A new residency program for translators was launched by the Israeli Institute for Hebrew Literature, with the support of Mifal HaPais Council for the Culture and Arts and the Foreign Ministry.
Within the framework of the program, seven of the best translators of Hebrew literature – into Japanese, French, English, German, Spanish, Dutch, and Italian – are set to mentor translators who are just beginning their careers.
The event is set to begin with two intensive weeks of residency at Kibbutz Eilon (in the villas at Keshet Eilon) and to continue until the end of 2023.
The senior translators participating in the program include Yardenne Greenspan - who has translated into English the works of Shemi Zarhin, Etgar Keret and Assaf Gavron, and is herself a writer and an essayist published in The New Yorker - Anne Birkenhauer-Molad - who has been translating literature and poetry from Hebrew into German since 1989, including prose by Yaakov Shabtai, Aharon Appelfeld, Gabriela Avigur-Rotem, and David Grossman, as well as poems by Dan Pagis, Yitzhak Laor, and Yehuda Amichai - and Rosie Pinhas - who authored the translation of some of the greatest Hebrew literature into French.
The program is aimed to encourage translators at the beginning of their professional careers, with the objective of promoting the spread of Hebrew literature worldwide. The two weeks residency is designed to provide a unique peek into the craft of translation and the world of the translator; as well as a first attempt at creating a personal system of accompaniment and mentorship and a professional yet intimate relationship between senior translators and nascent translators.
In the first part of the day, the program will offer free time so that the translators can work on their personal translation task in collaboration with their translation partner, while in the second part of the day, the time will be dedicated for group activities.
In addition, the public is invited to the opening event, which will feature a panel facilitated by Dr. Oded Wolkenstein focusing on the role of the translator as an artist.
The second part of the event will feature a workshop entitled “A Peek at Crafting Translations.” The audience will be divided into teams and each team will work on an original translation of a text, guided by an experienced translator. Debbie Eylon, a Prime Minister’s Prize for Translation laureate, and Jonathan Dayan, one of the top translators from English to Hebrew, will run the workshops.
Experts Nir Ratzkovsky, Ornit Cohen-Barak, Yoni Mendel and Assaf Schurr will also offer workshops and lectures to the participants, who will also go on a day trip to Rosh Hanikra and Akko in their first week, so they learn about daily life in Israel, local history and geography and are exposed to the variety of cultures and religions in Israel.
Other senior translators attending the program include Raffaella Scardi (Italian), Ana Bejerano (Spanish), Wilbert Geijtenbeek (Dutch) and Natsu Kosaki Motai (Japanese).