The jury of the Working Group of Literary Translations, of the Literature Association of the Netherlands (VvL), has deemed Poetry International as 2015’s ‘Translation Angel’. The annual Translation Angel – as well as the Translation Devil – award will be presented on 3 March 2015 during the ‘Translation Slam’, a yearly VvL event, co-sponsored by the Foundation for Literary Activities in Amsterdam (SLAA). The jury awards the Translation Angel to Poetry International because it ‘is known, for over 25 years, for its tradition of giving attention to good translations and providing decent arrangements for translators. This is apparent, in part, on the website, where translators from numerous languages are carefully noted. But it is also evident from festival programs, such as one where a debate between two translators over the word “the” kept the audience on the edge of their seats for half an hour’.
‘Poetry translations demands a special talent from the translator and, above all, much time and love. All this can’t be expressed in money, but Poetry International’s attention to the material side of the work is evidence of its respect and appreciation for it. Therefore, we want to award this year’s Translation Angel to this organization, that with so much love and commitment gives attention and space to poetry from around the world’, the jury adds.
For its annual festival in June, Poetry International Rotterdam invites poets from around the world to Rotterdam to read and present their work. Poems are translated into both English and Dutch. These translations are broadcast simultaneously during the poet’s reading and are then included on Poetry International Web, an online journal and archive of international poetry. Poetry International Web works with editors from many countries around the world to select, translate into English, and publish on an international platform the best poets of their languages.
During the festival, Poetry International also organizes many translation-oriented programs and workshops. Beginning early March, amateur and aspiring translators have a chance to translate poems for the festival through the project Met Andere Woorden (In Other Words). More information on how to participate can be found on the project's ( Dutch and English) Facebook pages.