Writing On Literature

  • When I set up this blog (see left sidebar) I made half a promise to translate a little known book by Henry Miller called J'suis pas plus con qu'un autre. And I would probably have started before now, if I hadn't attempted to disprove Miller's title: some people are more idiot than others.  I lost my copy of the book.  It is a small book.  In the Domaine Etranger edition there are 79 pages, and it had somehow slotted in with my other slim volumes, on the poetry shelf.  This explains why it took me many months to find it.  And when I did spot it among the poetry, I immediately reclaimed it because it was prose. The curiosity of I'm

    Oct 01,
  • For some time I've been gearing up to translate a short and little-known book by Henry Miller called I'm no More of an Idiot than Anybody Else.  Maybe.  Despite the fact that Henry Miller is American, and wrote in English, he made an exception for Je Ne Suis Pas Plus Con Qu'un Autre. There in the title lies the first dilemma.  'Con' is perhaps the most common French curse word.  Certainly, it is a word that most Anglophones will hear at some stage on any visit to France, often prefaced with 'espece de'.  However, your French antagonist may be calling you something more or less rude than you think - the exact equivalent in English is unclear.  Strictly speaking, a

    Sep 05,