Thursday, September 10, 2009

Conference: ALTA 2009, "Continental Drift"

November 11 - 14, 2009

The 2009 ALTA Conference Committee invites you to join us in Pasadena for a celebration of the confluence of cultures and languages that characterizes Southern California. Greater Los Angeles is the home of the world’s second largest Mexican population (after Mexico City), the most populous Korean community outside of Korea, and a center of Arab, Armenian, Central American, Chinese, Iranian, Jewish, Russian, Vietnamese, and countless other ethnic groups. LA is a place where continents truly do collide, even when our infamous seismic activity is at a lull! And who facilitates this metaphorical continental drift more effectively than literary translators?

This year’s ALTA conference will feature the intersection of translation and the entertainment industry, including film, legitimate theater, and music. Additionally, we will take a close look at the pedagogy of translation and the increasing visibility of literary translation in academia.

Of course, you can expect the usual complement of provocative panel discussions, as well as an exciting selection of bilingual readings, expertly coordinated, as always, by Alexis Levitin. We’re happy to report that Barbara Paschke will once again be in charge of Friday night’s ever-popular Declamación. And we’ve invited three prominent keynote speakers associated with Latin American, Asian, and European literature in translation, respectively.

But look for a few unusual twists this year. For example, you won’t want to miss the pre-conference reception, co-sponsored by Red Hen Press, on Wednesday evening, from 7-9, at the beautiful Pacific Asia Museum. The museum is located just steps from the Hilton. All galleries will remain open for our enjoyment. John Balaban will read his exquisite translations of Ho Xuan Huong's poems from his book, Spring Essence: The Poetry of Ho Xuan Huong and the talented Le Pham Le will recite the Vietnamese originals in this unique setting. As a tribute to Los Angeles’ rich theatrical traditions, we have a special event in store – a production of Jaime Salom’s Behind the Scenes in Eden, directed by Chris Kidder of Commedia Beauregard.