Scholastique Mukasonga

Scholastique Mukasonga’s Our Lady of the Nile is on the longlist for the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation 2021 announced on October 28, 2021.

The Warwick Prize for Women in Translation is an annual prize honoring a translated work by a female author published in English by a UK-based or Irish publisher during the previous calendar year. The stated aim of the prize is “to address the gender imbalance in translated literature and to increase the number of international women’s voices accessible by a British and Irish readership.” The prize established by the University of Warwick in 2017 is open to works of fiction, poetry, or literary non-fiction, or works of fiction for children or young adults.

In 2021, the prize is supported by the British Centre for Literary Translation and the British Comparative Literature Association. The judging panel of Amanda Hopkinson, Boyd Tonkin and Susan Bassnett received 115 entries representing 28 languages. Judge Boyd Tonkin said of the 2021 longlist:

“Despite a period of obstacles and uncertainties for international publishing, the 115 submissions for this unique award continue to showcase the vitality and variety of translated work by women writers from around the world now published in the UK.“

These long-listed titles not only span cultures and continents from China to Georgia, and from Thailand to Poland, they also cover a spectrum of literary forms. The list includes poetry, fiction of many kinds – from futuristic fables to family sagas – as well as a range of imaginative non-fiction, from family memoir and biographical essay to social history.“

In every case, the artistry of the translator keeps pace with the invention of the author. Each book created its own world in its own voice. The judges warmly recommend them all.”

From the longlist of 17, there was only one book by and African/Black writer in Scholastique Mukasonga novel Our Lady of the Nile, translated from French by Melanie Mauthner (Daunt Books Publishing, 2021)

The shortlist for the award will be revealed later in the month before the winner is announced on November 24. The winner goes home with the £1000 cash prize.