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Sebald Lecture

The Sebald Lecture on Literary Translation

The Sebald Lecture is given annually on an aspect of literature in translation and is named after W.G. Sebald who set up BCLT in 1989. ‘Max’ was a German writer who opted to live in the UK and continue writing in German. His novels and essays include The Rings of Saturn, Austerlitz and On the Natural History of Destruction and established him as a leading writer of the 20th century.

 

The Sebald Lecture 2017

Michael Longley - 'Releasing the Lyric: Translating Latin and Greek Poetry'

Monday 20 February 2017, 7pm at the British Library Conference Centre, London

Since studying Classics at Trinity College Dublin, Belfast poet Michael Longley has frequently drawn on classical models in his poetry and established allusive parallels between ancient and modern concerns. Over the course of his career he has also translated a wide variety of fellow poets, from classical authors to Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, prompting Justin Quinn to write that ‘for Longley, translation becomes a way of thinking about the world’. In this lecture he will be reading, and commenting on, his translations from Latin and Greek. He will begin with his youthful versions from Sextus Propertius and progress to later poems derived from Ovid’s Metamorphoses and Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey, taking in Sappho and Tibullus on the way.

One of Britain’s finest poets, Michael Longley has received many awards for his sophisticated but deceptively simple poetic studies of love, death, memory, history and nature, published over more than fifty years. His collection Gorse Fires (1991) won the Whitbread Poetry Prize, and The Weather in Japan (2000) won the Irish Times Literature Prize for Poetry, the Hawthornden Prize, and the T.S. Eliot Prize. He was awarded the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry in 2001, and was Professor of Poetry for Ireland from 2007 to 2010.

The Sebald Lecture is given annually on an aspect of literature in translation and is named after W.G. Sebald who set up BCLT in 1989. ‘Max’ was a German writer who opted to live in the UK and continue writing in German. His novels and essays include The Rings of Saturn, Austerlitz and On the Natural History of Destruction, and they established him as a leading writer of the 20th century.

To purchase tickets please visit www.bl.uk/events

Photo © Bobbie Hanvey

 

The Sebald Lecture 2016

Roger McGough CBE FRSL

To listen to the Sebald Lecture on Literary Translation 2016

 

Photo credit: Colin Clarke ARPS

The 2016 Sebald Lecture on literary translation, sponsored by the British Centre for Literary Translation at UEA, was given by poet, playwright and broadcaster Roger McGough on Monday 22nd February at the British Library Conference Centre. He drew on his experience of translating three critically acclaimed Molière plays for the English stage (Tartuffe, 2008; The Hypochondriac, 2009; The Misanthrope, 2013) and having his own poems translated into many other languages – including translations into German by W.G. Sebald himself, who founded BCLT in 1989.

Roger McGough is one of Britain’s best-loved poets. He first achieved recognition in the 1960s, in the Penguin anthology The Mersey Sound and in the chart-topping group The Scaffold. Since then he has published many internationally acclaimed collections of poems and stories, for adults and children. He has edited several anthologies, and hosts the long-running weekly poetry programme Poetry Please for BBC Radio 4. His poems have been translated into many other languages – including translations into German by W.G. Sebald himself.

This event was supported by Arts Council England and Writers' Centre Norwich.