Spring 2024

Mather A/B Dining Hall


9:45 am - 11:45 am

CompLit 145: Prize-Winning Translations, 2010-2020

Luke Leafgren

In this course, students will read English translations of novels that have won major prizes. In addition to exploring themes of contemporary literature from around the world, special attention will be paid to the role of translation in shaping the work and its reception, and to the question of what makes for a prize-winning translation. Each week students will read a prize-winning translation alongside reports from the prize committee, reviews of the translation, and what the translators say about their work.


Write a 2000-word analysis of the translation decisions in a novel translation, with reference to the source text and to the translator’s stated goals, if available.

Write a 1000-word book review of a translated novel, including a discussion of the translation.

Imagine that you are one the committee for one of the prize-winning novels we have read. Write a 2000-word argument for one of the short-listed titles to be chosen in its place.

This course satisfies the Arts & Humanities distribution requirement, counts towards the Secondary in Translation Studies, and may be taken pass/fail upon application. Reading knowledge of one language in addition to English is required.

Course presentation video

In Person