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As a translator of Spanish literature into English who early on felt he was a different person when speaking Spanish I found this article by William Grimes in the NY Times about writers working in their non-mother tongues to be fascinating.  I had no idea there were so many, and so many doing it well.  Not just Conrad and Nabokov!

Like many of her bilingual peers, Ms. Li speaks of the advantages of writing in a foreign language. “If you are a native speaker, things are automatic,” she said. “For me, every time I say or write something, I have to go back and ask, ‘Is this what I want to say?’ ”

Some bilingual writers find it liberating to escape from their native language. “I think that I have fewer tools than if I were writing in Italian, but my voice is freer,” Ms. Marciano said.

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As Herta Müller said in praise of her translator (posted here) “Each language has different eyes sitting inside its words.”

Even if we never get to these Olympian heights in a second or third language it’s worth opening a few doors and windows as we travel, learning some words, reading books from native writers in translation.

Off gaan we, naar Amsterdam!

Each language has different eyes sitting inside its words. – See more at: http://www.asymptotejournal.com/article.php?cat=Nonfiction&id=61&curr_index=19&curPage=current#sthash.fwp0uScT.bDF56Oh4.dpuf
Herta Müller
Herta Müller
Herta Müller