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The Ottaway Award for the Promotion of International Literature

Named in honor of James H. Ottaway, Jr., the first board chair of Words Without Borders, the Ottaway Award recognizes individuals who have taken extraordinary steps to advance international literature in English translation. In accordance with WWB’s mission, the awardee will be selected on the basis of their efforts to build cultural understanding by advancing popular awareness of international writers and literatures.

Historically, the Ottaway Award has been presented each year at the Words Without Borders Gala in New York City. Past awardees are (below, left to right) Barbara EplerDrenka Willen, Carol Brown JanewaySara Bershtel, and Jill SchoolmanChad W. Post, and Edith Grossman. After a hiatus in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are very pleased to present the 2021 Ottaway Award this fall at a virtual or hybrid ceremony. The date and format of the event will be announced this summer. 


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