Women in Translation: Stories from Croatia and Kazakhstan

May 31, 2024 7:00 pm

Women in Translation: Stories from Croatia and Kazakhstan

Women in Translation: Stories from Croatia and Kazakhstan

May 31, 2024 at 7 p.m.

The Ruby SF

Only about 3% of all books published in the United States are works in translation. Less than 30% of that tiny percentage are from women writers. And less than half are from languages other than French, Spanish, German, and Italian. English-language readers are being left in the cold when it comes to the extraordinary wealth of women writers from around the world, but not if literary translators can help it! 

Join LARB and the Center for the Art of Translation on May 31 at The Ruby in San Francisco to explore stories from Croatia and Kazakhstan, written and translated by women. We will host translators Ena Selimović and Mirgul Kali as they read from recent translations and discuss with historian and writer Daniela Blei the challenges and successes of their efforts to bring literary works from under-translated languages and women writers to English-language readers.

This event is free! RSVP here

Refreshments provided.


Ena Selimović is a Yugoslav-born writer and co-founder of Turkoslavia, a translation collective and journal. She is the 2023 Translator-In-Residence at the Los Angeles Review of Books x Yefe Nof Translation Residency. Her translation, Aunt Jelena, of Marina Gudeljn’s work will be featured issue no. 41 of the LARB Quarterly Journal. Her work has received support from ALTA, ACLS, and NEA. She holds a Ph.D. in comparative literature from Washington University in St. Louis. Her translations of Nebojša Lujanović’s Cloud the Color of Skin and Maša Kolanović’s Underground Barbie are forthcoming with Fraktura and Sandorf Passage, respectively.

Mirgul Kali translates from her native Kazakh. Her translations of short stories by classic and contemporary Kazakh writers appeared in Tupelo Quarterly, Electric Literature, Exchanges, The Massachusetts Review, Gulf Coast, and other publications. She received a PEN/Heim Translation Fund Grant and a PEN Translates award for her translation of Baqytgul Sarmekova’s To Hell with Poets, a short story collection recently published by Tilted Axis Press. She holds an MFA in Literary Translation from the University of Iowa, where she was an Iowa Arts Fellow.

Daniela Blei is a writer, historian, and book editor in San Francisco.