Our new Summer issue features work in and about translation. There’s a story from Andrés Neuman and a sneak peek at Michel Houellebecq’s controversial novel, Submission, plus poems by Coral Bracho, Xi Chuan, Radmila Lazić, and Iman Mersal. At its center are two interviews in our Art of Translation series—first with Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, who have been married for thirty-three years and whose thirty-odd translations include The Brothers Karamazov, Crime and Punishment, War and Peace, Anna Karenina, and Chekhov’s Selected Stories. “Very naive readers think you take the Russian and you put it in English, and then you’re done,” Pevear says.
Why would there be two translations? People still ask us that—hasn’t it been translated already? Some people feel very uneasy once they discover that there might be two or three different ways of translating something. How do I know which one to read? And that part is very emotional.
And with Peter Cole, who translates poetry from Hebrew and Arabic:
If you want to produce a vital translation, at some point in the translation process you have to forget the original. Some would say you have to kill it. Ideally by eating it alive.
Last month, the Washington Post called for the return of the serialized novel, suggesting The Paris Review ought to lead the charge. Our Summer issue kicks off our third serial in five years: Chris Bachelder’s novel The Throwback Special, about an ordinary group of men who gather together once a year to reenact what ESPN has called “the most shocking play in NFL history.” Each of the four installments will feature illustrations by Jason Novak; you can see one below.
There’s also new fiction from Ann Beattie, Deb Olin Unferth, David Szalay, Padgett Powell, and Lucia Berlin; poems by D. Nurkse, Peter Cole, Nick Twemlow, Ishion Hutchinson, and John Koethe; and a portfolio by Aidan Koch, whose work—polka dots included—also graces our cover.