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2024 Jawad memorial prize
The seventh Jawad Memorial Prize for Urdu-English translation, 2024

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The Jawad Memorial Prize for Urdu-English translation has been instituted to honor the life and literary legacy of Ali Jawad Zaidi (1916-2004). He was an Urdu poet, a freedom fighter and a polyphonic scholar who wrote several books of poetry and scholarly works such as 'A History of Urdu Literature', 'Uttar Pradesh ke Marsiyago' and several others. He also wrote commentary on a wide range of cultural themes, publishing significant books like 'Do Adbi School' and 'Islami Taraqqi Pasandi.' He was honoured with several awards including the Padmashri, the Ghalib Award, the Mir Anis award and others. He was working on a project he called 'Urdu mein Ramkatha' when he passed away on December 6, 2004.

This prize focuses on translation in recognition of the fact that much of Ali Jawad Zaidi's work served as a bridge between languages, cultures and histories, and that he was deeply invested in not only writing Urdu poetry but also in ensuring the preservation of its history and literary traditions. It is our hope and endeavor that the prize will serve to continue his life's work in a small way.

The winner of the 2023 Jawad Memorial Prize for the translation of a single poem on the theme of 'Freedom' was Poorna Swami. The runner-up prize went to Mohd Aqib. For 2024, we are once again offering the prize for translations of Urdu poetry. The theme for 2024 is 'Resurgence'.

Translators residing anywhere in the world are invited to submit (unpublished) translations into English of an already published Urdu poem. The winner gets INR 25,000 (USD $350, approximately) and a certificate, and the runner-up gets INR 10,000 (USD $150) and a certificate. Submissions are judged blind. Please read the rules carefully before submitting.

Details and Rules:

Translators are invited to submit translations into English of an Urdu poem (already published) with a theme of Resurgence. You are free to interpret the theme broadly but do remember that its thematic relevance should be apparent to the jury.

The poem should be between 10 - 50 lines (in translation).

Translators may submit more than one entry.

The original poem in Urdu must either be free of copyright claims (65 years after the death of the poet) or the translator must obtain the Urdu poet's permission before submitting.

Please send your translations to <> with 'Jawad Memorial Prize Submission' in the subject field.

The original Urdu poem should be attached as either a pdf, jpeg or word document.

The translation (entry) file must be sent as a word attachment, either as a .docx or .rtf file.

The poet's name must be mentioned in the document, but NOT the translator's name.

The translator's name and a short biographical note (50 - 100 words) should be mentioned in the body of the email.

The judges will not be announced beforehand. Submissions are judged blind, so please do not write your name anywhere on the entry document submitted.

The deadline for submission is August 31, 2024.

The winning entries will be announced before December 31, 2024. Please note that there will not be an award ceremony. The winners will be contacted individually and awarded their respective prizes.
The decision of the judges is final.

The winning translator and the runner-up must consent to their work being published on the website and/or any other media platform for publicity purposes.

Our best wishes to all current and potential translators. We look forward to your submissions.

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