Saturday, 11 April 2009

Estonian Literary Magazine

The Estonian Literary Magazine is already listed in the Links column to the right of the screen on this blog. But I feel it merits a small introduction. Because when you first access the website you are confronted with a bare list of 19 issues. This doesn't immediately reveal the full scope of this magazine.

Firstly, it's in English, which makes it widely accessible. Secondly, it cover classics, modern classics and contemporary Estonian literature. So anything written by any significant Estonian author between about 1890 and the present day could feature in an article or two. Prose excerpts and poetry, biographical articles, poems, a list of translations into other languages, and so on. And both exile Estonian authors and those that lived in the ESSR are discussed, plus all those that have emerged since independence. Articles are written both by Estonian scholars and foreign translators.

Only issues 8-27 are available online, starting with Spring 1999 and up to Autumn 2008, but that is more than enough to be getting on with.

For example, Issue 14 has an article about Swedish translations of Estonian literature, which is of course one way for Scandinavianists to access that literature, if an English translation does not yet exist. And Issue 17 mentions the biggest history of Estonian literature available in any larger European language: Geschichte der estnischen Literatur by Cornelius Hasselblatt, Walter de Gruyter, 2006.

The best way to find out the range of topics and authors is to click each issue and look at the various articles listed in the left-hand column. But the website does also have a search function, if you know what you're looking for.

1 comment:

Eric Dickens said...

The latest issue of the Estonian Literary Magazine (ELM) came out for the book fair. It contains articles about the poet and theologian Uku Masing; an article by the marvellously named Miriam McIlfatrick-Ksenofontov (a lass from Northern Ireland, actually) on translating poetry by Doris Kareva; poetry by Doris Kareva; plus several other matters.

A new an useful occasional publication, aimed more at foreign publishers, is "10 Books From Estonia" which simply presents ten books from Estonia, some translated, some not. It is published by the Estonian Literature Information Centre (ELIC).

Both these publications were available at the LBF Estonian stand. The stand also had an interesting range of new untranslated books, which are interesting to translators and publishers alike.