Plenaries


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Ciaran Carson

Ciaran Carson was born in Belfast in 1948, where he is Professor of Poetry at Queen’s University. He is the author of nine collections of poems, including Belfast Confetti, First Language, and Breaking News, which won the 2003 Forward Prize. His prose works include Last Night’s Fun, a book about Irish traditional music; The Star Factory, a memoir of Belfast; Fishing for Amber: A Long Story; and a novel, Shamrock Tea. His translation of Dante’s Inferno won the 2002 Oxford Weidenfeld Translation prize, and his translation of Brian Merriman’s Cúirt an Mhéan Oíche (The Midnight Court) appeared in 2005. A translation of the Old Irish epic Táin Bó Cuailnge was published by Penguin Classics in 2007. Due in 2008 are For All We Know, a book of poems (Gallery Press) and The Pen Friend, a novel. Ciaran Carson is a member of Aosdána, the affiliation of Irish artists.

Rita Copeland

Paper title: Some Fortunes of Horace’s Ars poetica: Translating Translation Precept


Rita Copeland's work on rhetoric, translation, and literary theory ranges across the period from later antiquity through the late Middle Ages.  Her publications include Rhetoric, Hermeneutics, and Translation in the Middle AgesCriticism and Dissent in the Middle Ages, Pedagogy, Intellectuals, and Dissent in the Later Middle Ages, and many articles on related subjects such as rhetoric and literary theory, sophists and sophistic in the Middle Ages, and intellectual biography.  Her major forthcoming project is Medieval Literary Theory:  Grammatical and Rhetorical Traditions, with Ineke Sluiter, which is an anthology of primary texts on grammar and rhetoric from late antiquity to the fifteenth century.  She is also co-editing, with Peter Struck, the Cambridge Companion to Allegory, Ancient to Modern.  She is a co-editor and co-founder of the journal New Medieval Literatures.  She is Professor of Classical Studies, Comparative Literature, and English at the University of Pennsylvania, and Chair of the Program in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory.

Paul Davis

Paper title: The Sanity of the Translator: Cowley to Cowper


Paul Davis took his undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at Trinity College, Cambridge. He was Junior Research Fellow at Magdalene College, Cambridge before joining the English department at University College London where he has taught since 1997. He is the author of Translation and the Poet’s Life, 1646-1726 which will appear from Oxford University Press in 2008. His numerous essays on intellectual and literary culture in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, with particular emphasis on classicism, imitation and translation, have been published in journals including Essays in Criticism, The Seventeenth Century and Translation and Literature. He was a contributor to volume 3 of The Oxford History of Literary Translation in English. Currently he is co-editing (with Steven Zwicker of Washington University at St. Louis) The Oxford Handbook of the Restoration to which he is also contributing an essay on the interrelations of scientific and literary culture in the period. Among smaller projects in preparation are a piece on ‘Marvell and the Literary Past’ for The Cambridge Companion to Marvell and a survey of the afterlives of Latin epic between the Restoration and the end of the eighteenth century for The Oxford History of the Reception of Classical Literature in English.


Elaine Feinstein

Elaine Feinstein was brought  up in Leicester, and educated at Newnham College, Cambridge.  She  has lived as a poet, novelist and biographer  since 1980,  receiving many awards, including three translation awards from the Arts Council,  a Cholmondeley Award for Poetry, an Honorary D.Litt from the University of Leicester, and a Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship at Bellagio.   She received a major Arts Council award for her new novel, The Russian Jerusalem , out in 2008.   Her latest book of poems is Talking to the Dead.  She has recently been elected to the Council of the Royal Society of Literature.


David Hopkins

Paper title: Pope’s Trojan Geography

David Hopkins is Professor of English Literature at the University of Bristol. He is author of two books on John Dryden, and co-editor (with Paul Hammond) of the Longman Annotated Poets edition of Dryden's poems, and(with Stuart Gillespie) of Volume 3 of The Oxford History of Literary Translation in English. He has recently completed (with Stuart Gillespie)
an edited facsimile of The Dryden-Tonson Miscellanies, 1684-1709, and is currently co-editing (with Charles Martindale) The Oxford History of Classical Reception in English Literature.


Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin

Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin was born 1942 in Cork and educated University College Cork. Since 1966 has taught at Trinity College, Dublin, where she is now Associate Professor of English. Married to the poet Macdara Woods, they have one son, Niall.

She has published a number of academic books and articles, as well as several collections of poetry. She has won the Patrick Kavanagh award for poetry (for her first book), and the O’Shaughnessy award of the Irish-American Cultural Institute. Latest books are The Wilde Legacy, (edited) 2002, The Girl who married the Reindeer, 2001, and translations: The Water Horse with Medbh McGuckian, from the Irish of Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, 1999, and After the Raising of Lazarus, from the Romanian of Ileana Malancioiu, 2005. A new collection of poems and a second selection of Malancioiu’s work are in preparation. Faber are publishing her Selected Poems next year.


William Radice

William Radice is a poet, librettist and translator of Bengali. He has written or edited more than thirty books. His volumes of verse include Strivings (1980), Louring Skies (1985) for Anvil Press and Green, Red, Gold: A Novel in 101 Sonnets for Flambard Press (2005). He is well known for his translations of the poems and stories of Rabindranath Tagore for Penguin Books. He is Senior Lecturer in Bengali at SOAS, University of London, but in 2005 went part-time to devote more time to writing. Recent operatic projects include a verse-narration for Mozart’s unfinished opera Zaide, commissioned in 2007 by Trinity College of Music. Forthcoming books include a translation for Penguin India of Meghnādbadh kāvya, an epic poem by Michael Madhusudan Dutt (1824-1873).

Michael Schmidt

Paper title: Texts as Templates


Michael Schmidt OBE FRSL is Professor of Poetry at the University of Glasgow, where he is convenor of the Creative Writing Programme. He studied at Harvard and at Oxford, and has taught at Manchester University and at Manchester Metropolitan University, helping to establish Creative Writing programmes in both institutions. He is a founder and the Editorial and Managing Director of Carcanet Press and founder and general Editor of PN Review. He has published several collections of poems, two novels, a number of anthologies and volumes of literary history, and two books of translations.


Robin Sowerby

Paper title: ‘The Passion of Dido for Aeneas’: Translations by Denham, Godolphin and Waller.   

Robin Sowerby is Senior Lecturer in English Studies at Stirling University where he has spent most of his professional life. After reading Classics for his first degree at university, his doctorate was on Dryden‚s translations from Homer in the light of the Renaissance reception of classical epic. His chief research interests are reflected in the titles of his two main publications: The Classical Legacy in Renaissance Poetry (Longman, 1994) and The Augustan Art of Poetry: Augustan Translation of the Classics (OUP, 2006).

Lawrence Venuti

Paper title: Translation, Interpretation, Canon Formation

Lawrence Venuti is a translation theorist and historian as well as a translator. He translates from Italian, French, and Catalan into English. Recent translations include Antonia Pozzi's Breath: Poems and Letters (2002), the anthology Italy: A Traveler's Literary Companion (2003), and Massimo Carlotto's crime novel Death's Dark Abyss (2006). He is the author of The Translator's Invisibility (2nd ed., 2008) and The Scandals of Translation (1998) and the editor of The Translation Studies Reader (2nd ed., 2004). He is professor of English at Temple University.