Hatred of Translation thinks through translation with an emphasis on its disaggregation. These pieces address, sometimes obliquely, often with effrontery, the works of René Char, Hervé Guibert, Hilda Hilst, Danielle Collobert, Frankétienne, Mizoguchi Kenji, Ingeborg Bachmann, Kobayashi Masaki, and Marguerite Duras. Resolutely resistant to anything resembling a theory of a thing, these pieces provoke a persistent commitment to thinking in the place of theorizing. Where the French pensée means both of aphoristic thought and of the pansy, Hatred of Translation seeks a garden in the midst of body such as it is occupied by language.
FINALIST for the FIRECRACKER AWARDS
What happens when the tongue is split by languages? It will resound with Hölderlin’s lallen und lallen, the original stammer that lives in the doubled echo, the queen’s caesura. From between those commissures a stream of inkblood makes visionary poetics and translating that is writing, possible. Nathanaël is that rare contemporary whose work exactly rides this cesarian caesura whose “oblique intimacies” touch texts in their misalignments, there where the partitioning of bodies becomes the parturition of new writing. This is a visionary book that will read you thoroughly, mon lecteur, non-semblable.—Pierre Joris
“Writer and translator Nathanaël’s (The Middle Notebooks) latest is a slim, obscure “scenario” in which philosophical musings on architecture, the photographic image, and epistemology are layered atop a bare-bones narrative foundation. History, this elliptical book seems to imply, is too violent, chaotic, and vast to perceive in all its complexity”—Publishers Weekly