Bad News

By Eric Abrahamsen, published February 15, 2008, 5:19p.m.

An unfortunate bit of news: we've been asked by the State University of New York press to take down our samples of Wang Xiaobo's Golden Age, since the samples apparently conflict with the English-language translation rights they hold for Wang in Love and Bondage. Frankly, I'm not in the least convinced that this is legally viable, but I'm also very unwilling to get into a fight about it. The prospect of a practically penniless university press suing a group of actually penniless translators over stories few are ever likely to read is too depressing to bear consideration, so down they come. We're leaving the stubs up; if you want to read the longer samples email us.

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Comments

# 1.   

Nice post. I have to say, this makes me sorry we were so diplomatic in our references to Wang in Love and Bondage, especially since it would now appear to be people's only legal English-language option for The Golden Age...

...And that is a lot more criminal than unauthorized sample translations of short excerpts, in my book. It's so nice to see SUNY Press coming down on the side of scholarship and literature here. Hacks.

Brendan, February 16, 2008, 1:57a.m.

# 2.   

Pity. I read their translation and thought it sucked.

Pretty clear case of tenure protecting the incompetent.

trevelyan, February 18, 2008, 9:26a.m.

# 3.   

I see nothing to indicate that Zhang Hongling has tenure. Jason Sommer, listed as a Professor of English at Fontbonne University and Poet in Residence, might have tenure, but translations are almost never considered in tenure decisions, anyhow, giving academics a disincentive to publish translations.

Lucas Klein, March 5, 2009, 4:24p.m.

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