Thrilled and honored to be the recipient of the Astrid Lindgren Prize

Every three years, the Federación Internacional de Traductores (FIT) holds a World Congress during which awards and prizes are presented to distinguish professionals from all over the world for their work in very many fields, from translation of fiction and non-fiction to solidarity within the community of translators and interpreters. And this year I have had the great fortune to receive one: the Astrid Lindgren Prize for the translation of literature for children and young adults!

The ceremony was held in Cuba of all places at the beginning of June. And you can see on my face how happy I felt when I received the prize. I also had the opportunity to say a few words (until the orchestra began to play) and I took the chance to give thanks left and right, to praise translators of books for children and young people… and of course to ask for better working conditions.

Carlos Mayor | Astrid Lindgren Prize 1
Carlos Mayor | Astrid Lindgren Prize 2

And on top of that the prize is named after my admired Astrid Lindgren. I thought so much of her last year when I spent over a month in residence in Gotland and visited the house and locations where the Pippi Longstocking series was shot! No doubt, both their spirits were watching over me.

Pippi Calzaslargas

The Astrid Lindgren Prize aims to promote the translation of children’s literature, improve the quality thereof and draw attention to the role of translators in bringing the peoples of the world closer together in terms of culture. It was created in 1981 and it is sponsored by the Astrid Lindgren Fund, based on a donation made by the author herself. Previous winners are professionals from around the world such as Anthea Bell, Francesca Novajra, Torstein Bugge Høverstad and Åke Holmberg. This year’s jury was terribly generous in its verdict: “Carlos Mayor’s extensive catalogue of translations spanning all ages of children’s and YA literature as well as his academic and advocacy work make him the outstanding candidate. He has translated over 170 books from English, French and Italian into Catalan or Spanish. He is an active, dedicated professional, who shares his professional experience via lectures, workshops and articles and campaigns for the rights of translators of books for children and young adults. The judges were impressed by his call for translators to encourage ‘the pleasure of reading’ among young readers and were unanimous in their verdict”.

The award was presented to me by FIT Secretary General Alexandra Jantscher-Karlhuber, and the person standing next to me on stage while I give my speech is the Chair of the FIT Awards Management Standing Committee, Reina de Bettendorf. The pictures are by Guillaume Deneufbourg. It was a day that I lived in a whirlwind of emotions among great colleagues. A day I will never forget!

Awards | Catalan into Spanish | Comics | English into Catalan | English into Spanish | Fiction | French into Catalan | French into Spanish | Illustrated Books | Italian into Catalan | Italian into Spanish | My Own Trumpet | Spanish into Catalan | Translators' Associations

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