The Christoph Martin Wieland-Preis is awarded every second year by the ‘Circle of Friends for the Promotion of Literary and ScientificTranslation’, founded by Helmut M. Braem.
This year’s award is for the translation of an opus of world literature and goes to Eike Schönfeldt for his German translation of the American classic Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson. The collection of narratives, first published in 1919, is fundamental to the tradition of the American short story, which has thrown up authors like Faulkner and Hemingway, both influenced by Anderson himself, but also Cheever and Carver. The unadorned, dry, extremely artificial language in which these sympathetic portraits of bizarre characters are presented is recreated in the German language in a very precise and highly sensitive way. The timbre is balanced between sparse sobriety and voluble fluency. Eike Schönfeldt, who for nearly thirty years has been translating works by such English-language authors as Henry Fielding, Saul Bellow, Jonathan Franzen, Charles Darwin and Nicholson Baker, succeeds with his sensitive translation in opening up this classic to contemporary readers, as the jury agreed.
The award ceremony will take place on the 5th of September in Wieland, Biberach. The €12.000 prize is sponsored by the Baden-Württemberg Ministry for Science, Research and Art.