Also shortlisted are the translators of Alain Mabanckou, Virginie Despentes (translated by previous Scott Moncrieff laureate Frank Wynn), Vénus Khoury-Ghata and graphic novel writer and illustrator Dominique Goblet — that’s four female authors and translators out of five (see The Society of Authors for the full shortlist of all translation awards 2019).
In the judges’ words: ‘Sophie Lewis’s translation artfully renders the syntactical and lexical syncopations that Noémi Lefebvre deploys to evoke - and destabilise - the temporal and geographical moorings in her narrative counterpoint.’ (We couldn’t agree more.)
The Scott Moncrieff Prize is an annual award of £1,000 for translations into English of full length French works of literary merit and general interest. Established in 1965, and named after the celebrated translator of Proust’s À la recherche du temps perdu, the prize is generously sponsored by the Institut français du Royaume-Uni. The 2016 Scott Moncrieff Prize, for translations published in 2015, went to Natasha Lehrer and Cécile Menon for their translation of Suite for Barbara Loden, by Nathalie Léger, published Les Fugitives, in an exceptional year for the nano-press’s very first book. We are delighted to be back in the translation prizes runner-ups, for the third consecutive year (Jeffrey Zuckerman was shortlisted for the TA’s inaugural First Translation Prize 2018 for Eve out of Her Ruins, by Ananda Devi)
The translation prizes will be awarded in a ceremony at The British Library Knowledge Centre on 13th February.