I have been enjoying getting to know the work of translator/poet/essayist Michael Hoffman.

Without an active sense of mischief, he says, translators can easily become bitter people. “Nobody sees what you are doing, and the minute you do something, people cry ‘Mistake, mistake!’ If done in that way, it feels almost parasitic upon literature. … That’s partly why I have mostly ended up translating dead people. They are more appreciative.”

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