Authors of All Nations

Wednesday May 29, 2013

By Guide Biography: Patrick Kennedy

For the better part of a year, I've been writing biographies of famous authors for this site. And if you visit the listing "Authors by Language and Nationality". you might notice a few things. For one, why is this list so French? For another, why are countries like China, India, and modern Turkey not there at all?

I have a few answers. If you look at a volume like the popular HERE, you'll notice that French, German, Russian authors get most of the attention. The same goes for many high school, college, and university courses in world literature. So I've followed suit. But I've also been waiting for the right time to sit down, read some new branches of literature, and get a few more "Languages and Nationalities" on the site. And that time is now!

Tell me: what new languages should I focus on? I've already decided on one: Portuguese. Last month, a bio of Portugal's most famous poet (Fernando Pessoa) appeared on the site. I've followed it up with a profile of Nobel Prize-winner José Saramago (from Portugal) and bestselling novelist Paulo Coelho (from Brazil). All important authors in their own right--and all authors who build upon the writers and writings I've already profiled. Coelho's works owe some huge debts to another celebrated Latin American author, Jorge Luis Borges. And if you're a fan of Kafka, Beckett, or Italo Calvino, by all means, check out Saramago's wildly original work.

Now it's your turn! Send in your requests for the next literary language that I'll profile. Yiddish lit, Korean, Czech, Gaelic? Help me decide our next step, even if it means giving me a whole new pile of books to read.


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