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Malvern Books presents: Twenty Girls to Envy Me Book Launch with Marcela Sulak & Marian Schwartz

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Twenty Girls to Envy Me Book Launch with Marcela Sulak & Marian Schwartz

WHEN: August 10, 2016 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
COST: Free

Join us in celebrating the launch of Twenty Girls to Envy Me (University of Texas Press), an English-Hebrew poetry collection from the Israeli writer Orit Gidali. This event will feature readings and a discussion with the book’s translator, Marcela Sulak. Marian Schwartz will also read from her recent translation of Calligraphy Lesson (co-translated with Leo Shtutin, Sylvia Maizell, and Mariya Bashkatova), the first English-language collection of short stories by Mikhail Shishkin.

Twenty Girls

Twenty Girls to Envy Me: Selected and New Poems of Orit Gidali features three dozen poems by the extraordinary Israeli writer Orit Gidali (b. 1972; pictured above), a unique voice among her contemporaries. Gidali’s work appears to focus on the domestic, but for her, the domestic sphere is the stage on which the drama of the geopolitical is reworked on an individual scale. The domestic is always inhabited by the Other, who in these deeply personal poems appears in various guises: a Palestinian mother, biblical figures, the poet’s own deceased mother, and her husband’s first wife. Gidali creates a space in her world to imaginatively reconfigure the current political impasses of the region through a focus on relationship and openness. Gidali’s poems, beautifully captured in English by Marcela Sulak, present a world beset by danger and uncertainty, yet they nonetheless cry out for community, connection, cooperation, and coexistence.

Orit Gidali has published three collections of poetry, as well as a children’s book. She teaches at Tel Aviv University and organizes workshops in collaboration with the author Eshkol Nevo.

Marcela SMarcela Sulak is the author of two collections of poetry, Decency (Black Lawrence Press, 2015) and Immigrant (Black Lawrence Press, 2010) and one poetry chapbook, Of all the things that don’t exist, I love you best (Finishing Line Press, 2008). She has co-edited Family Resemblance. An Anthology and Exploration of 8 Hybrid Literary Genres (Rose Metal Press, 2015). Her four book-length poetry translations from Hebrew, Czech, and French include Twenty Girls to Envy Me (University of Texas Press, 2016), A Bouquet of Czech Folktales by Karel Jaromir Erben (Twisted Spoon Press, 2012), May by Karel Hynek Macha (Twisted Spoon Press, 2005, 2010), and Bela-Wenda. Poems from the Heart of Africa by Mutumbo Nkulu-N’Sengha (Host Publications, 2011). She is an Associate Professor of English at Bar-Ilan University, and she is an editor at The Ilanot Review. She also hosts a weekly literary podcast on the online radio station TLV.1 called “Israel in Translation.”

Marian SMarian Schwartz has translated Russian classic and contemporary fiction, history, biography, criticism, and fine art for over forty years. She is the principal English translator of the works of Nina Berberova and has retranslated half a dozen Russian classics, including Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina. In addition to half the stories in Calligraphy Lesson: The Collected Stories of Mikhail Shishkin, she also translated Shishkin’s novel Maidenhair for Open Letter Books. Forthcoming in January 2017 is her translation of Andrei Gelasimov’s novel Into the Thickening Fog.