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Transnational Series Presents: On Norah Lange

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Susana Lange, Idra Novey, Stefan Tobler, and Charlotte Whittle discuss the life and work of author Norah Lange.

About this event

Join the Transnational Literature Series at Brookline Booksmith for a virtual event with Susana Lange, Idra Novey, Stefan Tobler, and Charlotte Whittle to celebrate the life and work of Norah Lange.

"Read Norah and be bewitched." —Pola Oloixarac

Born in 1905 to Norwegian parents in Buenos Aires, Norah Lange was a key figure in the Argentine avant-garde of the early to mid-twentieth century. Though she began her career writing poetry in the ultraísta mode of urban modernism, her first major success came in 1937 with her memoir Notes from Childhood, and the novels People in the Room and The Two Portraits. She contributed to the magazines Proa and Martín Fierro, and was a friend to figures such as Jorge Luis Borges, Pablo Neruda, and Federico García Lorca. From her teenage years, when her family home became the site of many literary gatherings, Norah was a mainstay of the Buenos Aires literary scene and was famous for the flamboyant speeches she gave at parties in celebration of her fellow writers. She traveled widely alone and with her husband, the poet Oliverio Girondo, always returning to Buenos Aires, where she wrote in the house they shared, and where they continued to host legendary literary gatherings. She died in 1972.

Too long viewed as Borges's muse, Lange is today recognized in the Spanish-speaking world as a profoundly gifted writer in her own right. Translated into English for the first time by Charlotte Whittle and published by And Other Stories, her work is now available to a new swathe of readers, to be read alongside Virginia Woolf, Clarice Lispector, and Marguerite Duras.

About the Speakers:

Idra Novey is the author of the novels Those Who Knew, a finalist for the 2019 Clark Fiction Prize, and Ways to Disappear, which received the 2018 Brooklyn Public Library Prize and was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for First Fiction. Her translations include Clarice Lispector's The Passion According to G.H. and a co-translation with Ahmad Nadalizadeh of Iranian poet Garous Abdolmalekian, Lean Against This Late Hour, a finalist for the 2021 PEN America Poetry in Translation Prize. She teaches fiction in the Creative Writing Program at Princeton University.

Charlotte Whittle has translated works by Jorge Comensal, Agus Morales, and Elisa Victoria, among others. She has been instrumental in bringing Norah Lange to audiences in English. For People in the Room, she was longlisted for the Best Translated Book Award, and shortlisted for both the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation and the Society of Authors’ TA First Translation Prize. Her work on Notes from Childhood won a PEN Translates award. She lives in New York.

Moderator Stefan Tobler is a translator and founder of the publishing house And Other Stories ten years ago. Its titles include the Booker Prize shortlisted Swimming Home by Deborah Levy and the Best Translated Book Award-winning Signs Preceding the End of the World by Yuri Herrera. With English and Swiss parents, he was born in the Amazon. His translations include Clarice Lispector’s Água Viva, Raduan Nassar’s A Cup of Rage, Rodrigo de Souza Leão’s All Dogs are Blue, and Arno Geiger’s The Old King in His Exile.

The Transnational Literature Series at Brookline Booksmith

The Transnational Series focuses on stories of migration, the intersection of politics & literature, and works in translation and is supported by the independent bookstore Brookline Booksmith. Subscribe to the Transnational Series newsletter for information on upcoming events, book recommendations, and more.

What You Need to Know to Attend

This virtual event is free to attend but please consider purchasing Notes from Childhood and People in the Room from Brookline Booksmith. Register on this page to receive a Zoom link on the day of the event. If you don't receive a confirmation email after registering, contact us right away.

Get Your Books

  • Books are held for pickup or shipped after ticket sales have closed.
  • Store Pickup: Pick up your book in person at Brookline Booksmith (Click here for directions). You will receive an email alert when your book is ready.
  • Shipping: Have your book shipped via USPS priority mail. Shipping is only available in the United States.

About Donations

We are pleased to make this event free for entry, but you may notice you have the option to donate. By donating, you help Brookline Booksmith build toward a stronger today and a post-pandemic future. Every dollar of support means the world to us. Thank you for your continued support!

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