Call for Proposals and New Book Series: Central Asian Literatures in Translation

Becca Kearns's picture
Call for Publications
Massachusetts, United States
Subject Fields: 
Cultural History / Studies, Area Studies, Humanities, Literature, Russian or Soviet History / Studies

Academic Studies Press (Boston, MA) is pleased to announce the launch of "Central Asian Literatures in Translation."

This series focuses on literary texts by non-Russian peoples of the former Soviet Union, with an emphasis on Central Asia and the Caucasus, while also engaging with the literatures of cognate geographies and neighboring terrains. Rather than prioritizing regional rubrics, “Central Asian Literatures in Translation” supports the translation of underappreciated classics from across the temporal spectrum, and of new work that pushes the boundaries of contemporary literary form within a Eurasian literary context. We welcome titles that redefine what literature can be and mean in a region wherein geopolitics too frequently mutes aesthetics. Ranging across a geography known for its tendency to resist categorization, our titles make the most of the capacious relations to place, space, culture, and power that mark the literatures of Turkic and Persianate Central Asia, Georgia, and Armenia, and in other indigenous languages of the Caucasus. In conceiving of literature from the point of view of the post-Soviet postcolony, this series offers a new way of studying world literature beyond imperial paradigms.

Series Editor: Dr. Rebecca Gould (University of Bristol) specializes in the literatures of the Persian and Islamic world (especially the Caucasus). Her first monograph, Writers and Rebels: The Literature of Insurgency in the Caucasus (Yale University Press, 2016), examines literary memorializations of anticolonial violence in the literatures of the Caucasus. Alongside her work on classical and modern Persian, Georgian, and Arabic literatures, she maintains an active interest in the intersections of anthropology and social theory with textual methodologies. Her translations include After Tomorrow the Days Disappear: Ghazals and Other Poems of Hasan Sijzi of Delhi (Northwestern University Press, 2016, from Persian) and The Prose of the Mountains: Tales of the Caucasus by Aleksandre Qazbegi (Central European University Press, 2015, from Georgian). Future translation projects include poetry by Titsian Tabdize and prose by Idris Bazorkin and Mirza Fath-'Ali Akhundzadeh.

The editorial board comprises the following scholars and translators: 

Professor Jeanne-Marie Jackson (Johns Hopkins University) published her first book, South African Literature’s Russian Soul: Narrative Forms of Global Isolation (Bloomsbury/Continuum), in 2015. It is centrally concerned with how Russia’s nineteenth-century “Golden Age” of literature and ideas provides a model for the study of South African forms and epistemologies both during and after apartheid. It also advances a broader argument for realism’s maturation through historical upset and alienation rather than social and economic stability. Through paired readings of nineteenth-century Russian texts and their South African successors, the book ultimately asks how traditions that manifest a deep sense of isolation in the world make us ask harder questions about global methodologies. She is now at work on a second book project called The African Novel of Ideas: Intellection for the Post-Liberal Age. It charts the relationship between the novel and philosophy, both formal and institutional, at key sites of African intellectual development from the early twentieth century through the present day.

Professor Erdağ Göknar (Duke University) a poet, literary translator, and scholar whose research focuses on the intersection of politics and culture in the Middle East; specifically, the late Ottoman Empire and modern Turkey. He is interested in exploring questions of Turkish and Muslim representation in literature, historiography, and popular culture/media. This includes examining tensions between city and nation at the nexus of representational and political power. His work has focused on the political critiques of state ideology embedded in literary and historical tropes in the work of authors like Nobel laureate Orhan Pamuk and on the critical role played by writers in representations of political violence, such as cultural revolution, military coups, and colonial occupation. His award-winning translations include Pamuk's My Name Is Red (Knopf, 2001) and Atiq Rahimi's Earth and Ashes (Harcourt, 2002); his study Orhan Pamuk, Secularism and Blasphemy: The Politics of the Turkish Novel (Routledge) was published in 2013; and his collection Nomadologies: Poems (Turtle Point Press) appeared in 2017.

Professor Roman Utkin (Davidson College) specializes in twentieth-century Russian and Soviet poetry, prose, and visual culture, with emphases on comparative modernisms, exile, urban poetics, and queer theory. His current book project, tentatively titled Russian Berlin: Culture of a Modernist Diaspora, explores the ways Russian émigré authors forged an alternative Russian tradition abroad. As a native speaker of both Tatar and Russian, Utkin is also interested in the cultures of Russia's non-majority peoples, Turkic avant-gardes, and ethnic difference in a transnational world. 


For more information, or to submit a proposal for inclusion in the series, please contact: Rebecca Gould (

Visit the series page here: