Always Babel: Living a Jewish Life in Translation, with Ilan Stavans

A Live, Online Event Recorded Via Zoom on April 15, 2021

To coincide with the publication of Ilan Stavans' Selected Translations: Poems 2000–2020 (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2021), which features around a hundred of his translations of poems originally written in nearly a dozen different languages (including Yiddish, Hebrew, Ladino, Spanish, Russian, German, Portuguese, and the indigenous tongue K'iche'), he reflects on the act and art of living a Jewish life in, through, and by means of translation. For over two decades, Stavans, the award-winning, polyglot essayist, storyteller, and scholar who teaches at Amherst College and is the publisher of Restless Books, has rendered into English the work of poets like Avrom Sutzkever, Pablo Neruda, Paul Celan, Federico Garcia Lorca, Anna Akhmatova, and Yehuda Amichai. For Stavans, Jewish civilization from biblical times to the present always points back to the drama of the Tower of Babel.

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