Thursday, July 1, 2010

World Cup, World Literature

Our good friend (and former coworker) Florence wrote to tell us about an amazing promotion over at Archipelago Books. For those of you who don't know, Archipelago is an independent press that almost exclusively publishes translations. That's put them in exactly the right place to make you the most well-read soccer fan out there.

Here's what she says:

"In honor of the 2010 South African World Cup, we are offering two special deals—a set of nine Archipelago titles by authors from the host and quarterfinal-qualifying countries for only $90, or three of the nine titles of your choice for $35!

"In the words of Aleksander Hemon, writing on The New Republic's excellent World Cup blog, 'The thing that bothers me most about the Americans-not-accepting-soccer story is the underlying notion that if the majority of Americans have no interest in soccer, then Americans have no interest in soccer. By the same logic, Americans have no interest in reading novels, as survey upon survey shows that the majority of Americans prefer television to reading. I don't know the numbers, but I would venture to guess that the number of Americans reading literary fiction is in the neighborhood of the number of Americans interested in soccer.'

"We would even venture to guess that there might be some cross-pollination between the two groups. Soccer fans have a natural love for drama, are notoriously patient, and are personally, if not politically, committed to their teams. In other words, imbued with the qualities that also mark lovers of great literature.

"Support your favorite teams—and international literature in translation—by purchasing a World Cup set."

To do so, go here: Archipelago Books.