Ganbare! Workshops on Dying


by Katarzyna Boni

November 23, 2021 
nonfiction | pb | 296 pgs.
5.5" x 8.5"

The March 11, 2011, earthquake and subsequent tsunami that ravaged Japan lasted a mere six minutes. But the fallout—the aftershocks, the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the country-wide devastation—from this catastrophic event and the trauma experienced by those who survived it is ongoing, if not permanent.

In Ganbare! Workshops on Dying, Polish writer and reporter Katarzyna Boni takes us on a journey through the experience of death and how the living—those of us left behind—learn to grieve. In Ganbare!, some learn how to scuba-dive for the sole purpose of recovering their loved one’s remains; some compile foreign-language dictionaries of “prohibited,” tsunami-related words so they don’t have to think of them in their mother tongue; many believe in the lingering presence of the ghosts of those whom the wave claimed for itself. Whatever their methods, whatever their mechanisms, whatever their degree of success, the survivors Boni gives voice to in Ganbare! provide an intimate, soul-aching, and above all human look at how people come to deal with loss, trauma, and death.

Translated from the Polish by Mark Ordon


About the Author:

Katarzyna Boni graduated in cultural studies at the University of Warsaw and in social psychology at the SWPS University, as well as from the Polska Szkoła Reportażu (Polish School of Reportage). She publishes in travel magazines and the Duży Format magazine. Boni specializes in writing about Asia, where she spent over three years working in Japan, China, Cambodia, Thailand, the Philippines, and Indonesia. She is a co-author of Kontener—a book about Syrian refugees in Jordan, written together with Wojciech Tochman.

About the Translator:

Mark Ordon is a writer and translator based in Poznań, Poland. His work has appeared in the English edition of Przekrój magazine and The Thornfield Review, as well as academic publications commissioned by the Polish Academy of Sciences. His focus to date has been on short fiction and non-fiction, as well as translations of academic papers and lectures, such as "On the Importance of Sadness," a lecture given by philosopher Tomasz Stawiszyński at A Night of Philosophy and Ideas in Brooklyn, New York in February 2020.