Jeffrey Yang & Robyn Creswell
April 27, 2017, 7:00 PM
Jeffrey Yang and Robyn Creswell join us to discuss two important books they translated for New Directions. Open Up, City Gate (Yang) is Bei Dao’s lyrical autobiography--a beautiful memory palace of endless alleyways and corridors--where personal narrative mixes with China’s momentous history. Abdelfattah Kilito’s The Tongue of Adam (Creswell) considers the genesis of multilingualism through the historical debates on the language of the first man: Adam.
Jeffrey Yang is the author of the poetry collections Vanishing-Line and An Aquarium, winner of the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award. He is the translator of Ahmatjan Osman’s Uyghurland, the Farthest Exile (with the author), Liu Xiaobo’s June Fourth Elegies, Su Shi’s East Slope, and Bei Dao’s autobiography City Gate, Open Up. He is also the editor of the anthologies Birds, Beasts, and Seas: Nature Poems and Time of Grief: Mourning Poems, and the collection The Sea Is a Continual Miracle: Sea Poems and Other Writings by Walt Whitman (forthcoming, 2017). Yang works as an editor at New Directions and New York Review Books.
A critic, translator, and scholar, Robyn Creswell has written about contemporary poetry and fiction for Harper’s, The Nation, Raritan, n+1, and other magazines. During a fellowship at the Cullman Center at the New York Public Library, he translated Sonallah Ibrahim’s That Smell and Notes from Prison. He has also translated Abdelfattah Kilito’s The Clash of Images from the French. Creswell is currently the poetry editor for The Paris Review and Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature at Brown University.