Winner of the Susan Sontag Prize
25 December 2010 | In the news
The Susan Sontag Foundation was established in New York in 2004 in memory of the celebrated author and cultural journalist Susan Sontag (1933–2004). The Foundation grants a prize to a young American who translates from other languages into English. In 2010 the prize was awarded for the third time.
Benjamin Mier-Cruz is currently pursuing his PhD in Scandinavian Languages and Literatures at University College Berkeley, with a particular interest in Finland-Swedish modernism and German expressionist poetry. His winning translation proposal is entitled Modernist Missives of Elmer Diktonius – Letters and Poetry of Elmer Diktonius.
Elmer Diktonius (1896–1961) was a rebellious Finland-Swedish avant-garde poet and composer, who was fluent in Finnish as well as his native Swedish. His letters to a wide range of European authors and critics, written between 1919 (the year of the Finnish Civil War) and 1951, reflect the political, artistic and personal developments in Finland and Europe.
The prize ceremony took place first in Helsinki on 5 November in a seminar at the Svenska litteratursällskapet i Finland (the Society of Swedish Literature in Finland), then at Scandinavia House, New York, on 12 November.