Vondel Prize Longlist Announced

27 September 2021

Dutch translations into English are currently experiencing a great boom, so much so that English translations from the Dutch are becoming as important as German translations, traditionally the main export market for Dutch literature. The jury of the Vondel Translation Prize, consisting of previous winner Michele Hutchison, poet Jane Draycott and translator Susan Massotty, were able to consider a wide range of translations published in 2019 and 2020, from works across many different genres.

Susan Massotty, who has judged the prize before, noted that ‘the quality of the translations was very impressive and has steadily improved over the years’. The varied translations featured on the longlist were selected for ‘their sustained sensitivity across the work in capturing the voices, tones and atmospheres of a distinctive collection of original publications,’ explained Jane Draycott. ‘It was fantastic to be able to survey the whole field in this way,’ said Michele Hutchison. ‘I was primarily looking for translations that I found inspirational in some way, translations I could learn something from myself.’

nine covers

The longlist (in alphabetical order):

  • David Colmer, WILL by Jeroen Olyslaegers
  • David Doherty, SUMMER BROTHER by Jaap Robben
  • Sam Garrett, THE DITCH by Herman Koch
  • Kristen Gehrman, THE TREE AND THE VINE by Dola de Jong
  • Jane Hedley-Prole, THE REPUBLIC by Joost de Vries
  • David McKay, ADRIFT IN THE MIDDLE KINGDOM by Jan Jacob Slauerhoff
  • Jonathan Reeder, IN SEARCH OF A NAME by Marjolijn van Heemstra
  • Laura Watkinson, LAMPIE AND THE CHILDREN OF THE SEA by Annet Schaap (9+)
  • Judith Wilkinson, THE WORLD BY EVENING by Menno Wigman (poetry)

Vondel Translation Prize

The Vondel Translation Prize is a biennial prize for the best book translation into English of a Dutch literary or cultural-historical work. Established in 1996 by the British Society of Authors, it is funded by the Dutch Foundation for Literature. The prize is valued at € 5,000.

The shortlist for the Vondel Translation Prize 2022 will be announced on November 16th and the winner in February 2022.

Marije de Bie


Marije de Bie

Programme officer

[email protected]