Kalima is a giant translation initiative recently launched by the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (ADACH).
The translations include the works of seven prominent award-winning American authors, like Denis Johnson; Marilynne Robinson, Edward P. Jones, and Ha Jin.
International authors translated by Kalima include names like Irelands’ Edna O’Brien and Germany’s George Sebald.
Jonson’s novel, ‘Tree of Smoke’, was listed as America’s best novel for 2007 by the New York Times. The fiction tells the story of a CIA mission in Vietnam.
Robinson’s new novel, ‘Gilead’, came twenty-five years after her successful first novel ‘House Keeping’. While her first work focused on female generations, her second book primarily deals with men across different generations.
The thorny issue of American slavery is the theme of Jones’s fiction, ‘The Known World’. However his story revolves around black-black relations, as opposed to the known white-black relationship in the US during times of slavery.
O’Brien’s work, ‘Mother Ireland’, gives a personal and a beautiful depiction of the moving tales of the land and of the people of Ireland, in a beautiful mix of pain and joy.
Jin, born in China in 1956, only migrated to the US in 1984. His novel, ‘Waiting’, takes on subjects related to power, exile and freedom in a poetic style.
In his novel ‘Austerlitz’, the German author Sebald takes his readers to the times of sorrows and horrors of World War II and Nazi concentration camps. His book criticises modern Europe’s avoidance system as he deals with the topic of loss and forgetfulness in history.
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