Mar 16th, 2016, 12:00 AM

Beautiful and Thoughtful: The Cahiers Series

By Yana Kotina
Image credit: The Cahiers Series
Discover a short-books collection of remarkable writing and masterly translation

The Cahiers Series, published by The American University of Paris in collaboration with Sylph Editions, is a collection of artsy short books that explore the borders of writing and translation, or the areas that link them. Each of these books is specifically designed and illustrated alongside the literary works, including images from the author's personal collections, photos of diaries and letters, as well as the artworks and sketches.  

What makes The Cahiers Series unique is the remarkable content and its intellectual content. The Cahiers do not present a literary work in an bland manner, but offer a colorful discourse that incorporates the author’s remarks, editorial comments, and additional information, if applicable. In short, The Cahier Series expands the boundaries of what the language and literature allow us to do with words and thoughts.

Image credit: The Cahiers Series

"Like many of the numbers that precede it, this cahier’s size belies its substance, resonance, and weight. This book has resonance, a power generated and magnified by every layer of its substance. It deserves a very wide readership and it is worth owning as a work of art in itself." Bethany W. Pope, The Coffin Factory

The current 26 editions interact with different branches of writing. The series ranges from short texts by Muriel Spark, in "Walking on Air", as well as an eloquent Pushkin’s translation by Richard Pevear, who binds it with a discussion of translating Tolstoy in "Translating Music". The Cahiers also include an extraordinary introduction to the opera Wagner Dream written on Buddhist motifs in "Circles of Silence", by Jonathan Harvey and Jean-Claude Carrière, and a beautifully printed "Text on Textile", which explores a close connection between the textile's nature, mythology, and art history by Italian poet Patrizia Cavalli. More information about The Cahiers Series can be found at the websites of Sylph Editions and the American University of Paris. 

Image credit: The Cahiers Series

The Cahiers Series can be bought online through the Sylph Editions as one or as a collection of six editions, and also found at the AUP's library. The short books are the fascinating masterpieces that are must read or, at least, must see.

"The Cahiers Series represents all that we should be striving for in our increasingly interwoven world." Book Trust