Friday, January 8, 2010

Richard Zenith to translate two cantigas

The award-winning translator and Pessoa expert Richard Zenith will translate two medieval poems for the bilingual Anthology of Galician Literature to be published by Xerais and Galaxia in spring 2010.

Born in Washington DC, Richard has lived since 1987 in Lisbon, where he works as a researcher in the Pessoa archives. He has prepared numerous editions of Pessoa’s work, including a seven-volume Obra Essencial de Fernando Pessoa published in 2006-7 by Assírio & Alvim. His translation Fernando Pessoa & Co.: Selected Poems won the 1999 PEN Award for Poetry in Translation. Other translations of work by Pessoa include A Little Larger Than the Entire Universe: Selected Poems, The Book of Disquiet and The Selected Prose of Fernando Pessoa.

He has also translated poetry by Luís de Camões, João Cabral de Melo Neto and Sophia de Mello Breyner and novels by António Lobo Antunes, José Luandino Vieira and José Luís Peixoto. His Education by Stone: Selected Poems by João Cabral de Melo Neto won the 2006 Harold Morton Landon Translation Award.

In 1995, the British publisher Carcanet brought out his landmark 113 Galician-Portuguese Troubadour Poems, an edition Richard is in the process of revising and enlarging. Holder of a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1987 and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in 1988, he has also published his own stories and poems.

We are extremely fortunate, therefore, that Richard will contribute two translations to the anthology: a song of love or cantiga de amor chosen for the anthology by Elsa Gonçalves and a song of Holy Mary or cantiga de Santa María chosen for the anthology by José Ángel Valente.

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