Arizona Translates!

Arizona Translates!

Arizona Translates! is a series of public events held in fall 2021 alongside ALTA’s 44th annual conference (ALTA44: Inflection Points). The program includes: 

German-English Translation Slam: One Text, Two Translators, and No Wrong Answers

Thursday, September 30, 10:00-11:00am PT

Virtual event: Register through InEvent and select a "Free - Special Event Access" ticket

Moderator: David Gramling
Participants: Didem Uca and Jon Cho-Polizzi
Joined by: Jake Schneider, SAND journal

Come join us for a lively, interactive event, where translators and non-translators alike get a peek inside the translation process—and the fact that different translations can be equally valid. Two translators will arrive having independently completed an English translation of the same German poem by Keça Filankes. They’ll read their translations, and then describe their choices, as well as cultural and linguistic aspects of the original poem. Which parts of each version will you prefer? Are there other possible translations that you might suggest? During the reading and moderated conversation, you’ll be invited to offer your own suggestions in the chat, and the event will conclude with a live Q&A.

Access Information: This event will be CART-captioned, and a recording will be made available afterwards on ALTA's Crowdcast page. 

This event is a collaboration between ALTA and SAND journal, is sponsored by Wunderbar Together, and affiliated with the College of Humanities' Tucson Humanities Festival.

Inflection Points: A Gallery Talk on Poetry in Translation

Tuesday, October 5, 4:00-5:00pm PT

Virtual event: Register through InEvent and select a "Free - Special Event Access" ticket

Moderator: Julie Swarstad Johnson

As we emerge from this time of crisis, how might the field of literary translation chart new trajectories and imagine new narratives of possibility? Four translators of poetry—Kareem James Abu-Zeid (Arabic, French, German), Alex Braslavsky (Polish, Russian), Jein Han (Korean), and Farid Matuk (Spanish)—will discuss how this question informed their process of curating works for Inflection Points, a digital exhibition presented by the Poetry Center in collaboration with the American Literary Translators Association. Curators will highlight pieces from the exhibit and explore the potential for poetry to cross boundaries of language, culture, place, and time. 

Access Information: This event will be CART-captioned, and a recording will be made available afterwards on ALTA's Crowdcast page. 

This event is a collaboration between ALTA and the University of Arizona Poetry Center, is supported by a grant from Arizona Humanities, and is hosted by the College of Humanities' Tucson Humanities Festival.

Reading by the BIPOC Literary Translators Caucus

Thursday, November 11, 8:00-9:00pm

In-person event: Sky Bar Tucson, 536 N 4th Ave, Tucson, Arizona 85705

Get your weekend off to an interplanetary start with a reading by the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) Literary Translators Caucus at Sky Bar, Tucson’s beloved astronomy-themed, stargazing, solar-powered nightspot. Grab a drink and a slice of pizza, relax to some stellar translations, and enjoy an out-of-this-world evening with these translators!

Access Information: Sky Bar is wheelchair accessible. Everything is on one level. Exiting the streetcar, patrons will cross to the sidewalk, and the entrance to Sky Bar is directly off the sidewalk about 200 ft from the streetcar stop. All of the sidewalks have wheelchair access, and the ground is flat, other than the aprons for the sidewalks. Access copies of the readings will be provided.

Keynote Address by Ofelia Zepeda and Discussion Tables

Friday, November 12, 3:30-5:00pm (Keynote), 5:00-6:00pm (Discussion Tables)

In-person event: Sabino-Pima-Madera Room, Tucson Marriott University Park, 880 E 2nd St, Tucson, Arizona 85719

A member of the Tohono O’odham (formerly Papago) Nation, Ofelia Zepeda grew up in Stanfield, Arizona. She earned a BA, an MA, and a PhD in linguistics from the University of Arizona. She is the author of a grammar of the Tohono O’odham language, A Papago Grammar (1983). Zepeda’s poetry collections include Ocean Power: Poems from the Desert (1995) and Jewed’l-hoi/Earth Movements, O’Odham Poems (1996).

Following the keynote address, you are invited to move to the discussion tables at the back of the room to share your thoughts about Ofelia Zepeda’s keynote address with your fellow attendees. We encourage you to sit with someone you don’t know!

COVID Guidelines: Proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test test taken within 72 hours is required to attend this event, and face masks are required while in the venue. Please see our COVID-19 Guidelines for more information. 

Access Information: For information about the physical features of the Marriott's accessible rooms, common areas, or special services relating to a specific disability, please visit the Marriott's website, call 1-520-792-4100, or contact Program Manager Kelsi Vanada. Download the Marriott's floor plan here. Accessible Areas with Accessible Routes from Public Entrance include the Business Center; Meeting spaces and ballrooms; Public entrance alternative; Registration Desk Pathway; Registration desk; Restaurant(s)/Lounge(s). Accessible Hotel Features include: two accessible restrooms near conference meeting rooms; Accessible Self-parking; Self-parking facility, van-accessible spaces; Self-parking, accessible spaces; Service animals are welcome; Valet parking for vehicles outfitted for drivers in wheelchairs; Elevators.

This event is supported by a grant from Arizona Humanities.

Before the German’s Here: A Staged Reading and Talkback

Friday, November 12, 7:30-9:30pm

In-person event: Scoundrel & Scamp Theatre, The Historic Y, 738 N 5th Ave, Tucson, Arizona 85705

ALTA has partnered with the Scoundrel & Scamp Theatre in Tucson to present the winner of the 2021 Plays in Translation Contest. Before the German’s Here by Marta Barceló, translated by H.J. Gardner, was selected from among 20 translated play excerpts submitted to ALTA.

Juliá has just been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Suddenly her life has been thrown into a blaring state of imminence. She knows now, her biggest enemy is time. Juliá faces her family, her past, and herself, as she races the ever-ticking clock to live her life to the fullest, before her own mind betrays her. A vitalist play that transmits a glimmer of hope in the face of irreversibility and that speaks to us about choice, identity, and courage.

Tickets are $15, or free for ALTA44 conference registrants. Learn more and reserve your ticket on the Scoundrel & Scamp Theatre’s website

COVID Guidelines: Proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test test taken within 72 hours is required to attend this event, and face masks are required inside the theater. Please see the Scoundrel & Scamp Theatre’s COVID Guidelines For Audiences for more information. 

Access Information: The Scoundrel & Scamp Theatre has seating designated for patrons utilizing wheelchairs. Please call ahead at (520) 448-3300 to ensure reservation. Accessible parking and ramp access is available from our parking lot (accessed from 5th Avenue). A drop-off area is available at the front door of The Historic Y on 5th Avenue. The S&S Theatre does not provide sound amplification due to the intimate size and excellent acoustics of our space. If concerned that hearing may be difficult, we are happy to seat patrons in the front row. Please call ahead at (520) 448-3300 to ensure reservation.

This event is a collaboration between ALTA and the Scoundrel & Scamp Theatre, and is supported in part by a grant from Arizona Humanities.

Guided Tour at MOCA Tucson: Museum of Contemporary Art

Sunday, November 14, 11am

In-person event: MOCA Tucson, 265 South Church Avenue, Tucson, AZ

Join MOCA Tucson Curator-at-Large Laura Copelin at on November 14 for a tour of the exhibitions were-:Nenetech Forms and Mujeres Nourishing Fronterizx Bodies, a group exhibition with collaborative work from Arizona and Agua Prieta, MX.

Established by artists in 1997, MOCA Tucson is a beacon for contemporary art in the binational Sonoran Desert region that presents exhibitions by locally, nationally, and internationally renowned artists and produces creative programs for all ages. Guided tour and museum entry on Sunday is FREE for attendees of ALTA44. More information can be found here.

Access Information: Designated accessible parking (with access to a ramp) is available on the south side of McCormick St in front of MOCA. Additional parking is available in the police station lot adjacent to MOCA to the east. MOCA has an accessible restroom in the lobby and all exhibition and lecture spaces are ADA compliant. MOCA is committed to providing access to the arts for everyone; any additional accommodations can be made by calling MOCA’s front desk at (520) 624-5019.

Participating Bookstores

Thursday, November 11––Saturday, November 13

In-person: Antigone Books (411 N 4th Ave, Tucson, Arizona 85705); The University of Arizona Bookstore (1209 E University Blvd, Tucson, Arizona 85721, located on campus in the UA Student Union)

Stop by Antigone Books or the University of Arizona Bookstore anytime between November 11-13 to check out their special displays of literature in translation!

About Arizona Translates!:

Arizona Translates! is ALTA’s first public event series aimed at bringing translation to Arizonan audiences since the organization moved to Tucson and became affiliated with the College of Humanities at the University of Arizona in January 2019. This series is made possible by a grant from Arizona Humanities, with additional support from Wunderbar Together. 

To join the virtual events, register at InEvent, our conference platform, where you can select a "Free - Special Event Access" ticket to watch these events for free. Or, join us for the entire ALTA44 conference, which is taking place online on October 15-17 and in-person in Tucson, Arizona on November 11-13, by purchasing a paid ticket. Please see our COVID-19 guidelines here. If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch by emailing

We welcome everyone to our series and are committed to making our programming and events accessible, and to making arrangements that allow all attendees to participate. Please view our Accessibility web page for more information. With questions about access, or to request any disability-related accommodations that will facilitate your full participation in ALTA's programming, such as ASL interpreting, CART captioning, or captioned videos, please contact Program Manager Kelsi Vanada (520-621-1757). Requests for CART captioners and/or ASL interpretation must be made at least two weeks in advance.