Janina Orlov

Porträttbild av en kvinna med kort hår och ansiktet lutat i handen
Photo: Susanne Kronholm


Born: 1955
Currently lives in: Stockholm
Jury member since: 2018

Janina Orlov is a translator and literary scholar. She has translated numerous books for both children and adults from Russian and Finnish into Swedish. She holds a doctorate in Russian language and literature and is currently a lecturer at Stockholm University. She is also a sought-after lecturer and seminar leader.

Do you have any childhood reading memories that have stayed with you over the years?

"Once, just after I learned to read, I was in the countryside in Finland and I found a book in a corner of the attic. It was a Swedish translation of South by Java Head by Alastair Maclean. It was desperately exciting. I turned each page with a mixture of terror and delight."

How did you get started as a translator, and what is translating like as a profession?

"It was by chance. I had been asked to translate a stage adaptation of Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment for a theatre in Helsinki. I discovered how much fun translation is, and how exciting, and I decided to continue with it. Translating, like all writing, is a lot of work. It’s both pleasurable and challenging."