Chaim Grade’s translator on Inna Hecker and losing the Pulitzer Prize to Alice Walker.
A Hebrew Bible published in 16th century Antwerp features the words ‘hate evil’ in French. What does this say about the holy book’s provenance?
The great poet Chaim Nachman Bialik (1873-1934) also produced translations that helped re-energize Modern Hebrew. Bialik’s renditions of Friedrich Schiller’s 1804 drama “Wilhelm Tell” and Cervantes’ “Don Quixote” are examples, as detailed in “The Russian Jewish Diaspora and European Culture, 1917-1937.”
Translations have the potential to communicate one culture to another, strengthening humanistic ties. Translators can be peacemakers, self-abnegatingly finding compromises in the perilous confrontation of languages. No one exemplifies this ideal more than Sasson Somekh, an Israeli translator and literary historian of Iraqi Jewish origin.