Introducing Papa Hamlet

Friends! Please forgive the absence. As usual I disappear for ages then come bursting back babbling about books. And this time it’s one of my own. Well, not my own, but one I’ve rendered into English.

My latest translation for Rixdorf Editions is Papa Hamlet, by Arno Holz and Johannes Schlaf, and it’s out today (with fantastic cover art by Svenja Prigge). Originally published in 1889, it’s an entertainingly savage portrait of decay informed by the authors’ own bohemian existence. As well as the book itself, you can read up on Holz and Schlaf’s humble pastoral retreat (then) outside Berlin in Niederschönhausen (and the district’s Cold War ghosts) or Naturalism, the movement that Papa Hamlet kick-started in Germany, or read another Holz/Schlaf short story which isn’t included in our edition, but does have a surprising connection to Elvis.

And with the authors somewhat reluctant to promote the book themselves (something about them being long dead), I’ve put together this presentation which describes the genesis and impact of Papa Hamlet. Enjoy!


One comment

  1. Linda Hollander

    Dear James,

    I tried to post a comment but was not able to do so.

    So…here I am, just to say welcome back to my email with your singular and fabulous world view. I’m delighted as always.

    Linda Hollander

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