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Translating canonical texts: a discussion (with illustrations from Russian and French)

Prof Martin Sorrell (Emeritus), Prof Adam Watt & Dr Muireann Maguire (all Exeter ML) discuss their recent work

Martin Sorrell has recently published a Selected Poems of Apollinaire with Oxford World’s Classics (see a glowing review here -; Muireann Maguire has published a review essay on recent translations of Tolstoy (and Tolstoy translation more generally) and is an active translator from Russian; and Adam Watt has written the introduction and notes to a new English translation of Proust’s Un amour de Swann (trans. Brian Nelson) forthcoming in November with Oxford World’s Classics and has a chapter forthcoming on Derek Mahon’s translation of Valéry’s Le cimetière marin. Discussion will attend to a range of matters relating to translating ‘classics’: why do we (re-)translate? should we buy into the ‘each generation needs its own Dante/Tolstoy/Proust (etc)’ argument? what was particularly challenging about translating Apollinaire? how do different translators approach Tolstoy? how do we handle the annotation of translations? Audience intervention and participation most welcome!

Event details


Queens Building LT1