Saturday, December 26, 2009

In Translation

So many books and too few have been translated into English. Is it that it’s too difficult, or is it a venture that leaves publishers with a meager profit?

Last year, prior to announcing the winner of the Nobel Prize for literature, Horace Engdahl, the permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, said— "The U.S. is too isolated, too insular. They don't translate enough and don't really participate in the big dialogue of literature. That ignorance is restraining."

And there were many replies on both sides of the Atlantic. We, of course, took exception to being called insular and isolated.

Two interesting articles on translation:

From the New York Times Small Publisher Finds Its Mission in Translation

From NPR The Art of Translation

Words Without Borders is an "... Online Magazine for International Literature"

This month they are exploring science fiction.

Columbia University's web site Center for Literary Translation maintains a list of links to magazines and journals devoted to international writing.

I've found some wonderful writing by perusing the different sites.

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