How Translators Teach Translations

Michael Henry Heim used to tell a story of how he had once introduced a bit of translation into his large survey class on Soviet Civilization in the early 1990s, commenting in passing on how a well-known book had been translated differently by two different translators. I believe it might have been Solzhenitsyn’s One Day… Continue reading How Translators Teach Translations

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Post-Short Russian Fiction 2021

I finished grading the short Russian fiction class last week, and, having used a little new material and more new methods, wanted to write a few things down before I forget them. First, one surprise was the Lyudmila Ulitskaya story “Happy” (Nadya L. Peterson, tr.), which was surprisingly easy to teach, probably because it is… Continue reading Post-Short Russian Fiction 2021

Teaching Russian Short Fiction

I’ll be teaching what is called a “second 8-week” class this semester. This is a special format that my university came up with to address two problems. The first one is that sometimes a professor offers a class that doesn’t get enough students to sign up, such that it has to be canceled. The second… Continue reading Teaching Russian Short Fiction

It’s, like, the ripest old age

The relative frequency of the word даже is something translators from Russian to English figure out at some point, and Dostoevsky’s palaverers present a classic case. Gogol’s are right up there as well, and I seem to recall that one of the most astute passages of Eikhenbaum’s “How Gogol’s Overcoat is Made” delves into the… Continue reading It’s, like, the ripest old age

In Paperback!

New In Paperback Spring 2016 “The Woman in the Window manages to cross numerous boundaries with enviable ease. The result is not just intellectually stimulating, but eminently readable.” —Eliot Borenstein, Russian and Slavic studies, New York University “Provocative and wide-reaching, The Woman in the Window: Commerce, Consensual Fantasy, and the Quest for Masculine Virtue in… Continue reading In Paperback!

In NY later this week (for a man and a woman)

I’ll be participating in The University of Rochester’s Reading the Word series this Thursday for the launch of The Man Between. Then to NYU’s Jordan Center on Friday afternoon for a presentation drawn from The Woman in the Window. Here are the details: Event No. 1: Michael Henry Heim was one of the greatest literary… Continue reading In NY later this week (for a man and a woman)

The jacket cover, etc.

I’ve just sent a suggested revised version of the short description that will go on all the promotional materials for the book, and here it is: In The Woman in the Window: Commerce, Consensual Fantasy, and the Quest for Masculine Virtue in the Russian Novel, Russell Scott Valentino offers pioneering new insights into the historical… Continue reading The jacket cover, etc.