Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp (Literary Translation, 2016)The Weather DetectiveRider Books, Dutton USA, 2018

Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp

Shortlisted in 2016 for Literary Translation

Ruth is a British literary translator of Arabic, Russian and German into English, and an editor of English texts. She works mainly on contemporary fiction and non-fiction (journalism, politics, history, travel writing, human rights, linguistics and education), and children’s books. She also teaches Arabic literary translation at City University’s annual summer school, Translate at City (since 2016).

She is the translator of novels by Hanna Winter and Fadi Zaghmout, and the co-translator (with Nashwa Gowanlock) of The Crossing: My Journey to the Shattered Heart of Syria, by Samar Yazbek (Rider Books, 2015). Her most recent translations include a history of horses in 19th century art, literature and thought, Farewell to the Horse: The Final Century of Our Relationship, by Ulrich Raulff (Allen Lane, 2017), a DIY/craft book for kids by Thomas Bärnthaler (Phaidon, 2017, co-translation with Jessica West), and a German children’s book about Syrian refugees and asylum, Apple Cake and Baklava: A New Home for Leila, by Kathrin Rohmann (Darf, 2018).

Ruth has published translations in The Guardian, The Observer, Banipal, Words Without Borders, Index on Censorship, The Massachusetts Review, The Common, Art and Thought magazine, and in an anthology published by Pushkin Press. She has translated and edited children’s books for Outside in World and Neem Tree Press.

She is also a very experienced commercial translator and editor, and regularly translates for a range of research institutions, charities and NGOs.

She holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Arabic Translation (IOLET, 2013), an MA in Translation and Interpreting (University of Bath, 2006) and an MA in Medieval and Modern Language and Literature (Russian and German) from St Hilda’s College, University of Oxford (2003).

In 2016 she was shortlisted by The Arts Foundation for a literary translation fellowship.