What is the aim of the Summer School?
The aim of the Summer School is to offer an intensive, one-week, residential programme of hands-on translation practice, with the authors present, supplemented with seminars and lectures addressing various aspects of the theory, practice and business of literary translation.
How is the week structured?
The core activity of the week is the literary translation workshops, during which the participants work on a consensus translation of a particular text. They are led in their translation work by the workshop leader, in partnership with the author of that text. The final consensus translations are presented to all participants at the end of the week, together with commentaries on the problems each group encountered, the options they discarded and the solutions they chose.
Alongside the workshops, we’ll be offering a series of panel discussions about various aspects of life as a literary translator, with guest speakers. We will be inviting editors to spend part of the week, speaking on panels and participating in workshops.
How many participants are there in a workshop group?
Each workshop group comprises no more than ten participants, who are generally early- to mid-career translators. The advanced workshops will be suitable for more experienced translators and will be open to translators who have taken part in previous summer schools.
Which text will I be translating?
The text is selected by the workshop leader and the author. The group works together to produce a consensus translation of the selected piece of text, which may be a group of poems, a short story or a chapter from a longer work such as a novel. The texts will be carefully selected so as to be interesting for translation; the language should be rich, with a strong voice, notable style and tone, and full of nuances and cultural specificities.
What is the role of the workshop leader?
As they work through the text, usually sequentially, the workshop leader encourages all participants to offer potential translations of words and phrases for discussion within the group and peer learning. The workshop leader guides the group as they work together to write a draft of the translation, which will be polished throughout the workshops.
Will I have the opportunity to discuss the text with the writer?
Yes. Participants will discuss with the author language-specific translation issues that arise and have the opportunity to explore in depth all the elements of the text, nuances and specific cultural references.
What is an advanced workshop?
In the advanced workshop, participants will focus on consensus translation of a text, with the author present in the room, but the selected text will be particularly challenging for translation. The advanced workshop will also include exercises and discussions on specific aspects of and difficulties in translation from that language.
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