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Dutch translator Raas gets state award

Published : 07 Oct 2020, 01:35

  DF Report

Dutch translator Annemarie Raas. Photo :Ministry of Education and Culture.

Minister of Science and Culture Annika Saarikko on Tuesday granted the State Award for Foreign Translators to the Dutch translator Annemarie Raas, said the Ministry of Education and Culture in a press release.

The prize is worth €15,000 and was awarded this year for the forty-fifth time.

Annemarie Raas began her career 20 years ago, when she assisted her university instructor Marja-Leena Hellings with the translation of a book by crime fiction writer Matti Yrjänä Joensuu. Since then Raas has completed 47 translations, the most recent being Sofi Oksanen’s Dog Park.

While Joensuu became one of Raas’s favourite authors, she has also translated detective novels by other writers, including Leena Lehtolainen, Matti Rönkä, and Kati Hiekkapelto.

But Raas has also produced skilful translations of Aki Ollikainen's subtle short novels, Riikka Pulkkinen's strong prose and Arto Paasilinna’s humour, besides children’s literature by Siri Kolu and Tuutikki Tolonen.

Raas’s work has also been recognised previously with other awards: Siri Kolu’s Me Rosvolat (Me and the Robbersons) was awarded the Zilveren Griffel, the highest prize awarded to children’s books translated into Dutch. Her translation of Rosa Liksom’s Compartment No. 6 was among the top five finalists for the Dutch Europese Literatuurprijs in 2013.

Annemarie Raas (b. 1968) holds a master’s degree from the University of Groningen, where she studied Finnish language and culture. She was introduced to Finnish in high school. However, his know3le4dge in Finnish deepened when she spent a year as an exchange student in Jämsä, Finland.

This year’s award was presented by Minister of Science and Culture’s State Secretary Tuomo Puumala on 6 October at the National Library of Finland in Helsinki. Raas participated in the event virtually.