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Translating Marie NDiaye

Translating Marie NDiaye TRANSLATING MARIE NDIAYE Erika Rundle he forays of novelists into the world of theatre can have mixed results. For every Beckett, Genet, and Handke there are a score of others whose efforts remain page-bound, never finding their way onto the stage. To be sure, the transition from fiction to drama is almost never graceful; it requires a thorough reorientation of the writer’s imagination to accommodate the rigors and freedoms of theatre. While adjustments from one fictional landscape to another require the practiced skills of a long-distance traveler—differences in time, language, culture, and habit exert their own considerable demands on both reader and writer—moving between genres can seem like the equivalent of an interstellar voyage: dangerous, fascinating, and subject to an entirely foreign gravitational force. Marie NDiaye, a novelist celebrated for her penetrating, precise meditations on themes of intimacy, abandonment, violence, and sorcery, has, with the publication of Hilda—her first work for the stage—transformed her many literary gifts into the talents of an equally compelling playwright. Her drama—dominated almost completely by the speech of one character, Mrs. Lemarchand—creates and maintains, on its surface at least, a singular perspective often associated with the novel, but does so in a way http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art MIT Press

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Publisher
MIT Press
Copyright
© 2005 Erika Rundle
Subject
Play
ISSN
1520-281X
eISSN
1537-9477
DOI
10.1162/152028106775329651
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

TRANSLATING MARIE NDIAYE Erika Rundle he forays of novelists into the world of theatre can have mixed results. For every Beckett, Genet, and Handke there are a score of others whose efforts remain page-bound, never finding their way onto the stage. To be sure, the transition from fiction to drama is almost never graceful; it requires a thorough reorientation of the writer’s imagination to accommodate the rigors and freedoms of theatre. While adjustments from one fictional landscape to another require the practiced skills of a long-distance traveler—differences in time, language, culture, and habit exert their own considerable demands on both reader and writer—moving between genres can seem like the equivalent of an interstellar voyage: dangerous, fascinating, and subject to an entirely foreign gravitational force. Marie NDiaye, a novelist celebrated for her penetrating, precise meditations on themes of intimacy, abandonment, violence, and sorcery, has, with the publication of Hilda—her first work for the stage—transformed her many literary gifts into the talents of an equally compelling playwright. Her drama—dominated almost completely by the speech of one character, Mrs. Lemarchand—creates and maintains, on its surface at least, a singular perspective often associated with the novel, but does so in a way

Journal

PAJ: A Journal of Performance and ArtMIT Press

Published: Jan 1, 2006

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