Best Translated Book Award 2015 Shortlists

book-stackA month ago, the 2015 Best Translated Book Award longlists came out – you might still be reading them, they’re the longest longlists of all time (though perhaps not so long if you consider that close to 600 titles were submitted). But if you’re not done yet, you might now want to skip to the shortlists, which were announced earlier today.

Read More

Why I Signed the PEN Protest Letter


In Charlie Hebdo, Christianity gets shafted too.

As you have no doubt heard by now, six writers who were to have served as “table hosts” at the PEN American Center’s 2015 Gala recently backed out in protest of PEN’s decision to present the PEN/Toni and James C. Goodale Freedom of Expression Courage Award to the French satirical journal Charlie Hebdo.

Read More

2015 French-American Foundation Translation Prize Finalists

Screen Shot 2015-04-28 at 10.13.58 AMShortlist season is in full swing. Here’s the list of finalists for the 2015 French-American Foundation’s Translation Prize. The winner in each category (fiction and nonfiction) will be awarded at $10,000 prize, funded by the Florence Gould Foundation, at an awards ceremony on June 9, 2015. With no further ado, voila:

Finalists in Fiction:

  • Howard Curtis, for his translation of Invisible Love by Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt, Europa Editions
  • Ann Jefferson, for her translation of Winter Mythologies and Abbots by Pierre Michon, Yale University Press
  • Tess Lewis, for her translation of Privy Portrait by Jean-Luc Benoziglio, Seagull Books
  • Donald Nicholson-Smith, for his translation of The Mad and the Bad by Jean-Patrick Manchette, New York Review Books
  • Edward Ousselin, for his translation of Pleasures and Days and “Memory” by Marcel Proust, Dover Publications

Finalists in Nonfiction:

  • David Ball, for his translation of Diary of the Dark Years, 1940-1944 by Jean Guéhenno, Oxford University Press
  • Deke Dusinberre, for his translation of The Man Who Thought He Was Napoleon by Laure Murat, University of Chicago Press
  • John Lambert, for his translation of Limonov by Emmanuel Carrère, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Lorna Scott, for her translation of Teresa, My Love by Julia Kristeva, Columbia University Press
  • Mbarek Sryfi & Eric Sellin, for their translation of Arabs and the Art of Storytelling: A Strange Familiarity by Abdelfattah Kilito, Syracuse University Press

Congratulations to all the finalists!

Read More

Translation on Tap in NYC, May 1 – 15, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-04-28 at 10.07.31 AMHere’s what’s coming up in Translationland NYC this early May. Let’s hope these are events are accompanied by actual spring-like temperatures!

Friday, May 1:

Translation in Transition: The two-day conference being held at Barnard College kicks off at 2:00 p.m. on Friday and runs through the evening of Saturday, May 2.

Read More

Remembering Benjamin Harshav, 1928-2015

harshavHearing the sad news this past week of Benjamin Harshav’s passing, I asked Adriana X. Jacobs, a colleague who specializes in contemporary Israeli poetry and translation, to say a few words in tribute. This is what she wrote:

A few trembling lines on the palm of my hand.

I held them long
And let them flow through my fingers,
Word by word.”
—Jacob Glatshteyn, “A Few Lines”
translated by Benjamin and Barbara Harshav

The great literary scholar and translator Benjamin Harshav died this past week at the age of 87. 

Read More

Translation at the 2015 London Book Fair

LBFJuliaSherwoodTwo years ago I visited the London Book Fair for the first time and was chuffed (new vocabulary item!) to see how prominently  translation and translators were featured. I wrote up an account of my experiences here. Since then, I unfortunately haven’t made it back again, but my colleague Julia Sherwood (who translates from Slovak) was in attendance for LBF 2015 and has written up a lively account of her adventures for Asymptote.

Read More

Translation at the 2015 PEN World Voices Festival


2015 PWV cover image: The Root of all Eves (detail) by Wangechi Mutu

There’ll be some terrific-sounding translation-flavored events at this year’s PEN World Voices Festival, to be held May 4 – 10 in various NYC locations. Here’s the lineup:

Friday, May 8:

Translation Slam: This one is a perennial Festival favorite, moderated as is traditional by Michael Moore.

Read More