Will Firth shortlisted for major translation prize

Will Firth's translation of the WW1 epic novel, The Great War, wins him a place on the shortlist for the Oxford-Weidenfled Prize

The Oxford-Weidenfeld Prize is for book-length literary translations into English from any living European language. It aims to honour the craft of translation, and to recognise its cultural importance. It is funded by Lord Weidenfeld and by New College, The Queen’s College and St Anne’s College, Oxford.

Will Firth has been shortlisted for his translation of Aleksandar Gatalica’s The Great War, described by the judges as 'A large-scale novel by a leading Serbian writer, on the First World War as seen from a variety of angles that will inform, and surprise, English readers.'  The novel was an unprecedented hit in the author's native homeland of Serbia, where it has so far sold over 36,000 copies, and garnered every major literary prize in the country. Historian and biographer, Mark Thompson, in his review in the Times Literary Suppliment, described it thus: ‘This may be the most noteworthy comic novel on the First World War since Jaroslav Hašek’s ‘The Good Soldier Švejk’...

This year’s judges of the Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize are the academics and writers Adriana Jacobs, David Maskell, Jane Hiddleston and Jonathan Katz (Chair).

Will Firth finds himself on the shortlist with a selct group consisting of: Susan Bernofsky for Jenny Erpenbeck’s The End of Days (Portobello Books; Nick Caistor and Lorenza Garcia for André Neuman’s Talking to Ourselves (Pushkin Press); Euan Cameron for Jean-Michel Guenassia’s The Incorrigible Optimists Club (Atlantic Books); Anne Stokes for Sarah Kirsch’s Ice Roses (Carcanet Press); Geoffrey Strachan for Jérôme Ferrari’s The Sermon on the Fall of Rome (MacLehose Press); Stefan Tobler for Clarice Lispector’s Água Viva (Penguin Books); Paul Vincent for Erwin Mortier’s While the Gods were Sleeping (Pushkin Press)