The Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize

The Oxford-Weidenfeld Prize is for book-length literary translations into English from any living European language. It aims to honour the craft of translation, and to recognise its cultural importance. It is funded by Lord Weidenfeld and by New College, The Queen’s College and St Anne’s College, Oxford.

 

The Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize

2016: This year’s judges are Valentina Gosetti, Jonathan Katz, Graham Nelson, and Patrick McGuinness (Chair).

The short list includes eight books from an outstanding entry of nearly 110 titles in translations from 15 different languages. 

Once again there were impressive submissions from both larger and smaller publishing houses: Jonathan Cape, Faber & Faber, Istros Books, MacLehose Press, Oneworld, and Bloomsbury. The list contains translations from six languages. 

The winner will be announced at the prizegiving and dinner at St Anne’s College, Oxford on Saturday 11 June. Shortlisted translators will be invited to introduce their work, and perhaps read extracts. This will be the crowning event of Oxford Translation Day, which boasts a varied programme of talks, workshops and readings. Details are available at http://www.occt.ox.ac.uk/oxford-translation-day-2016

  • Paul Vincent and John Irons for 100 Dutch-Language Poems (Holland Park Press)
  • John Cullen for Kamel Daoud’s The Meursault Investigation (Oneworld)
  • Stephen Pearl  for Ivan Goncharov’s  The Same Old Story (Alma Classics)
  • Don Bartlett  for Karl Ove Knausgaard’s Dancing in the Dark: My Struggle (Harvill Secker)
  • Shaun Whiteside for  Charles Lewinsky’s Melnitz (Atlantic Books)
  • Lola M. Rogers  for Sofi Oksanen’s When the Doves Disappeared (Atlantic Books)
  • Philip Roughton for Jón Kalman Stefánsson’s The Heart of Man (MacLehose Press) 
  • Lisa C. Hayden for Eugene Vodolazkin’s Laurus (Oneworld)

The prize of £2,000 will be awarded at Oxford Translation Day, at St Anne’s College on Saturday 11th June. 

Oxford Translation Day will feature talks, seminars and workshops, and will give all shortlisted translators the opportunity to read from and discuss their work. 

2015: The judges were Jane Hiddleston, Adriana Jacobs, David Maskell, and Jonathan Katz (Chair).
The 2015 shortlist is available on our website

Enquiries about the Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize should be directed to the Prize administrator, Dr Eleni Philippou, at Comparative.Criticism@st-annes.ox.ac.uk.

Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize 2015

The winner of the Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize 2015 is Susan Bernofsky for her translation of Jenny Erpenbeck’s The End of Days (Portobello Books).

The judges said:

The award-winning German author Jenny Erpenbeck’s latest and philosophically most ambitious work presents a number of possible courses of events and chance occurrences governing the life of a Jewish woman born in Galicia at the beginning of the 20th century, bringing her to different European countries and different political and social phases of central and eastern European history. The book is powered by profound depictions of personal and family reactions to death and tragedy, without ever wholly losing some prospect of hope and redemption. Susan Bernofsky’s English translation, The End of Days, is a beautiful, poetic and persuasive work in its own right, intellectually engaging, and emotionally gripping. The lyrical richness and psychological depth of the original German are matched by a fresh, compelling English style in a publication that promises to bring both author and translator to the forefront of modern European literature known in Britain and America.