The Italian Cultural Institute in New York
in pleased to host
prof. Lawrence Venuti
in conversation with
Fabio Finotti, Director IIC-NY
presenting: The Stronghold,
his translation of
Il Deserto dei Tartari by Dino Buzzati.
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Indication “The Stronghold”
Published in 1940, Dino Buzzati’s novel Il deserto dei Tartari (The Desert of the Tartars) quickly became a modernist classic which has since been translated into forty languages. It was interpreted primarily as an existentialist fable, an allegory of the absurdity of human life, but it has supported a range of provocative readings that include a critique of the Italian Fascist regime. Stuart Hood’s English version, The Tartar Steppe, has been almost continuously in print since its publication in 1952, when Buzzati’s novel was seen as reflecting the ideological stalemate of the Cold War. Lawrence Venuti’s recent retranslation, The Stronghold, returns to Buzzati’s original title (La Fortezza) in an effort to write a new interpretation for our troubled times. He will be in conversation with Fabio Finotti (Director IIC New York) to discuss the perennial interest generated by Buzzati’s most famous work, as well as the problems it poses to the translator.
Lawrence Venuti, professor emeritus of English at Temple University, is a translator from Italian, French, and Catalan, as well as a translation theorist and historian. He is, most recently, the author of Contra Instrumentalism: A Translation Polemic (2019), the editor of The Translation Studies Reader (4th ed., 2021), and the translator of J. V. Foix’s Daybook 1918: Early Fragments (2019), which won the Global Humanities Translation Prize at Northwestern University.
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