Category: english

Translation Café No 144: Issue No 144 Poems by Matei Vișniec

Press Release May 2015

eZine of Modern Texts in Translation
Translation Café

under The University of Bucharest,
in conjunction with The British Council,
The Romanian Cultural Institute,

and The Embassy of Ireland

Announces the publication of

Issue No 144
Poems by Matei Vișniec

Translation Café publishes in Issue 144 poems by Matei Vișniec, a Romanian poet and playwright who now lives in France. His plays have been translated into numerous languages and acted throughout the world. This issue contains poems from the volume entitled At Marx’s Table; the poems have been translated from Romanian into English by graduate students of the MA Programme for the Translation of the Contemporary Literary Text.

Translation Café No 144 is available for consultation and downloading on receipt of this Press Release, at the following internet address:

Comunicat de presă mai 2015

eZine of Modern Texts in Translation
Translation Café

sub auspiciile următoarelor foruri:
Universitatea din București,
The British Council,
Institutul Cultural Român,
și Ambasada Irlandei

No 144
Poezii de Matei Vișniec

Translation Café publică în acest număr poezii de Matei Vișniec, poet și dramaturg român stabilit în Franța. Matei Vișniec este cunoscut în special pentru piesele sale de teatru, care au fost traduse în numeroase limbi străine și au fost puse în scenă în întreaga lume; în 2002, Ministerul Culturii i–a decernat Premiul Național pentru Dramaturgie. Acest număr al revistei conține poeme din volumul La masă cu Marx. Traducerile în limba engleză au fost făcute de masteranzi ai programului pentru Traducerea Textului Literar Contemporan (MTTLC).

Translation Café  No 144 poate fi consultată și descărcată din acest moment la adresa de internet:


William Shakespeare: Sonnets. Sonete pdf gratis

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William Shakespeare: Sonnets. Sonete

Există scriitori clasici care sunt traduși periodic în alte limbi. De fiecare dată traducerea lor scoate la iveală o nouă față. S-a întâmplat acest lucru cu traducerea lui Eminescu în limba engleză. Se întâmplă acum—din nou—cu traducerea lui William Shakespeare în limba română.

Publicăm o traducere inedită a Sonetelor, făcută de un inginer, care este și debutant pe deasupra. Radu Ștefănescu traduce sonetele cu rimă, ritm și sens. Desigur, orice traducere este în același timp o extindere a textului către cultura altei limbi, dar și o limitare a lui la felul în care înțelege traducătorul ceea ce traduce.

Radu Ștefănescu traduce și rescrie. Sonetele lui în românește sunt un act de cultură, dar și unul de creație. Invităm cititorul să decidă singur dacă ele sunt în primul rând o traducere și abia după aceea creație de poezie—sau invers. Sau, poate, în egală măsură, și una și alta. Lectura acestui volum, chiar dacă nu-l va convinge pe cititor, cu siguranță îl va captiva.


mesostomizing a Romanian body (a verbal drawing)

This week’s assignment for Modern & Contemporary American Poetry course (as I’ve posted it today for the Coursera platform).

(a BBC report in Cage’s program)

































 chanc E




I preferred using the text of a BBC report on the Romanian elections from this weekend instead of a literary reference. The reason for this was that I a non-literary source-text offers the opportunity to study the way each word accesses different registers of language once it is taken out from the original context. The online program offered automatically only 20 lines, so I had to add the last two manually using words from the report (actually, the first and the last words of the poem – “Romania” and “chance” are the first and the last words of the original article, as it can be seen at the first link).

Coursera_Computer_NarrowI enjoyed the fact that the automatic selection included all the tensions from the reality. It pretty much works as an electronic DADA poem with the essential included. Using news piece as the original text emphases the change in the words condition from journalism to poetry. Actually the different functions of the language, as identified by Roman Jackobson take turns in this automatic poem. The beginning is referential as “Romanian’s/ electiOn” is the background event even for (and in) the poem. The chance worked well with the inclusion of “On” as beginning in these first lines and then, the “Me” on the third one.

I’m not so sure about the way the strange Romanian names included in the text work here. Ponta and Basescu, I’m sure that doesn’t mean anything for a non Romanian reader, so it might very well be considered as a mark of the conative function of language, as it engages a receiver for the poem. Then, as it doesn’t seem necesar to know the political relevance of the names it simply works as a device of the poetic function (the message for it’s own sake). As for the expressive function it might be identified here in the recurrences of euphonic devices (the repetition of “occasionally”, the way these words sound in relation with “nation” and “election”).

Then, as for the exact poem, the first and the last letters of the spine are the first and the last letter of the poem. The spine, also, puts into action a metalingual function of the poem, as it denies identity between text and reference. Going farther, I might add, that this is not really a poem in the expressive tradition of the ego, but a poem that emphases on the non-identity of reality and it’s description. In the end, text’s function is only phatic (it remains just language for the sake of interaction, like greetings or any casual conversation) in the terms of the same linguist and literary theorist. Even more, deleting the ego of the writer is one of the most important experiences of this kind of writing. Instead of a text about something that is (or was) somewhere else (in authors life, or mind, or “soul”) we are provided with a device that invites to perform the text, to make it present. This might be exactly what Marjorie Perloff called “”real – ization” in her essay on Cage or (as the critic noticed) in Cage’s own (spine) word, “performance”.


photo Dennis Jarvis

Free online paralell texts: Liviu Ioan Stoiciu – Born in Romania / Născut în România

Press Release Bucharest, Monday 30 June 2014
Online Publication
Contemporary Literature Press,
under The University of Bucharest, in conjunction with The British Council, The Romanian Cultural Institute, and The Embassy of Ireland,

Announces the publication of

Liviu Ioan Stoiciu
Born in Romania
Născut în România
Parallel Texts

Edited by Lidia Vianu
Translated into English by Leah Fritz and Alina Bușe
Illustrated by Cristina Ioana Young
ISBN 978-606-8592-52-7

We are publishing now, in the year 2014, 25 years after the fall of communism, and 24 years after what we call “Piața Universității”, an anthology of poems by Liviu Stoiciu, a poet who was not fooled by any of the traps history set him. .

The poet allowed the Publishing House to choose a title for this book. We have chosen, from one of his lines, Born in Romania. The reason is in the poems, which we hope our readers will decode.

The book was first translated by Ioana Bușe, a former student of the MA Programme for the Translation of the Literary Text, and, then, the remarkable American-born poet Leah Fritz worked on it for two full years. We all knew translating a Romanian poet, and especially translating Liviu Ioan Stoiciu, would be a hard nut to crack. Once again, we do hope our readers will read his poems and understand why.

Born in Romania / Născut în România. Parallel Texts, by Liviu Ioan Stoiciu is formally launched on Monday 30 June 2014. The volume is available for consultation and downloading on receipt of this Press Release, at the following internet address:

You are kindly invited to visit the Contemporary Literature Press website at For comments or suggestions, please contact the publisher Continuare