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They Have To Be In English

Via Garth’s old piece on literary prizes, I am reminded that one of the rules of the “Super” Booker is that the author has to be in English:

The Man Booker International Prize is unique in the world of literature in that it can be won by an author of any nationality, providing that his or her work is available in the English language.

Which makes “Super” Booker judge Rick Gekoski’s remarks completely nonsensical. On the one hand translation is a requirement of the prize, but on the other hand, any translated work will be competing at a disadvantage and therefore cannot win.

With judges like this, I don’t see how anyone can take Roth’s “win” seriously . . .



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