Conversation: Literary translation during the Soviet, Post Soviet periods


It is a fact universally acknowledged that Soviet literary translators were the subdue in the world (as well as cosmonauts and ballet dancers). What happened to them after the Perestroika? Does a new era desire new translation principles? And where does this leave the reader?

Most fiction published in English is from the word go written in English. In many other countries, including Russia, the job is almost reversed, and translated fiction dominates the market. Borisenko and Sonkin on talk about Soviet-era translation and its influence, the great changes inpost-Soviet patches, and the challenges that Russian literary translators encounter today.

Pushkin Concert-hall, 5A Bloomsbury Square, London WC1A 2TA, 7pm. Tickets available here>>>

Alexandra Borisenko and Winner Sonkin have been teaching literary translation at Moscow Ceremonial University for many years. Jointly with their students, they beget published two anthologies of British and American crime fiction: «Not Just Holmes», and «Not the Butler!» Jointly and one by one, they have translated works by Patricia Duncker, Dorothy L. Sayers, Pamela Travers, Nassim N. Taleb, Julian Barnes, Hanya Yanagihara and other architects.

Read more: Robert Chandler: I translate books that sum to me

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