A New College of Florida professor was recently granted a fellowship to help translate a 2014 French novel.
The National Endowment for the Arts announced Wednesday that Amy Baram Reid, professor of French language and literature at New College of Florida, has been recommended as one of 23 recommended fellows nationwide for 2017. Reid’s $12,500 grant will support the translation from the French of the 2013 novel “When the Plums Are Ripe” (La Saison des prunes) by francophone Cameroonian novelist Patrice Nganang.
“When the Plums Are Ripe” is the second volume of a trilogy about the sources of Cameroonian nationalism, focusing on the period from 1940-44 and interweaving history with fiction.
Reid’s translation of the first volume of the trilogy, “Mount Pleasant,” was published in April 2016 by Farrar, Strauss & Giroux. She said she is pleased that the NEA grant will allow her to work again with Nganang.
“I am, of course, thrilled to have been selected for the NEA Translation Grant,” she said in a statement. “My work as a translator has grown out of my teaching at New College. I want to make Francophone literature accessible to American readers. This grant will allow me to focus full-time on this project next summer.”
In addition to “Mount Pleasant,” she has translated Nganang’s novel “Dog Day”s (University of Virginia Press, 2006), as well as “Queen Pokou: Concerto for a Sacrifice” (Ayebia Clark, 2009) and “Far from My Father” (University of Virginia Press, 2014) by the Ivorian author Véronique Tadjo.
In total, the NEA is recommending $325,000 in grants this round to support the new translation of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry from 13 different languages into English, according to officials. Since 1981, the NEA has awarded 433 fellowships to 383 translators, with translations representing 67 languages and 81 countries.