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Moderators

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Eric Banks

Eric Banks is director of the New York Institute for the Humanities at NYU. He is the former president of the National Book Critics Circle and was previously editor in chief of Bookforum. His writing has appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times Book Review and the London Review of Books.

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Karen Kovacik

Karen Kovacik is a poet and a translator of contemporary Polish poetry. Her translations include Jacek Dehnel's Aperture (Zephyr, 2018) and Agnieszka Kuciak's Distant Lands: An Anthology of Poets Who Don't Exist (White Pine, 2013). She is also the editor of Scattering the Dark, an anthology of Polish women poets (White Pine, 2016). Her work has been awarded with two fellowships in literary translation from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Fulbright Research Grant.

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Nermeen Shaikh

Nermeen Shaikh is a Co-Host and News Producer at Democracy Now! She is the author of The Present as History published by Columbia University Press. She has a B.A. (Honors) from Queen’s University in Canada, and an M.Phil. in politics from Cambridge University. She regularly speaks on issues ranging from contemporary news media and film to psychoanalysis and literature. She has presented in various venues including the United Nations, TEDx Danubia (Hungary), the Toronto International Film Festival, the psychoanalysis division of the American Psychological Association, the European Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies, among others.

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Sean Bye

Sean Gasper Bye is a translator of Polish literature. His translations of Lidia Ostałowska’s Watercolours (Zubaan Books) and Filip Springer’s History of a Disappearance (Restless Books) were published in 2017. His translations of fiction, reportage, and drama have appeared in The Guardian, Words Without Borders, Catapult and elsewhere. He is a winner of the 2016 Asymptote Close Approximations Prize and a 2019 National Endowment for the Arts translation fellow. He studied modern languages at University College London and international studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies. Since 2014, he has been Literature and Humanities Curator at the Polish Cultural Institute New York.

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Cressida Leyshon

Cressida Leyshon is the deputy fiction editor at The New Yorker.

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YZ Chin

YZ Chin is the author of Though I Get Home (Feminist Press, 2018), premier winner of the Louise Meriwether First Book Prize. She has also written two poetry chapbooks: In Passing (Anomalous Press, 2019) and deter (dancing girl press, 2013). Her fiction and essays have appeared or will appear in Harvard Review, Somesuch Stories, Paper Darts, Electric Literature, Lit Hub and more.

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Tess Lewis

Tess Lewis is a writer and translator from French and German. Her translations include works by Peter Handke, Alois Hotschnig, Klaus Merz, Hans Magnus Enzensberger, Christine Angot, Pascal Bruckner and Jean-Luc Benoziglio. She has been awarded grants from PEN USA, PEN UK, and the NEA, a Max Geilinger Translation Grant for her translation of Philippe Jaccottet, the ACFNY Translation Prize and the 2017 PEN Translation Prize for her translation of the novel Angel of Oblivion by the Austrian writer Maja Haderlap, and most recently a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship. She is Co-chair of the PEN Translation Committee and Advisory Editor for The Hudson Review.

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Violeta Kelertas

Violeta Kelertas, Ph.D., is a literary critic, translator and editor who has written about the literary scene in Soviet and post-Soviet Lithuania since the 1970s. Former Endowed Chair of Lithuanian Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago, she is currently affiliated with the Baltic program at the University of Washington, Seattle. Kelertas is the editor and main translator of the short story anthology, Come into My Time: Lithuania in Prose Fiction 1970-1990. She published a translation, Tofylis, or the Marriage of Zosė (London: paper+ink, 2018). Marriage for Love, selected stories by Zemaite, is forthcoming with Birchwood Press, Los Angeles.

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Claire Potter

Claire Potter is an associate editor of literary and serious nonfiction at Crown Publishers, a division of Penguin Random House. She has previously worked at Words Without Borders, the Feminist Press, and Guernica.