Adam Ash

Your daily entertainment scout. Whatever is happening out there, you'll find the best writing about it in here.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Translations and Man Booker International

18 authors were shortlisted for this prize (see previous post). In this article, judges’ chairman Oxford Eng Lit Prof Carey (chaired Booker in 1982 and 2003), notes that more than half of the authors are in translation, including Hebrew and Japanese: “We hope this will be a spur to publishers to publish more work in translation.” The article states: "Many experts claim foreign literature is ignored in Britain. In 1997 only 2 per cent of books published in Britain were translations. Today 3 per cent are translations." Carey says: "We're too insular. There are wonderful things, but a lot of readers are cut off from them. Think of the history of novels — Balzac, Zola...we think they’re English writers in a way. It’s the enormous dominance of English. It means we are cut off from other countries.” Of Gregory Rabassa's translation of his One Hundred Years of Solitude, Marques said it read better than the original.


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