Daisy Rockwell to be conferred Vani translator Award

Awarded for making Hindi and Urdu visible on globally

(L-R) Neeta Gupta, director of Jaipur BookMark; translator Daisy Rockwell; Kanishka Gupta of Writer's Side; and Namita Gokhale founder and co-director of Jaipur Literature Festival at the press conference

The seventh Vani Foundation Distinguished Translator Award for the year 2023 will be presented to Daisy Rockwell for her contribution to make Hindi and Urdu visible on the global literary landscape. The award ceremony will be held on 22 January 2023 at the Jaipur BookMark during the annual Jaipur Literature Festival 2023.

Vani Foundation and Teamwork Arts present the Vani Foundation Distinguished Translator Award to honor translators who have consistently and qualitatively facilitated literary and linguistic exchange between at least two Indian or international languages.

This award was deemed necessary in order to actively encourage direct exchange between Indian and international languages at a time when such endeavors were few or none. The award especially favors translators who have produced a significant literary corpus. It carries a monetary prize of one lakh Indian rupees or equivalent in addition to the trophy and testimonial letter.

Daisy Rockwell is a painter and translator of Hindi and Urdu literature, living in northern New England. She paints under the ‘takhallus‘, or alias, Lapata (pronounced ‘laapataa), which is Urdu for “missing,” or “absconded,” as in “my luggage is missing,” or “the bandits have absconded.” She posts her paintings regularly to Flickr, showing her work widely.

Daisy grew up in a family of artists in western Massachusetts, some whose work adorns the surfaces of chinaware and brightens up the waiting rooms of dentists’ offices, and others whose artistic output has found more select audiences. From 1992-2006, she made a detour into Academia, from which she emerged with a PhD in South Asian literature, a book on the Hindi author Upendranath Ashk and a mild case of depression.

Daisy has published numerous translations from Hindi and Urdu, including Ashk’s Falling Walls (2015), Bhisham Sahni’s Tamas (2016), and Khadija Mastur’s The Women’s Courtyard. Her translation of Krishna Sobti’s final novel, A Gujarat here, a Gujarat there (Penguin, 2019) was awarded the Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for a Translation of a Literary Work in 2019. Her translation of Geetanjali Shree’s Tomb of Sand (Tilted Axis Press, 2021) has won the International Booker Prize. Rockwell has written The Little Book of Terror, a volume of paintings and essays on the Global War on Terror (Foxhead Books, 2012), and her novel Taste was published by Foxhead Books in April 2014.

The award is in its seventh edition in 2023.The Award’s Journey so far:

  • Attoor Ravi Verma (2015 -2016): Malayalam
  • Anamika (2016-2017): Bhojpuri
  • Rita Kothari (2017- 2018): Sindhi
  • Teji Grover (2018 -2019): Hindi
  • Rakhshanda Jalil (2019- 2020): Urdu
  • Arunava Sinha (2021-2022): Bangla

The award has been an integral part of JBM since 2016. The jury for the award comprises Namita Gokhale- founder and co-director of Jaipur Literature Festival, Neeta Gupta- director of Jaipur BookMark and Sundeep Bhutoria, Chairman of Prabha Kahitan Foundation, author and cultural critic.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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