Mark Thwaite (Ready Steady Book) talks to Charlotte Mandell about translating the French writer and theorist Maurice Blanchot
Charlotte Mandell
Charlotte Mandell

I first came across your name as a translator of the work of Maurice Blanchot. What first got you interested in Blanchot?

Fate. My friend Pierre Joris, who translated Blanchot’s The Unavowable Community, was asked by Helen Tartar (then editor-in-chief at Stanford University Press) to translate La part du feu. He didn’t have the time, so he recommended me. I sent in a sample chapter – I was only 24 then and the only book-length work I’d translated was a book of poems, Le feu l’ombre, by the French poet Jean-Paul Auxeméry. Helen liked the straightforwardness of my translation, the fact that it didn’t use any acadamese – I tried to translate Blanchot as simply and as honestly as I could. (more…)