c o n t r i b u t or s

Etel Adnan, poet, painter and essayist, was born in Beirut in 1925. Her novel SITT MARIE ROSE, a novel of the Lebanese Civil War, has been translated and published in six languages and is considered a classic of Middle Eastern literature. Her books in English include THERE; PARIS, WHEN IT’S NAKED; FROM A TO Z; THE ARAB APOCALYPSE; THE INDIAN NEVER HAD A HORSE and other Poems; and OF CITIES AND WOMEN, all published by The Post Apollo Press, as well as many artist’s books. The composer Gavin Bryers set a group of eight of her love poems to music in THE ADNAN SONGBOOK. With her companion, Simone Fattal, she lives in Paris and Sausalito and travels often to Beirut.

Joel Agee is the author of TWELVE YEARS: AN AMERICAN BOYHOOD IN EAST GERMANY (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1981; University of Chicago Press, 2000), a memoir of his life behind the Iron Curtain from ages eight to twenty. His essays and stories have appeared in publications such as Harper’s, The New Yorker, and The Best American Essays. He is also known as a translator of German literary works, among them Rilke’s LETTERS ON CÉZANNE (Fromm International Publishing Corporation, 1985) and Elias Canetti’s THE SECRET HEART OF THE CLOCK (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1989).  He has received a Guggenheim Fellowship and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. In 1999 he won the Helen and Kurt Wolff Translator’s Prize for his translation of Heinrich von Kleist’s PENTHESILEA (HarperCollins, 2000). (See Endnotes, Archipelago, Vol. 3, No. 1.) “The Storm” first appeared in the April 1995 issue of Esquire. Joel Agee is currently completing a novel titled IN THE HOUSE OF MY FEAR. An excerpt from this book will appear in the January issue of Harper’s Magazine.

Cornelia Bessie is an editor and, with her husband, Michael Bessie, publisher of Cornelia and Michael Bessie Books (associated with Perseus Books). A conversation with her and Michael Bessie appeared in the series Institutional Memory in Archipelago Vol. 1, No. 4, and Vol. 2, No. 1.

Heather Burns holds an MFA from the University of Virginia and lives in Charlottesville, Virginia. Her poems have appeared in Alligator, Juniper, Antietam, Arion, The Blue Moon Review, The English Journal, Iris: A Journal About Women, Nimrod, Quarterly West, Southern Poetry Review, and The Virginia Quarterly Review. Three of her poems appeared in Archipelago, Vol. 2, No. 1. She is a founding director of a community writing center where she teaches poetry to adults and children.

Isabel Cole, translator of Christine Wolter and other German writers, has lived in Berlin since graduating from the University of Chicago in 1995. Her website contains her portfolio and curriculum vitae. Her translation (in excerpt) of Christine Wolter’s THE ROOMS OF MEMORY appeared in Archipelago Vol. 4, No. 1.

Annemarie Schwarzenbach was born in Zürich in 1908 and studied history in Zürich and Paris. Her friends Klaus and Erika Mann introduced her to the literary scene in Berlin, where she lived on and off from 1931 to 1933. In May 1933 she traveled to Spain with the photographer Marianne Breslauer, marking the beginning of her journalistic activities. From 1934 to 1941 she took numerous trips in Europe, the United States and the Near East as a photographer, journalist and essayist, often engaged in the support of European anti-Fascist groups. In 1940 she met Carson McCullers, who dedicated “Reflections in a Golden Eye” to her. In 1942 Annemarie Schwarzenbach was killed in a motorcycle accident in Switzerland. Her publisher is Lenos Verlag, Basel. They have announced a film to appear in Summer 2001, “Die Reise nach Kafiristan” (The Journey to Kafiristan), about Schwarzenbach’s trip to Afghanistan in 1939-40, with the photographer Ella Maillart.

“Annemarie Schwarzenbach died in 1942, at the age of thirty-four, after a motorcycle accident in Engadin. In Berlin she had become an addict, no longer able to free herself from morphine. She had left Germany soon after Hitler’s rise to power; taken a trip through the Near East; visited a Writers’ Congress in Moscow with Klaus Mann; inadvertently, through her mother’s hostility, endangered Erika Mann’s emigrant cabaret ‘The Pepper Mill’; suffered through a brief, disastrous marriage with a French diplomat; then traveled the world, east, west and south; in the United States, befriended the great and no less tormented Carson McCullers. And ultimately she too, like so many of her countrymen, made repeated visits to psychiatric clinics. So much in such a short life! Death overtook her in Nietzsche’s Sils Maria – her own, most shattering novel.” -Hilde Spiel, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Alan Sondheim is a writer, theorist, and artist (video/sound) whose work is distributed widely on-line. He is co-moderator of the Cybermind, Wryting, and Cyberculture e-mail lists. He edited Lusitania: Being on Line for Lusitania, and has a forthcoming book of texts centered around Nikuko, an “emanant” he has worked with for the past four years. He wrote “Rosa’s Argument” and a number of other texts on a TI59 calculator with thermal printer. He was a virtual writer-in-residence for trAce and Trace Projects. More of his work exists at Internet Text and Partial.

Dan S. Wang  was born in Midland, Michigan, in 1968. He was educated at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, and the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. He writes and makes art about technology, mass media and culture, the construction of race and ethnicity, and Chinese history. His first one-person show was at the Woodland Pattern Center for the Book in Milwaukee in 1999. He lives and works in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. “Rosa’s Argument” was printed on a Vandercook sp-15 proof press manufactured in the early 1960s, in Chicago. This press was used to produce a perfect proof of a handset form which was then made into a photo-litho plate for eventual offset mass reproduction. “In other words, this machine occupies the very specific and narrow period in which printing used both manual skills and photo offset automation.”

Holly Woodward writes stories, verse, essays and plays; she is also working on a novel with comic strips. She spent two semesters at St. Petersburg University and won a doctoral fellowship to Moscow University. She has served as writer in residence at Saint Albans, Washington National Cathedral. Her fiction has won prizes from Story and Literal Latté.

“X”: The author of AGENT NINE is currently undercover. Comments and inquiries may be sent in care of Archipelago. Book One, “Alice’s Adventures Overseas,” appear in six installments in Archipelago, from September 2000 till March 2001. The newest episode goes on-line around the middle of next month.



News of Our Contributors

Katherine McNamara, editor and publisher of Archipelago, is the author NARROW ROAD TO THE DEEP NORTH, a non-fiction narrative set in Alaska, to be published in February 2001 by Mercury House. An excerpt, “The Repetition of Their Days,” appeared in Archipelago, Vol. 2, No. 3.

Hubert Butler (1900-1991), the Anglo-Irish essayist who is now recognized as a writer of international stature, was honored at a celebration of his centenary in Kilkenny, Ireland, on the weekend of October 20-22, 2000. Among the distinguished guests and speakers were John Banville, John Casey, Roy Foster, Neal Ascherson. The site devoted to him is being developed as a resource for readers and scholars. Hubert Butler’s disturbing essay “The Artukovitch File” appeared in Archipelago, Vol. 1, No. 2. John Casey is a Contributing Editor of Archipelago.



Emergency Money for Writers

Professional writers and dramatists facing financial emergencies are encouraged to apply for assistance to the Authors League Fund, founded in 1917 and supported with charitable contributions. The writer may apply directly to the Fund, or a friend or relative may apply on behalf of a writer who urgently needs money to pay medical bills, rent, or other living expenses. Though the money is a loan, it is interest-free and there is no pressure to repay it.

The applicant must be a professional writer with a record of publications and a U.S. citizen. For an application or more information, contact the Authors League Fund,31 East 32nd Street, 7th Floor, New York, New York 10016. Telephone: 212 268-1208; fax 212 564-8363.



Letters to the Editor

Not Constance Garnett, please! On “Endnotes: The Poem of the Grand Inquisitor,” Vol 4, No. 3, from Robert Spaulding, in Paris:

I was shocked to read that you referenced the Constance Garnett translation [of THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV]as anything but a travesty and betrayal of the great man’s writing. I recall comparing the Magarshack version of CRIME AND PUNISHMENT to hers, and wanting to cry about all the years I had wasted thinking the first one I read (hers) had anything to do with, even vaguely, what Dostoyevsky had been trying to write. For me, her name will always be synonymous with censorship and the toning down of brilliant, dark, original writing to meet Victorian tastes.

I am a bit of a nut about translations, having also looked for good English translations of MADAME BOVARY, just out of curiosity, after passing one of my most pleasant, excited, literary experiences reading all of Flaubert in the original French. The results of my search were surprising: none even came close, in fact, none of them seemed to even get the story straight, much less the dark humor, comic qualities, pathos, and so on. They couldn’t do what Emma’s exploits in semi-public places did to me when I read about them on the MÈtro, in fact, causing me to look up sometimes and wonder if anyone noticed the color in my face or the effect below the waist.

Robert Spaulding

And from Laura Kennelly:

I’m not a fallen-away Catholic because I’m very stubborn. I’m not sure the priests would agree that I’m still a Catholic, but I’ve decided that the mystical body of Christ includes myself – so if I do go to Hell, it will really be for something. (This is all to say that after thirty something years of marriage, I sought a divorce and remarried and am very very happy.)

It is a very thoughtful essay. I’ve only read THE BROTHERS twice (I think), so I suppose I’ve got to go through it again. I used to try to decide who was my favorite, Tolstoy or Dostoyevski? I had to go with the heart and the kissing the ground, but both are superb and, in quite different ways, are sometimes saying the same thing (I’m thinking of THE DEATH OF IVAN ILYCH now, more than ANNA KARENINA).

OK. So thanks,

Laura Kennelly


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