Translator Claus wins 2010 PEN Translation Prize

7 September 2010

The 2010 PEN Translation Prize has been awarded to Michael Henry Heim for his translation from the Dutch of Wonder (De verwondering) by Hugo Claus. The novel was published in 2009 by Archipelago Books.

The judges write in their citation: “Michael Henry Heim’s outstanding translation has succeeded masterfully in mirroring Hugo Claus’s many voices in this novel that reflects a complex, complicated vision of post-World War II Flanders. It is a world that Claus describes in language that is often deeply poetic, and that alternates between simplicity and hyperbole, clarity and obfuscation, fantasy and reality. To capture all of this in English requires an intensely focused mind as well as an acutely sensitive ear. Michael Henry Heim proves to have both.” Excerpts of the novel can be read on the website of PEN.

The PEN Translation Prize is awarded to book-length translations from any language into English.