Good news on the Hölderlin front. A new translation of Hölderlin’s novel Hyperion is currently in preparation by Ross Benjamin for Archipelago Books. A new translation, I think, should illuminate aspects of Hölderlin’s German not available to English readers, without obscuring the original or perverting English syntax. From what Ross has told me, it sounds like his translation will do just that. With Hölderlin’s German, Ross is working to bring out its musicality. Hölderlin’s poetry is well known for its musical character, and in my experience, translations have not sufficiently recognized its pervasiveness, so I’m excited to see what Ross has in store for us.
We can expect the translation sometime in the Spring of 2008. If you are not familiar with Archipelago Books, you should seek out their somewhat recent publication of Novalis' The Novices Of Sais (Archipleago, 2005). The Novalis book is a beautiful edition that is accompanied by the drawings of Paul Klee. They have also published books by Musil, Buchner, and Rilke.