The leading Germanist Roy Pascal’s translation of Goethe’s moving version of the Iphigenia-Orestes story was first broadcast on BBC radio in 1954 in a production by Val Gielgud (with Maria Becker, Marius Goring and Donald Wolfit) and again in 1966 in a production by H.B. Fortuin (with Irene Worth, Denys Hawthorne and Michael Hordern). It is now published for the first time. ‘This translation could have been written today,’ writes Martin Swales in his Introduction. ‘It has stood the test of time, and in that sense it is a classic.’
Goethe’s version of the Classical Greek legend speaks with particular urgency to us today. In this eloquent blank verse drama Iphigenia, daughter of Agamemnon, leader of the Greek forces in the Trojan War, in exile as a priestess in the barbaric land of the Tauri (Crimea), by her own unaided human efforts lifts the Tantalid family curse and ends the chain of revenge killings through the generations. Read more
This fifth selection of Denis Jackson’s definitive series of translations of the novellas of Theodor Storm includes the little-known late masterpiece A Doppelgänger, the dramatic story of an ex-prisoner’s struggle for rehabilitation, along with one of Storm’s most celebrated tales, Aquis submersus, a tragedy of passion and a powerful critique of the North German landowning Junker class.
‘Slaves in their Chains condenses more than fifty years of inexorable social change that began with the union of the Ionian Islands with Greece in 1864. This powerful novel, fluently and compellingly rendered into English for the first time, deserves to be much better known.
POETRY BOOK SOCIETY RECOMMENDED TRANSLATION
SHORTLISTED FOR THE WEIDENFELD TRANSLATION PRIZE 2014 AND THE ROSSICA TRANSLATION PRIZE 2014
Vladislav Khodasevich (1886–1939), deleted from literary history in the Soviet era because of his emigration in 1922 with his partner Nina Berberova, has since been welcomed in Russia into its 20th-century pantheon of poets, where he was long ago placed by Vladimir Nabokov and Joseph Brodsky.
Khodasevich is a modernist yet standing for continuity, relishing the verse forms of Pushkin. In the postrevolutionary era of the 1920s, in the sound and fury of poetic schools battling for supremacy, his restrained and understated tone was misunderstood. Read more
Russian writers from Pushkin to Bulgakov and beyond have produced outstanding ghost stories, supernatural thrillers, and other tales of the uncanny. In the first decades of the 20th century the Gothic-fantastic genre flourished in Russia, despite official efforts to stamp it out. Few of these stories have been translated or published outside Russia. This collection includes eleven vintage tales by seven writers of the period. Read more