Shortlist of Romain Rolland Book Prize out

New Delhi, Jan 9 (PTI) Four books, translated into Hindi, Malyalam, Bengali and Tamil from French, have been shortlisted for the third edition of 'Romain Rolland Book Prize' 2020, announced the French Institute of India in collaboration with Oxford Bookstores on Thursday.

The prize, which awards the best translation of a French title (francophone area) into any India language, including English, aims at encouraging and awarding the efforts made by Indian publishers to bring the best of Francophone literature and thought to the Indian readership.

The shortlist includes first three albums of the 'Astérix' series by Albert Uderzo and René Goscinny (translated in Hindi by Dipa Chaudhuri & Puneet Gupta and published by Om Books International), 'Chanson Douce' by Leila Slimani (translated in Bengali by Trinanjan Chakraborty and published by Patra Bharti), 'Corps désirable' by Hubert Haddad (translated in Tamil by S.A. Vengada Soupraya Nayagar and published by Kalachuvadu Publications) and 'Malentendu à Moscou' by Simone de Beauvoir (translated in Malayalam by Prabha R Chattergy and published by Green Books).

The award this year consists of an invitation to the Paris Book Fair 2020 in March (Livre Paris 2020) for the publisher, and one month of residency in France for the translator.

'Each time, we get more contributions from Indian languages outside English, and more genres get represented.

'With India being guest of honour at the Paris Book Fair in March, and France being the guest of honour at the New Delhi World Book Fair in 2022, it is more than ever important to make accessible to each other the richness of our thoughts and literature through the difficult art of translation, and to celebrate those who make it possible,' said Bertrand de Hartingh, Counsellor for Education, Science and Culture, Embassy of France, and Director of the French Institute in India.

Seven titles were in the run for the shortlist, which featured fiction and a comic series. Outside English titles, two Hindi titles with one each in Malayalam, Tamil and Bengali were in the contention.

No English title made it to the shortlist.

The Indo-French jury, which takes into account the qualities of the translation and of the publication itself, included names like Annie Montaut, Michèle Albaret-Maatsch, Renuka Georges, Nalini Thampi, Chinmoy Guha and Sindhuja Veeraragavan.

The prize will be announced at Zee Jaipur Literature Festival/Jaipur BookMark on 23rd January by French Ambassador to India Emmanuel Lenain and presented by the French author Leila Slimani. PTI MG MG