i n t e r e s t i n g  s i t e s  &  r e s o u r c e s 



As Archipelago continues its seventh year of publication, we pause to remind ourselves of where we come from. In “Little String Game,” our contributing editor K. Callaway traced the meaning of the word through history.

“I’ve looked up ‘archipelago’ in the OED and my Eleventh Edition (1910-11) of the Encyclopaedia Britannica, and found it is pronounced arkipelago, and that the Italian word it came to us from, arci-pelago, is pronounced archie. Thus, at least two pronunciations are in use. To my surprise, though, I see the word doesn’t mean ‘islands’ but the sea in which they are found in number. The etymology is much disputed. The OED says it comes from the Italian arcipelago, from arci (chief, principle) and pelago (deep, abyss, gulf, pool). The medieval Latin is pelagus, the Greek pelagos, sea. In most languages the word had at first the prefix of the native form: OS. arcipielago ; OPg. arcepelago; M.E. archpelago, arch-sea. All except Italian now begin archi; according to the OED….” “Little String Game,” Archipelago Vol. 1, No. 2.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights. A reminder of our rights and our responsibility to those whose human rights are endangered, at home and abroad.

The “Copenhagen Project” is devoted to the fascinating series of symposia and other events organized around Michael Frayn’s play “Copenhagen,” about which we wrote in our Endnotes, “The Colossus,” Vol. 6, No. 1 , and “Colossus II”. Vol. 6, No. 2.

An e-mail from The Black Documentary Collective (PO Box 33, Prince Street Station, New York, NY 10012) informs us: “The Black Documentary Collective (BDC) provides people of African descent working in the documentary film and video field with the opportunity to meet socially; network professionally; promote each others’ work and exchange ideas in order to generate productions. The BDC also advocates on issues impacting Black documentarians.

“We welcome new members in the New York metropolitan area who are willing to develop the BDC through the vision of the membership in the spirit of collective work and the collective concept of organization. Membership is open to people of African descent engaged in the production and/or service of documentary film and video, including students.”


Independent Presses

Ardis is the small publishing company founded in 1969 by (the late) Carl and Ellendea Proffer, who published the great Russian writers we needed (still need) to read, when no one else was doing it. Mrs. Proffer is still the publisher; her lovely essay “About Ardis” is worth reading. It is – she was – living history. The Ardis picture archive is extraordinary: images of Akhmatova, Bulgakov, Platonov, Nabokov, and so many of the remarkable writers of the 20th century.

Catbird Press publishes, among other notable books, a number by Czech writers in translation, including THE POEMS OF JAROSLAV SEIFERT; a garland of these poems appeared in Archipelago Vol. 2, No. 3.  Daniela Fischerová’s “A Letter to President Eisenhower,” appears in Vol. 3, No. 1; her collection of stories,  FINGERS POINTING SOMEWHERE ELSE, came out this year. See also  the web site of the Czech Embassy, Washington, for their cultural calendar in the capital city.

The Lilliput Press is an Irish publisher founded in 1984 by Antony Farrell. Some 150 titles have appeared under its imprint: art and architecture, autobiography and memoir, biography and history, ecology and environmentalism, essays and literary criticism, philosophy, current affairs and popular culture, fiction, drama and poetry – all broadly focused on Irish themes. Since 1985 they have brought out four volumes of the essays of the late Hubert Butler. Hubert Butler’s “The Artukovitch File” appears, with their permission, in Archipelago Vol. 1, No. 2 and “The Sub-Prefect Should Have Held His Tongue” Vol. 5 No 1.

McPherson & Co publishes such writers as the fascinating Mary Butts (THE TAVERNER NOVELS), Anna Maria Ortese (A MUSIC BEHIND THE WALL, Selected Stories Vol. 2), and the performance artist Carolee Schneeman. A beautiful story by Ortese, “The Great Street,” appeared in our inaugural issue, and the writer’s testament, “Where Time Is Another,” appeared in Vol. 2, No. 4.

Mercury House is an estimable non-profit literary publisher, some of whose authors are Alfred Arteaga (Archipelago Vol. 1, No. 3), Robert Louis Stevenson, Joseph von Sternberg, the Italian fabulist I.U. Tarchetti (PASSION; FANTASTIC TALES), and a number of personal writings about the Holocaust. They  publish NARROW ROAD TO THE DEEP NORTH, by Katherine McNamara.

Station Hill Press is a non-profit publisher run by the poet George Quasha. They publish writers of serious and surrealist bent, as well as very fine poetry and fiction. Among their writers are Maurice Blanchot and Spencer Holst (whose “The Zebra Storyteller” appeared in Vol. 3, No. 1). María Negroni, whose work appeared in Vol. 1, No. 1 and Vol. 2, No. 4, is the author of a beautiful work in poetry and prose, ISLANDIA, recently out.

Salmon Poetry lives in County Clare, Ireland. The editor, Jessie Lendennie, is pleased to publish not only her countrymen, including, she tells us, the largest list of women poets of any Irish publisher, but also Alaskan poets, among whom are several old friends of ours.

Sun & Moon Press is a fine, serious, literary press with a long backlist. They publish classics as well as contemporary fiction and poetry; writers and poets such as Arkadii Dragomoschenko (astonishing Russian poet), Paul Celan, Harry Matthews, Djuna Barnes, Paul Auster, Russell Banks. They will publish Maria Negroni’s LA JAULA BAJO EL TRAPO/CAGE UNDER COVER, tr. Anne Twitty, in a Spanish-English edition; a selection appeared in Archipelago Vol. 2, No. 4.

Turtle Point Press. This intelligent press, led by Jonathon Rabinowitz, Helen Marx, and Jeanette Watson, is reviving several books by the marvelous Iris Origo, including her LEOPARDI: A STUDY IN SOLITUDE. Another necessary book published here is Hannah Green’s profound THE DEAD OF THE HOUSE. Jeanette Watson’s Books & Co. News “Off the Wall,” now appears on its own site. (An excerpt from Lynne Tillman’s BOOKSTORE, about Watson and Books & Co., once one of the cultural resources of Manhattan, appears in Vol. 3, No. 3.)

Twisted Spoon Press, publishing in Prague, offers works in translation by Central European writers, in handsomely-made paperbound books. Among their authors: the great Czech writer Bohumil Hrabal (his TOTAL FEARS, as it is called in English, being a selection of periodic writing, is a great book), Toma alamun, fine Slovenian poet, Peter Nadas, Hungarian novelist, and other writers we will want to know about. The Prague Links are particularly useful if you are going there or are interested in the city.

Fine Arts

<i>iola</i>. This perfectly eccentric site is like the dinner party of artists, thinkers, above all, talkers you want regularly to be invited to. Its host-redactor is Robbin Murphy, who is worth looking up. Of particular delight: The Little Window.

Utopia, the fascinating exhibit on “The Search for the Ideal Society in the Western World,” mounted by the New York Public Library, and co-curated by that library and the Bibliothèque national de France, has both physical and virtual installations. Beautiful books about a beautiful, or terrifying, subject of Western thought and social experiments are handsomely displayed; but the web site offers another dimension entirely. Handsome flash art; serious, even profound matter; marvelous resources including bibliographies and links. A research site to bookmark.

Work in Regress. This vertiginous site is by Peteris Cedrins, author of “The Penetralium,” an excerpt of which appears in Archipelago Vol. 3, No. 3. Here also are two images of dark, thrilling paintings by Inguna Liepa; descent into the psyche.

Journals and Reviews

Al Jadid, a printed review of Arab culture and arts, posts a website offering selections from the present and back issues. It should attract any intelligent reader interested in the literature and arts of the Middle East. We note particularly the complex, thoughtful essay (Fall 2001) by Elie Chalala on the Lebanese novelist Hanan al-Shaykh, writing about the “life, dreams and pain of Afghan women” in response to September 11. Available in print in the same issue are the beautiful translations “Songs of Pashtun Women,” by Simone Fattal, publisher of the Post-Apollo Press; she also publishes the luminous poet Etel Adnan, whose “Further On…” appeared in Archipelago Vol. 4, No. 4.  Al Jadid is available by subscription; information is posted on the website.

The Alsop Review. Edited by Jaimes Alsop, this is a handsome, thoughtful publication that, if it were published on paper, would be collected and turned to for rainy-day reading.

The Barcelona Review, Jill Adams, Editor. A fine, multi-lingual (English, Castilian, Catalan) offering published in Catalonia by a multi-national group. Intelligent editing; interesting reading of younger writers from Europe and America.

Big Bridge. Edited by Michael Rothenberg, editor of OVERTIME, selected poems of Philip Whalen (Penguin, 1999), and PARIS JOURNALS (Fish Drum, 2000) and Wanda Phipps, who bring an open-armed, ‘60s generosity to this “webzine.” “We think walls are good for keeping out the cold and rain,” they write: “They’re useless in the creation and propagation of art.” Big Bridge Press publishes chapbooks and handsome botanica. Michael Rothenberg and Mary Sands also co-edit Jack Magazine.

Blackbird is directed by our colleague Mary Finn, editor of the New Virginia Review, which co-produces Blackbird with Virginia Commonwealth University. Although an academic literary magazine, published twice-yearly, it offers interesting established writers and, regularly, new audio pieces. We are particularly fond of the audio conversation with our friend George Garrett, who has appeared occasionally in these pages, in conversation and as reviewer in Vol. 1, No. 3  and Vol. 5, No. 3.

The Central European Review, covering the news and arts of Central Europe, and offering interesting links and a library of e-books, has reappeared and is now published by Transitions Online, which covers the post-communist nations of Central and Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and the former Soviet Union. TOL also publishes Balkan Reconstruction Report (BRR) and the TOL Wire. We’re pleased to see CER back in form.

Contemporary Poetry Review is “unique in the English-speaking world,” according to its editor, Garrick Davis, “devoted as it is exclusively to the criticism of poetry.” This British journal offers reviews of  “established international poets” and interviews with poets, critics, and translators, information about newly-published books, and a chat-room. CPR is an intelligently-written and organized publication.

The Drunken Boat was founded and is edited by the poet Rebecca Seiferle, whose most recent book of poems is BITTERS (Copper Canyon Press). Look for translations of poets from Montréal, Lithuania, Vietnam, etc.; poems by Americans such as Ruth Stone, Marvin Bell, Aliki Barnstone, and many others; columns and reviews; links to other sites (including ours, generously reviewed); and the archives, which contain a fine anthology of world poetry. This is a lovely publication to look at, as well.

Frank is a stylish-earnest journal, published in print and on-line. The editor is David Applefield, an American in Paris. About Frank he writes: “Based in Paris, where culture, language, history, and creative energy all converge, Frank has published over 1000 writers, poets, translators, and visual artists from over 35 countries since the early 80s. Deeply committed to the increasingly-important need to combat ethnocentricity, Frank publishes fiction, poetry, cultural interviews, and compelling art from wherever people create.” On y va…

Frigate. We’ve been reading this journal from the beginning, and suppose everyone else does, too. “Ours is a simple little on-line magazine, mostly talking about books. Frigate takes its name from Emily Dickinson, ‘there is no frigate like a book’; from the thieving frigate bird, which never lands on earth; from ‘frig it,’ the midwest’s favorite pseudo-obscenity. We are a piratical frigate, and we take our riches where we find them.”

Hyde Park Book Review is a coolly-designed, intelligent, new quarterly review of literary fiction and serious non-fiction published by small and medium-sized independent and university presses. We are going to read this one often.

Jacket was founded and is edited four (or so) times a year by John Tranter, a widely-published Australian poet of energy and accomplishment devoted to pushing the edges of the poetic form. In this journal he offers the work of other writers generously, as poems, essays, reviews, articles, interviews, and features; but he does not accept submissions.

Kinoeye: “a fortnightly journal of film in the New Europe.” Read about films and filmmakers from Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, and Slovenia. This is a good source.

Linnaean Street is an elegant small review edited with discrimination and taste by Andrew Wilson and produced handsomely as though on paper.

London Review of Books. One of the few reviews we read cover to cover; published on paper every two weeks and worth subscribing to. The on-line edition offers a generous selection of the current and past editions.

Poetry Daily. A daily necessity, in their fifth year on-line.

The Richmond Review published in London, received approving notice (along with Archipelago) in the TLS. Its founding editor, Steven Kelly, offers short stories, essays and articles by, and reviews of, international authors; also, news of the book trade in Britain.

Sycamore Review is published at Purdue University as a print journal but has a web site offering information about the journal, and intends to offer more as back issues go out of print. We note that recently it published WithoutCovers://literary_magazines@the_digital_edge, a Sycamore Review Book Project, edited by Lesha Hurliman and Numsuri C. Kunakemakorn. Our contribution to the anthology is an article about the formation of Archipelago; we are honored to have been included with the editors of the nationally distributed books and small magazines The Cortland Review, The Drunken Boat, The Iowa Review, Jacket Magazine, The Kenyon Review, The Literary Review, Leonardo's Horse, The Missouri Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, Poets & Writers, Postmodern American Fiction, Postmodern Culture, River Styx, and ZYZZYVA.

Two Lines is a journal of literary translation published on paper, but its web site offers information, lists the contents of back issues, and publishes news of interest to professional translators. We admire it and think it one of the necessary journals offering American readers work by international writers seldom available in the U. S. Every translation is paired with its original text and an introduction by the translator. Worth seeking out; better, subscribing to.

Web del Sol is the invaluable stand-by we’ve consulted for years, configured gorgeously into an almost dizzying assemblage of literary web sites (we couldn’t do without the Links page), portal to vast riches of poetry residing in distant nodes of the web or right under our fingertips. (It plays music, too.) The editor, Michael Neff, was kind enough to write of Archipelago: “You have a superb magazine, and it elevates all who engage in online publishing of serious work.” Recently, the poet Martin Earl wrote about us in his CyberRambler column No. 6.

Good Deed

The Hunger Site, United Nations: A friend e-mails: “Quite clever of the U.N. to do this. Go to the Hunger Site on the U.N. webpage. All you do is click a button and somewhere in the world a hungry person gets a meal at no cost to you. The food is paid for by corporate sponsors. All you do is go to the site and click. You’re allowed one click per day.” It’s true, and worth doing.

Et Alia

Dialog Among Civilizations. Rattapallax Press is among the world-wide organizers of a “Dialogue Among Civilizations Through Poetry.” Last year’s readings at the U. N. featured Yusef Komunyakaa, Joyce Carol Oates, and others. In more than one hundred cities and international sites were readings by hundreds of poets. The dialog continues; information, schedules, photos, and useful links are posted on both the “Dialog” and Rattapallax websites.

Art and Literary Sites

Alt-X Publishing Network is Mark Amerika’s smart, sharp performance-artist/publishing/writing/cultural-critical scene. His PHON-E-ME virtual installation at the Walker Art Center, for instance, is brilliant. We talk about his work in Vol. 4 No. 4 with Calvin Reid. See, also, Joe Tabbi’s challenging, thoughtful review of Mark Amerika’s writing and why we ought to read it well.

Book Comics. Fantagraphics  is a good entry-point if you are looking for more work by graphic artists and writers like Chris Ware (JIMMY CORRIGAN), Dan Clowes, Jessica Abel, and others whose work is worth watching. We read graphic novels for their complexity, intensity, and edge-of-despair wit. We began with Franz Masreel (1898-1972) (PASSIONATE JOURNEY, A Novel Told in 165 Woodcuts with an introduction by Thomas Mann, Penguin; LANDSCAPES AND VOICES, Schocken), and haven’t stopped finding new artists. We admire Artbabe: she’s the smart, funny, full-speed-ahead invention of Jessica Abel. Paul Pope has his own website – he’s the rock-‘n-roll star of comics artists. Matt Madden has a new book called ODDS OFF coming out from High Water Books, and a rather brilliant experimental project based on Raymond Queneau’s EXERCISES IN STYLE. Comix Decode is a traveling road show of comics artists – read more about it.




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