Edouard Roditi was an American poet, short-story writer and translator
Édouard Roditi was born in Paris, June 6, 1910; he was educated in England at Elstree, Charterhouse, and Balliol, and received a BA from the University of Chicago; he became acquainted with T.S. Eliot, James Joyce, André Breton and other leading literary figures, while living in London, Paris, and Berlin (1929-37); he published the first Surrealist manifesto in English, “The new reality,” in the Oxford outlook (1929); while continuing his literary interests, he worked for the U.S. government during World War II for the Office of War Information and also served as an interpreter for the State Department during the San Francisco conference which established the United Nations.
In 1961, Roditi translated Yasar Kemal's epic novel Ince Memed (1955) under the English title Memed, My Hawk. This book was instrumental in introducing the famed Turkish writer to the English-speaking world. Memed, My Hawk is still in print.
In addition to his poetry and translations, Roditi is perhaps best remembered for the numerous interviews he conducted with modernist artists, including Marc Chagall, Joan Miró, Oskar Kokoschka, Philippe Derome and Hannah Höch. Several of these have been assembled in the collection Dialogues on Art
Roditi also held teaching positions at various colleges and universities; in addition to his literary achievements, Roditi was known as a generous and encouraging mentor to young writers; he died in Spain on May 10, 1992.
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