Submit Now: Two Competitions for Translators from Japanese

Submissions are invited for two prizes for translators of Japanese-language literature.

Donald Keene

The first is for book-length works: the Donald Keene Center of Japanese Culture at Columbia University annually awards $6,000 in Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission Prizes for the Translation of Japanese Literature. A prize is given for the best translation of a modern work or a classical work, or the prize is divided between equally distinguished translations. Beginning this year, as part of the same competition, the Keene Center will also consider applications for Lindsley and Masao Miyoshi Translation Prizes and Grants, for scholarly works and works-in-progress. Occasional lifetime achievement awards are given out as well. The deadline to compete for one of this year’s prizes is June 1, 2017, and complete application guidelines can be found on the Keene Center website.

Kyoko Selden

For shorter works (up to 20,000 words), the Department of Asian Studies at Cornell University offers the Kyoko Selden Memorial Translation Prize in Japanese Literature, Thought, and Society. This one is bittersweet for me, because I knew Kyoko Selden, a very lovely person, writer, editor, translator, teacher, and member of the Cornell University community who died in 2013; I miss her. This prize in her honor awards $1500 each to an experienced and an emerging translator (defined as not yet having published a book in translation or the equivalent). This year’s deadline is Aug. 1, 2017. Full details of the prize and application guidelines can be found on the Cornell Asian Studies website.

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