Today sees the release of an important work out of the contemporary Oulipo school, One Hundred Twenty-One Days, by Michèle Audin (translated by Christiana Hills), marking only the second novel by a female Oulipo member to appear in English. At Reading in Translation, I take a closer look at this debut, "a story in numbers." Recalling that Oulipo writers are mathematicians using linguistic puzzles (palindromes, anagrams, etc.) as "constraints" to compel creativity, a meditation on this book as a translation compels a deeper appreciation for the role of the translator as "the ultimate mathematician." Explore with me the intimate connection between language and figures in my review of this poignant "riddle" of a novel.
Publication announcements, bookish items of note and the occasional literary musing.