Resolve to Support Women in Translation

Resolutions in Translation Series

Resolution #8 (August) — Support Women in Translation

Read, Share, and Hire More Women in Translation

How Did Women in Translation Month Start?

On September 16, 2011 a University of Rochester study was officially published called “The Three Percent Problem”. The book receives its title from the unfortunate fact that only about 3% of all books published in the United States are translated texts. This means that the majority of literature being published and read in our country comes from within, which gives us a very narrow view of the world around us. The book went on to address, among other things, the low number of works from female authors being translated into English and published. A few years later, “Women in Translation Month” was begun by Meytal Radzinski to increase awareness of foreign female authors and ideally balance out the number of female and male authors being published. Since then, the movement has grown to include female translators working to translate these less common foreign works.

How Can We Support  Women in Translation Month?

Each of us can do our part to celebrate and support Women in Translation. Whether you are a female author, translator, or simply an avid reader you can increase the demand by branching out and reading more translated works by females this month. Metro News, Conversational Reading, Book Culture, and many other sites posted lists of excellent foreign female authors and works to choose from. After reading these WIT works we can share them through social media, LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, etc. By increasing awareness of these works we can balance out the discrepancy between not only domestic works and international translated works, but also works by female and male authors and translators. For those of us in the translation industry, we have the opportunity to improve the situation in more ways than simply reading and sharing more translated works. We can also accept more translation jobs from female authors and hire more female translators. By increasing the volume of works by female authors and translators we can increase the availability and probability that these works will be read.

How Are You Celebrating  Women in Translation Month?

There is something every one of us can do to increase awareness of women in translation. Please comment below and share how you are supporting and celebrating Women in Translation Month.