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.
The last five days of the eleventh-century Icelandic politician, writer of sagas, and famous murder victim Snorri Sturleleson (the Norwegian spelling, Snorre, is preserved in the book) make up Thorvald Steen’s most recently translated historical fiction, The Little Horse. Murdered. . .
We all know Paris, or at least we think we know it. The Eiffel Tower. The Latin Quarter. The Champs-Élysées. The touristy stuff. In Dominique Fabre’s novel, Guys Like Me, we’re shown a different side of Paris: a gray, decaying. . .
One hundred pages into Birth of a Bridge, the prize-winning novel from French writer Maylis de Kerangal, the narrator describes how starting in November, birds come to nest in the wetlands of the fictional city of Coca, California, for three. . .
At 30, the Mexican writer Valeria Luiselli is already gathering her rosebuds. Faces in the Crowd, her poised debut novel, was published by Coffee House Press, along with her Brodsky-infused essay collection, Sidewalks. The essays stand as a theoretical map. . .
Fantomas Versus the Multinational Vampires: An Attainable Utopia (narrated by Julio Cortázar) is, not disappointingly, as wild a book as its title suggests. It is a half-novella half-graphic novel story about . . . what, exactly? A European tribunal, Latin. . .
Marie NDiaye has created a tiny, psychological masterpiece with her Self-Portrait in Green. In it she explores how our private fears and insecurities can distort what we believe to be real and can cause us to sabotage our intimate relationships.. . .
Reading a genre book—whether fantasy, science fiction, crime, thriller, etc.—which begins to seem excessively, stereotypically bad, I have to make sure to ask myself: is this parodying the flaws of the genre? Usually, this questioning takes its time coming. In. . .
The Sicilian Mafia has always been a rich subject for sensational crime fiction. The Godfather, Goodfellas, and The Sopranos worked the mob’s bloody corpses and family feuds to both entertainment and artistic value. Giuseppe di Piazza’s debut novel attempts this,. . .
Antoine Volodine’s vast project (40 plus novels) of what he calls the post-exotic remains mostly untranslated, so for many of us, understanding it remains touched with mystery, whispers from those “who know,” and guesswork. That’s not to say that, were. . .
It hasn’t quite neared the pitch of the waiting-in-line-at-midnight Harry Potter days, but in small bookstores and reading circles of New York City, an aura has attended the novelist Elena Ferrante and her works. One part curiosity (Who is she?),. . .