time and waterWritten by Andri Snær Magnason and translated by Lytton Smith, is a finalist for the National Translation Award (NTA) in the United States. NTAs are awarded for English translations of both prose and poetry and are administered by the American Literary Translators Association (ALTA). According to his press release, “It is the only national award for translated fiction, poetry, and literary non-fiction that involves rigorous judging of both the relationship between the source and his text and the finished English work.” “
The NTA has been awarded for 24 years, the last eight with separate awards for prose and poetry. The winning translator in each category will receive a cash prize of $2,500.
time and water It is one of 12 titles nominated for this year’s NTA in prose. Other candidates are: Lucifer Translated from Norwegian by Martin Aitken, by Karl Ove Knausgaard, Billy Wilder on Assignment: Dispatch from Weimar Berlin and Interwar Vienna By Billy Wilder, Translated from German by Shelly Frisch, in case of emergency By Mahsa Mohebali, Translated from Persian/Farsi by Mariam Rahmani, and harsh times By Mario Vargas Llosa, translated from Spanish by Adrian Nathan West.
time and water It captured the judges’ attention for its ability to make the enormity of the climate crisis seem tangible and manageable. In their nomination, they wrote:
“The devastation of our climate crisis is measurable, but statistics fail to adequately motivate change. We illustrate its scale and scope by sharing the stories of Rand’s citizen scientists, who spent their honeymoon exploring the Vatnajökull glacier.” Currently, Vatna Jökull is dying. Weaving together family history, folklore, and glaciology, the book attempts a “current myth” that might inspire the action needed to deflect the most terrifying Anthropocene destruction. Adeptly translated by Lytton Smith, Magnuson follows his example, the Dalai Lama and conservationist John Sauvjarnarsson, and conveys a dangerous urgency with unwavering familiarity. “
Translator Lytton Smith is a poet and professor of English and creative writing at SUNY Geneseo in New York. He has translated numerous works from Icelandic. Children of the reindeer forest By Christine Omarsdottir, Ambassador By Braj Olafsson, history. confusion. By Sigrún Pálsdóttir, Thomas Jonsson, bestseller By Guðbergur Bergsson, and Jón Gnarr’s three-part autobiography, Indians, pirates, When Outlaw. In 2019, he received a Translation Fellowship from the National Foundation for the Arts.
Former presidential candidate and outspoken environmental activist Andri Snaire Magnusson is the author of numerous books, including fiction for children and adults, long-form non-fiction, and poetry. time and water Shortlisted for the 2021 Nordic Council Literature Prize.
NTA winners will be announced at a virtual ceremony on October 6th.