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Do You Hear in the Mountains... and Other Stories

Maïssa Bey. Translated by Erin Lamm. Afterword by Alison Rice

BUY Cloth · 196 pp. · 5.5 × 8.5 · ISBN 9780813940281 · $65.00 · Sep 2018
BUY Ebook · 196 pp. · ISBN 9780813940304 · $65.00 · Sep 2018
BUY Paper · 196 pp. · 5.5 × 8.5 · ISBN 9780813940298 · $25.00 · Sep 2018

This new translation brings together two of Algerian author Maïssa Bey’s important works for the first time in English. "Do You Hear in the Mountains..." is a compelling piece of autofiction in which three destinies meet dramatically on a train moving through France. We meet an Algerian refugee, whom we recognize as Bey herself. She has escaped the civil war and cannot forget her father’s commitment to independence nor his death under the torture of the French soldiers. Sitting near her is a retired doctor whose military service in Algeria coincidentally took him to the same area at the time of that tragedy. Their neighbor is a girl who would like to understand this past that is so painful to discuss. The eleven diverse tales that follow, presented under the title "Under the Jasmin, at Night," exemplify some of Bey’s recurring themes—the Franco-Algerian colonial legacy and the feminine condition. Together, these works provide an unforgettable picture of a turbulent history that reaches across generations and continents.

CARAF: Caribbean and African Literature Translated from French


Maïssa Bey is widely recognized as one of the most important contemporary Algerian women writers. Her works are often cited alongside those of Assia Djebar, Leïla Sebbar, and Malika Mokeddem as feminist voices speaking out against various forms of oppression imposed upon women of Algerian origin. As the newest voice in this group of writers, Bey deserves equal consideration and exposure to English-speaking audiences

Anne Carlson, Spelman College

In this charged work of autofiction, Bey explores her ties with the Algerian War for Independence, during which her father was killed.... Lamm’s translation is beautifully rendered. The contents of the novella and the subsequent short stories may be sobering, but they provide a host of essential queries for the individual who enjoys a philosophically charged read. The edition is made all the more pleasant by its afterword, authored by Alison Rice, from the University of Notre Dame, who puts both Maïssa Bey and her writing into context for the non-specialist who wants to better understand Bey’s literary journey.

Words Without Borders

A new note in the rising tide of feminist voices from North Africa, this collection by Algerian author Maïssa Bey brings together a dozen of her rightly awarded short stories to create a picture of the historical moment from which she comes. Foregrounding her personal history as a refugee, Bey presents the stories of postcolonial women quickly but unforgettably, like the strangers one glimpses through the windows of a passing train car.

World Literature Today

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