Sunday, August 17, 2014

WITMonth Day 17 - The other Europe

As we enter the second half of WITMonth, so too we turn towards new regions and new writers. This week, that means looking at the parts of Europe that generally receive less attention and translations - the Center, the Balkans and the full-blown East. My definition for Eastern Europe was entirely arbitrary and fairly vague - there's no line running through Europe that indicates who's West and who's East. Or rather, there isn't one any more. Like last time, readers are free to imagine their own definitions and read however they'd like.

The reason I feel the need to distinguish between these two halves of Europe has less to do with their former politics (I'll note that the Soviet Union did not really exist in my lifetime) and more to do with the fact that it's been a slow burn getting literature translated into English. Countries like Poland, Romania, Russia and others don't lack for women writers, but they're certainly underrepresented in translations. As always, the idea is to highlight the authors we are familiar with, and hope for more.

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