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A novel-in-translations by Jacqueline Feldman, featuring a story by the lauded French poet Nathalie Quintane.
How, in a time of vibrant need, do you surface what is repressed societally—lodged in the political unconscious? By translating it, Jacqueline Feldman has found. Combining fiction in translation, travelogue, essay, the postcard, and a scholarly monograph, ON YOUR FEET tells the story of a provincial city’s victory over the far-right figure, Marine Le Pen. It is the story of a cat-owning local poet’s valiant resistance and of a US woman—let us say an American girl—making her own, Joan-of-Arc-like entrance into the fray. This novel in translations slows time to take, with precision, the imprint of a moment in French and world history. It was a moment when fascist speech could be distinguished, still, from the great mass, separated out—leaving the moment, like the language, open to intervention. Making contributions to the theory and practice of translation, which has been considered an applied linguistics, ON YOUR FEET is a searching theorization of the politics of literature. What it offers, to readers of to readers of both languages or either, is a new kind of applied literature.
Fiction. Literary Nonfiction. Essay. Hybrid. Literary Criticism.
”A high-wire performance of autocriticism.” — Joanna Walsh
”A nested and complexly interwoven set of linguistic, personal, and social encounters for our time.” — Lindsay Turner
”Jacqueline Feldman's ON YOUR FEET: A NOVEL IN TRANSLATIONS brings together heterogeneous components in an endeavor to recreate Nathalie Quintane's writing and thinking and being in a new language and an attempt, in long stretches of English and then French, to illuminate all the particulars, personal and otherwise, essential to such an endeavor.” —Jeffrey Zuckerman
”There isn’t a sentence here without a thought in it.” — Jordy Rosenberg
”Translation, Feldman proves, is merely an extreme act of reading.” — Claire Foster
”She is a superreader.” — yasser elhariry
”ON YOUR FEET carves out a new landscape for literature.” — Emma Ramadan
”Ce travail d’une grande originalité ouvre des possibles considérables pour la recherche-création.” — Tiphaine Samoyault
”I never wanted to learn so much about Marine Le Pen.” — Karim Kattan
Nathalie Quintane was born in Paris in 1964 and is the author of over twenty books of experimental poetry and genre-defying prose. She famously wrote a book about a shoe, and ran a parody literary journal in the 1990s with Christophe Tarkos and Stéphane Bérard. In recent years (beginning with TOMATOES in 2009), her work has come to directly address particular political issues, including the plight of refugees in Europe, the gilets jaunes and Nuit debout movements, the Front nationale, and France's colonial legacies. Keenly aware of how aesthetics, language, and politics are related, she critiques political and critical languages and practices her own alternatives. Her style is incisive and droll, using wordplay to make cutting political arguments, and her texts have a light and vital energy that likely comes from her quasi-improvised approach to composition. Quintane is considered one of the major experimental poets of her generation; TOMATOES is only her second book-length work available in English, after Cynthia Hogue and Sylvain Gallais's translation of JOAM DARC (Fence Books/La Presse, 2017).Author City: Digne-les-Bains FRA
Jacqueline Feldman's writing has appeared in The Paris Review Daily, 3:AM Magazine, Triple Canopy, and The White Review. Born in 1990 in Connecticut, she lives in Massachusetts.