Spanish Translation Competition 2020

We are delighted to announce the second University of Sheffield Spanish Translation Competition for Year 12 and Year 13 students in the UK.

Spanish village
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This competition is now closed.

We are delighted to announce the second University of Sheffield Spanish Translation Competition for Year 12 and Year 13 students in the UK.

The Winners of our Spanish Translation Competition 2020:

Congratulations to the 10 winners of our Spanish Translation Competition!
They are (in no particular order):

Alexandra Shepherd, Saffron Walden County High Sixth Form
Elsie Berry, King Edward’s School, Bath
Emily Slater, Leicester High School for Girls
Graciela Diaz-Thorpe, Sale Grammar School
Iona Blair, St Mary’s Catholic High School
Joseph Mather, Southend High School for Boys
Kurt Price, Luton Sixth Form College
Robert Couchman, Stamford School
Scarlett Kilcoyne, Tunbridge Wells Girls’ Grammar School
Thomas Maloney, Epsom College

We received 260 entries for the competition and very much enjoyed reading them! As ever, the overall standard was impressively high.
Many thanks to all of you who entered the competition.
A fair copy of the translation, based largely on the best entries, is available below, followed by a few remarks on the main translation issues that arose
in it.
Unfortunately, we cannot provide feedback on individual entries.

Dr Paul O’Neill and Colleagues in Hispanic Studies

Text

In the following newspaper article the writer and columnist Maruja Torres reflects on how much Spain has changed throughout the years:

La tele en los años 50
Fue mi madre quien me dio la noticia. En Madrid, dijo, quien tuviera dinero ya podía comprarse un televisor. Estábamos en 1956, yo tenía 13 años, intentaba aprender contabilidad en una academia nocturna y no sabía del nuevo medio más que lo que mostraban algunas películas norteamericanas: una pequeña pantalla, metida en
una caja bastante aparatosa, en la que se movían imágenes poco identificables. “Es como tener el cine en casa, y gratis”, añadió mi madre. No se puede pedir otra definición que refleje mejor la ingenua actitud de una persona humilde, en un barrio pobre -el Chino barcelonés; hoy conocido como el Raval-, en un país atrasado, en
una época difícil. Es decir, lo que eran en aquellos años España, gran parte de sus barrios y la mayoría de su gente. 

Para nosotros, la televisión resultaba tan inalcanzable como hoy lo es Internet para los habitantes del altiplano andino. Quizá por eso, porque éramos pobres y necesitábamos fantasear, cuando por fin llegó a Barcelona, tres años después, cada sesión de televisión se convirtió en un episodio tan señalado en nuestras vidas como la
retransmisión radiofónica del sorteo de la lotería de Navidad, y las horas que la precedían poseían algo de la magia de la fortuna planeando sobre nuestras cabezas. Como si esperáramos que parte del glamour indiscutible del invento se nos contagiara por el solo hecho de permanecer un rato ante el televisor, aunque fuera para admirar a Mariano Medina, el primer hombre del tiempo.

Translation
The telly in the 50s
It was my mother who gave me the news. In Madrid, she said, anyone who had money could now buy themselves a television set. It was 1956
and back then I was 13. I was trying to learn accountancy at night school, and I didn’t know any more about this new medium than what you got to see in some American films: a little screen, set in a rather showy box, on which barely-recognizable images moved around. “It’s like having the pictures in your house, and for free”, my mother added. You couldn’t ask for a better definition to sum up the naïve attitude of a humble person, in a poor neighbourhood (the Barrio Chino in Barcelona, which is now known
as Raval), in a backward country during hard times. In other words, Spain as it was in those years, along with a great number of its neighbourhoods and most of their inhabitants.

For us, television was as far beyond our reach as the Internet is today for the inhabitants of the high Andean Plateau. Maybe it was for that reason, because we were poor and needed to fantasise, that when it finally reached Barcelona three years later, every time we watched television it became as important an occasion in our lives as the broadcast of the draw for the Christmas lottery on the radio, and the hours beforehand had something of the magic of fortune hovering over our heads. As if we hoped that some of the undoubted glamour of the invention would rub off on us by the simple fact of being in front of the set for a while, even if it were only to admire Mariano Medina, the first weatherman.

Maruja Torres, El País

About the competition

The competition is open now and closes on Friday 6 November at 5pm. Students of Spanish in Years 12 and 13 in the UK are invited to submit their translation of the original short Spanish text below. Only one translation per student is permitted.

The prize

The authors of the ten best entries will each receive a prize of a £25 book token and an invitation to take part in a special virtual Translation Workshop organised by the School of Languages and Cultures at the University of Sheffield, involving academics in Hispanic studies, Masters students in Translation Studies and alumni who work in translation-related fields. The Workshop will be held on Wednesday 9 December 2020.

The judges

The translations will be read and judged by a panel of Spanish experts from the School of Languages and Cultures at the University of Sheffield. 

How to enter

The competition is open to students of Spanish in Years 12 and 13 in the UK. Please translate the text above by Maruja Torres. Translations should be the original work of individual students and should be typed or copied on to the competition entry form (available here) and sent as an email attachment to 
translation-competition@sheffield.ac.uk before 5pm on Friday 6 November

Entrants should also include:

  • First and Last Names
  • Date of Birth
  • Home Address and Postcode
  • Contact email address
  • School name and address
  • Whether you would be happy to be contacted by the University of Sheffield about other events, such as Open Days, in future (please note that we will normally contact you by email)
  • Whether you would be happy to be named on the competition website, should you be declared a winner in the competition Winners will be notified by Friday 27 November 2020.

A fair copy of the translation, based on the best entries, will be available on this website from late November. Unfortunately, we cannot provide
feedback on individual entries.

Text

In the following newspaper article the writer and columnist Maruja Torres reflects on how much Spain has changed throughout the years:

La tele en los años 50

Fue mi madre quien me dio la noticia. En Madrid, dijo, quien tuviera dinero ya podía comprarse un televisor. Estábamos en 1956, yo tenía 13 años, intentaba aprender contabilidad en una academia nocturna y no sabía del nuevo medio más que lo que mostraban algunas películas norteamericanas: una pequeña pantalla, metida en una caja bastante aparatosa, en la que se movían imágenes poco identificables. “Es como tener el cine en casa, y gratis”, añadió mi madre. No se puede pedir otra definición que refleje mejor la ingenua actitud de una persona humilde, en un barrio pobre -el Chino barcelonés; hoy conocido como el Raval-, en un país atrasado, en una época difícil. Es decir, lo que eran en aquellos años España, gran parte de sus barrios y la mayoría de su gente.

Para nosotros, la televisión resultaba tan inalcanzable como hoy lo es Internet para los habitantes del altiplano andino. Quizá por eso, porque éramos pobres y necesitábamos fantasear, cuando por fin llegó a Barcelona, tres años después, cada sesión de televisión se convirtió en un episodio tan señalado en nuestras vidas como la retransmisión radiofónica del sorteo de la lotería de Navidad, y las horas que la precedían poseían algo de la magia de la fortuna planeando sobre nuestras cabezas. Como si esperáramos que parte del glamour indiscutible del invento se nos contagiara por el solo hecho de permanecer un rato ante el televisor, aunque fuera para admirar a Mariano Medina, el primer hombre del tiempo.


Buena suerte!
Dr Paul O’Neill and colleagues in Hispanic Studies


View our previous Translation Competitions for French in 20192018 & 2017.

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