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Welcome to the first of this year’s Litro World Series: Litro #152: the Sweden issue.
Litro has always been a keen promoter of out standing fiction in translation, this year we will be bringing to Londoners, not one, not two but three special editions in translation, as part of our annual World Series editions.
As Cuba grows ever more accessible to outsiders, Litro will guide you through it’s Literary and artistic landscape bringing you Cuba’s hottest voices and artists in a special Cuba edition July—to celebrate the Cuba edition we will be taking over Waterstones Piccadilly in July with a special evening of words and music follow Litro on Social media @Litro Magazine for more details.
I know, you’re dreaming of summer and busy getting in shape for a beach get away with autumn a distant thought but in October we will bring an Indian summer to our pages—as we turn over the magazine to the celebrated Indian author Shashi Tharoor who will guest edit the India edition.
In the meantime we’ve given our pages to our Northern neighbours Sweden! Our Cover art- work is Painting Series #2 (2011) by the award winning Swedish artist Maria Friberg, courtesy of PiArtworks.
The stories within, these pages have been compiled by the Swedish translator Nichola Smalley.
Nichola of the issue:
“Even those of you who’ve never been to Sweden will probably have ideas about what it’s like, and what kind of literature comes out of it (moody detectives, anyone?).In putting together this special issue I wanted to present a different view of our northern neighbours. We open the issue with eternal love on the streets of contemporary Stockholm (as in Jonas Hassen Khemiri’s tale of less-than-per- fect memories ‘Unchanged Unending’), travelling to foreign climes (for an ill-judged proposal at a Spanish bullfight, in Lina Wolff’s ‘Verónica’), political perspectives (as Agri Ismaïl comments on current racialised politics in Sweden and abroad, in his essay ‘The Wreckage of the Nation State in the Time of Global Migration’), today’s digital culture and the social life of parks (with an unexpectedly fraught walk in Cilla Naumann’s ‘The Park Begins Here’).
Each of these writers is celebrated in Sweden. Some of them have had novels or other work published in English, others will be new to UK readers. What they all have in common is a desire to write in new ways, challenging norms and expectations about what can be said and how. I hope the short texts presented here will inspire you to seek out more by these and other writers from Sweden—there’s a huge and diverse literary culture to discover!