An opportunity to immerse in poetry whose essence transcends language barriers, is very exciting. Poets Translating Poets is a novel project initiated by Goethe-Institut-Mumbai in collaboration with Literaturwerkstatt Berlin. The initiative launched in 2015 with the assistance of Deutsche UNESCO, provides a platform to poets from Germany and South Asia to translate each other’s work.Over 50 renowned poets from Germany, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, with works across 20 languages were selected for this project.
Bringing together 51 poets including 17 German poets from across 20 languages through literary encounters in several South Asian locations, this project promises to stimulate new literary networks and open new avenues for trans-cultural understanding. The project culminates in the the Poets translating poets festival in Mumbai in the month of November 2016. The festival will present around 60 events over three days in a variety of formats, such as readings, performances and workshops.
Over the past months, several encounters and workshops were held across India, South Asia and Germany. The languages in the project in the different encounters included Marathi and Gujarati (Mumbai encounter), Bengali (Dhaka encounter) , Kashmiri and Hindi (New Delhi) , Sindhi and Urdu (Karachi), Tamil and Sinhala (Colombo), Malayalam, Tamil and Kannada (Chennai and Trivandrum encounters), Odia and Bengali (Kolkata), Telugu, Urdu and English (Hyderabad), Nepali and Mizo (Gangtok/Sikkim), German.
The poetry encounters and collaborations have led to translation of poems in diverse languages while preserving the poetic essence intact. It has given poetry connoisseurs a chance to discover literature and poetry in foreign languages, breaking the language barriers.
The project website gives compete detail about the poets, poems, essays, photographs, calendars and chronicles of this program.