The NTA Countdown to ALTA44: Afro-Creole Poetry in French from Louisiana’s Radical Civil War–Era Newspapers

Join us as we count down to the ALTA44: Inflection Points awards ceremony with the National Translation Award in Poetry and Prose longlisted titles! We will be featuring the titles in alphabetical order alongside blurbs penned by our judges for the National Translation Awards in Poetry and Prose. This year’s prose judges are Jennifer Croft, Anton Hur, and Annie Janusch. This year’s judges for poetry are Sinan Antoon, Layla Benitez-James, and Sibelan Forrester.

The winning translators will receive a $2,500 cash prize each. The awards will be announced at ALTA’s annual conference, ALTA44: Inflection Points, which this year is being held jointly online and in-person in Tucson, AZ. The virtual awards ceremony will be aired on Saturday, October 16, at 5:00pm PT. To attend, register via the virtual conference platform (there is also a free ticket option that includes public events like this one.)

Join us as we shine the spotlight today on this NTA longlisted title, along with a citation penned by the judges:

Afro-Creole Poetry in French from Louisiana’s Radical Civil War-Era Newspapers: A Bilingual Edition
By various authors
Translated from French by Clint Bruce
(The Historic New Orleans Collection)

This is a book of tremendous historical value. Its substantial introduction draws the reader into the story of the newspapers and the task of the scholars who assembled them to compile the edition. The translations strive to show the formal mastery of the originals, underlining the sophistication of the writers (many of them anonymous) as well as the moral and philosophical tenor of the poems, though accuracy of concepts is always the priority. Every reader will learn important things from this book: it restores a wrongly forgotten but now-inspiring chapter in Francophone poetic creativity and US history.

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