MFA in Literary Translation

What can I do with BU’s MFA in Literary Translation?

Graduates of MFA in Literary Translation will be equipped with the skills, connections, and portfolio to find translation work and to pursue a wide variety of international careers, not only in literary but also in technical, legal, and humanitarian fields. They will be well qualified to work as editors in literary publishing, as many Boston University MFA and PhD graduates have gone on to do.


For those desiring further graduate study, the MFA provides an exceptionally strong foundation from which to begin a PhD in comparative literature, language & literature, or an area studies or social science field.

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“What makes a good translator?”

The BU Master of Fine Arts in Literary Translation gives students the tools to read more carefully and write more thoughtfully across languages. Located in the heart of Boston’s vibrant literary scene, the program is built around BU’s storied literary translation seminar, which brings leading literary translators to Boston to talk technique with our students. The two-semester curriculum includes courses in translation history and theory, language-specific workshops, and advanced literary study. A collaborative workshop brings together students translating from different languages. Students work closely with faculty mentors to produce a publisher-ready translation.  The BU MFA in Literary Translation is the only program of its kind to include a specially designed course in English style for translators.

For Fall 2021, we will be accepting students translating into English from eleven languages: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Ancient Greek, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Persian, Spanish, and Turkish.

Whom can I ask for more details?

The MFA program is administered by the Department of World Languages & Literatures and draws on faculty expertise in the Departments of Classics, Romance Studies, English, and Creative Writing.

For more information contact Anna Elliott (