MARGUERITE DURAS (1914-1996) was born in Giadinh, Vietnam (then Indochina) to French parents, both teachers. She went to Paris at 18 and studied mathematics, law, and political science at Sorbonne. In 1935, she became a civil servant in the Ministry for Colonial Affairs. During WWII she was active in the Resistance and in 1945 joined the Communist Party. Duras is the author of over 50 novels, plays, and screenplays. Her novel The Lover, won the Prix Goncourt in 1984.
MARK POLIZZOTTI has translated works by Jean Echenoz, Andre Breton, Gustave Flaubert, and Patrick Chamoiseau, in addition to Durass novel Writing (Lumen Editions, 1998). His own books include Revolution of the Mind: The Life of Andre Breton, Lautreamont Nomad, the collaborative novel S., a monograph on Luis Bunuels Los Olvidados, and a forthcoming book on Bob Dylan. He is director of publications at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.