Powell conducts translation workshop in Querétaro, México
Senior Instructor of Spanish Amanda Powell will be running an 11-day workshop titled “Mundo a Mundo” in Querétaro, Mexico, this July. Mundo a Mundo is a literary translation workshop that has resulted in the exchange of novels, stories, poems, drama and cultural expression – in both Spanish and English.
Since 1995, Mundo a Mundo has offered language, literature and culture aficionados an encouraging atmosphere for Spanish-to-English and English-to-Spanish literary translation. The workshop, which will start on July 11 and end July 22, cultivates analytical and creative skills necessary to transform literary works from one language to another. The topics include cultural differences, figurative language, traditions and genres. Participants bring their individual projects for assistance and feedback from the director and peers. “It’s kind of like a literary lab,” Powell says, “where things come into being based on the participants and their projects.”
Participants attend three-hour morning sessions, Monday through Friday, for two weeks; afternoons and evenings are free for individual project work and cultural activities, sightseeing and entertainment. Participants include creative writers, journalists, professional translators, cultural activists, passionate amateurs, and university, college and high-school teachers from all over the world. Their ages range from 20-80. While no prior translation experience is necessary, participants are required to be proficient in Spanish and English, as well as have an enthusiasm for literature, language and culture. Several UO faculty members, including Amalia Gladhart and Bryan Moore, have attended Mundo a Mundo over the years.
Querétaro serves as the perfect setting for this intercultural workshop as it is a UNESCO World Heritage site filled with romantic plazas, charming colonial buildings and friendly pedestrian walkways. The city balances relaxing cafes, beautiful parks, and Spanish-style patios with dance performances, film festivals and cultural events produced by six major universities, museums, art galleries and shopping centers. Mexicans and foreigners agree that Querétaro is “muy mexicana.” Workshop participants may choose to live with a host family, or stay in one of Querétaro’s hotels, hostels or bed and breakfasts.
“In addition to working on individual projects, Mundo a Mundo builds lifelong, international friendships,” Powell says. “It’s demanding, but rewarding.”
Sarah Sullivan is a senior at the University of Oregon. She studies public relations and Spanish.