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Talking Translation (翻译话题)

New Kid on the Block: Chinese-to-English Literary Translator Database

I watch this sort of thing fairly closely, and up until now the only list of international Chinese-to-English literary translators I knew about was at Paper Republic: Translator Directory.

But today by accident I discovered another at a Chinese-language site called 中国文化对外翻译与传播网. It’s a much bigger undertaking, and features 2,003 listings under “English,” with the next biggest category being “Japanese” with 220 names.

I have to admit it was a pleasant surprise to be one of the featured translators on a site where Western faces are few and far between, but includes notable literary translators such as Howard Goldblatt, Goran Malmqvist, Nicky Harman and Eric Abrahamsen. But seriously, this does appear to be a modest breakthrough. I’ve encountered translator databases on the Chinese web before, but only PRC citizens figured in them. Of course, the fact that the web site and most of the info is in Chinese—including translators’ names—means that foreign publishers will find it hard to take advantage of the listings . . .

As I understand it, the web site is run by Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press (外研社) with the “support and guidance” of  GAPP’s Foreign Exchange and Cooperation Department (国家新闻出版总署对外交流与合作司). Its goal is to serve as a platform for public information regarding the current “Chinese cultural products go global” program (“走出去”).  See here for the detailed description in Chinese.

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