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Fresh Air with Terry Gross

Poet John Balaram has translated the poetry of an 18th century Vietnamese concubine in the new book, –Spring Essence: The Poetry of Ho Xuang Huong— (Copper Canyon Press) Ho Xuang Huong won acclaim for her poetry despite the fact that she was a woman and she challenged established conventions. Most of her poems also were double entendres: a hidden sexual meaning lay behind her words. Balaban was a conscientious objector during the Vietnam war, and went back to the country after the war to collect and preserve Vietnamese folk poetry. Balaban is also the author of a memoir, and of several books of his own poetry.

32:15

Other segments from the episode on February 21, 2017

Fresh Air with Terry Gross, January 4, 2001: Interview with John Balaban; Review of Ken Burns' documentary series "History of Jazz;" Obituary for Charlie Lourie; Review of the film "Traffic."

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