Crossing Borders – Translating Wales and the Balkans

Wednesday April 18th, 2012

Crossing Borders – Translating Wales and the Balkans

Thursday 19th April, 6.30pm. Free
Free Word Centre, Farringdon Road, London 

Literature Across Frontiers is delighted to partner with new publisher Istros Books for an evening of discussion with three novelists: Montenegrin writer, polemicist and winner of last year’s European Prize for Literature Andrej Nikolaidis, bestselling Croatian writer Robert Perišić and Welsh novelist and photographer Owen Martell, whose recent book has just been published in translation Serbia. The writers will join the literary editor of The Guardian, Claire Armitstead at London’s Free Word Centre to discuss translation, cultural and language politics and what it’s like to be an emerging writer on the European literary scene. This event is free, to reserve a place please contact

Robert Perišić is a prominent Croatian writer and journalist. Throughout his successful career, he has written plays, essays and short stories, many of which have been translated into several languages. ‘Our Man in Iraq’ is his first novel and quickly became the best-selling book of 2008, while going on to win him critical acclaim both at home and abroad. 

Andrej Nikolaidis is a contemporary writer from one of Europe’s newest and smallest states: Montenegro. He is also a polemical journalist whose writing is fundamental to the process of democratic dialogue in the region. He has written three novels and was awarded the European Prize for Literature 2011.

Owen Martell is an award-winning Welsh novelist and photographer whose recent landmark novel Dyn yr Eiliad (The Other Man) has recently been translated and published in Serbia. In 2009 Owen took part in Literature Across Frontiers’ Word Express project which took young writers on train journeys across the Balkans. The Serbian translation of his book, by Milan Dobričić, was a direct result of the exchange. His new novel in English, Intermission, will be published by Heinemann in Spring 2013.

Claire Armitstead is the literary editor of the Guardian. She was previously arts editor, having worked as a theatre critic for the Ham & High, the Financial Times and the Guardian. As a published author, she has contributed essays to New Performance (Macmillan, 1994) and Women: A Cultural Review (Oxford University Press, 1996). She makes regular appearances on radio and television as a cultural commentator on literature and the arts.