Vincent Kling has been announced as this year’s winner of the Helen & Kurt Wolff Translator’s Prize for his NYRB Classics translation of Heimito von Doderer's novel The Strudlhof Steps. Administered each spring by the Goethe-Institut, the award comes with a prize of $10,000.
In its statement, the Wolff Translator’s Prize jury had this to say about Kling’s efforts:
Our jury was tickled and transported by the translation’s musicality (“contrive, connive, keep the tryst alive”), alliterative allure (“secret sharer of his solitude”), command of nomenclature, and metaphoric inventiveness (“her neck lengthened out over the situation”), its adherence to the long and twisty sentences of the original German, and its introduction of words-that-ought-to-be-words (“advicelets”). We congratulate Vincent Kling on this monumental linguistic and literary achievement, the masterful quality of which is maintained on each of the novel’s more than eight hundred pages. Perhaps it is no coincidence that the very last word of this resplendent translation is “perfection.”
To read the entirety of the jury’s statement and learn more about the prize, click here.