Wednesday, 7:00 pm EDT October 26, 2022
The Center for Fiction
This event has been canceled.
As part of an ongoing series in which we investigate and appreciate the art of translation, we welcome Jacob Rogers—acclaimed translator, winner of Poetry in Translation Prize from Words Without Borders and the Academy of American Poets, and The Center for Fiction bookseller(!)—for a discussion on his “lucid and musical” translation of The Last Days of Terranova. Originally written in Galician by Manuel Rivas, The Last Days of Terranova tells of Vicenzo Fontana, the elderly owner of the long-standing Terranova Bookstore, on the day it’s set to close due to the greed of real-estate speculators. On this final day, Vincenzo spends the night in his beloved store filled with more than seventy years of fugitive histories. Join us for a conversation on the practice of translation, the expertly-crafted novel, and often-intertwining literary and political history. Jacob will be joined in conversation by Eric Banks.
Jacob Rogers is a translator of Galician and Spanish poetry and prose. He has received grants from the National Endowment of the Arts and the PEN/Heim Translation Fund, as well as winning the Poetry in Translation Prize from Words Without Borders and the Academy of American Poets. He has helped coordinate two features of Galician-language writing, in Words Without Borders and Asymptote, and his translations have been featured in a variety of publications. His translation of Carlos Casares’s novel, His Excellency, was published by Small Stations Press in 2017. His translation of Manuel Rivas’ novel, The Last Days of Terranova is forthcoming from Archipelago Books in October 2022.
Eric Banks is director of the New York Institute for the Humanities. He is the former editor in chief of Bookforum and a former senior editor of Artforum. He is a past president of the National Book Critics Circle. Banks is consulting editor of the digital Robert Rauschenberg catalogue raisonné.
Manuel Rivas is an award-winning Galician writer, poet, screenwriter, and journalist, and considered a revolutionary in contemporary Galician literature. He began his writing career at the age of 15, and has since published nine anthologies of poetry, fourteen novels, collected essays, and news articles. His 1998 novel O lápis do carpinteiro (The Carpenter’s Pencil) is the most widely translated work in the history of Galician literature. Rivas has received the Spanish Critics’ Prize for Un millón de vacas, the Galician Critics’ Prize for En salvaxe compaña, the National Literature Prize for Narrative for Que me queres, amor?, the Spanish Critics’ Prize for O lapis de carpinteiro, and the National Critics’ Prize in Galician for Os libros arden mal, which was also named Book of the Year by booksellers in Madrid.
The Last Days of Terranova
By Manuel Rivas
Published by Archipelago Books / Steerforth Press
Translated by Jacob Rogers
The Last Days of Terranova tells of Vicenzo Fontana, the elderly owner of the long-standing Terranova Bookstore, on the day it’s set to close due to the greed of real-estate speculators. On this final day, Vincenzo spends the night in his beloved store filled with more than seventy years of fugitive histories.
Jumping from the present to various points in the past, the novel ferries us back to Vicenzo’s childhood, when his father opened the store in 1935, to the years that the store was run by his Uncle Eliseo, and to the years in the lead-up to the democratic transition, which Vicenzo spent as far away from the bookstore as possible, in Madrid.
Like the bookstore itself, The Last Days of Terranova is a space crammed with stories, histories, and literary references, and as many nooks, crannies, and complexities, brought to life in Rivas’s vital prose.
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