Why publish foreign literature in France?
The strength and beauty in literature lies in its distinctions, its differences. Foreign literature is characterised by its strangeness, its foreignness, its wonderful dissonances of sound and tone. There is a considerable gap between us and them, the familiar point of view and the stranger’s point of view, in our way of perceiving the world, and the other’s way of approaching it, which is so different and unexpected. For me, foreign literature is the heart of literature. There is an international series of novels which could be set interchangeably in Tokyo, London or Honolulu, the same capital cities with the same five star hotels where one drinks the same chic cocktails, speaks the same languages, goes to the same museums. But what I am looking for is that something in the language, the style, the subject and the story – which will change something in us as we are reading them, giving us a new perspective on the big questions, whether it be hedonism and pleasure or life and our metap