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Trần Dần’s novel to be introduced at Book Fair Frankfurt

Update: September, 07/2017 - 17:15
Late recognition: Writer Trần Dần was posthumously awarded the State Prize in 2007. Photo tacphammoi.net
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — South Korean Literary (KL) Management will introduce and popularise the Vietnamese novel Những Ngã Tư Và Những Cột Đèn (Crossroads and Lamposts) at Book Fair Frankfurt in October, according to Nhã Nam Publishing House. 

The novel was penned in 1966 by Trần Dần. It took decades, however, before the novel was finally published in 2011. It won the Hà Nội Writers’ Association Award for a novel that same year. 

Nhã Nam has been working to introduce the novel to international copyright companies, including KL Management and Barbara J.Zitwer Agency in New York. 

"Crossroads and Lamposts is an amazing and unique literary work," said Joseph Lee, chairman of KL Management at a meeting with the late writer’s family. "Trần Dần is a great poet and novelist.”

Through the KL Management’s network, Nhã Nam sent an English introduction and part of an English translation by Australian-born David Payne, to European and American copyright companies. 

KL Management and the Barbara J.Zitwer Agency listed Crossroads and Lamposts among the outstanding literary works which they will introduce to publishers from all over the world at Book Fair Frankfurt.

Korean IWBooks Publishing House will publish the novel in Korean at the end of 2018. 

"It is a rare phenomenon, but important for Vietnamese books to be translated into foreign languages and published abroad, because this can popularise Vietnamese culture and art," said Xuân Minh, a representative from Nhã Nam publisher.

"It is also a good sign for the Vietnamese literary when a Korean publisher buys copyright for publishing. The novel meets market demand."

Born in the northern province of Nam Định, writer Dần was twenty years old when he joined the Vietnamese military in 1946. He returned to Hà Nội following the victory of the Điện Biên Phủ battle. He joined the Nhân Văn - Giai Phẩm group, which included young writers, artists and intellectuals pushing for freedom of art and expression. 

His works were banned from the late 1950s until 1988 but he continued to write novels and poems. Ten years after his death in 1997, he was posthumously awarded the State Prize for his contribution to literature.

Crossroads and Lamposts is widely considered a classic of Vietnamese contemporary literature. — VNS

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