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Literature and Translation

Novels, essays, poetry, short stories, comics – German-language literature holds a mirror up to society. For language changes and evolves in society, and changes the way we write. This ongoing interaction gives rise to a lively German-language literary scene, in which we work with a worldwide network of writers and translators.

A woman listens to digital media from the Onleihe service and runs past people waiting at the bus stop in the rain. Illustration: Maria Tran Larsen © Goethe-Institut

Onleihe: The digital library

Our digital library Onleihe offers access to more than 20,000 German-language media such as e-books, audio books and music, newspapers, magazines and films, free of charge. 

Current Programmes & Projects

Illustration, on the left-hand side you can see an open book against a beige background, illuminated from above by three spotlights. On the right-hand side, the same motif is smaller and can be seen five times on a bright orange background. © Goethe-Institut/ El Boum

New project on literature
Vorzeichen. Whom, What, and How We Read.

Through online readings and talks at the intersection of scholarship with the literary scene, as well as book reviews on Instagram, the series intends to open up spaces for texts and readers, different ways of reading and new perspectives on literature. Read more about the project and upcoming events on the website of the project. 

"New Books in German" logo: three vertical bars in different colours symbolising three books © New Books in German

Independent Expert Recommendations
New Books in German

Discover the latest books out in the Austrian, German and Swiss markets! New Books in German presents reviews of the best current novels as well as articles about the German-language literary scene.

A pile of books © Goethe-Institut/ Loredana La Rocca

Translations of German Books into Other Languages
Translation Grant Programme

We support non-German publishers in publishing and translating German-language literature to make current works of contemporary literature, books for children and young people, comics and graphic novels as well as academic titles and non-fiction works accessible to a larger audience.

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New Translation
Translation Award

Find out everything about the Goethe-Institut Award for New Translation: prizes, submission deadlines and conditions of participation.

An illustration of two POC © Goethe-Institut. Illustration: EL BOUM.

Artificially Correct

With Artificially correct, we are developing a tool with experts that minimizes the bias in translations. We want to strengthen the position of translators and a conscious approach to translation machines and include the reality of as many people as possible in them.    

Books Menu © Goethe-Institut Glasgow

Book Blog
Literary Tastings

What are people reading in Germany and Great Britain these days? We bring together the writers people are talking about.

Illustration: Several robots carry books through a control room, a human oversees their activities. Philippos Vassiliades | CC-BY-SA

Reflections about the future of translation
A.I. and Literary Translation

Is Artificial Intelligence advanced enough to grasp and process literary texts in all their linguistic richness, and translate them into another language? Will it ever be advanced enough? Or will it remain "artificial" instead of "artistic"? Perhaps it doesn't have to be perfect to be useful and can work as a tool to support literary translators in their work – Let's ask some experts! 

Image of a bird with glasses reading Image by MonikaP from Pixabay. Free for commercial use.

Events in Glasgow

Explore upcoming Translation events at Goethe-Institut Glasgow. 

Photo from translator event at GI-London Photo: Steph Morris

Events in London

Explore upcoming Translation events at Goethe-Institut London.

Newsletter about current cultural events

All our events in the visual arts, film, literature, music, dance and theatre!

Our Libraries

Our libraries are open for anyone and everyone to read, work, watch a film, listen to music or just take a coffee break there in a haven of peace and tranquillity.

Browse through audiobooks, eBooks, films and more: 
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Perspectives on Contemporary Literature and Language

Interesting news and interviews as well as popular items and insider tips in every literary genre

Collage with three coloured drawings from graphic novels. Illustrationen von Hamed Eshrat, Lukas Jüliger und Reinhard Kleist | © Goethe-Institut

Goethe Medal 2020
Ian McEwan in Graphic Novels

How can we celebrate important moments in the midst of a pandemic? As we were not able to award the Goethe Medal to Ian McEwan in a traditional ceremony, we asked three German graphic novel artists to reinvent it through visual storytelling.

Drawing: an eagle holding two books in its wings entitled West and East. © Axel Scheffler

German Book Recommendations
The German Riveter

Interested in German literature? The “German Riveter” magazine contains a great many recommendations by the European Literature Network! All books mentioned can be found in our library in London or in our digital library – free of charge!