The Borders Project: Sarajevo-Atlanta is currently running as a series in the journal Strane in Bosnia and Herzegovina. To date we’ve published ten texts (poetry and prose) in Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian and B/C/S translation, along with the work of three Bosnian photographers, and we have another three groups of writers and photographers to come. Our extraordinary translator, Mirza Purić, has made this collaboration possible — he translates in both directions and also translated the B/C/S texts into English for our English-language Borders Project special feature, which ran in EuropeNow over six issues in 2017.
I had the enormous privilege of interviewing poet Jamie McKendrick for Off Assignment about his years-long project translating Italian Jewish writer Giorgio Bassani’s fiction — six individual volumes are collected in The Novel of Ferrara, forthcoming in October from Penguin Classics (UK) and W.W. Norton (US). I learned a great deal as a human, a reader, and a writer by engaging with Bassani’s work and corresponding with McKendrick.
Our exchange can be read here.
My thanks to Off Assignment and editor Lenora Todaro for the opportunity.
We (Sarajevo Writers' Workshop) are so very honored to be featured in this gorgeous spread by Tamara Zablocka in the March issue of URBAN Magazin. See the photos above to review the print version; the link to the online version is here. I did an interview for the piece, discussing our history as well as our collaborations with Atlanta's Narrative Collective (The Borders Project, published in EuropeNow Journal) and with our dear colleagues in Caracas, Venezuela (Narrative Witness, via the University of Iowa's International Writing Program). Our Mirza Purić translated the interview.
The article (print) includes images by Sarajevo photographers with whom we've collaborated (Nerma Sofić, Vanja Čerimagić, Merisa Basić) and texts by some of us (poetry by Selma Asotić and Zerina Zahirović, prose by Dijala Hasanbegović). URBAN's online version of Dijala's story is at a separate link here.
With special thanks to The Goat Farm Arts Center -- where Narrative Collective is in residence and for which I am writer-at-large -- for hosting our Borders Project reading and to poet Ferida Duraković for being such a supportive friend over these years. You'll find in the URBAN article a quote from a piece by Fedosy Santaella of Caracas -- his essay "Trees of Sarajevo." In Mariela Matos Smith's English translation, the opening reads, "Sarajevo is so far from us. I will never go there, it is so far away. Maybe I should get myself a map and fold it in order to bring Caracas closer to Sarajevo. A poem by Montejo dreams of Iceland. I have taken to dreaming of Sarajevo." Moving words.