Preface to the Universal Literature Collection
Miren Ibarluzea


The presence or absence of a preface is a feature worth examination in the paratextual analysis of literary works. The works translated into Basque for the Universal Literature collection each have a preface, which is noteworthy in that it is almost always the translator who writes it. Why do the translators write these prefaces? What do they discuss? What function do these texts carry out? How are they organized? What are their main characteristics? The 152 prefaces of the first two phases of the collection vary widely; in this article, following the classifications of Genette (1987) and Risterrucci-Roudnicky (2008), we try to describe this variety and to clarify the primary characteristics of these prefaces, not only to analyze and evaluate the collection, but also as a guide for future writers of prefaces to literary translations.