Page 158 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 41

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practice, helping to launch the works o f several p rom inen t mod­
ern Hebrew writers, such as Aharon Appelfeld, A.B. Yehoshua,
Yoram Kaniuk, Yitzhak Orpaz, Benjamin Tammuz and Amos
Oz. We would go so far as to say tha t a writer like David Shahar,
last year’s w inner o f France’s prestigious Medicis Prize, would
probably not have attained tha t distinction without the consistent
suppo rt o f the Institute, which has been p romo ting the transla­
tion o f his stories and novels fo r many years.
Though the Institute directs its major effort at translation into
English, much has also been done to encourage translations o f
Hebrew litera tu re into o the r languages. Here the initiative gener­
ally comes from a local translator o r publisher, following which
the Institute may lend financial assistance, supply material avail­
able in English translation, set up contacts with the Hebrew
authors, and the like. These efforts have borne f ru it over the
years, and translations have been published in French , Spanish,
German, Danish, Dutch, Rumanian, Portuguese, Norwegian,
Hungarian , Hindi, Welsh, and o the r languages.
One o f the Institu te’s recent undertak ings is an extensive p ro ­
gram o f translation into Arabic. As a first step, an anthology of
m odern Hebrew stories was compiled and edited by Anton
Shammas. An Arabic translation o f “T h e Lover,” A. B.
Yehoshua’s best-selling novel which has been translated into
seven languages to date, was recently submitted to the Egyptian
publisher Dahr el-Ma’reef, and a selection o f poems by David
Avidan has been published with the Institu te’s support. In 1980,
the Institute published an exhaustive bibliography o f Hebrew lit­
e ra tu re in Arabic translation covering the years 1948-79, and
compiled by Amnon Zippin. F u rthe r translations are in progress
and will duly be published.
T he list o f new English translations includes works by such
writers as Yaakov Shabtai, Nissim Aloni, Yitzhak O rpaz and
Yitzhak Ben-Ner. A series o f thematic anthologies o f prose and
poetry is in prepa ra tion . T he first in this series, an anthology o f
kibbutz stories edited by Amos Oz, has already been published in
Norwegian and Danish, and an English translation is due soon.
This will be followed by an anthology o f stories on the Holocaust,
ano ther anthology entitled, “Childhood in Israel,” a selection of