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Ann Goldstein
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In Other Words

Jhumpa Lahiri. Ann Goldstein, trans.
Publisher Knopf  
Format hardcover, Autographed, First Edition
Product Dimensions 8.6 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
ISBN 9781101875551
Pages/Publication Date 233/2016
Daedalus Item Code 69096
This item is not available.
(First Edition, Autographed) The Pulitzer Prize and PEN/Hemingway Award–winning author of Interpreter of Maladies, The Namesake, Unaccustomed Earth, and The Lowland, Jhumpa Lahiri here makes a brilliant nonfiction debut with an inquiry into the nature of language itself, through her own passionate acquisition of Italian. The book is at heart a love story—including a long and sometimes difficult courtship—as the language first captivated and confused Lahiri during a trip to Florence after college. Although she studied Italian for many years afterward, true mastery eluded her. Finally, Lahiri moved to Rome with her family, for "a trial by fire, a sort of baptism" into a new language and world. There, she began to read, and to write—initially in her journal—solely in Italian. Written entirely in Italian—and presented in parallel with an English translation by Ann Goldstein—In Other Words investigates the process of learning to express oneself in another language, and describes the journey of a writer seeking a new voice. We are pleased to offer this unique exploration in a first edition with a tipped-in page signed by Lahiri.

"Unlike Samuel Beckett and Vladimir Nabokov, who also wrote in adopted languages, Lahiri doesn't leap directly into fiction. Though the book contains a short story, her first order of business is to tell her own story. She writes exquisitely about her experiences with language.... Her unexpected metamorphosis provides a captivating and insightful lesson in the power of language to transform."—Publishers Weekly (Book of the Week)

"For Lahiri, Italian was her third language—her mother spoke Bengali—and she relates the reasons she felt drawn to Italian, her many difficulties learning it, and her move to Rome to write.... Although there are paragraphs about vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation, Lahiri is more interested in the effects of all of this on her writing and on her identity. Her memoir is also chockablock with memorable comments about writing and language. 'Why do I write?' she asks. 'To investigate the mystery of existence. To get closer to everything that is outside of me.' An honest, self-deprecating, and very moving account of a writer searching for herself in words."—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

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