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Talks on new translation of Vasily Grossman

I appear to be on translator Robert Chandler's mailing list, and I recently received a mail witth details of talks about Vasily Grossman's Everything Flows, which Robert Chandler has recently translated.

Unfortunately, all of these talks are in London.


Three readings/talks in London devoted to Vasily Grossman:

1. Monday 7 June, 6.30 p.m. at the Free Word Centre, 60 Farringdon Road, London EC1R 3GA (Admission free)

Robert Chandler will talk about, and read from, his newly-published translation of EVERYTHING FLOWS.  This is unlike any other work in world literature.  It is hard to believe that so many unusual perceptions about so many subjects – marriage, betrayals of all kinds, the ‘Russian soul’, the whole sweep of Russian and Soviet history – can have been compressed into so small a space. A fifth of the length of Life and Fate, this odder, more modernist novel now seems equally broad in its scope and still deeper in its insights.  

2. Tuesday 15 June, 7.30 p.m. at Pushkin House, 5A Bloomsbury Square, London WC1A 2TA  (tel: 020 7269 9770; tickets - £7 [£5 concessions])

Robert will read from EVERYTHING FLOWS and discuss this novel, and Grossman’s work as a whole, with Yekaterina Korotkova-Grossman (Grossman’s daughter by his first wife).  Yekaterina came to know her father only gradually.  At first she saw little of him except during January holidays.  In the mid-1950s she moved from the Ukraine to Moscow, and they became close in the last ten years of his life.

3. Sunday 20 June, 2 p.m. British Museum, Stevenson Room, (tel: 020 7269 9030; tickets - £8 [£5 concessions])

Thanks Himadri

The only Grossman book I have read is Life and Fate a number of years ago. Thought it was excellent.

Are you going to make the trip into London for one of the talks? Living in Yorkshire, I don't see myself makling it. Why can't at least one of these be outside London??



I'd like to go to at least one of these three - the one of the 15th June seems the most likely. It really depends on whether I can get away from the office in time - I work outside London, and it takes about an hour just to get into Waterloo from the nearest station.

I do agree that it's pretty pathetic that all these events take place only in London. But I am looking forward to reading this book: i was completely blown over by Life and Fate.

Am only too glad to talk outside London

I am more than happy to give talks outside London.  Unfortunately, the organizers of literary festivals, etc, tend to be reluctant to invite a mere translator, so I have not been able to do this as often as I would like.  If anyone has any ideas, please let me know!  Yours, Robert Chandler

Thanks for your post, Robert!  It is a shame that you don't get more opportunities for such things.  If I had lots of money, I would love to organise a serious literary festival, rather than one based around celebrities and bestsellers and other commercial frippery - but I don't, sadly.

Great to have your response here, though, and maybe Himadri will get to one of your talks.

Indeed I will - the Tuesday event at Pushkin House seems the most likely. I don't know if any of the other Grossman fans here can make it (RN Singer: surely it can't be too difficult for you to come over from Canada for this?  Wink ) but if you can, do please let me know.

Hi Robert

What a nice surprise to see you post on these boards! Like I said, I would have loved to have been able to attend the talk on 'Everything Flows' but sadly live a fair bit away from London. I shouldn't really complain too much about 'everything being in London' as Ilkley, West Yorks has a good literary festival each year with a nice range of speakers and would be doing them a disservice not to mention it.

I will certainly look out for your translation as Grossman is an author I really should try and read more of.

Please feel free to post again on these boards on anything that takes your fancy.


Joe Mac

I'll be right over. Confused

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