World Literature Today Announces 2022 Student Translation Prize Winners

May 17, 2022
Photographs of the two Student Translation Prize Winners
The 2022 Student Translation Prize Winners, Emily Graham and Aziza Kasumov.

Aziza Kasumov and Emily Graham were recently named the recipients of the fifth annual translation prize for students sponsored by World Literature Today at the University of Oklahoma. Consistent with World Literature Today’s commitment to publishing literature in translation, the WLT Student Translation Prize recognizes the talent and promise of translation students worldwide.

The editors of WLT judged the competition: Daniel Simon, assistant director and editor in chief; Michelle Johnson, managing and culture editor; and Rob Vollmar, book review and online editor. They selected a winner in each of two categories, prose and poetry. Each prizewinner will receive a cash award, and their winning translations will be published on the WLT website this week.

Robert Con Davis-Undiano, World Literature Today’s executive director, noted that this prize “continues to attract some of the most talented young translators anywhere.” He added that “WLT will continue to take the lead to highlight the work of young people in the field who need a boost to reach the top in the publishing world.”

Recipients of the 2022 World Literature Today Translation Prizes

Aziza Kasumov won the prose category for her translation from the German of an excerpt from the opening chapter of Macht und Widerstand (Power and resistance), by Bulgarian German author Ilija Trojanow. Kasumov grew up in Ludwigshafen am Rhein, Germany, but has spent the past eight years of her life in the US, first in Los Angeles, then in New York. She studied international relations and journalism at the University of Southern California and worked as a reporter for news organizations on both sides of the Atlantic, including the Financial Times and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. She is currently pursuing an MFA in fiction writing at Columbia University. Her faculty sponsor for the submission was Susan Bernofsky from Columbia University.

Translating French poet Linda Maria Baros, Emily Graham won the poetry category for her translation of “Je sors dans la rue avec l’ange” (I go out into the street with the angel), from the French. Graham is a translator of contemporary French poetry from Cleveland, Ohio. She recently received her BA from the University of Connecticut, and she will be continuing her studies in the fall at the University of Iowa, pursuing an MFA in literary translation. Her faculty sponsor for the submission was Peter Constantine from the University of Connecticut.