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Translation programme

Stephen Spender was a fine translator of the poetry of Lorca, Altoguerra, Rilke, Hölderlin, Stefan George and Schiller. Through The Times Stephen Spender Prize for poetry in translation established in 2004, its grants programme, the Translation Nation project with Eastside Educational Trust and the Joseph Brodsky/Stephen Spender Prize, the Trust promotes the art of literary translation and hopes to encourage a new generation of literary translators.

Work to date

As well as the projects mentioned above, the Trust has also commissioned the translation of a novel – The Beauty of History – by the Estonian writer Viivi Luik.

The Beauty of History book cover Although one of Estonia's foremost writers, and published to great acclaim in France and Germany, Viivi Luik has never been published in English. The translation has been undertaken by Hildi Hawkins, a literary translator of considerable standing, and the Trust will be giving the rights in this translation to whichever publisher publishes the book.

The Trust’s translation committee

The translation committee comprises Dr Harriet Harvey Wood, OBE, long-time Director of the British Council's Literature Department, Christopher MacLehose, Publisher of The MacLehose Press, Philip Spender, who has worked with Index on Censorship, Writers and Scholars Educational Trust and OneWorld Online, and Daniel Weissbort, editor for more than 30 years of Modern Poetry in Translation and co-editor of Exchanges.