The distinguished British novelist, biographer and long-time lover of Romania meets fellow literary critic, broadcaster and author, Bucharest’s Marius Chivu.
Marius Chivu is a writer, translator and literary reviewer. He made his debut in 2012 with a collection of poems entitled Vîntureasa de plastic / The Plastic Wafter (Brumar), which won the Union of Romanian Writers Debut Prize and Observator cultural magazine Debut Prize. He has also published a collection of interviews, Ce-a vrut să spună autorul / What the Author Meant (Polirom, 2013), and two travel diaries, Trei săptămâni în Himalayas / Three Weeks in the Himalayas (Humanitas, 2012) and Trei săptămîni în Anzi / Three Weeks in the Andes (Humanitas, 2016), and a book of short stories, Sfîrșit de sezon / Season’s End (Polirom, 2014). Since 2005 he has worked as an editor and literary reviewer for Dilema veche magazine and writes editorials for Elle magazine. He has translated Oscar Wilde, Lewis Carroll, Tim Burton, and Paul Bailey into Romanian, and has contributed to and edited several anthologies.
Read more about him on Lithub.
Writer and broadcaster Paul Bailey won a scholarship to the Central School of Speech and Drama in 1953 and worked as an actor between 1956 and 1964. He became a freelance writer in 1967 and has enjoyed a distinguished career. He is known for his love of, and insight into, Romania. He was appointed Literary Fellow at Newcastle and Durham Universities (1972-4), and was awarded a Bicentennial Fellowship in 1976, enabling him to travel to the USA, where he was Visiting Lecturer in English Literature at the North Dakota State University (1977-9). He was awarded the E.M. Forster Award in 1974 and in 1978 he won the George Orwell Prize for his essay ‘The Limitations of Despair’, first published in The Listener magazine. Paul Bailey’s novels include At The Jerusalem (1967/Head of Zeus, 2019), which is set in an old people’s home, and which won a Somerset Maugham Award and an Arts Council Writers’ Award; Peter Smart’s Confessions (Cape, 1977) and Gabriel’s Lament (Cape, 1986), both shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Fiction; and Sugar Cane (Bloomsbury 1993), a sequel to Gabriel’s Lament. Kitty and Virgil (Fourth Estate, 1998) is the story of the relationship between an Englishwoman and an exiled Romanian poet. In his last novel, Uncle Rudolf (HarperCollins, 2002), the narrator looks back on his colourful life and his rescue as a young boy from a likely death in fascist Romania, by his uncle, a gifted lyric tenor and the novel’s eponymous hero.
He has also written plays for radio and television: At Cousin Henry’s was broadcast in 1964 and his adaptation of Joe Ackerley’s We Think the World of You was televised in 1980. His non-fiction books include two volumes of memoir, entitled An Immaculate Mistake: Scenes from Childhood and Beyond (Bloomsbury, 1990), and A Dog’s Life (Hamish Hamilton, 2003). Three Queer Lives: An Alternative Biography of Naomi Jacob, Fred Barnes and Arthur Marshall (Penguin, 2001), is a biography of three gay-popular entertainers from the twentieth century. His latest books are Chapman’s Odyssey (Princeton University Press, 2011) and The Prince’s Boy (Bloomsbury, 2014). Find The Prince’s Boy here.
The event is part of Romania Rocks: Romanian-British Literature Festival.