Heather Cleary is a translator and writer based in New York and Mexico City. Her essays and literary criticism have appeared in Two Lines, Lit Hub, and Words Without Borders, among other publications. Her book, The Translator’s Visibility: Scenes from Contemporary Latin American Fiction, which shows how narratives of translation can challenge norms of intellectual property and propriety, is out now from Bloomsbury.
She also co-edited McSweeney’s 65: Plundered with Valeria Luiselli. Check it out here.
Her translations include Brenda Lozano’s Witches, Betina González’s American Delirium, María Ospina’s Variations on the Body, Roque Larraquy’s Comemadre (nominee, National Book Award 2018), Sergio Chejfec’s The Planets (finalist, Best Translated Book Award 2013) and The Dark (nominee, ALTA’s National Translation Award 2014), and Poems to Read on a Streetcar, a selection of Girondo’s poetry published by New Directions (recipient, PEN and Programa SUR translation grants).
She has served on the jury of the National Book Award in Translation (2020), the Best Translated Book Award (2016), and the PEN Translation Award (2015), and is known to jump at the chance to speak about contemporary Latin American literature and/or translation. She holds an MA in Comparative Literature from NYU and a PhD in Latin American and Iberian Cultures from Columbia University, and teaches at Sarah Lawrence College.