Terence McKenna Books in Translation

Terence McKenna’s published works have been translated, over the years, into more than a dozen languages (Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Czech, Hungarian, Russian, Polish, Japanese, Estonian, Bulgarian, Italian, Dutch, Slovenian…and, no doubt, others that I am unaware of). The Terence McKenna Archives holds a small selection of these translations. Some were acquired recently as a result of donations to our ongoing crowdfund, others were in the collection prior to the crowdfund, and some have been kindly donated. If you have a translated copy of a work by Terence McKenna that is not pictured here (or if you represent a publisher of such a work) and would like to donate a copy to The Terence McKenna Archives, please do send an email.

Thanks, in particular, to Castellarte, the publisher of the Spanish translation of True Hallucinations Alucinaciones Reales: Relato de las Extraordinarias Aventuras del Autor en el Paraiso del Diablo (2001). They were kind enough to send me two beautiful copies for the archival collection. It is produced in the style of the original HarperSanFrancisco edition.

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Another edition of the same book that is produced in a similar style is the Japanese edition published by Daisan Shokan幻覚世界の真実 (Genkaku sekai no shinjitsu) (1995). [Google Translate provides a rough translation of “The Truth of the Hallucination World”]. Some of the primary differences between this and the English and Spanish editions derive from the different ways in which Japanese is read (the book opens from what English readers would identify as the “back” cover, for instance, and the text reads from right to left). I am particularly enamored of the vertical, columnar orientation of the Table of Contents and the marbled, malachite-green hard cover beneath the dust jacket.

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Of all of the translated editions of True Hallucinations, my favorite, aesthetically remains the Italian translation, Vere Allucinazioni, published by Shake Edizioni Underground and abundantly & skillfully illustrated by Matteo Guarnaccia. I have an entire previous blog post on this edition.

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The Japanese translation of Food of the Gods, also published by Daisan Shokan, is called 神々の糧 (ドラッグ) : 太古の知恵の木を求めて : 植物とドラッグ、そして人間進化の歴史再考 (Kamigami no doraggu : taiko no chie no ki o motomete : shokubutsu to doraggu soshite ningen shinka no rekishi saiko (1993). [“Drugs of the Kami” is an interesting translation of Food of the Gods]. It’s another hardcover that looks very nice on a shelf and has a wonderful cover design.

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The Terence McKenna Archives collection also has German and Polish translations of Trialogues at the Edge of the West under the titles Denken am Rand des Undenkbaren & Zdążyć Przed Apokalipsą (which Google Translate renders, respectively, as “Thinking on the Edge of the Unthinkable” & “Make it For the Apocalypse” or “Be in Time for the Apocalypse”).

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We also have some copies of foreign-language books or translations that include contributions by, or interviews with, Terence McKenna.

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This heady German volume includes a translated 3-page extract of Terence from a conversation with musician b-Eden, called “Psychedelische Erfahrungen” [Psychedelic Experiences]

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published by Stampa Alternativa, this is an Italian book (translated ‘Psychedelic Heresies’) that includes an interview with Terence McKenna called “Sacri Antidoti,” mostly about Buddhism.

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German translation of ‘The Gateway to Inner Space: Sacred Plants, Mysticism, and Psychotherapy: A Festschrift in Honor of Albert Hofmann’, edited by Christian Rätsch, which includes a chapter by Terence McKenna, called, in English, “Among Ayahuasquera”

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However, there are far more translations that are not currently represented in The Terence McKenna Archives collection….(it’s actually nice to still have plenty more work to be done)!

Crowdfund Acquisitions #2 – Illustrator Matteo Guarnaccia Brings Italian Translation of ‘True Hallucinations’ to Life

Another item that has been added to The Terence McKenna Archives as a result of our ongoing crowdfund campaign is Vere Allucinazioni (1995), an Italian translation of Terence’s “talking book” (1984) and eventually paper book (1993), True Hallucinations: Being an Account of the Author’s Extraordinary Adventures in the Devil’s Paradise.

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What makes this volume particularly valuable and noteworthy, aside from the significance of the affordance for Italian speakers to be able to read Terence’s work, are the copious and excellent illustrations (dozens scattered throughout the text) by Matteo Guarnaccia.

Dozens of Guarnaccia’s drawings litter the pages and often mesh unbelievably well with the contents of the book — I’m only showing a fraction of them here. This is an edition of Terence’s work that is worth having, even if you can’t speak Italian, for the incredibly competent and compelling psychedelic art alone.

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Terence McKenna Archives – Random Item #3 – Obituary in Esotera: Das Magazin Für Neues Denken und Handeln (July 2000)

Today’s random item from the archives is a memorial article written by Irene Dalichow shortly after Terence’s death in April 2000 for the German alternative spirituality magazine Esotera: Das Magazin Für Neues Denken und Handeln and appears in their July 2000 issue. I would be greatly obliged to any capable German language readers who might be willing to provide a translation of the article in English (which would be much preferable to a Google Translate version)–please email translations to terencemckennaarchives@gmail.com or just post in the comments below.

The title for the piece is simply (translated) ‘Obituary on Psychedelic Researcher Terence McKenna’. The Google translation of the quote attributed to him in the opening photograph is a good example why translation by a real person is still preferable to translation by a computer. There are nuances and idioms that are difficult to translate literally: “I saw the light of eternity shining through every sheet.” I’m sure there is a more evocative rendering of whatever Terence said in English, which was then translated to German, and which we are now attempting to translate back into English. I wonder how close our final English renderings after going through that translation and reverse-translation process come to whatever Terence’s actual original words were. Anyway, there’s also some nice photos of Terence here that I don’t think are otherwise represented online at the moment. So, the community of TM-enthusiasts and meme-makers will no doubt be happy about the addition of those to the general corpus. Unfortunately, the magazine doesn’t give photographer credits. If you shot either of these photos, or know who did, please do get in touch.

[Update: a Facebook member was kind enough to crop and clean up the two photos of Terence, so I thought I’d add them here for your enjoyment. Thanks, Micki!]

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