12 May 09 | Chad W. Post | Comments

It was recently announced that Antonia Lloyd-Jones has received this year’s Found in Translation Award for her translation of Pawel Huelle’s The Last Supper. (Which is available in the UK from Serpent’s Tail, and has a U.S. pub date of December 1, 2009.)

Huelle is a big name in Polish literature, and although a number of his books have been translated into English, it seems that he’s much more popular in the UK than the U.S. Which is unfortunate—this novel sounds pretty interesting:

The story of The Last Supper is set in Gdansk and centres on a single day in the near future, when twelve men have been invited by their mutual friend, an artist, to model at a photographic session for a modern version of The Last Supper. The histories of the twelve men are revealed through their thoughts on the day: their wayward behaviour is a reflection of the role of the Church in Polish society today. The reunion is disturbed as a wave of terrorist bombs paralyses the city, creating upheaval and a sense of unease.

Antonia Lloyd-Jones is one of the best Polish to English translators working today, and has translated other Pawel Huelle titles (including Castorp), along wiht works by Olga Tokarczuk, Jaroslaw Iwaszkiewicz, Ryszard Kapuscinski, and Wojciech Tochman.

The Found in Translation prize was established last year by the Polish Book Institute, Polish Cultural Institutes in London and New York, and W.A.B. Publishers. Its goal is to honor the best translation from Polish into English published within the past year by giving the translator PLN 10,000 (ca $3,000) and a three-month scholarship.

10 April 08 | Chad W. Post | Comments

Just got a message from the Polish Book Institute that Bill Johnston (translator of numerous Polish authors, including Jerzy Pilch’s The Mighty Angel, another Open Letter book about drunks that we’ll be publishing in Spring 2009) has won the first ever Found in Translation award.

He won for his translation of Tadeusz Rozewicz’s New Poems available from Archipelago.

As pointed out in the press release about the award, this isn’t the first honor for Rozewicz’s book—it was also a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle award for poetry.

Bill is a really incredible translator and perfect example of how someone can help promote a particular country’s literature in translation.

He has translated the classics – J. Słowacki, B. Prus, S. Żeromski and Witold Gombrowicz. His splendid translations of books by authors such as Magdalena Tulli and Andrzej Stasiuk have also allowed American readers to become acquainted with Polish contemporary literature. Bill Johnston is an Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Second Language Studies at Indiana University in Bloomington (USA).

The Found in Translation award was established last October by the Book Institute, the Polish Cultural Institute in London, the Polish Cultural Institute in New York, and W.A.B. Publishers. The winner receives 10,000 PLN (almost $5,000) and a three-month Book Institute scholarship.

7 January 08 | Chad W. Post | Comments

All funding, all day, it seems . . .

On the heels of the ACE debacle, and the NEA’s increase, here’s an announcement from the Polish Book Institute:

Found in Translation Award

The Polish Book Institute, Polish Cultural Institute in London, Polish Cultural Institute in New York and W.A.B. Publishing House in Warsaw announce the FOUND IN TRANSLATION Award.

The FOUND IN TRANSLATION Award is to be given annually to the translator or translators of the best translation of a work of Polish literature into English that was published as a book in the preceding calendar year.

The Award consists of a three-month residency in Krakow, with lodging, a stipend in the amount of 2,000 PLN monthly, an airline ticket to and from Krakow funded by the Polish Book Institute, and a financial award of 10,000 PLN funded by the W.A.B. Publishing House.

The Award is given by a Selection Committee consisting of representatives of the Polish Book Institute, Polish Cultural Institute in London, and Polish Cultural Institute in New York. The Director of the Polish Book Institute is to be President of the Selection Committee.

The name of the laureate is to be announced during the award ceremony, which will be organized each year in the laureate’s country of origin, preferably during the International Book Fair in that country.

Candidates for the Award can be nominated by private persons as well institutions in Poland and abroad.

Nominations are to be sent to the Polish Book Institute, 31-011 Kraków ul. Szczepańska 1, Poland, e-mail biuro@instytutksiazki.pl with the subject-heading FOUND IN TRANSLATION.

The nomination is to include the book title, name of the author, name of the translator, publisher, and a statement of the reasons for the nomination. The deadline for sending nominations is January 31 of each year, by midnight.

It’s years off the future, but I’m already planning on recommending Bill Johnston for his translation of Jerzy Pilch’s The Mighty Angel that we’ll be bringing out next year . . .

....
I Am a Season That Does Not Exist in the World
I Am a Season That Does Not Exist in the World by Kim Kyung Ju
Reviewed by Jacob Rogers

Kim Kyung Ju’s I Am a Season That Does Not Exist in the World, translated from the Korean by Jake Levine, is a wonderful absurdist poetry collection. It’s a mix of verse and prose poems, or even poems in the. . .

Read More >

Kingdom Cons
Kingdom Cons by Yuri Herrera
Reviewed by Sarah Booker

Yuri Herrera is overwhelming in the way that he sucks readers into his worlds, transporting them to a borderland that is at once mythical in its construction and powerfully recognizable as a reflection of its modern-day counterpart. Kingdom Cons, originally. . .

Read More >

The Invented Part
The Invented Part by Rodrigo Fresán
Reviewed by Tiffany Nichols

Imagine reading a work that suddenly and very accurately calls out you, the reader, for not providing your full attention to the act of reading. Imagine how embarrassing it is when you, the reader, believe that you are engrossed in. . .

Read More >

A Simple Story: The Last Malambo
A Simple Story: The Last Malambo by Leila Guerriero
Reviewed by Emilee Brecht

Leila Guerriero’s A Simple Story: The Last Malambo chronicles the unique ferocity of a national dance competition in Argentina. The dance, called the malambo, pushes the physical and mental limits of male competitors striving to become champions of not only. . .

Read More >

The Little Buddhist Monk & The Proof
The Little Buddhist Monk & The Proof by Cesar Aira
Reviewed by Will Eells

Aira continues to surprise and delight in his latest release from New Directions, which collects two novellas: the first, The Little Buddhist Monk, a fairly recent work from 2005, and The Proof, an earlier work from 1989. There are a. . .

Read More >

Agnes
Agnes by Peter Stamm
Reviewed by Dorian Stuber

The narrator of Peter Stamm’s first novel, Agnes, originally published in 1998 and now available in the U.S. in an able translation by Michael Hofmann, is a young Swiss writer who has come to Chicago to research a book on. . .

Read More >

Class
Class by Francesco Pacifico
Reviewed by Vincent Francone

The thing about Class is that I don’t know what the hell to think about it, yet I can’t stop thinking about it. I’ll begin by dispensing with the usual info that one may want to know when considering adding. . .

Read More >