mercredi 31 juillet 2013

Haitian fiction translated into English

I'd been thinking about doing this post for a while, but there was always another priority on my to-do list. A couple of days ago I finished reading Americanah. I really enjoyed it and it got me thinking about how good it feels to find a book that you can really fall into, whether as an escape or to expand your knowledge.

Books have always had a special place here at Tande. A couple of years ago, we even had a debate about translation, about making works available to Haitian Americans and others who might not be able to read them in the original. So, I thought I'd draw up a quick list. I hope that you'll find the same joy and excitement reading them that I did with Adichie's latest.


Jacques Roumain's Masters of the Dew.
For Jacques Stéphen Alexis, both General Sun, My Brother and In the Flicker of an Eyelid are available.
Love, Anger, Madness by Marie Vieux-Chauvet and René Philoctète's Massacre River are both favorites of mine. Although I don't know if the Philoctète, first published in 1989 qualifies as a classic yet. What's the timeframe on that? Oh, and let's add René Depestre's  The Festival of the Greasy Pole.

Contemporary works:

There are actually too many available to name them all. I'll just list a few of my favorites. I actually haven't read any of these translations -- just the originals, so I hope the translations are as good!

An Aroma of Coffee by Dany Laferrière
Children of Heroes by Lyonel Trouillot
Reflections of Loko Miwa by Lilas Desquiron

Two English translations of contemporary novels will be available in the coming weeks -- one set in colonial St. Domingue: Evelyne Trouillot's The Infamous Rosalie, and one set during the tumultuous demonstrations that rocked Port-au-Prince in early 2004: Yanick Lahens' The Colour of Dawn.

Please feel free to add any books I've forgotten. For those who do read French and Creole, are there any works you'd love to see translated into English?

Happy Reading!


6 commentaires:

  1. Very nice list!
    Thanks for giving us the heads up as well regarding the other upcoming titles.

  2. I just got my copy of The Infamous Rosalie by Evelyne Trouillot and started reading it today. Can't wait to see how it is compared to the French version which I loved. I think it's great that more and more Haitian works are being translated.

  3. Happy to be of service, Kreyol! You'll have to come back and let us know what you think of the translation once you've had a chance to read it, Sha!

  4. Too exciting about Infamous Rosalie! I'm glad I got to this posting late so I could also see Shadine's note that the book is out! I'll be referring a lot of people to it and buying my own copy ASAP! Alyssa

  5. Hi! I need to contact Mrs. Navere Menard. How can I get her email? Please help.

  6. Hi, you can send an email to me at