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Nathan Henne publishes first-ever English translation of Guatemalan novel

November 9, 2012

Loyola University New Orleans assistant professor of languages and cultures Nathan Henne, Ph.D., completed the first-ever English translation of “Time Commences in Xibalbá,” a novel by Luis de Lión. The book gives a picture of a violent village crisis in Guatemala as a man returns to his seemingly unchanged childhood home. Henne, himself born and raised in Guatemala, translates the novel with a keen sense of the poetics underlying Guatemala’s indigenous culture. He also penned the introduction to the translated novel, published by the University of Arizona Press.

De Lión, the author, was a primary teacher in rural schools of Guatemala and later taught at the University of San Carlos in Guatemala City. On May 15, 1984, he was kidnapped by a death squad of the Guatemalan dictatorship because his writings were critical of the government. He is presumed murdered.

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