Jonathan Wright on translating Arab and Iraqi literature, interview by Ruth Abou Rached

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Abstract

Jonathan Wright is a British journalist and literary translator, known for bringing many works of Arab fiction to new audiences via translation for the past fifteen years. His recent works, however, seem more connected to Iraq: in addition to The Iraqi Christ by Hassan Blasim and Frankenstein in Baghdad by Ahmed Saadawi, he has translated The Book of Collateral Damage by Sinan Antoon (Yale University Press, 2020) and God 99 by Blasim (Comma Press, 2020). Jonathan is currently working on a semi-biographical novella by Iraqi writer Ali Bader and on works by Palestinian activist and fiction writer Ghassan Kanafani yet to be translated or retranslated, into English. In this interview, Ruth Abou Rached and Jonathan Wright discuss the experiences of Wright translating Iraqi and Arabic fiction and Wright offers his thoughts and recommendations.
Original languageCanadian English
Article number4
Pages (from-to)43-47
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Contemporary Iraq and the Arab world
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Mar 2023

Keywords

  • Jonathan Wright
  • Arabic literature in translation
  • Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize
  • Fusha
  • Arabic dialects in translation
  • Iraqi fiction

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