The Susan Sontag Foundation recently announced Julia Powers and Adam Morris as the winners of their 2012 Prize for Translation. Every June, the $5,000 prize is awarded to a literary translator under the age of 30 over the course of five months, during which the proposed project must be completed. The award was established to foster the development of a new generation of literary translators and increase the number of works in translation published in the United States. This year, the prize will be split between Powers and Morris, who will each translate a work by Hilda Hilst, a Brazilian poet, novelist, and playwright. Known for writing about intimacy, insanity, and supernatural events, Hilst wrote for 50 years, during which she won almost every major Brazilian literary prize.
Julia Powers will translate Contos d’escárnio/Textos grotescos, a short, satirical novel with elements of confessionalism and radical criticism. A graduate of Amherst College, Powers has worked as an editor for the Hudson Review and recently received a Fulbright research grant to translate literature in Salvador, Brazil. This fall, she will begin her Ph.D. in Comparative literature at Yale University.
Adam Morris’s project, A obscena senhora D, is an erotic narrative that draws inspiration from the field of psychoanalysis. Morris is currently working toward a Ph.D. at Stanford University, studying 20th and 21st century Latin American literature. He has been published in CR: The New Centennial Review, The Luso-Brazilian Review, parallax, Zyzzyva, and Public Books.
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