March 24th, 2022 (14:30 - 16:00 Boston / 19:30-21:00 Lyon & Madrid) **

Online via Zoom | RSVP: or


This is the third in a series of conversations about the current state of Spanish in Europe and the U.S., organized by the directors of the Institutos Cervantes in Lyon and Harvard University, Juana Gil and Marta Mateo. This session will center on literary translation, which involves the richest and most complex type of discourse and takes full advantage of the possibilities of language, thus putting to the test the knowledge, dexterity, and creativity of the translator. After a brief introduction where they will present their concept of translation and read illustrative excerpts of their own work, two relevant translators from both sides of the Atlantic, David Ferré and Valerie Miles, will converse with directors Gil and Mateo about the differences and challenges posed by translating literary Spanish into French or English. The discussion will address questions of syntax, semantics, phonetics, pragmatics, and discourse, including stylistic conventions, humor, the varieties of language, cultural references, and the specificity of each literary genre. 

David Ferré is a drama translator from Spanish into French, stage director and editor (Actualités Éditions). He completed his studies in theater directing at the RESAD in Madrid, and his master’s thesis, La skêne de la traducción teatral o el viaje del texto, is being prepared for publication in Paris. He began his career as a translator with two emblematic authors: Juan Mayorga (El traductor de Blumenberg, 2003) and José Manuel Mora (Los cuerpos perdidos, 2012, translation for which he was recognized by Spain’s Sociedad General de Autores y Editores). Living in Barcelona, Valerie Miles is an American writer, editor, and translator, as well as a professor of literary translation and of creative writing at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra. She has collaborated with The New Yorker, The New York Times, El País, and The Paris Review, among other media publications. She has recently translated Rafael Chirbes and Enrique Vila-Matas and is now working on the English translation of Borges by Bioy Casares. For her translation of Milena Busquets’ También esto pasará, she was a finalist for the Dublin Literary Award and received a PEN prize. 


** This event is affected by daylight savings time, which has not gone into effect yet in Spain.


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