The 9th annual Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference is a week-long series designed to provide training and community to beginning and experienced translators, as well as those who want to be more sophisticated readers of literary translation or want to incorporate it into the classroom.

Literary translation is the translation of a literary work such as a poem, essay, short story, or novel, out of its original language and into a new language. It is also the creative, complex, and writerly activity of making an equivalent literary text exist in English.

The Translators’ Conference aims to strengthen the visibility and access to high quality literary translations in the United States, and also to acknowledge that translators require the same training and skills as creative writers.


The conference incorporates the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference model of small, focused, genre-based workshops coupled with lectures and classes on the art of literary translation. Workshops are limited to ten participants so that each manuscript receives individual attention and careful critique. All participants also meet individually with their workshop leader to amplify and refine what was said in the workshop itself.

In addition to the workshops, lectures, classes, and readings, meetings with agents and editors take place during the afternoon. The workshop packet of student translations for the Translation Workshops and packet of readings for the Introductory Workshop are made available in the weeks leading up to the session in order to allow time to read and prepare before arrival.

Participants include translators who want to improve their craft; students who are mastering a foreign language and want to acquire translation skills; teachers interested in bringing the practice of literary translation into their classrooms; and anyone wanting to learn more about and participate in the ever-growing community of literary translators.

The 2023 Session

The 2023 Translators’ Conference will be held from Friday, June 2 to Thursday, June 8 in Ripton, Vermont. Find out more about dates and fees.

Our faculty are acclaimed and award-winning translators including Madhu H. Kaza and Matvei Yankelevich (Introductory workshops); Mónica de la Torre (poetry workshop); Hosam Aboul-Ela and Padma Viswanathan (prose workshops); and Geoffrey Brock and Christopher Merrill (mixed workshops including prose and poetry). In addition to their literary accomplishments, our faculty has been specifically chosen for their skill at guiding developing translators in a given genre.

Other guests from the publishing, literary, and translating world will offer panels, discussions, or one-on-one meetings with conference participants. Find out more about faculty and guests.

Financial Aid

Financial aid is limited, but thanks to support from the Katharine Bakeless Nason Endowment, the Michael Collier Endowment, and Middlebury College, several $500, $1000, $1500, and $2655 awards will be given. Find out more about financial aid.


Rolling admissions November 1 to March 1 or until places fill. Applicants are notified approximately four to six weeks after they apply.

Applicants choose to apply to either the Introductory Workshop or the Translation Manuscript Workshop. Applicants can choose to apply as auditors. See Application and Acceptance Information.

What Past Participants Say:

  • “Our workshop leader was an inspiration modeling an open, democratic approach that was both instructive and nourishing to a developing translator. It was beyond all expectations of what a workshop could be. Attending the conference has brought me to a whole new level. I no longer feel like a “dabbler” but instead someone who might consider taking the path to publication. A truly transformative experience.”

    Katherine Durnin
    Creston, BC

  • “Our faculty member was outstanding, and I felt very seen when my piece was workshopped. It’s the best translation workshop I’ve had. The Participant Readings were extremely friendly, and I loved The Barn location with the fireplace and lights. The Readings have become very precious memories for me.”

    Jenna Tang
    New York City, NY

  • “A faculty member joked that every day at Bread Loaf is so full that it’s like a week—and I agree! I came back brimming with new knowledge. The creative, professional, and academic training filled many gaps for me, and I felt the thoughtful intentions present in every exchange. Words can’t express how valuable Bread Loaf was for my creative life. It was life changing for me.”

    Deborah Ostrovsky
    Montreal, QC

  • “The workshop was fantastic. The faculty member’s comments were open, clear, direct, kind, and incredibly useful. I went to the conference with some trepidation about my project because it’s rather unconventional. To my relief and delight, many people were having rich and generous discussions about translation—including unconventional approaches! Overall, the conference was pure magic for me.”

    Grace MacNair
    Brooklyn, NY