García Márquez Beats Cervantes in Terms of Translations. Which other Authors Are Next in Line?

The Instituto Cervantes placed Gabriel García Márquez as the Spanish-speaking author with the most translations in the 21st century. In the top 10 6 Latin Americans stand out.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Photo: Guadalajara International Film Festival

LatinAmerican Post | Julián Gómez

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Leer en español: García Márquez supera a Cervantes en traducciones. ¿Qué otros autores lo siguen en el escalafón?

Gabriel García Márquez established a milestone for literature in Spanish, surpassing Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, and is now the Spanish author with the most translations in the world. Precisely, the Instituto Cervantes is in charge of breaking the news through its World Map of Translation within the framework of the IX Congress of the Language of Cádiz.

Cervantes rose to fifth position as the most translated writer so far this century. The Colombian writer is followed by Isabel Allende, Jorge Luis Borges and Mario Vargas Llosa to complete the top 5. In the top 10 are the Chileans Roberto Bolaño and Luis Sepúlveda.

The Instituto Cervantes is able to draw this conclusion due to a search of bibliographies thanks to the access to catalogs it has throughout the world. However, the metric is based more on trends than absolute data. The organization considers metadata from works published and translated in English, Mandarin Chinese, French, Arabic, Russian, German, Japanese, Portuguese, Italian, and Swedish.

After this new update, Miguel de Cervantes is the only Spanish author with the most translations in China. In other languages, Gabriel García Márquez or Isabel Allende dominate. There is also the special case of Alejandro Jodoroswki, Franco-Chilean, who is the most translated into French.

Next, we leave the ranking of the five most translated Latin American authors, according to the report of the Instituto Cervantes. In addition, we put what is their most successful work and the language other than Spanish in which they are most translated.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez

After receiving the Nobel Prize in 1982, he became the most visible author of the 'Latin American Boom'. His novels "One Hundred Years of Solitude" and "Love in the Time of Cholera" close the top 3 of the works in Spanish with the most translations, together with "Don Quixote de La Mancha". The interest of his works in other languages is dominated by Russian.

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Isabel Allende

The second most translated author has more potential than García Márquez in languages like Swedish. Among her most translated works are “The House of the Spirits” and “The Stories of Eva Luna”. The Chilean, although born in Peru, carries the banner of the most successful women authors of Latin American literature.

Jorge Luis Borges

According to the study by the Cervantes Institute, the Argentine ranks third on the list. Like Gabriel García Márquez, the language other than Spanish in which he most dominates the volume of his translations is Russian. The book par excellence that the Argentinian manages to sell the most is "Ficciones" , which surpasses other important titles such as "Chronicle of a Death Foretold" by Gabriel García Márquez or "Like Water for Chocolate" by Laura Esquivel.

Mario Vargas Llosa

The Peruvian Nobel Prize for Literature in 2010 is another of the most significant figures of the Latin American Boom, together with the Colombian author. The case of Vargas Llosa follows that of Isabel Allende, since the language into which he is translated the most is Swedish and his favorite book in that market is "Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter".

Luis Sepulveda

In addition to Cervantes, the Chilean is behind the Spaniards Carlos Ruiz Zafón and Arturo Pérez-Reverte in eighth place. His greatest success was thanks to his novel "The Old Man Who Read Love Stories." The book has achieved translation into more than 60 languages and also sold a volume that exceeds 18 million copies.


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