Northwestern University’s Buffet Foundation Global Humanities Initiative Announces Prestigious New Translation Prize

Evanston, Ill. – May 19, 2016 – Northwestern University’s Global Humanities Initiative and Northwestern University Press are pleased to announce the establishment of the new Global Humanities Translation Prize. Selected annually by a rotating committee of distinguished international scholars, writers, and public intellectuals, winning translators will receive a $5,000 cash prize. Northwestern University Press will publish the work selected.

The Global Humanities Translation Prize seeks to recognize work that strikes a nuanced balance between scholarly rigor, aesthetic grace, and general readability, especially those that introduce a wider audience to:

– underrepresented and experimental literary voices from marginalized communities
– humanistic scholarship in infrequently translated languages
– important classical texts in non-Western traditions and languages

The Global Humanities Initiative was cofounded under the auspices of the university’s Buffett Institute in the fall of 2015 by Laura Brueck, an associate professor of Indian literature in the Department of Asian Languages and Cultures, and Rajeev Kinra, an associate professor in the Department of History at Northwestern. “Our goal is to bring much-needed attention not only to the rich humanistic traditions of the non-West, but also to the relevance of those traditions for global development and public policy,” say Brueck and Kinra. “It places Northwestern University within a vital international conversation about the continuing role of the humanities in building a more just, tolerant, and humane twenty-first century.”

Founded in 1893, Northwestern University Press publishes sixty-five scholarly monographs as well as quality works of fiction, drama, nonfiction, and poetry. “The Press’s partnership with the Global Humanities Initiative,” says Press director Jane Bunker, “is very much part of our long tradition of bringing exceptional translations of important works to an English-speaking audience. We expect that this award will bring a renewed measure of academic prestige to the craft of translation itself.”

Interested translators may apply for the inaugural award through August 1, 2016. For submission instructions, applicants may visit the Global Humanities Initiative website or write

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