The novel was released by the publishing house Samayik Prakashan under the title Zone of Enthusiasm – Berlin, from the Other Side of the Wall.
His novel Zóna nadšenia (Zone of Enthusiasm) was translated into Hindi, the fifth most widely spoken language in the world used by about 380 million people. This is the first translation of a Slovak novel into Hindi. Also for this reason, the Ambassador of India in Slovakia Rajiva Misra gave a reception at the Indian Embassy, which was attended also by the President of Slovakia´s National Council, Pavol Paška.
On November 26th, the novel was released at the Slovak Embassy in New Delhi in the presence of the Ambassador Marián Tomašík, the author, the translator, the publisher and important representatives of Indian cultural institutions. The novel was published by Samayik Prakashan under the title Zone of Enthusiasm – Berlin, from the Other Side of the Wall.
The leading Indian specialist in German studies Amrit Mehta has translated the novel from German, published under the title Jubelzone. Up until today he has translated 62 novels by German, Swiss und Austrian authors such as Nobel Prize winners for litterature Günter Grass, Elfriede Jelinke or Henrich Böll. Jozef Banáš is the first author from a non-German speaking region and the translator has stated that the novel contains European parameters and is one of the best books he has ever read.
After the release of the book, Jozef Banáš toured India for one week, during which he gave lectures at the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, at the University in Chandigarh and Punjabi University in Patiala. During the sessions with students and teachers, he discussed life in Slovakia before the fall of the Berlin wall and after 1989. The Indian media devoted special attention to Banáš´ visit. Interviews with him were presented on TV as well as in the printed media.
The attendance of the President of the Slovak National Council at the reception was not a coincidence. “Jozef and I met in the parliament in 2002 for the first time, he was member of the ruling coalition and I was head of the opposition Committee of Foreign affairs. When I became President of the Parliament after the elections in 2006, Jozef called me and brought a manuscript saying that he had written a new book. So I had a look at it. I must say that the novel fascinated me and I think that it is no surprise that the book has been translated so often, as it offers an insight into history as well as strong emotions. Jozef had not been as popular those days yet and publishers were not overtaking each other to release his book, so I was the first to give him significant financial support thus prompting the trustworthiness of this project. More than 30,000 copies have been sold by now, which is a fantastic success in Slovakia,” Pavol Paška said for TA SR.
“I am happy about this; it is a language spoken by more than 380 million people. And moreover, at the University in Patiala a decision has been made to translate the novel into Punjabi as well, a language used by further 120 million people mainly in Pakistan thus opening the doors to Pakistan too. I have always believed in this novel and those reading the manuscript encouraged me as well, and still I would have never thought it to become such an international success. The book was published in 2008 and it sells very well even today. In the meantime it has been translated into Czech, German and Polish; in February the book will be released in Ukrainian; a Serbian translation and a translation into English are on their way as well,” the author Jozef Banáš said for TA SR.
He has written further successful bestsellers such as Idioti v politike (Idiots in Politics), Zastavte Dubčeka (Stop Dubček), Kód 9 (Code 9), Sezóna potkanov (The Rat Season) and Posledná nevera (Last Infidelity).
TA SR, Press Agency of the Slovak republic 13.12.2012