Read Well, Read Wisely, and Read Translations

Charlotte Collins
Photo: Goethe-Insititut New York

Upon accepting the 2017 Helen & Kurt Wolff Translation Prize, Charlotte Collins gives an impassioned plea for learning new languages, reading world literature, and living in the moment.

Charlotte Collins was chosen to receive the Helen and Kurt Wolff Translator's Prize by a jury of five for her translation of Robert Seethaler's A Whole Life (Ein ganzes Leben) published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux in 2016. The jury wrote that her, “masterful translation of this meditative novel perfectly captures the quiet, compelling tone of the original German-language narrative of a ‚whole life.’” The honor was presented to her on June 8, 2017 by the Consul General of Germany in New York in an award ceremony held at the Goethe-Institut New York.

Charlotte Collins studied English Literature at Cambridge University, and worked as an actor and radio journalist in Germany and the UK. Before becoming a literary translator. Her translation of A Whole Life was shortlisted for the 2016 Man Booker International Prize and the 2017 International Dublin Literary Award. She has also translated Robert Seethaler's The Tobacconist, and is currently working on Benedict Wells' The End of Loneliness as well as Nino Haratischwili’s award-winning family saga The Eighth Life.