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On a Woman’s Madness

On a Woman’s Madness

by Astrid Roemer, Translated by Lucy Scott

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“Astrid Roemer’s writing, in Lucy Scott’s new translation, is lush and sinuous, turning quiet domestic scenes into dreamscapes and cranking up the volume on the many love stories this novel contains. It has taken far too long for On a Woman’s Madness to make it into English – don’t miss it now that it’s here!”
—Lily Meyer, NPR

On a Woman’s Madness tells the story of Noenka, a courageous Black woman trying to live a life of her own choosing. When her abusive husband of just nine days refuses her request for divorce, Noenka flees her hometown in Suriname, on South America’s tropical northeastern coast, for the capital city of Paramaribo. Unsettled and unsupported, her life in this new place is illuminated by romance and new freedoms, but also forever haunted by her past and society’s expectations.

Strikingly translated by Lucy Scott, Astrid Roemer’s classic queer novel is a tentpole of European and post-colonial literature. And amid tales of plantation-dwelling snakes, rare orchids, and star-crossed lovers, it is also a blistering meditation on the cruelties we inflict on those who disobey. Roemer, the first Surinamese winner of the prestigious Dutch Literature Prize, carves out postcolonial Suriname in barbed, resonant fragments. Who is Noenka? Roemer asks us. “I’m Noenka,” she responds resolutely, “which means Never Again.”


ISBN-13: 9781949641646
Publisher: Two Lines Press
Publication Date: November 28, 2023
Pages: 265

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