Literary gems found in translation
A new anthology of Thai short fiction brings out the best of 2012 in English; 'Brunch' speaks to the compiler about the art of bringing these stories to an international audience
Translation is a time-consuming, arduous and often thankless task. Literary translation also involves suppressing some natural impulses to interpret, edit and impose a personal style, while remaining in the background and allowing the tale to take root in another language.
Marcel Barang, 67, is not just a translator but active in the literary sphere, promoting the talents he feels merit it. In 12 Thai Short Stories _ 2012 he collated a dozen of last year's finest short fiction by Thai writers into an accessible and absorbing e-book. The styles and subjects are a study in contrasts, pointing to increasing depth and nuance in new Thai fiction. They are the ones, out of the hundreds Barang reads each year, that he feels stand on their own on merit.
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