The Republics

Playwright, editor, and poet Handal's fifth collection of poetry balances what she calls 'flash reportages' with vivid lyric and image. Built out of a patchwork of powerful blocks of monologue or narrative, and threaded with Spanish and Haitian Creole, the book's texture parallels those of 'a multicolored coat,' 'a mirror of unfinished voices,' and 'a scarf tangled in sepia.' . . . The poems spring forth with a spontaneity and urgency that counterbalance the restrained flourishes of her previous work. Handal watches and waits to 'catch what aches in beauty,' telling stories of Haitians and Dominicans with searing honesty. . . . Handal artfully captures the desire, the rawness of life, and the 'misery that burns the soul' of the people she encounters.
Publishers Weekly
Winner, 2016 George Ellenbogen Poetry Award

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“The Republics is a massively brilliant new work, a leap in literature we have not seen. It’s gripping, harrowing, and at times horrific while its form paradoxically is fresh, luscious, and original. Bypassing pity and transforming pain into language Handal stars. She has recorded like Alice Walker, Paul Celan, John Hershey, and Carolyn Forché some of the worst civilization has offered humankind and somehow made it art.”—Sapphire

88 Pages, 6.1 x 7.6 in.

March, 2015

isbn : 9780822963325

about the author

Nathalie  Handal

Nathalie Handal was raised in Latin America, France and the Middle East, and educated in Asia, the United States, and the United Kingdom. Her recent poetry books include the flash collection The Republics, winner of the Virginia Faulkner Award for Excellence in Writing, and the Arab American Book Award; critically acclaimed Poet in Andalucía; and Love and Strange Horses, winner of the Gold Medal Independent Publisher Book Award. She is the author of eight plays, editor of two anthologies, and her poetry, essays and creative nonfiction have appeared in Vanity Fair, Guernica Magazine, The Guardian, The New York Times, The Nation, The Irish Times, among others. Handal is the recipient of awards from The Lannan Foundation, Centro Andaluz de las Letras, Fondazione di Venezia, Emily Harvey Foundation, among others. Her work brings her to audiences globally. She is a professor at Columbia University, and writes the literary travel column “The City and the Writer” for Words without Borders magazine.

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Nathalie  Handal