Literary translation is, as its name suggests, the translation of a literary work such as a poem, essay, short story, or novel, out of its original language and into a new language, but it is also the creative, complex, and writerly activity of making an equivalent literary text exist (at least in the United States) in English.
The 3rd annual Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference is a week-long event based on the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference model that is designed to provide training and community to beginning as well as experienced translators in the pursuit of translating literary texts into English—or to those aiming to be more sophisticated readers of literary translation and to incorporate it into the classroom. A natural complement to signature Middlebury programs such as the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Language Schools, and the equally-renowned translation and interpretation degree programs at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS), this conference aims to strengthen the visibility and access to high quality literary translations in the United States and to acknowledge that translators require the same training and skills as creative writers.
2017 DATES AND LOCATION
Saturday, June 3—Friday, June 9, 2017. The conference will take place at the Bread Loaf Campus of the Middlebury College in Ripton, Vermont.
PROGRAM AND SCHEDULE
The conference will incorporate the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference model of small, focused, genre-based workshops coupled with lectures and classes focusing on the art of literary translation. Workshops will be limited to ten participants so that each manuscript will receive individual attention and careful critique. All participants will also meet individually with their workshop leader to amplify and refine what was said in the workshop itself.
This week-long conference of workshops, classes, lectures, readings, and discussions is for translators who want to improve their literary craft; for students mastering a foreign language and wanting to begin acquiring skills in the art of translation; for teachers interested in bringing the practice of literary translation into their classrooms; and for anyone wanting to learn more about and participate in the ever-growing community of literary translators.
To get a better feel for what to expect during the week, see this sample schedule from the 2016 conference. In addition to the lectures, workshops, classes, and readings listed, meetings with editors take place during the afternoon, and faculty schedule an individual meeting with each contributor to take place during the session. The workshop packet of student translations for the Translation Workshops and packet of readings for the Introductory Workshop are made available in the weeks leading up to the session in order to allow time to read and prepare before arrival.
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