Warwick Prize for Women in Translation Announces 2018 Longlist

Fifteen titles from nine languages have been longlisted for the second annual Warwick Prize for Women in Translation:

As last year, the titles were mostly from European languages. German titles by women had the strongest showing, with four different books, followed by two from Croatian, two from Polish, two from Swedish, and one each from Danish, Spanish, French, Japanese, and Korean.

The full longlist:

  • Bang by Dorrit Willumsen, translated from Danish by Marina Allemano (Norvik Press, 2017)
  • Belladonna by Daša Drndić, translated from Croatian by Celia Hawkesworth (Maclehose Press, 2017)
  • Flights by Olga Tokarczuk, translated from Polish by Jennifer Croft (Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2017)
  • Go Went Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck, translated from German by Susan Bernofksy (Portobello Books, 2017)
  • Hair Everywhere by Tea Tulić, translated from Croatian by Coral Petkovich (Istros Books, 2017)
  • Land of Smoke by Sara Gallardo, translated from Spanish by Jessica Sequeira (Pushkin Press, 2018)
  • Letti Park by Judith Hermann, translated from German by Margot Bettauer Dembo (The Clerkenwell Press, 2018)
  • Maybe Esther by Katja Petrowskaja, translated from German by Shelley Frisch (4th Estate, 2018)
  • 1947 by Elisabeth Åsbrink, translated from Swedish by Fiona Graham (Scribe Publications, 2017)
  • Of Dogs and Walls by Yuko Tsushima, translated from Japanese by Geraldine Harcourt (Penguin, 2018)
  • River by Esther Kinsky, translated from German by Iain Galbraith (Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2018)
  • The Emperor of Portugalia by Selma Lagerlöf, translated from Swedish by Peter Graves (Norvik Press, 2017)
  • The House with the Stained-Glass Window by Żanna Słoniowska, translated from Polish by Antonia Lloyd-Jones (Maclehose Press, 2017)
  • The White Book by Han Kang, translated from Korean by Deborah Smith (Portobello Books, 2017)
  • Vernon Subutex One by Virginie Despentes, translated from French by Frank Wynne (Maclehose Press, 2017)

According to judges, the competition received a total of 53 eligible entries representing 22 languages. The 2018 prize is being judged by Amanda Hopkinson, Boyd Tonkin and Susan Bassnett, who said in a prepared statement:

Ranging from South Korea to Argentina by way of Poland and Croatia, the long-list selections for this year’s prize have a truly global spread. Equally diverse are the forms of literature represented: from short stories to family sagas, interior journeys to topical fables, scorching satire to historical epic, with a welcome showing for creative non-fiction as well.

It has been fascinating reading some of the really unusual books that cross genre boundaries and resist being pigeon-holed as fiction, history or memoir. The task facing translators has been immense and the success in English of some of these complex novels and collections of short stories testifies to the translators’ skill. A cornucopia of shocks and delights to judge, and for many new readers to discover and enjoy.’

The £1000 prize was established by the University of Warwick in 2017 to address the gender imbalance in translated literature and to increase the number of international women’s voices accessible by a British and Irish readership. Last year’s inaugural prize went to Memoirs of a Polar Bear, written by Japanese-German writer Yoko Tawada and translated from German by Susan Bernofsky.

The shortlist is due to be announced in early November 2018. The winner will be announced in an evening ceremony at the Warwick Arts Centre on Tuesday 13 November at 6 p.m.

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