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Unmasked Writings / Historias desconfinadas
A unique collaboration between Creative Writing students at UEA and students of Translation Studies at the University de Alcalá, Unmasked Writings/Historias desconfinadas is a series of five chapbooks mapping the emotional angles of the pandemic and giving voice to the long moments of introspection we all cultivated during the hardest months of this crisis. Each text is presented both in the original English and the translated Spanish.
This is volume two, No Date on the Calendar / Sin fecha en el calendario.
Cartoons by Willa Froy
translated by Soledad Benavente Ceballos
Unprecedented by Aayra Khawaja
translated by Javier Romero Castañeda
Weekly Routine by Ryan Lenney
translated by Roberto Matei
The outbreak of coronavirus disease in 2020 had a major impact around the world. The COVID-19 pandemic had, and still has, extraordinary consequences for all of us, since lockdowns, isolation, distance, or anxiety have marked our daily lives throughout the past months.
In this “new normality,” connecting students from two different countries seemed a natural way of overcoming social distancing and the restrictions imposed. The present initiative emerged as an idea for channelling the feelings, visions and responses to this pandemic of students of Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, who were asked to put into words all these stories burning inside them during the long months in which our routines, relationships and horizons were locked down. The texts crafted by these authors were then passed to students of Translation Studies at the University de Alcalá, who have re-created the original texts in a different language, Spanish, by working hand in hand with the authors.
The results of this collaboration can be found in these books, which include the original texts and their translations. Through varied techniques and diverse literary forms —short story, poetry or screenplay— the different accounts explore the effects of the pandemic in multifarious ways. From the description of difficult relationships during the lockdown to narratives set in a dystopian future, the texts in these books show a compelling introspective portrait of the feelings of isolation, uncertainty, or longing brought by the pandemic, although there is also room for love and hope in some of them.
The reader is therefore invited to dive in the different experiences shared by these talented young writers and translators, who, as first-hand witnesses, have followed a thoughtful creative process in order to offer their own perspectives of the pandemic in the texts that build these billingual collections.