Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Cambodian group secures translation rights for Jack Kerouac book

Monsters and Critics
Asia-Pacific News
Aug 12, 2008

Phnom Penh - A Cambodian arts' organization has secured the rights to translate the Beat Generation author Jack Kerouac's classic On The Road into Khmer, the group said Tuesday.

The revolutionary 1951 work was penned by the US author in just three weeks, and traces his sometimes debauched travels across the United States over a seven-year period.

Kerouac hailed from Lowell, Massachusetts - home to one of the largest populations of overseas Cambodians in the US - and art group Camerado felt the translation would be a fitting tribute that would also benefit Khmer speakers and modern Cambodian writers.

But Camerado organizer Jason Rosette admitted there were some concerns that it may challenge some culturally conservative Khmers.

'It may be a stretch for Khmers, but we've arranged to do a simultaneous interpretive translation as well, which may make it more accessible,' he said by email. 'We will definitely be in need of sponsorship to get it off the ground.'

Camerado is known for innovative projects, including establishing CamboTube, the Cambodian version of YouTube.

Kerouac's work has been credited with influencing artists and musicians ranging from The Beatles and Bob Dylan to members of the New Journalism movement including Truman Capote and Norman Mailer.

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