The NTA Countdown to ALTA44: The Selected Poems of Tu Fu

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:

The Selected Poems of Tu Fu
By Tu Fu
Translated from Chinese by David Hinton
(New Directions)

Tu Fu (or Du Fu) is one of the classic Chinese poets, is essential reading for anyone interested in Chinese literature, or in poetry from any era or world tradition. This translation testifies to patient craftsmanship: the lines of each poem are even in length, which recreates the orderly visual impression of the originals, and the incredible compactness of the Chinese poems is conveyed in ways the reader can still easily approach. Each section of poems is provided with a brief introduction by the translator. Reviews have called David Hinton’s translation “austerely beautiful,” and we would add that it is rich with compressed meaning.

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