Cover Osteuropa 11-12/2014

In Osteuropa 11-12/2014

World-class Masters of Language
Russian Literature in First and New Translation in 2014

Karlheinz Kasper

Deutsche Fassung


This year, even fewer translations from Russian reached the Germanophone book market than in 2013, perhaps a result of the deterioration in political relations. Two-thirds of the titles are first translations. Of these, only the books by Arkady Babchenko and Alisa Ganieva as well as Andrei Kurkov’s Ukrainian Diaries deal with the immediate present. Elena Katishonok’s strong novel ends with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Rid Grachev’s fantastic short prose exudes the spirit of “thaw” period. The artistic power of the titles from the early the 20th century translated for the first time (Hippius, Teffi, Gazdanov, Mayakovsky) is impressive. The new translations are based on current critical editions of the Russian original texts (Babel, Khodasevich, Ginzburg), make a point of falling back on previous versions (Bunin), follow new translation principles (Bulgakov), or offer new arrangements of texts (Yuriev).

(Osteuropa 11-12/2014, pp. 177–231)