However, as our third issue of babel goes online we are also affected by the recent murder of Hrant Dink in Turkey. More writers, editors and journalists are coming under threat in Istanbul. Among them are Orhan Pamuk, Elif Shafak and Asli Erdogan. International PEN reports that at least 18 writers have been offered police protection. The human right to express oneself freely, to hold and voice opinions that challenge the people in power must always be championed: a challenge for writers and readers alike. With that in mind this spring's Empty Chair is given to the Uzbekistan journalist Jamshid Karimov.
In this spring issue of BABEL we are happy to have Barnstone and Ping's new translations of Han Shan's poetry. Having had to flee for his life for political reasons, Han Shan found refuge in the mountains, writing his poems on trees and rocks.
We are also proud to have Marilyn Hacker's moving translations of Marie Etienne's "War Diary". And don't miss Inara Cedrin's translaitons of Amanda Aizpuriete's poems.
With so many Voices this time (Latvian, French, English, Chinese and Danish) we are lucky to be able to hear Niels Hav reading in his native tongue.
Jeff Encke's poems from Most Wanted were chosen for the brave and provocative approach to the subject matter: love, enemies, identity.
The editors hope that you will find something to enjoy and perhaps even something to challenge your opinions.
Ren Powell, Editor babel
Helge Lunde, ICORN Project Manager