Lithuanian classics finally available in English

Important | 2018-05-04

Warm Lithuanian spring and beautiful Kaunas city parks create perfect atmosphere for reading outdoors. For those of you interested in Lithuanian literature, we have exciting news: White Shroud, one of the most influential Lithuanian novels is now translated into English.

“Written from the perspective of a newcomer to an Anglophone country, White Shroud encourages readers to better understand the complexities of immigrant life”, Vagabond Voices, the publisher of the English translation of White Shroud write on their website.

White Shroud (Balta drobulė, 1958) is the novel included into Lithuanian school programme, thus, it’s a book that everyone has read or is familiar with. It tells a story of an emigrant poet working as an elevator operator in a large New York hotel during the mid-1950s. Written in a stream-of-consciousness style this psychological novel portrays an immigrant’s struggle to adapt to a completely different world.

The author of the novel Antanas Škėma was born in 1910 and started studying medicine in Kaunas in 1929. He later transferred to law studies and, in 1935, began attending a theatre studio. Škėma even made it to the main stage as an actor. From 1940 to 1944, he acted and directed in Vilnius State Theatre and later left the country for the West. In the German DT camps and then in the United States, he continued his theatrical career and wrote numerous articles on theatre and literature and a handful of literary works. He died in a car accident a few years after White Shroud was finished.

Read more on the Kaunastic Visit Kaunas page.

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