British Library Translator in Residence

This film explores the multiplicity of ways in which multilingualism, translation and interpreting are vital to the life, work and collections of the Library.

British Library St Pancras building

A new residency scheme, supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), brings a translator to the British Library.

Published date:

The Translator in Residence scheme offers a translator the opportunity to become part of the British Library's multilingual community of staff, readers and visitors for one year. 

The British Library holds material in a vast range of languages. Our collections include sound and oral history recordings, print publications in most written languages, historical dictionaries and other material relating to the history of language, and we are also home to the archives of literary translators. 

By giving the resident the opportunity to get to know the Library from the inside, this scheme hopes to open up its resources for new audiences. The residency also promotes wider understanding of the value of translation and linguistic diversity. 

The scheme is supported by the AHRC as part of its Translating Cultures theme. The British Library has a strong track record of holding academic and public events relating to translation. With this residency it will build on its already fruitful collaborations with the AHRC. 

The first Translator in Residence, Jen Calleja, arrived at the Library in spring 2017, followed by Rahul Bery in 2018-19. 

Project update (May 2019)

Rahul Bery will finish his very successful period as the British Library’s second Translator in Residence on 31 May 2019. Many thanks to Rahul for all his work, commitment and enthusiasm over the past year.

We will shortly post a report on the outputs and achievements from Rahul’s residency and from our first Translator in Residence, Jen Calleja. The scheme has delivered much more than we had hoped and it has been a privilege to work with two such talented and imaginative professionals.

There will be a pause in the British Library’s Translator in Residence scheme as we work out what shape it will take in the future. Please keep an eye on this space for future announcements.