Poetry Expo 24 / 1 March 2024

Lecture on Poetry Translation and Being Translated with Mary Jo Bang

Poetry Expo 24

In an engaging series of interviews and lectures, Matthias Goeritz delves into the intricate world of poetry translation, joined by a distinguished panel of poets and translators: Mary Jo Bang, Volha Hapeyeva, and Uda Strätling. These conversations illuminate the multifaceted process of translation, exploring the balance between fidelity to the original text and the translator's creative input. The discussions shed light on the unique challenges and rewards of translating poetry, a genre where every word and punctuation mark can carry profound meanings and evoke a spectrum of emotions. Through these dialogues, Goeritz and his guests offer invaluable insights into the art of being translated, revealing the depth of collaboration and understanding required to bring poetry to life in another language. This series not only celebrates the craft of translation but also honors the essential role of translators in bridging cultures and connecting readers around the world to the beauty of foreign literature.


Matthias Göritz

Matthias Göritz is a poet, translator, and novelist. He has written four poetry collections: LoopsPoolsTools, and Spools; four novels, including Der kurze Traum des Jakob Voss (The Brief Dream of Jakob Voss) and Parker; and three novellas. He has received the Hamburg Literature Prize, the Mara Cassens Prize, the Robert Gernhardt Prize, the William Gass Award and the International Pretnar Award. He teaches as Professor of the Practice in Comparative Literature at Washington University.


Mary Jo Bang

Mary Jo Bang was born in Missouri and grew up in Cool Valley, outside of St. Louis. She originally studied sociology, earning both her BA and MA in the subject from Northwestern University. She earned a BA in photography from the Polytechnic of Central London, and an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University. She is the author of numerous collections of poetry, including A Doll for Throwing (2017); The Last Two Seconds (2015); The Bride of E (2009); Elegy (2007), which won both the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Alice Fay di Castagnola Award; Louise in Love (2001); The Downstream Extremity of the Isle of Swans (2001); and Apology for Want (1997), which received the Katherine Bakeless Nason Prize. In 2012 she published a translation of Inferno by Dante Allegheri.