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Associate Professor of Writing, Columbia University

Ellen Maria Gorrissen Fellow - Class of Fall 2020

Susan Bernofsky directs the translation program at Columbia University’s School of the Arts. She completed her BA at Johns Hopkins University, MFA in fiction at Washington University in St. Louis, and PhD in comparative literature at Princeton University. Bernofsky has taught at Bard College, Sarah Lawrence College, and Queens College. Her translations include eight works by the Swiss-German modernist Robert Walser, whose forthcoming biography she is publishing with Yale. A Guggenheim fellow and former chair of the PEN Translation Committee, Bernofsky co-edited (with Esther Allen) the anthology In Translation: Translators on Their Work and What It Means (Columbia 2013). Bernofsky has also translated novels and poetry by Jenny Erpenbeck, Yoko Tawada, Franz Kafka, Hermann Hesse, Uljana Wolf, and others. Her translation of Erpenbeck’s novel The End of Days won several awards, including the 2015 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize and Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize. Her translation of Tawada’s 2016 novel Memoirs of a Polar Bear received the inaugural Warwick Prize for Women in Translation. Her additional awards include the 2019 Lois Roth Award, Helen and Kurt Wolff Translation Prize, and Hermann Hesse Translation Prize.

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