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Many people see no problem in giving the names of their favourite authors or books. It's hard for me. There are so many authors and books I like and besides that it depends on the mood I am in. To stay in touch with the English language I am reading as much as possible in English. So it is not astonishing, that many of the authors and books I like are from the English speaking world. Nevertheless, I started the German version of this rubrique with the Austrian author Thomas Bernhard. I would have guessed that his novels couldn't be translated into English, because he is "abusing" the German language in an utmost way. I was amazed about how many books of his are translated in English and above all that he his well-liked in the English speaking world. I think I will have to try to read one of his books in English one day. You can find an overview of his works at The Gaping Void (Thomas Bernhard in English).
It seems to me that there is a way inevitably leading from Thomas Bernhard to Samuel Beckett. Though they are rather different in style.
I like Beckett's works both in their English and their French versions. Most of the time both versions are written and translated by the author himself. Even his German versions are not translations in the traditional sense, because he was helping in the translation process and did rephrasings and reshapings to make the German versions up to his intentions. I am most fascinated by his play

Bloom von J. Joyce
From Beckett I skip to the next Irish author: James Joyce. Beckett being a master of a spartanic way of using language, Joyce is the contrary. His novel Ulysses, where his "hero" Leopold Bloom is erring through Dublin for one day, is hard to understand because of its incredibly huge and special vocabulary.
Leopold Bloom

Other authors which have to appear here soon are: Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, Joseph Heller and  John Irving. back to home
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Written by Bernd Klein; Last Modified: December 21, 2023