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2017 International DUBLIN Literary Award Announced

As I’m sure you all know, the International DUBLIN Literary Award is the biggest one out there, with a purse of €100,000 (which is split 75%/25% between author and translator). It’s incredibly competitive, nominations are made by librarians () around the world, and the prize can go to a work written in any language (including English). And this year’s prize (shortlist here) has just been announced: it’s gone to A General Theory of Oblivion, written by Angolan author José Eduardo Agualusa and translated from the Portuguese by Daniel Hahn. I’m so pleased to hear this news, especially as Daniel Hahn, besides being a splendid translator (and author in his own right), is also Mr. Translation in the U.K., tirelessly working as an educator and organizer of pro-translation activities (e.g. he’s recently served as chair of the Translators Association and the Society of Authors as well as working as the national program director of the British Centre for Literary Translation, just for starters). What’s more, he’s donating half his prize money to start a new prize for first-time translators; it’s a characteristically generous act (and part of a new trend?). I’m so delighted to see his artistry honored. Bravo Danny, and well done!

Submit Now for the 2017 Gulf Coast Prize in Translation

Translation_Logo-2The 2017 Gulf Coast Translation Prize is now open for submissions and will be reading this year in the Prose category (so no poetry until next year). The prize comes with a purse of $1000 and publication in the journal Gulf Coast (from the English Dept. at the University of Houston). The $18 reading fee gets you a year’s subscription to the journal, and this year’s judge will be the amazing John Keene. There will also be two $250 honorable mentions.

The application deadline this year is Sept. 8, 2017.  You’ll find more information on the Gulf Coast website. The application instructions are a bit of a mess where permissions are concerned (they clearly didn’t read my translation rights primer and wound up asking for something that doesn’t make sense), but muddle through as best you can, and let them know if you have questions.

2017 Man Booker International Prize Announced

The Man Booker Prize Foundation in London has just announced the winner of this year’s Man Booker International Prize. The 2017 prize goes to Israeli writer David Grossman and translator Jessica Cohen for A Horse Walks into a Bar published by Jonathan Cape. Bravo to author and translator! For more information about the winning book and the others on this year’s shortlist, see the website of the Man Booker Prizes. At the prize ceremony, translator Jessica Cohen spoke (starting at 13:45) movingly about all the great literature coming out of Israel at a time when there hasn’t been much good news at all coming from that country, and announced that she would be donating half of her prize money (quite a sum – the prize comes with a £50,000 purse that’s split equally between writer and translator) to B’Tselem, an organization that champions human rights and exposes violations in the occupied territories of the West Bank and Gaza. “It’s not easy,” she said, “to tell unflattering and uncomfortable truths, and it’s certainly not easy to hear them, but it is essential, not only in literature, but in life, and I hope that organizations like B’Tselem can continue to do so.” Jessica, you represent the best of what we are. Thank you, and my most heartfelt congratulations.

2017 Austrian Cultural Forum New York Translation Prize Announced

Adrian Nathan West

The Austrian Cultural Forum New York has just announced that its 2017 Translation Prize will be awarded to translator, editor, and writer Adrian Nathan West for his translation of The Abduction (Die Verschleppung) by Austrian writer Josef Winkler. This is the fourth book by Winkler West has translated. The prize will be awarded in a ceremony at the Austrian Cultural Forum on Oct. 12, 2017.

The Austrian Cultural Forum New York Translation Prize has been around since 2009 and supports the translation of work by Austrian authors with a $5000 prize to an outstanding translator of an outstanding book. Recently the prize has been awarded in odd-numbered years, so watch this space for a call for applications some time next year.

2017 Firecracker Award in Fiction Goes to a Translated Book

For the second year in a row, the Firecracker Award for Independently and Self-Published Literature in the Fiction category presented by the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses has gone to a translated book. This year’s winner is Eve out of Her Ruins by Ananda Devi, translated from French by Jeffrey Zuckerman and published by Deep Vellum. I’m particularly happy to see a book written by a woman selected for this award, as the overwhelming preponderance of male-authored translated books winning prizes over books by women has been a subject of concern for a while now. There were a number of translated books among the finalists too. The Firecracker winners in all categories were announced on Twitter earlier today and at a prize ceremony last night, and you’ll soon find information about all these books posted on the Firecracker Awards website. Congratulations to all the winning authors (and translator!)

Free One-Day Literary Translation Institute at Long Island University in Brooklyn

For the first time ever, the MFA Program in Creative Writing at Long Island University will be offering a one-day Literary Translation Institute for both novices and experienced translators on June 16, 2017 that is, miraculously, both free and open to the public – the only requirement being that you register and submit work (except for the introductory workshop) by June 9. I recommend that you don’t wait until the last minute to register, since the afternoon workshops might fill up before that, though it may still be possible to attend the morning’s presentations. The faculty members for this program include Kaiama Glover, Gregary Racz, Christopher Winks, and me (Susan Bernofsky), and it’s being organized by poet Erica Hunt. For more information about the day’s activities (faculty presentations in the morning, workshops in the afternoon, lunch provided by LIU in between), please visit the LIU MFA Program’s Facebook page, where you’ll find application instructions etc. Please direct any questions to the MFA Program office. I hope to see you there!

Translation on Tap in NYC, June 1 – 30, 2017

Well, it’s summer, but fortunately there’s still translation lore coming your way. Here’s what’s on tap. Enjoy!

Thursday, June 1:

Launch event for Nest in the Bones by Antonio di Benedetto, featuring translator Martina Broner joined by Benjamin Kunkel. More information here. McNally Jackson Books, 52 Prince St., 7:00 p.m.

Friday, June 2:

European Literature Night: This night of readings and conversations from the work of and with over a dozen authors from various  European countries also features several translators (including Tim Mohr, Karen Van Dyck, and Karen Kovacik) reading and Read More →