Humphrey Davies on Tahrir, Elias Khoury in an Undershirt, and ‘Mentally Gratifying’ Reads

Last month, André Naffis-Sahely sat down with veteran translator Humphrey Davies. The conversation occurred during Davies’ recent trip to London, shortly after Maclehose Press released his translation of Elias Khoury’s As Though She Were Sleeping.


Al-Mutanabbi and Elias Khoury’s ‘As Though She Were Sleeping’

Humphrey Davies’ translation of Eliash Khoury’s 2007 كأنها نائمة, As Though She Were Sleeping, is now available in the UK. I wish the Marilyn Booth translation (Archipelago, 2012) were out at the same time, so we could compare their strategies. This book is a particularly complex beast: Khoury’s novels have long been interested in what language can’t (and can) do, but كأنها نائمة is perhaps his most language-obsessed work.

One-Minute Review: Hoda Barakat’s /Tiller of Waters/

Because I resist this idea of “summer reading,” I thought I’d choose a summer reading challenge book that is quiet, thoughtful, and cannot easily be taken to the beach (where one reads with an eye to make sure the youngest doesn’t drown) or on a plane (where one reads with an eye toward the person sneezing beside her).