Wednesday, May 27 2020


Hà Nội celebrates Polish literary giant

Update: November, 16/2016 - 07:00
Henryk Sienkiewicz (1846-1916) is a Polish novelist and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature. –Photo Courtesy of National Museum of Warsaw
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — A meeting celebrating the year of Henryk Sienkiewicz was held on November 14 to commemorate the great novelist of Poland.

The meeting, organised by Việt Nam’s National Library and the Polish Embassy in Việt Nam, attracted local translators, researchers and poets and was attended by the Polish ambassador to Việt Nam, Barbara Szymanowska.

“The event is an opportunity for us to commemorate the great novelist of Poland, one of four literature Nobel laureates in Poland,” Kiều Thúy Nga, director of Việt Nam’s National Library, said.

For the Polish, Henryk Sienkiewicz is an outstanding writer and a great patriot. The works composed at a time when Poland virtually disappeared from the Europe map have been hugely meaningful to the country as they helped to maintain national unity, said the ambassador.

“Henryk Sienkiewicz’s works are also known widely in Việt Nam and I am very happy that thanks to the constant efforts of passionate translators, many of his works are translated in Vietnamese,” Szymanowska added.

“Poland and Việt Nam history have many things in common as both nations have experienced the pain of war. I believe that the Vietnamese audience can feel the closeness and familiarity in his works,” she said.

Quo Vadis and In Desert and Wildness has been republished 10 times and 25 times, respectively, shows how enthusiastically the works have been received by the Vietnamese audience,” said translator Nguyễn Hữu Dũng.

Dũng translated Quo Vadis and In Desert and Wildness in the periods 1980-1985 and 1981-1985, respectively. “I also began working on translating Teutonic Knights in 1990 and will finish it soon,” Dũng said.

In Việt Nam, there are more than one hundred Polish literature works of classic and modern genre translated in Vietnamese, including the works of four literature Nobel laureates of Poland -- Henryk Sienkiewicz, Wladyslaw Reymont, Czeslaw Milosz and Wislawa Szymborska -- writer and translator Lê Bá Thự, who has translated more than 20 works of Sienkiewicz, said.

“We will continue our efforts in bringing more Polish works to the Vietnamese audience, contributing to increasing the mutual understanding between the two nations,” Thự said.

In 2015, the Polish parliament chose the year 2016 to be the year dedicated to honouring and commemorating Henryk Sienkiewicz, for his ideology of patriotism, identity and traditional Polish culture value preservation, which is well expressed in his works. 

Henryk Sienkiewicz (1846-1916), whose complete name is Henryk Adam Alexander Pius Sienkiewicz, pseudonym Litwos, is a Polish novelist and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature for "outstanding merits as an epic writer” in 1905. Many of his works, including Quo Vadis and the trilogy of Fire in the Steppe, With Fire and Sword and The Deluge were filmed and translated into more than 50 different languages around the world. – VNS 


In Desert and Wildness in different editions. The novel was republished 25 times in Việt Nam and has been enthusiastically received by the Vietnamese audience. – VNS Photo Hong Van

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