Elio Vittorini’s 1941 anthology Americana — showcasing thirty-three American writers translated for the first time into Italian — transformed the literary consciousness of a nation under fascism. More recently, the publication of Elena Ferrante in English has met with unanticipated and overwhelming success. In both instances, literary translation broke through barriers of parochialism and became a defining cultural phenomenon. In this workshop we will divide our time between translating excerpts of Italian fiction to English and vice-versa in order to better understand the beauty, breadth, points of connection and challenges of both languages.
Sample reading list:
Elena Ferrante, L’Amica Geniale
Elena Ferrante, trans. by Ann Goldstein, My Brilliant Friend
Natalia Ginzburg, Lessico Famigliare
Natalia Ginzburg, trans. by Jenny McPhee, A Family Lexicon
John Steinbeck, trans. by Elio Vittorini, I Pascoli del cielo
Ernest Hemingway, trans. by Fernanda Pivano, Il vecchio e il mare
Weekly reading of approximately 50 pages per week, approximately five pages of translation work per week, oral presentation. Final project: 15-20 pages of translated material working with Italian as both the language of departure and of arrival.
Prerequisites and Restrictions:
Reading proficiency in Italian required. Admission to the course is by application only. Students apply by submitting a writing sample of 3-4 pages of translation and a paragraph describing their interest in the course. Application opens August 1, 2017: http://arts.princeton.edu/application-forms/cwr-app/.
Primary language of instruction: Italian. Grading: 100% Other = Workshop assignments and final project