Why Translation Matters by Edith Grossman

SURVEY: Which Language Do You Want More Broadly Translated into English?

In Discussion by Edward Nawotka

By Edward Nawotka, Editor-in-Chief

Why Translation Matters by Edith Grossman

Today’s feature story looks at Overlook’s ambitious “The Russian Library” project, a projected 125 volume series that seeks to gain greater global exposure for unheralded Russian authors and texts by translating them into English.

English, as many have acknowledged, is a “gateway” language that enables readers who cannot read Portuguese, Japanese or Indonesian (to take some examples) to read books from those cultures in English, which is more widely utilized, with an eye toward translating them into the own native tongue. Unfortunately, much translation into English is limited and what there is remains focused on a handful of languages — the tops being French, German and Spanish, in large part because of the strong cultural affinities the United States has with those nations speaking those languages.

So, tell us, which literature of the world’s most widely spoken languages do you want to see more broadly translated into English? Which should be prioritized? Take our survey and let us know — pick one or supply your own below in the comments.

[poll id=78]
About the Author

Edward Nawotka

Edward Nawotka is the Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. A former foreign correspondent, he has covered the book business exclusively since 2000, serving as daily news editor for Publishers Weekly and columnist for Bloomberg News.