Frankfurt homage inspires Czech translators to join forces in an open letter to publishers

Frankfurt homage inspires Czech translators to join forces in an open letter to publishers

At Frankfurt International Book Fair, translators were paid a homage by the Norwegian writer Erika Fatland, who said that “Translators, who are often ignored, are the heroes of literature that I deal with every day.” They were also praised by the Norwegian Minister of Culture, Trine Skei Grande, who commented that “the Nobel Peace Prize should go to translators because they do a tremendous job in helping us read each other’s stories and thereby understanding each other.” These two declarations inspired Czech translators to join forces and write an open letter to publishers (https://www NULL.facebook NULL.com/obecprekladatelu/photos/pb NULL.183416178503538 NULL.-2207520000 NULL.0 NULL./1346843902160754/?type=3&theater).

Czech translators of Nordic languages set up independent professional assocation

Czech translators of Nordic languages set up independent professional assocation

Czech translators of the Nordic languages have founded an independent professional association: Překladatelé Severu (Czech Translators of the North).

Its aim is to improve translators’ pay and working conditions, disseminate information about contracts with authors and support the publication of quality translations, by, among a number of ways,  training new translators and editors.

Czech translator takes a public stand against xenophobic comments

Czech translator takes a public stand against xenophobic comments

Michala Marková, a renowned translator from English and French, wrote an open letter to the Czech Radio Council, expressing her concerns about the unacceptable statement of one of its members, Tomáš Kňourek, who reacted to a broadcasted excerpt from her translation of The Line of Beauty by Alan Hollinghurst. Mr Kňourek called the author a ‘lecher’ dressed as a writer and his writing ‘filth’, irrelevantly attacked the United Kingdom and its approach to migration, mentioned the Muslim minority as ‘people’ in quotation marks, and implicitly suggested censorship would be welcome  while attacking  the editor in chief of the highly acclaimed radio station.

Europe celebrates International Translation Day

Europe celebrates International Translation Day

On 24 May 2017, the United Nations General Assembyl recognised 30 September as International Translation Day, to be celebrated every year across the entire UN network. Translators’ associations all over Europe organise a variety of festive events. To name a few:

 

Austria

The Austrian association of literary translators (http://www NULL.literaturhaus NULL.at/lh/ueg/) has a tradition of celebrating International Translation Day together with the other translators’ and interpreters’ associations in Austria by taking turns in organising the event.

Call for applications: Prague City of Literature Residencies (Deadline 31 August 2018)

Call for applications: Prague City of Literature Residencies (Deadline 31 August 2018)

The project Prague City of Literature offers residency stays for foreign writers and translators. There are six residencies available for 2019, each lasts two months.

Prague City of Literature reimburses the resident for a return ticket, provides accomodation for free and a stipend of 600 euro per month.

For more details and the application form, please click here (https://www NULL.prahamestoliteratury NULL.cz/en/about/).

Czech translators and their concerns at the Prague Book Fair (10–13 May 2018)

Czech translators and their concerns at the Prague Book Fair (10–13 May 2018)

Translators enjoyed much attention at the last Prague Book Fair (https://www NULL.eepg NULL.org/index NULL.php?shortCutUrl=Prague-International-Book-Fair), visited by 46,000 book lovers, where as many as 26 countries participated in various programmes throughout the four days.

Apart from numerous readings organized by publishers and a complex introduction of literature from Latin America in the context of Czech book market, several major events highlighted our profession, thanks to the Czech Literary Centre (http://www NULL.culturenet NULL.cz/en/Czech-in/literature/czech-literary-centre/) (CLC).

Czech translators start a series of discussions on developments in book market

Czech translators start a series of discussions on developments in book market

Hosted by Vaclav Havel Library (http://www NULL.vaclavhavel-library NULL.org/en/index/news), the series ‘Lost in Translation’ is a chance for translators, editors and other representatives of publishing houses, big and small, as well as  publishers owned by large media groups, to exchange their experiences, expectations, complaints and grievances, and to comment on the situation in  the choked book market from their respective points of view.

Call for application for Susanna Roth Award: Competition for young translators from Czech (deadline: 31 March 2018)

Call for application for Susanna Roth Award: Competition for young translators from Czech (deadline: 31 March 2018)

Czech Centres (http://www NULL.czechcentres NULL.cz/) and the Czech Literary Centre traditionally invite young translators from Czech to compete in translating a chosen piece of contemporary literature. Try your luck with Bomba★Funk  by Karel Veselý to win several days in the Czech Republic filled with seminars and other programmes.

Increased support for translations of Czech literature

Increased support for translations of Czech literature

The Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic has increased its support for the publication of Czech literature abroad. The terms of the new Support  Programme  allow for claims of  up to 70% of the total  cost of publishing . Within the application for a grant to publish the translation of a complete book, it is possible to ask for a

  • translation grant (up to 50% of the total cost of publishing)
  • cover design costs, graphic design, typesetting, printing (up to 50% of the total cost of publishing)
  • copyright costs (up to 15% of the total cost of publishing) and
  • promotion costs (up to 25% of the total cost of publishing).

Residencies at Czech Literary Centre (deadline: 1 June 2017)

Residencies  at Czech Literary Centre (deadline: 1 June 2017)


The newly founded Czech Literary Centre (http://www NULL.czechlit NULL.cz/en/) organises two- to four-week residencies for foreign writers, translators, critics and literary scholars who are interested in, and want to learn more about Czech literature and culture.

The aim of the residencies, in form of creative scholarships and without any age limit, is to support literature, creative dialogue and international cultural exchange. 

Translation of fiction at Book World Prague 2016, the 22nd international Prague book fair and literary festival (12-15 May 2016)

Translation of fiction at Book World Prague 2016, the 22nd international Prague book fair and literary festival  (12-15 May 2016)

Among numerous events relating to foreign authors and their translators, the programme features several items on the translation of fiction and children’s literature.

On Thursday 12 May, literary agent Andrew Nurnberg will give a talk about copyright and changes in attitudes of American and British copyright holders towards the Czech and Slovak book-markets over the last 20 years.

Conference on poet, translator and reader Jan Zábrana

Conference on poet, translator and reader Jan Zábrana

On 6 and 7 November, the international conference Jan Zábrana: Poet – Translator – Reader was held in Prague at the Department of Translation Studies, Faculty of Arts of Charles University.

The conference focused on three major areas of Zábrana’s work: his own poetry and fiction, his translations of modern English, American, Russian, French and Spanish literature, and finally his literary journalism in which he introduced the authors he valued highly (Jesenin, Pasternak, Mandelstam, Babel, Ferlinghetti, Plath, Stevens, Ginsberg, Parra and many others) to the public.

Czech Mind Award to Martin Hilský

Czech Mind Award to Martin Hilský

The Czech Mind Award, a prize presented by the Government of the Czech Republic for exceptional results in research, development and innovation, has been awarded to a literary translator, treasured colleague Martin Hilský.

Prof. Hilský is a recipient of the Jungmann Prize, the Tom Stoppard Prize, the State Award for Translation, and the President’s Medal of Merit, as well as an Honorary Member of the British Empire for his lifelong achievement as translator, writer, and teacher.

Several Czech translation prizes awarded

Several Czech translation prizes awarded

The Czech Literary Translators’ Guild (OP) celebrated International Translation Day at its annual award ceremony on 6 October by its Hall of Fame to Miroslav Jindra, a State Prize winner and a renowned translator from English.

Fostering poetry translation, OP regularly grants the Hana Žantovská Scholarship, this time to the State Prize laureate Jiří Pelán translating selected baroque poetry to be published by Opus, a small publishing house praised by OP for its abiding devotion to quality literature and poetry in this year’s Cramerius Laudation.