Saturday, 23 June 2012

Three RUSs (that's Really Useful webSites)...

...not, as a casual reader might think, Rodents of Unusual Size (which would be ROUSs anyway, now that I think about it).

I'm gradually setting up my new laptop after my old one abruptly gave up the ghost, and am reminded of a few well-loved free things on the web, which I thought some readers might be interested in too (and btw just a quick disclaimer to say that these recommendations are entirely disinterested; I don't have any connection to any of these sites).

Today's three sites are Readability, the Wayback Machine, and DVDBeaver.

Readability reformats html pages on screen to make them easier to read. It involves downloading a free widget which installs in your toolbar. I think it's brilliant and it really relieves eye strain reading on the web. Recommended for blocks of text rather than little bitty webpages.

The Wayback Machine is part of the magnificent Internet Archive project. It finds archived versions of webpages which have since been removed. Paste the URL into the search engine and it will tell you what archived versions are available and from which dates. It's not always able to track things down but it's worth trying for broken links or articles which used to be available on open access and now have paywalls.

DVDBeaver was set up by Gary Tooze (interviewed in Kinema magazine here). It has accumulated thousands of the most detailed, lavishly illustrated technical reviews of DVDs anywhere on the web. I use it for finding screenshots from subtitled films (though I am aware that this is probably a slightly fringe interest!). My favourite bit of the website is the comparisons between different editions of the same film.

Feel free to post suggestions of really useful stuff on the web in the comments...

Friday, 15 June 2012

Free seminar on language and international mediation, August 2012

Just circulated, a very interesting-looking seminar taking place later this summer in Nottingham (now kindly confirmed by organisers; the website was originally a bit coy about the location).

Dear Colleagues,

I would like to bring to your attention a two-day event on the 15th (afternoon), 16th and 17th (morning) August entitled ‘Language and Cultural Aspects of International Mediation’. This event witnesses the first collaborative efforts between professionals and academics under the innovative theme. The speakers include professional mediators from the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) and academics specialising in sociolinguistics, translation, intercultural communication and conflict management studies. They will present and debate how professional knowledge and academic research into those areas can contribute effectively to the understanding of language use and inter/cross-cultural differences in mediation and conflict management and their representation in translation/interpreting.

For the full list of speakers, please follow the link:

To know more about the event and its background, please visit

I would like to invite you to attend this event. Registration is free but essential. Coffee and tea will be provided free of charge. If you'd like to have lunch with the speakers, a charge of £8 for each lunch will incur to cover the cost.

The registration deadline is 15th July and it is on first come first served basis.

If you experience any difficulties with the booking, please feel free to contact me xiaohui.yuan at

I very much look forward to seeing you in August.

Best wishes
Dr. Xiaohui Yuan
School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies
University of Nottingham

Thursday, 14 June 2012

jobs and internships, DE-EN, EN-DE

Have just seen that Fry and Bonthrone are advertising jobs and internships for translators from German to English and English to German. Interns should be

– thorough and committed to excellence in your work,
– a native speaker of English with German as your first foreign language, or vice versa,
– equipped with above-average language skills,
– willing to apply and enhance your knowledge,
– open to other cultures, and
– available for a minimum of six months.

More information at their website.

Monday, 11 June 2012

DE-EN translation workshop, Dublin, and Translation Ireland call for papers

Excited about going back to Ireland this weekend! (Less excited about the fact that I can't seem to make the fonts on this blog behave; sorry about that). To mark the occasion, here are two Irish-related snippets:

Translation Workshop with Angelika Overath

28 June 2012, 9:00-12 noon
Goethe-Institut Irland, 37 Merrion Square, Dublin 2
in German
Admission free, please register
Tel. +353 1 7168180
gillian.pye at
Angelika Overath
As part of the annual conference of Women in German Studies (WiGS) – which is hosted by University College Dublin and the Goethe-Institut Irland this year – there will be a translation workshop with the author Angelika Overath. Overath, born in 1957 in Karlsruhe, is a German writer and journalist, who lives in Switzerland. During the workshop the participants learn in small groups how to exercise their translation skills (German-English) using some short works by Angelika Overath. Afterwards the translators Rachel McNicholl and Nick Johnstone will present their own versions of two texts in the form of a 'translation-slam'. Angelika Overath will read from the original German texts and talks about the experience of 'being translated'.

As part of the conference the authors Angelika Overath und Julya Rabinowich (from Austria) will read from their works on 28 June 2012 at 6:30 pm im Goethe-Institut.


We are currently accepting articles for the forthcoming edition of Translation Ireland, the journal of the Irish Translators' and Interpreters' Association (ITIA). For this general issue we are accepting articles on any topic that would be of interest to ITIA members, particularly pieces concerning practical issues relating to the professional activities of translators and interpreters. Contributions may be in English or Irish and may be up to 5,000 words in length. They should be formatted according to the style guidelines available at Articles which need extensive language correction and revision will not be accepted.
Articles should be submitted in their finished form by July 15th 2012. The journal's editorial committee will consider all submissions and you will be informed within the week following the submission deadline whether your contribution has been accepted for publication. It is hoped that the new issue will be ready in autumn 2012. All contributors will receive a free copy of the journal.
All submissions and queries should be sent to the general editor of Translation Ireland, John Kearns: kearns at

Translation competitions (update) and literary translation mentorships

Is it really June? Arggh! Further to my new-year-resolution list of translation competitions, a few updates:

The Harvill Secker Prize for young translators has announced its chosen language for this year (Chinese). The deadline is 27 July 2012. Prizes for the winner include participation in a mentorship programme run by the British Centre for Literary Translation.

The Joseph Brodsky/Stephen Spender prize for the translation of Russian poetry closes on 31 August 2012.

And a new prize on the block is the British Council prize for translation from Turkish. Entrants translate one of a selection of set poetry and/or prose texts. The deadline is 28 September 2012. The prize includes a mentorship with eminent translator Maureen Freely.

Lastly, New Books in German invites applications for its Autumn 2012 Emerging Translators Programme:
Six emerging German-English translators will take part in the project. Each translator will be commissioned to produce a sample translation of a book from the Autumn 2012 issue of New Books in German. The translations will be commissioned at the end of July 2012, and completed by October 2012. Participants will be invited to a workshop in London in September, run by an experienced translator, where the group will work together on each sample translation.
Applicants are invited to send a short C.V. and a translation of a prescribed extract from Annett Gröschner’s Walpurgistag (reviewed in NBG 31), by 16th July
As always, good luck to any of our readers who apply! :)

UPDATE 22 JUNE 2012: The Translators' House Wales has announced its Challenge for 2012, which consists of a translation of a set text in English by the South Asian writer Sampurna Chattarji into Welsh. More details here. 

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Birmingham early-career research fellowships

From Gabriela Saldanha on the Translatio list. The deadline is 27 August 2012:

A new round of Birmingham Fellowships has just opened. Details can be found at

These are exceptional opportunities for outstanding early-career researchers (for instance, they are permanent, and the terms of eligibility are quite widely drawn).

On the website, the sidebar on the main page offers sections ‘about’, ‘apply’ (including a very useful FAQ), and ‘priority areas’ (of which the one most likely to be of interest will probably be ‘Language, Text and Performance’).  Please do read the details, and, if you think this is an opportunity you’d like to look into,  just click on the relevant contact email for your chosen priority area (or, if none of the areas seems to fit, use the email that’s given for people outside the priority areas). We’ll be delighted to hear from you!

Thursday, 7 June 2012

First 'Spot the Translator' contest for video artists

Today began with a short film about subtitling, when Sam B. sent me a link to this Titra Film series of ads for subtitling: Titra film translates all the emotions of the original movie...

And now, funnily enough, just seen on the love German books website: 

CEATL (the Council of European Associations of Literary Translators) are holding a contest for video artists (see their Facebook event page). CEATL is
calling for video artists to create sparky and clever short films reflecting the existence and importance of literary translators, their challenges, and their role in literature. Videos up to three minutes long are accepted, and a prize of 1000 Euros will be awarded for the winner on the International Translation Day, the 30th of September 2012.
Deadline for initial submissions is 2 September.

What a good idea. Readers please publicise!

Friday, 1 June 2012

PhD studentships in translation, Tarragona, Spain

From Anthony Pym's itit list:

Two four-year studentships are available for scholars with an MA who wish to carry out doctoral studies at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili, with a starting salary of just under 1000 euros a month.

One of the grants (ICREA) is for research in Translation Studies; the other (DEAA) can be in any area of English Studies, including Translation Studies.

Full details are available here:

To see the list of available positions, you have to register here:
Then do a search for "English".