The Invisible Hand
THE SOURCE: “Translators Struggle to Prove Their Academic Bona Fides” by Jennifer Howard, in The Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 17, 2010.
Pity the literary translator, whose mission it is to be invisible, to “fade into the background, like a discreet waiter who keeps the glasses filled while remaining practically unnoticed.” Translating fiction and poetry is a thankless task, one that earns little respect in the academy and little pay outside of it, writes Jennifer Howard, a senior reporter at The Chronicle of Higher Education.
In academia, translation is often seen as a digression from serious scholarly work. As Mark Anderson, a Franz...