2015

Story Is a Vagabond
Fiction,
Essays, and Drama
by Intizar Husain

Series Editor Frank Stewart
Guest Editors Alok Ballah,
Asif Farrukhi, and Nishat Zaidi

The Colors of Dawn
Twentieth-Century Korean Poetry

Series Editor Frank Stewart
Guest Editors Brother Anthony of Taizé
and Chung Eun-Gwi

One of Pakistan’s most distinguished writers, Intizar Husain was born in India in 1923 and immigrated to Pakistan during the Partition. An internationally acclaimed writer, critic, and translator, he has published seven volumes of short stories, four novels, and a novella, as well as travelogues, memoirs, and critical essays. Despite his importance to world literature for over six decades, Husain’s writing is little known in English translation. Story Is a Vagabond is the first collection in English to show the breadth of his thoughtful, innovative, and compassionate work.


Intizar Husain photographed by Umair Ghani.

Intizar Husain’s numerous honors include the Yatra Award (Harper Collins, India), Pride of Performance (Government of Pakistan), Kamal-i-Fun Award (Government of Pakistan), Adabi Award (Anjuman-i-Farogh-i-Urdu, India), ARY Gold Award, Pakistan’s Sitara-e-Imtiaz (Star of Excellence), Lifetime Achievement Award from the Lahore Literary Festival, and France’s Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.

In 2012, his novel Basti was published in English as a New York Review of Books Classics Original. In 2013, he was short-listed for the prestigious Man Booker International Prize. 

In this video, Sudha Bhuchar
reads in English from Basti.

About the guest editors: Alok Bhalla is a widely published critic, translator, and editor. His latest publications include Wild Verses of Wit and Whimsy: From Alpha to Zeta in 26 Movements, Stories about the Partition of India (four volumes), Partition Dialogues: Memories of a Lost Home, and The Place of Translation in a Literary Habitat. He has edited a volume of critical essays on Saadat Hasan Manto and translated Dharamvir Bharati’s Andha Yug: The Age of Darkness (also published as the summer 2010 issue of MĀNOA), Intizar Husain’s A Chronicle of the Peacocks, and Nirmal Verma’s Dark Dispatches, among other books.

Asif Farrukhi is a physician by training and a well-known critic, translator, editor, and short-story writer. His recent publications include Look at the City from Here: Karachi Writings and Gender, Politics, and Performance in South Asia. His forthcoming book is on Intizar Husain. He is the editor of the literary journal Duniyazad and an organizer of the Karachi Literature Festival. He was awarded the Prime Minister’s Literary Award by the Pakistan Academy of Letters in 1997 and, more recently, the Tamgha-i-Imtiaz by the Government of Pakistan.

Nishat Zaidi is a professor in the Department of English at Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. A scholar, critic, and translator, she is the author or translator of Agha Shahid Ali, Between Worlds: The Travels of Yusuf Kambalposh (translated with Mushirul Hasan), Pencil and Other Poems, A Voyage to Modernism: Syed Ahmed Khan (translated with Mushirul Hasan), Makhdoom Mohiuddin, and Ghalib Aur Unka Yug.

Story Is a Vagabond features images by Pakistani artist Imran Qureshi, whose work is a synthesis of contemporary abstract painting and the miniature painting that flourished during the Mughal courts.

In The Colors of Dawn, over forty poets tell the story of Korea’s twentieth-century struggles. While their styles are diverse, all express the passionate conviction that poetry is fundamental to bringing to light what is good and enduring in a darkened world.

The volume is divided into three parts: Poetry of Today, Survivors of War, and Founding Voices. The introduction, “Modern Poetry in Korea: A Historical Background,” looks at the development of poetry amidst such events as Japans invasion and occupation, the aftermath of World War II, the Korean War, the dictatorships of Syngman Rhee and Park Chung-hee, and democratization and modernization of the country.

The introduction is written by Brother Anthony of Taizé, co–guest editor of the volume and a well-known translator who has published more than thirty volumes of Korean poetry in translation. Born in Cornwall in 1942, he has lived in Korea since 1980 and was naturalized as a Korean citizen in 1994. He has received the Republic of Korea Literary Award in translation, the Daesan Award for Translation, the Korea PEN Translation Prize, and the Ok-gwan (Jade Crown) Order of Merit for Culture from the Korean government.

Chung Eun-Gwi was born in 1969 in Kyungju, Korea. She received her doctorate from the Poetics Program at the University at Buffalo (SUNY) and is now an associate professor in the Department of English Literature at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, in Seoul. Among her translated works is the volume Ah! Mouthless Things by Lee Seong-bok. She has received a Daesan Foundation translation grant for Korean literature and a translation grant from the  Literature Translation Institute of Korea.

In addition to Brother Anthony and Chung Eun-Gwi, the translators in The Colors of Dawn are Susan Hwang, YoungShil Ji, Kim Jong-gil, Myung-Mi Kim, Lee Hyung-Jin, Lee Sang-Wha, Jinna Park, Daniel T. Parker, and Yoo Hui-sok.

The artist is Hye Woo Shin, a doctoral student at the Institute of Life Sciences and Biotechnology of Korea University, in Seoul.

Eranthis byunsanensis.
Hye Woo Shin, 2012. Watercolor (detail).

In mid-February, Brother Anthony was in Hawai‘i for events featuring three poets in the volume: Lee Si-Young, Kim Seung-Hee, and Kim Soo-Bok. For a write-up of the events, please see our Facebook page.

Our gratitude to the Literature Translation Institute of Korea for its generous support of the events and The Colors of Dawn.

280 pp., summer 2015 (27:1), $20
ISBN 978-0-8248-5647-2

192 pp., winter 2015 (27:2), $20
ISBN 978-0-8248-6622-8