More Lefebvre translations?

Two publishers contact me on the same day about potential Lefebvre translations… I have some quite clear ideas of what of his so-far-untranslated work would be good, so hopefully this will lead to some new books in English.

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2 Responses to More Lefebvre translations?

  1. Nick Beech says:

    There are some big gaps aren’t there! This is exciting news—I’d been led to believe that De L’Etat was strictly untouchable, has there been movement on that? For my doctoral research I translated (really badly, my French is abysmal!) the ‘Concrete Abstraction’ chapter of De L’Etat, vol. 3, and I still think there is lots of research that could come from bringing that chapter together with (possibly?) Deleuze and Guattari… anyway, some of my students and other colleagues still find ‘Concrete Abstraction’ an interesting “stand alone” chapter. I was wondering if anyone (you?) is (are?) considering translating some of Lefebvre’s empirical research—particularly the studies on agriculture in the Pyrenées? That, with La Somme et le Reste have been the frustratingly distant (for us barbarians) materials in Lefebvre’s work. I think the agricultural studies could offer a massive corrective to how Lefebvre has been engaged in much of the Anglo-American academe (though that’s a ‘hunch’, as I’ve only got glimmers of it to date). Or were you thinking of Lefebvre’s studies in literature and visual arts? Many thanks, by the way, for the State, Space, World collection—really, really useful (not least for clarifying some of The Explosion) and I hope that it will begin to inform some of the debates around the student protest and occupation movement (we’ll see!).

    Sorry, I’ve burbled on your blog…

  2. stuartelden says:

    De l’Etat is complicated, and State, Space, World was an attempt to circumvent the restrictions. One way of getting a sense is to look at the work that has been reissued in France. There are several of Lefebvre’s books still out of print – if they haven’t been reissued (i.e. De l’Etat) there are possibly legal issues.
    Much as I would like to see his literary work or the rural studies in English, realistically the market for those is likely to be too restrictive to justify the costs (both translation and rights) involved. I’m hoping that some of his other work on the urban, space and politics might be translated (Du rural a l’urbain; La pensee marxiste et le ville; Espace et politique) and/or some of his more philosophical work, which has been poorly served so far.
    The Key Writings collection provides a sample of much of this; my book on Lefebvre tries to tie all these concerns into an overall picture of his work.

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