A group of 10 Indian poets will travel to Germany for a unique initiative ‘Poets Translating Poets’ which is a part of a two-year long literary project of Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan, Mumbai, an official said on September 6.
These ten Indians will be joined by poets from Pakistan and Sri Lanka who will travel over 12 cities in 45 days reciting their works for the German connoisseurs of Indian literature, starting September 15.
They are: Harish Meenashru (Gujarati), Sumanta Mukhopadhyay and Yashodhara Ray Choudhari (both Bengali), Lalnunsanga Ralte (Mizo), Jameela Nishat (Urdu), Shafi Shauq and Naseem Shafaie (Kashmiri), Sukirtharani (Tamil), Aruna Dhere (Marathi) and Sridala Swami (English).
They will be joined by a Tamil language poet from Sri Lanka, Somasundrampillai ‘Soma’ Pathmanathan, and Pakistan’s Afzal Ahmed Syed (Urdu) and Amar Sindhu (Sindhi).
“Contemporary poetry from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka has been translated into German and German poetry was similarly translated into 20 languages across South Asia during the course of the two-year long project, aimed to stimulate new literary networks and open new avenues for trans-cultural understanding,” said Martin Walde, Director of Goethe Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan here.
The ‘Poets Translating Poets’ project was initiated in October 2014 by the Mumbai institute along with its counterparts in South Asia, in collaboration with Literaturwerkstaff, Berlin and Haus fur Poesie to create a platform for poets from South Asia and Germany to translate each other’s works, he added.
The German poets involved are: Andreas Altmann, Ulrike Almut Sandig, Christian Filips, Barbara Kohler, Jan Wagner, Thomas Kunst, Sylvia Geist, Nicolai Kobus, Tom Schultz, Gerhard Falkner, Ulrike Draesner and Anja Utler, for the various languages.
These poets have held ‘translation encounters’ with their German counterparts between July 2015 and April 2016, and started presenting their works across Germany at the Poetry Festival from June this year, followed by the upcoming six-week long interaction for German audiences.
Besides Berlin, the literary events are planned at Munchen, Dresden, Leipzig, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Karlsruhe, Heidelberg, Kassel, Bremen, Tubingen and Munchen-Pasing.