BCLT is a research centre in the School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia in Norwich.
Through the BCLT Research Group, the Centre serves as the focus for literary translation research within the School and beyond, by academic staff and research postgraduates. BCLT hosts regular research events such as research seminars, book launch symposia and more substantial conferences, including a biannual Postgraduate Translation Symposium. We also partner with other research organisations across the UK and overseas on research projects such as the AHRC-funded Open World Research Initiative project “Cross-Language Dynamics: Reshaping Community”.
If you would like to work with BCLT as a partner on a research project, or are interested in applying to UEA for postgraduate research, please get in touch.
British Centre for Literary Translation offers two BCLT translation residencies every year for UK-based literary translators. The residencies are for 4 months, one day per week. The 2022 BCLT Translators in Residence (Feb-May 2022) were Sawad Hussain and Laura McGloughlin. Information on the 2022-23 Translators in Residence scheme will be available soon.
Sawad Hussain is an Arabic translator and litterateur who is currently co-chair (with Rebecca DeWald) of the Translator's Association. She was co-editor of the Arabic-English portion of the award-winning Oxford Arabic Dictionary (2014). Her translations have been recognised by the Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation, English PEN, the Anglo-Omani Society and the Palestine Book Awards, among others. She has run workshops introducing translation to students and adults under the auspices of Shadow Heroes, Africa Writes, the National Centre for Writing, the British Library, and Shubbak Festival. She has forthcoming translations from Fitzcarraldo Editions, Neem Tree Press, and Restless Books. She holds an MA in Modern Arabic Literature from SOAS. Her Twitter handle is @sawadhussain. Her website is https://sawadhussain.com
Laura McGloughlin has been a freelance translator from Catalan and Spanish since completing a Masters in literary translation at the University of East Anglia. She was awarded the inaugural British Centre for Literary Translation Catalan-English Translation Mentorship in 2011. Among others she has translated work by Llüisa Cunillé, Maria Barbal, Flavia Company, Toni Hill Gumbao, and Joan Brossa, as well as for director Carlos Saura, the Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona and the Association of Writers in Catalan (AELC). Her most recent publication is a translation of Wilder Winds by Bel Olid.
The inaugural BCLT Translators in Residence were Olivia Hellwell and William Gregory (October 2020-January 2021).
Whilst at BCLT, Olivia gave a research seminar on Supply-Driven Translation and Less-Translated Languages. We also held a book launch to celebrate the publication of Olivia's translation of The Fig Tree by Goran Vojnović. William gave a research seminar on Whose Voice? Translating the plays of Bosco Cayo. William also recorded a podcast with Sue Healy for the National Centre for Writing - Theatre in Translation: what next?
Olivia and William met regularly with BCLT's Cecilia Rossi to discuss questions surrounding literary translation. These discussions resulted in collaborative blog posts that can be viewed on the NewWriting.net website.
"My time as Translator in Residence granted me space to think creatively about connections between my translation work and my research; it offered a platform from which to hold conversations and to build working partnerships, and most importantly, I think, it carved out a regular, financially supported portion of time which I could dedicate to doing the thing I love to do the most: translating."
"It is wonderful news that, following my and Olivia's time as the inaugural Translators in Residence, the BCLT has confirmed that the programme will continue in to 2021-22. I cannot recommend this opportunity highly enough and I urge all fellow translators, however you came into literary translation, to consider applying."
BCLT runs a series of research seminars each term. Some take place on campus and others take place online. You can view recent online research seminars on the BCLT YouTube channel.
On 13th October 2021, Lawrence Venuti took part in a research seminar discussion, with BCLT's Duncan Large, on The Evolution of the Translation Studies Reader.
Eco-Translation: Responding to the Work of Michael Cronin
Friday 14-Saturday 15 May 2021 (online)
This two-day online conference focused on the work of the influential Irish translation theorist Michael Cronin. Leading UK and international scholars of translation, eco-criticism and environmental studies addressed issues highlighted in Cronin’s recent work, in particular Eco-Translation: Translation and Ecology in the Age of the Anthropocene (Routledge, 2017). Cronin’s book explores the challenges to translation posed by human-induced environmental change, with topics ranging from the translation of travel literature to endangered languages and inter-species communication.
The conference was co-organised by the British Centre for Literary Translation and the School of Politics, Philosophy, Language and Communication Studies at UEA. You can watch sessions from the conference on the BCLT YouTube channel.
Publishing in Translation
A day-conference at BCLT with panel events, workshops and networking bringing together publishers, literary translators and researchers
Saturday 30 November 2019, 10.30am-4.30pm, Thomas Paine Study Centre, UEA
Literary Translation Workshops: Bridging Communities Affected by Past Conflicts
Friday 23 November 2018, National Centre for Writing, Dragon Hall, Norwich
Venuti and After: A day-conference at BCLT on the work of Lawrence Venuti and its impact on Translation Studies
Friday 11 May 2018, University of East Anglia, Norwich
Innovation & Experimentalism in Translation and Translation Theory
18 - 19 November 2017, University of East Anglia, Norwich
The 7th Biennial Postgraduate Translation Symposium focused on innovative or experimental developments in literary translation practices, in translation theory, across the history of translation and in the practical applications of translation. We pondered both new critical developments, and new creative opportunities. It considered the challenges, and explored whether innovation has its limits. It also considered where innovation and experimentalism may lead the future of Translation Studies.
Keynote speakers: Dr Rocío Baños Piñero, UCL; Professor Catherine Boyle, KCL; Professor Tom Cheesman, Swansea; Clive Scott, Emeritus Professor, UEA.
The symposium was generously supported by: The Faculty of Arts and Humanities, UEA; the CHASE Doctoral Training Partnership; the British Centre for Literary Translation (BCLT).
Shakespeare in Translation
10 - 11 December 2016, University of East Anglia, Norwich
In collaboration with the British Council, Globe Education and Writers' Centre Norwich.
A conference that brought together translators, academics and theatre practitioners from the UK and overseas to discuss Shakespeare in translation and his international reception. This was the final event in the British Council’s 2016 programme “A Great Feast of Languages”, which marked the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. It featured three translation workshop sessions, six short presentations on aspects of Shakespeare in translation, and recorded perfomances of new translations produced by participants in international translation workshops held in Cologne, Mexico City and Singapore.
Dalit Literature And/In Translation
29 - 30 June 2015 at the University of East Anglia
The Centre for Postcolonial Studies at Nottingham Trent University, UK, in collaboration with the research centre EMMA at the Université Paul-Valéry Montpellier 3, France, created an international academic network to enable a multi-disciplinary dialogue on Indian literature produced by Dalits (formerly known as Untouchables) by hosting a series of workshops and conferences on the production, translation, dissemination and analysis of Dalit literature.
As part of this network, BCLT hosted a conference at the University of East Anglia in June 2015.
Watch part one
Literary Translation: Redrawing the Boundaries
Thursday 4 December 2014, University of East Anglia
A round table to celebrate the publication of Literary Translation: Redrawing the Boundaries (Palgrave Macmillan) edited by Jean Boase-Beier, Antoinette Fawcett and Philip Wilson.
Literary Translation: Redrawing the Boundaries is a collection of articles that gathers together current work in literary translation to show how research in the field can speak to other disciplines whilst simultaneously learning from them.
Contributors included BJ Epstein, Duncan Large, Clive Scott and George Szirtes.
The BCLT Research Group originally came together in 1993, when Jean Boase-Beier established UEA’s MA in Literary Translation with Professors W.G. Sebald, Clive Scott and Janet Garton.
Its ethos was to combine research with the writing of translations. Current members are Duncan Large, Cecilia Rossi, Thomas Boll, Jo Catling, Philip WIlson, Veronika Bowker, Eugenia Loffredo, Eugenia Kelbert Rudan, Hannah Osborne, Kotryna Garanasvili and Sophie Stevens.
BCLT Research Group members lecture, write and offer workshops on a range of literary translation topics. They also run a PhD programme, from which around 70 students have graduated. Members have received grants and awards for their translations and research. Read more about BCLT Research Group member publications.
Literary Translation in the School of Literature, Drama & Creative Writing at UEA
Translation plays an important role in the creation of literary texts and it is central to our understanding of them. In the School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing, translation is at the heart of our concern with foreign works, whether in the plays of Racine, the poetry of Virgil, the fiction of Sebald, or the philosophy of Descartes.
If you are interested in foreign literature, you may choose to study modules in other literatures as part of your undergraduate degree programme in English Literature, for example modules such as European Literature, Reading Translations, or Latin American Narratives, thus broadening your understanding of foreign writing, its influences on English literature and the role played by translation in reading, writing and creativity. Many of our modules, such as Medieval Arthurian Traditions, are of particular interest to students who want to address issues of translation across languages, cultures or traditions.
At postgraduate level, we offer the MA in Literary Translation for those who wish to become (or already are) practising translators, as well as for students who would eventually like to pursue further study at PhD level. Taking the MA in Literary Translation will help you broaden your understanding of foreign literatures and cultures and add further skills and knowledge to a degree in a subject such as Modern Languages, English Literature or Linguistics. MA students work on the publication of our in-house journal, Norwich Papers, each year. The journal is entirely edited and marketed by the students, and is highly regarded for its variety and rigour.
We have a large number of PhD students working on topics as varied as the translation of Russian poetry, postcolonialism and African writing, and the translation of writers who write in their second language. The PhD students in translation hold a symposium here at UEA which attracts internationally-recognised scholars as well as postgraduates from various countries.
The BCLT Translation Studies Reading Group was established in 2020 by Philip Wilson and Jen Calleja.
The group meets a few times per term to discuss a scholarly article that has been announced in advance. Each article is given a very brief introduction of no more than 5 minutes by the person who has chosen it, but the point is to share thoughts. The group is currently meeting virtually via Microsoft Teams. The group is open to UEA staff and students and is also now open to the public. If you would like to join the group please email Jen Calleja.
As an academic research centre with a mission to support the literary translation profession, BCLT is in a unique position.
Working in close partnership with the National Centre for Writing and other key impact partners, we take pride in capitalising on our academic research to benefit the wider community.
In particular, we draw on the insights from our research in designing our programme of activities that contribute to the continuing professional development of translators. Read more about BCLT impact and the Translator as Creative Writer.
Transference is a literary journal published by the Department of World Languages and Literatures at Western Michigan University.
Dedicated to the celebration of poetry in translation, it publishes translations from Arabic, Chinese, French and Old French, German, classical Greek, Latin, and Japanese into English verse. They feature translations as well as commentaries on the art and process of translating.
Translation Studies explores promising lines of work within the discipline of Translation Studies, placing a special emphasis on existing connections with neighbouring disciplines and the creation of new links.
Translation Studies aims to extend the methodologies, areas of interest and conceptual frameworks inside the discipline, while testing the traditional boundaries of the notion of “translation” and offering a forum for debate focusing on historical, social, institutional and cultural facets of translation.
The Creative Literary Studio
Join the 'studio' where issues about text making are discussed, theorised and put into practice.
Readers are encouraged to contribute their experimental and creative translations for publication on the blog. The Creative Literary Studio blog is run by Eugenia Loffredo and Manuela Perteghella.
The Iowa Review: Forum on Literature and Translation