Jeffrey F. Cayzer studied German, French and Education at the University of Sidney, and Theology at Sydney College of Divinity. Additionally he trained as a translator and interpreter in the aforementioned languages and is a member of the Australian National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters. At the beginning of his career he taught German and French at a grammar school in Sydney. He also worked as a Baptist priest and as a teacher at different educational institutions. At the moment Jeffrey Cayzer is dedicating himself to the translation of German and French literature into English.
Three questions to Jeffrey Cayzer
The idea of translating came to me rather late in life, as it offered to combine a number of my interests. I was lucky enough to attend a conference where the principal speaker (Prof John Webster of Oxford) had translated some of the works of one particular writer, Eberhard Jüngel, important in the field of theology, in which I am interested . On the spot Prof Webster generously offered to hand to me Jüngel’s latest work to translate.
I don’t have one favourite book. If “favourite” means a work to which one frequently returns, whose style and content one savours and reflects on, then I am particularly fond of Goethe and of many Dichter (as well as philosophers and theologians) of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Again, it’s hard to be specific. Surprisingly, perhaps, I enjoy well-written detective fiction and similar works as a form of relief from my heavier reading. I have, for example, read with pleasure most of what Bernhard Schlink has written. Since my background is in history and literature as well as in theology, I would enjoy translating a work of fiction, perhaps even historical fiction with a “thriller” edge to it.