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    • May 2013
    • 9780231159692
  • 288 Pages
  • 1 Illustrations

  • Paperback
  • $29.50
  • / £20.50


    • May 2013
    • 9780231159685
  • 288 Pages
  • 1 Illustrations

  • Hardcover
  • $89.50
  • / £62.00


    • May 2013
    • 9780231535021
  • 288 Pages
  • 1 Illustrations

  • E-book
  • $28.99
  • / £20.00

In Translation

Translators on Their Work and What It Means

Edited by Esther Allen and Susan Bernofsky

The most comprehensive collection of perspectives on translation to date, this anthology features essays by some of the world's most skillful writers and translators, including Haruki Murakami, Alice Kaplan, Peter Cole, Eliot Weinberger, Forrest Gander, Clare Cavanagh, David Bellos, and José Manuel Prieto. Discussing the process and possibilities of their art, they cast translation as a fine balance between scholarly and creative expression. The volume provides students and professionals with much-needed guidance on technique and style, while affirming for all readers the cultural, political, and aesthetic relevance of translation.

These essays focus on a diverse group of languages, including Japanese, Turkish, Arabic, and Hindi, as well as frequently encountered European languages, such as French, Spanish, Italian, German, Polish, and Russian. Contributors speak on craft, aesthetic choices, theoretical approaches, and the politics of global cultural exchange, touching on the concerns and challenges that currently affect translators working in an era of globalization. Responding to the growing popularity of translation programs, literature in translation, and the increasing need to cultivate versatile practitioners, this anthology serves as a definitive resource for those seeking a modern understanding of the craft.

About the Author

Esther Allen teaches at Baruch College, City University of New York. She has translated a number of books from French and Spanish, including the Penguin Classics anthology José Martí: Selected Writings. A former fellow at the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library, she was named a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government for her work promoting a culture of translation in English.

Susan Bernofsky is a leading translator from the German. Her translations of works by Robert Walser, Jenny Erpenbeck, Hermann Hesse, and others have been honored with the Helen and Kurt Wolff Translation Prize, the Calw Hermann Hesse Translation Prize, and fellowships from the NEA, NEH, PEN Translation Fund and Lannan Foundation. Chair of the PEN Translation Committee, she teaches in the MFA program at Columbia University and blogs about translation at

In Translation promises to be an essential part of any translation library. Allen and Bernofsky have assembled a collection of thoughtful essays by a wide-ranging group of translators whose opinions about the knotty art of translation are varied, fascinating, and eminently intelligent

Edith Grossman, Translator, author of Why Translation Matters

In Translation is an essential addition to the canon of translation studies, offering fascinating insights about the role and the work of the translator. Anyone interested in the making of literature will want this book.

John Biguenet, coeditor of The Craft of Translation and Theories of Translation

Serious and witty by turns, and sometimes both at once, these informative essays illuminate what matters in translation and why translation matters.

Motoyuki Shibata, University of Tokyo

A panoramic view of the craft of translation. An impressive gathering of the expertise of the finest translators working in English today from a wide range of languages and literatures.

Peter Constantine, winner of the Helen and Kurt Wolff Translator's Prize for Benjamin Lebert's novel, The Bird Is a Raven

The essays in In Translation, exploring both the larger, complex questions of translation's role and function in the world of literature and the more detailed, word-by-word dilemmas faced by every translator, are consistently stimulating, engaging, and eye-opening, not to speak of eloquent and occasionally even dramatic and/or funny. I came away from reading them with a host of new ideas and insights.

Lydia Davis, translator of Swann's Way and Madame Bovary

A strong introduction to the field.

Knowledgeable and articulate.... the book raises and clarifies a variety of significant issues about the many decisions translators must contend with.

An obvious choice for writers and readers interested in translation; challenging but also accessible to the nonacademic reader.

I loved this book. I felt I was introduced to a new universe, and not only translation, but language itself, will never look the same again.

AcknowledgmentsIntroduction: A Culture of Translation, by Esther Allen and Susan BernofskyPart I: The Translator in the World1. Making Sense in Translation: Toward an Ethics of the Art, by Peter Cole2. Anonymous Sources (On Translators and Translation), by Eliot Weinberger3. Fictions of the Foreign: The Paradox of "Foreign-Soundingness", by David Bellos4. Beyond, Between: Translation, Ghosts, Metaphors, by Michael Emmerich5. Translation as Scholarship, by Catherine Porter6. Translation: The Biography of an Artform, by Alice Kaplan7. The Will to Translate: Four Episodes in a Local History of Global Cultural Exchange, by Esther AllenPart II: The Translator at Work8. The Great Leap: César and the Caesura, by Forrest Gander9. Misreading Orhan Pamuk, by Maureen Freely10. On Translating a Poem by Osip Mandelstam, by José Manuel Prieto, translated by Esther Allen11. Are We the Folk in This Lok?: Translating in the Plural, by Christi A. Merrill12. Choosing an English for Hindi, by Jason Grunebaum13. As Translator, as Novelist: The Translator's Afterword, by Haruki Murakami, translated by Ted Goossen14. Haruki Murakami and the Culture of Translation, by Ted Goossen15. Translating Jacopone da Todi: Archaic Poetries and Modern Audiences, by Lawrence Venuti16. "Ensemble discords": Translating the Music of Scève's Délie, by Richard Sieburth17. Translation and the Art of Revision, by Susan Bernofsky18. The Art of Losing: Polish Poetry and Translation, by Clare Cavanagh

Read Haruki Murakami's essay on translating The Great Gatsby. (to view in full screen, click on icon in bottom right-hand corner)