Columbia University in the City of New York

Harriman Institute

Angela Rodel's headshot. Image links to event page.



“The Discreet Monsters of the Past”: Angela Rodel on Translating Bulgarian Literature
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Please join the Harriman Institute for a discussion between 2023 International Booker Prize-winning translator Angela Rodel and Harriman Institute Director Valentina Izmirlieva. Rodel will discuss her extraordinary career as a literary translator from Bulgarian. In the course of the conversation, Rodel will read excerpts from various Bulgarian works she has translated, including Georgi Gospodinov’s Time Shelter, Vera Mutafchieva’s The Case of Cem, and Joanna Elmy’s Made of Guilt, reflecting on the way these works reframe and even subvert traditional Bulgarian narratives.

Angela Rodel is a literary translator who holds degrees from Yale and UCLA. Nine Bulgarian novels in her translation have been published in the US and UK, and shorter works have appeared in McSweeney’s, Two Lines, Ploughshares, Words Without Borders, and elsewhere. She has received NEA and PEN translation grants. Her translation of Georgi Gospodinov’s Physics of Sorrow won the 2016 AATSEEL Prize for Literary Translation, while her translation of his novel Time Shelter was featured on The New Yorker’s list of Best Books of 2022 and won the 2023 International Booker Prize. Since 2015 she has served as executive director of the Bulgarian-American Fulbright Commission.