Laurynas KATKUS (poet, fiction writer, translator, essayist; Lithuania) is the author of the novel Judantys šešėliai [Moving Shadows] (2012), the essay collection Sklepas [The Basement] (2011), and the poetry collections Balsai, Rašteliai [Voices, Notes] (1998), Nardymo pamokos [Diving Lessons] (2003) and Už septynių gatvių [Behind 7 Streets] (2009). His writing has been widely translated, appearing New European Poets: an Anthology, Absinthe, The Drunken Boat and elsewhere; he translates from the English, German and Spanish. His participation is made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Sadek MOHAMMED (poet, translator, scholar; Iraq) is the co-editor of Flowers of Flame: Unheard Voices of Iraq (2008), which received a 2009 IPPY/Independent Publisher Book Award. His literary work has appeared in Atlanta Review, Best American Nonrequired Reading and elsewhere; he also has a scholarly volume on translation practice and theory. He has translated Maya Angelou’s poetry into Arabic and the collection Ishtar's Songs: Iraqi Poetry since the 1970s into English. Mohammed is the Dean of the College of Arts at the University of Imam Jaafar Al-Sadiq in Baghdad. His participation is made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Antônio XERXENESKY (fiction writer, translator; Brazil), currently completing a PhD in literary theory at Universidade de São Paulo, is the author of two novels, most recently F (2014), two short story collections, including A Página assombrada por fantasmas (2011) and several books of translation; his own work has been translated into English, French, German and Spanish. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
VILLEDA (poet, translator, fiction writer; Mexico) is the author of four books of poetry, most recently Dodo (2014). Her work in poetry and multimedia, widely anthologized and translated, has received recognition through several awards, including the 2014 National Fine Arts Prize for Children’s Fiction and the 2013 Elías Nandino National Award for Youth Poetry. She participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Nael ELTOUKHY (fiction writer, translator; Egypt) has published five books of fiction and two books of translation from the Hebrew. His novels include the critically acclaimed Nisaa Al Karantina [Women of Karantina] (2013) and Al Alfen wa seta [Two Thousand and Six] (2009). He is a staff journalist at a number of regional newspapers. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State
Marie SILKEBERG (poet, translator, nonfiction writer, filmmaker; Sweden) is the author of seven poetry collections, including 23:23 (2006) and Material (2010), and the essay volume Avståndsmätning (2005). Among her translations are those of Inger Christensen and Rosemarie Waldrop; she also collaborates with musicians on text and sound compositions and poetry films. A recipient of a number of awards, the 2013 Marin Sorescu Prize most recently, she teaches literary composition at the University of Southern Denmark. Her participation is made possible by the Paul and Hualing Engle Fund
Aki SALMELA (poet, translator; Finland) is the author of seven poetry collections and a number of translations, including the poetry of John Ashbery, Charles Simic, and James Tate. His work has been widely anthologized, and appears in literary journals throughout Europe. His first collection, Sanomattomia lehtiä, won the Kalevi Jäntti Prize in 2004; in 2008 he received the Finnish Broadcast Corporation’s Tanssiva Karhu Poetry Prize. His participation is made possible by an anonymous donation to the IWP.
Guzal BEGIM (poet, translator; Uzbekistan) is an editor at the Uzbeki children’s magazine Ghuncha, and a reporter. She has three poetry collections, the most recent being Majnunsoat (2012), and a number of poems in international anthologies. She participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Raed Anis Al-JISHI (poet, translator; Saudi Arabia) has published one novel, seven volumes of poems in Arabic and one, Bleeding Gull: Look, Feel, Fly, in English. Alongside a career as a writer, he teaches high school chemistry in his native city of Qateef. He is a feminist and human rights activist, and works on issues involving children and literacy. His participation is made possible by the U.S. Embassy in Riyadh.
Vladimir POLEGANOV (fiction writer, screenwriter, translator; Bulgaria) translates between Bulgarian and English. He also teaches a course on fantasy fiction at Sofia University, where he is working towards a Ph.D in Bulgarian literature. His most recent novel, [The Other Dream], will come out in 2016. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
ko ko thett (poet, translator; Myanmar) has won a PEN Translation Award for Bones Will Crow: 15 Contemporary Burmese Poets (2012), co-edited with James Byrne. His The Burden of Being Burmese (2015) explores the untenable notion of ‘‘Burmese.’’ After working in South East Asia and Europe, ko ko thett returned to his native Yangon. He writes in both Burmese and English. His participation is made possible by the Open Society Foundation.
Stephanos STEPHANIDES (poet, memory-fiction writer, translator, filmmaker; Cyprus) is professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Cyprus. In 2005 he published Blue Moon in Rajasthan and Other Poems; in 2008 he won the first prize for video poetry for Poets in No Man’s Land at the Nicosia International Film Festival. His poetry has been published in a dozen languages; he has served as a judge for the 2000 and the 2010 Commonwealth Writers Prize. His participation is made possible by an anonymous donation to the IWP.
ZHOU Jianing 周嘉宁 (fiction writer, translator; China) has published seven novels and two short story collections, as well as Chinese translations of major English-language writers such as Flannery O’Connor and Joyce Carol Oates. Her most recent novel, [In the Woods], was published in 2014. Her participation is made possible by the Paul and Hualing Engle Fund.
Henriikka TAVI (poet, fiction writer, translator; Finland) teaches creative writing, collaborates with artists from different art branches, and translates from the Swedish and German into Finnish. She is a founding member of Poesia, a poetry publishing cooperative, and the author of 12, an experimental poetry book project. She participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Christine YOHANNES (poet, writer, translator; Ethiopia) conducts poetry workshops in schools and is the founder of the monthly “Poetic Saturdays” gathering, where everyone can express themselves through art. Missing Words, a poetry collection, appeared in 2014. She participates courtesy of the U.S. Embassy of Addis Ababa.
Akhil KATYAL (poet, translator; India) has translated works by Langston Hughes, Dorothy Parker, Agha Shahid Ali, Amrita Pritam, and others. He teaches English literature at Shiv Nadar University, near New Delhi. His most recent collection of poetry is Night Charge Extra, published in 2015. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Alice S. YOUSEF (poet, translator; Palestinian Territories) publishes poetry on her blog “Blooms in Indigo,” writing on the Middle East, the Palestinian experience, and the emotions of daily life. She has also published short stories and translations. She has a MA in Writing from the University of Warwick (UK). She participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Subodh SARKAR (poet, translator, editor, non-fiction prose writer, India) has published 29 books of poems. Among his honors are the Gangadhar Meher National Award from Sambalpur University, and the Sahitya Academy Award. A former editor of Indian Literature and the president of the Kobita (poetry) Academy, West Bengal, he is currently at work on an autobiography in poetry. His visiting professorship at the University of Iowa is funded by the Nehru-Fulbright Fellowship.
Tim Parks (UK/Italy) is a novelist, essayist, travel writer and translator based in Italy. Author of sixteen novels, including Europa (1997), Destiny (1999), Cleaver (2006), and more recently In Extremis (2017), he has translated works by Moravia, Calvino, Calasso, Tabucchi, Machiavelli and Leopardi. While running a post-graduate degree course in translation at International University of Languages and Media in Milan, he writes regularly for the London Review of Books and the New York Review of Books. His many non-fiction works include A Season with Verona (2002), An Italian Education (2006), and Italian Ways (2014). His critical work includes the essay collection Where I’m Reading From (2014), The Novel, A Survival Skill (2015), and Translating Style: A Literary Approach to Translation, published in a revised edition in 2007.
Antoinette TIDJANI ALOU (fiction writer, poet, translator, scholar; Niger) teaches literature and directs the Program of Performing Arts at Abdou Moumouni University in Niamey. She has been the president of the International Society for Oral Literatures of Africa, and a collaborator on the “Women Writing Africa” project. Her first work, On m’appelle Nina, retraces the exilic experiences of a woman who leaves Jamaica for France, then Niger. A short story collection, a volume of poetry and a memoir are forthcoming. She participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.