In collaboration with the Modern Language Association, the MLA‐Roth Award for translation of literary work into English has been given on a biennial basis since 2000. In January 2018 it will start being given every year. This award, like few of the other sponsored translation prizes given at the annual MLA conference, is not limited to the translation of literary works in a specific language. Recipients have translated works in languages from all over the globe, including Chinese, Russian, Arabic, Japanese, Italian, German and now Turkish.
The 2016 award went to Maureen Freely and Alexander Dawes for their spectacular translation of The Time Regulation Institute (Penguin, 2014), by Ahmet Hamdi Tanpinar, which describes the misadventures of the antihero Hayri Irdal, as tradition meets modernity in early 20th-century Turkey. In the words of Nobel Laureate Orhan Pamuk, “Ahmet Hamdi Tanpinar is undoubtedly the most remarkable author in modern Turkish literature. With The Time Regulation Institute, this great writer has created an allegorical masterpiece, which makes Turkey’s attempts to westernize and its delayed modernity understandable in all its human ramifications.” Thanks to Maureen Freely and Alexander Dawes a world of new readers are now able to discover one of Turkey’s most celebrated novels.
The jury additionally awarded two Honorable Mentions: to Robert Chandler and Elizabeth Chandler for their translation of The Captain’s Daughter, by Alexander Pushkin (New York Book Review Books, 2014); and to Aaron Poochigian for his translation of Jason and the Argonauts, by Apollonius of Rhodes (Penguin, 2014).
For a complete list of recipients of the MLA‐Roth Award, please see MLA-Roth Award Recipients.