Reading and discussion: Helena Janeczek & Yoko Tawada


English-Japanese simultaneous interpretation

3 Sun. (National holiday) 14:30 - 15:30
Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Tokyo Agnelli Hall

On the occasion of the publication of the 21st century Italian short stories anthology Somewhere, in a safe place (Kokushokankokai), Italian novelist Helena Janeczek dialogues with award-winning Japanese author Yoko Tawada. The dialogue is moderated by Katsuo Hashimoto, professor of Italian contemporary literature and translator of Helena Janeczek. Both authors read excerpts from their works.


Helena Janeczek was born in Munich in 1964 in a Polish Jewish family, moved to Italy over 30 years ago and writes in Italian. Her latest book, La ragazza con la Leica [The Girl with the Leica] (2017) is a non-fiction novel depicting the photographer Gerda Taro, Robert Capa’s partner, who died very young in the course of the Spanish Civil War. With this novel, Helena Janeczek won the Premio Strega 2018, the most important Italian literary prize. Her books are translated in several languages. In English, Europa Editions published The Swallows of Montecassino (2013) and The Girl with the Leica (2019).


Yoko Tawada was born in Tokyo in 1960, educated at Waseda University and has lived in Germany since 1982, where she received her Ph.D. in German literature. She received the prestigious Akutagawa Prize for The Bridegroom Was a Dog. She writes in both German and Japanese, and in 1996, she won the Adalbert-von-Chamisso Prize, a German award recognizing foreign writers for their contributions to German culture. She also received the Goethe-Medal, an official decoration of the Federal Republic of Germany and the prestigious Kleist Prize (2016).


橋本勝雄 Katsuo HASHIMOTO

Born in Tochigi in 1967, he is a professor at the Kyoto University of Foreign Studies, specialized in Contemporary Italian Literature. He is the Italian to Japanese translator of Helena Janeczek’s ‘Trieste in love’ for the anthology Dokoka, anshin dekiru basho de. Atarashii Itaria no bungaku [Somewhere, in a Safe Place. The New Italian Literature, working title], edited by Sekiguchi Eiko, Hashimoto Katsuo and Andrea Raos (Kokushokankokai 2019, forthcoming). In 2016 he was awarded the Suga Atsuko Prize for the translation of Umberto Eco’s The Prague Cemetery (published in Japan by Tokyo Sogensha, 2016).

Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Tokyo

2-1-30 Kudan-Minami, Chiyoda-ku
Tokyo Metro Tozai Line, Hanzomon Line / Toei-Shinjuku Line "Kudanshita" station, Exit 2 (10 minutes)