Abahn Sabana David

Written by Marguerite Duras | Translated by Kazim Ali | Open Letter | June 14, 2016

Available for the first time in English, Abahn Sabana David is a late-career masterpiece from one of France’s top writers.

Late one evening, David and Sabana, communists, arrive at a country house where they meet Abahn, the man they’ve been sent to guard and ultimately kill for his perceived transgressions. A fourth man arrives (also named Abahn), and throughout the night these four characters discuss understanding, capitalism, violence, revolution, and dogs. A gun in the house disquiets the scene.

Suspenseful and thought-provoking, Duras’s novel is evocative of Samuel Beckett as it explores human existence and suffering in the confusing contemporary world.  (Read an Excerpt)

Marguerite Duras was born in Giadinh, Vietnam (then Indochina) to French parents. During her lifetime she wrote dozens of plays, film scripts, and novels, including The Ravishing of Lol SteinThe Sea Wall, and Hiroshima, Mon Amour, and was associated with the nouveau roman (or new novel) French literary movement. Duras is probably most well known for The Lover, an autobiographical work that received the Goncourt prize in 1984 and was made into a film in 1992. She died in Paris in 1996 at the age of 81.

"a gripping meditation on the nature of fear, silence, and survival."--Kirkus Reviews

"Duras’s sleek prose unfurls like poetry: terse, punchy sentences that often move down the page rather than across it into paragraphs."--Publisher's Weekly

More information is available on the publisher's website.

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