Tag: translation

Translator at play

28 January 2010 | This 'n' that


This is supposed to be the longest Finnish word. Lola Rogers interprets it as ‘You mean, not even (when it’s done) with their (usual) lack of systematization?’ More…

Jansson’s temptations

27 November 2009 | This 'n' that

Tove Jansson (ca. 1950)

Tove Jansson (c. 1950)

If Tove Jansson’s Moomin books are, as we certainly believe here at Books from Finland, strangely little known in the wider world, the same is even truer of her books for adults.

Incredibly, the Moomins celebrate their 65th birthday in 2010, and have been translated into 40 languages. Jansson (1914–2001) wrote her last Moomin book – there are nine altogether – in 1970. Over the last thirty years of her life, she also wrote a total of 11 volumes – novels and short stories – for grown-ups. (Books from Finland published stories from many of them as they appeared. They will become available again as our digitisation project gets underway; meanwhile, here’s a story from Dockskåpet [‘The doll’s house’, 1978].)

Back out there in the wider world, the tiny, Hampstead-based press Sort Of Books has since 2001 been introducing Jansson’s lesser-known works to British readers. Latest to appear is her bleakly unsettling novel The True Deceiver (Den ärliga bedragaren, 1982), the story of a strange young woman, Katri, who breaks into an elderly artist’s house and attempts to befriend her, for reasons of her own. More…

Poetic excercises by the sea: Herbert Lomas (re)visited

21 November 2009 | Authors, Interviews

Down by the sea: Herbert Lomas in Aldeburgh. - Photo: Soila Lehtonen

Poet ahoy: Herbert Lomas in Aldeburgh. Photo: Soila Lehtonen

The prize-winning British poet Herbert Lomas has been translating Finnish poetry – much of it for Books from Finland – for more than thirty years. Soila Lehtonen, our Editor-in-Chief and his long-time collaborator, interviews him on the occasion of the publication of his collected poems, A Casual Knack of Living

The shoreline and the seaside promenade stretch out along the windy East Suffolk coast in Aldeburgh, where Herbert Lomas lives in a pink house called North Gable.

In summer thousands of tourists frequent the picturesque village, particularly during the music festival in June, founded in 1948 by the local composer Benjamin Britten. A poetry festival, too, takes place every autumn, this year for the 21st time.

Herbert – Bertie to those, like us at Books from Finland, who know him well – has just published a handsome tome of poetry, A Casual Knack of Living, containing poems from nine earlier collections plus a selection of previously unpublished poems, entitled Nightlights. The home of his publisher, Arc Publications, is in the village where he was born, 85 years ago, Todmorden in the Pennines. More…

In other words

15 October 2009 | In the news

One of the many: Kari Hotakainen's Juoksuhaudantie ('Trench Road') in German

Top of the list: German translations of Finnish books, including Kari Hotakainen's Juoksuhaudantie ('Trench Road')

According to statistics, last year 204 Finnish books were published in 53 foreign languages. The 2008 list of translations of Finnish books into other languages has German at its head: 29 new translations appeared last year, 19 of them fiction. The list is compiled by the Finnish Literature Exchange (FILI) and the library of the Finnish Literature Society (SKS).

Second on the list is Russian, with 20 entries. Then come Estonian (17 titles, of which 11 are non-fiction), French, Polish, Japanese, Swedish and English. Finnish books for children and young people have been especially popular in Russia (ten titles published) and Japan (seven) last year.

The last three languages on the list of 53 are Croatian, Georgian and Hindi – with two Finnish graphic novels each.

We shall be featuring a small selection of Finnish books published in translation here. The Finnish Literature Society database lists all translations of Finnish titles and provides various search options for both authors and books.

Translation prize

20 August 2009 | In the news

Ljudmila Braude and Anna Sidorova

Left: Ljudmila Braude; right: Anna Sidorova. Photos: Irmeli Jung

This year the Finnish Government Prize for Translation of Finnish Literature, worth €10,000, was divided between two Russian translators. Lyudmila Braude and Anna Sidorova received their awards in Helsinki on 12 August from the minister of culture and sports, Stefan Wallin.

Braude was born in Leningrad in 1927, Sidorova half a century later in Vyborg, in 1978.

Dr Lyudmila Braude specialised in the translation of German and Nordic literature. Since 1991 she has translated Finland-Swedish fiction, Tove Jansson’s works in particular; all Jansson’s Moomin books as well as a selection of her novels and stories for adults are available to Russian readers. Books by the classic children’s writer Zachris Topelius as well as Finland-Swedish poetry by classic and contemporary poets have also been among her translations. Braude has received various international prizes for her work. More…

New translations?

15 May 2009 | In the news

Where to find new translations of Finnish books? Until last year, Books from Finland published lists of new translations of Finnish literature into other languages in its printed issues. These data are compiled and updated by the Finnish Literature Exchange FILI and the Library of the Finnish Literature Society, and you can find them in this database.