Sun, Feb 08, 2009 - Page 2 News List

Germany offers grants for publishers translating German books into Chinese

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

A visiting German official said yesterday his government would continue to offer financial aid to local publishers to translate German books into Chinese in an effort to raise the visibility of German literature in the Chinese-speaking world.

Speaking at the Taipei International Book Exhibition yesterday, Clemens-Peter Haase, head of the Literature and Translation Department at the Goethe-Institut Head Office in Munich, said that under the “Book Translation Grant,” publishers can receive subsidies of between 50 percent and 90 percent of their translation costs for translations of German books published in Taiwan.

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Although applications for all types of books are welcome, Haase said contemporary German literature and topics such as modern history, cultural aspects of Europe’s ongoing process of unification and contemporary regional and global issues would be prioritized.

Whether the authors of the books are well-known in Germany and whether the translations can be marketed in Hong Kong and China will also be taken into consideration, Haase said.

TWO-WAY STREET

In addition to introducing more German literature in Taiwan, Haase said exporting Taiwan’s literary culture to Germany was equally important and could be achieved through means such as inviting Taiwanese writers to visit Germany for cultural exchanges.

ALREADY ON THE MARKET

The German Cultural Center, which is the Goethe-Institut’s representative in Taiwan, said four German books had been translated and marketed in Taiwan under the program over the past two years.

The center said publishers interested in applying for the grant can visit its Web site at goethe.de/uebersetzungsfoerderung for more details.

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