MFA Creative Writing Program

Jen Hofer wins PEN Award for Poetry in Translation!

Congratulations to MFA Writing Faculty member Jen Hofer who has received the PEN Award  for Poetry in Translation for her translation of Myriam Mascona's Negro Marfil / Ivory Black.


Recognizing book-length translations of poetry from any language into English published in the previous calendar year, the prestigious PEN Award is judged by a single translator of poetry appointed by the PEN Translation Committee.

In his citation, judge and acclaimed poet Christian Hawkey writes:

"Myriam Moscona's Negro Marfil, translated by Jen Hofer, is a small miracle of writing, translation, book design, and graphic art, in part because it sets all these modes of writing and making in dialogue, in motion. The book pushes toward—Moscona/Hofer would write "burns" toward—a kind of productive, process-based dissonance, where answers (materials) are transformed into questions, lines of flight, and alternate modes of inquiry. The pleasure of Ivory Black is in its shades and shadows, how it articulates writing as a gesture hovering between binaries, bodies, languages, modes of perception, cultures. In this way it's a book that is also always reflexively about translation, which is further suggested by Hofer's effulgent translator's afterword. We're lucky to have such a poet-translator working today, and lucky to have a press like Les Figues willing to extend translation's inherent excess and errancy to the book object itself."

Jen Hofer reads from Negro Marfil / Ivory Black

Negro Marfil / Ivory Black is available from Les Figues Press

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