Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp is a literary translator working from Arabic, German and Russian into English.
She translates fiction and nonfiction, and has a particular interest in history, historical fiction, and writing for children and young adults.
Her translations include books from Germany, Jordan, Morocco, Palestine, Russia, Switzerland and Syria. See her full publications list here.
Ruth is a passionate advocate of world literature for young people and diversity in children’s publishing. She is co-editor of ArabKidLitNow! and Russian Kid Lit blogs, and writes about global reading for young people at World Kid Lit, Words Without Borders, and World Literature Today.
Ruth gives creative translation workshops in schools, and promotes #WorldKidLitMonth which happens every September.
- MA in Translation and Interpreting (University of Bath, 2006)
- MA Oxon Modern and Medieval Languages (University of Oxford, 2003)
- CIOL Diploma in Translation: from Arabic (2013), from German and Russian (2004)
- Selected for the IBBY Honour List, with The Raven’s Children by Yulia Yakovleva (2022)
- English PEN ‘PEN Translates’ Award for The German Crocodile and Punishment of a Hunter (2020)
- English PEN ‘PEN Translates’ Award for A History of the World with the Women Put Back In (2019)
- Shortlisted for the GLLI Translated YA Prize (2020)
- Shortlisted for the Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize for literary translation from Arabic (2020)
- Shortlisted for the Helen & Kurt Wolff Translator’s Prize (2019)
- Shortlisted for The Arts Foundation fellowship in literary translation (2016)
- Member of the 2021 judging panel for the Society of Authors/Goethe-Institut Award for Translation from German
- Member of the Society of Authors/Translators’ Assocation committee, 2019-2021
- Examiner for Edexcel GCSE Arabic and Russian GCSE, and the CIOL Diploma in Translation
- Co-editor of World Kid Lit blog since 2018