Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp

Literary translator from Arabic, German and Russian into English

Ruth is a British literary translator of Arabic, Russian and German into English, and editor of English texts. She works mainly on contemporary fiction and non-fiction (journalism, politics, history, travel writing, human rights, linguistics and education), and children's books. She also teaches Arabic literary translation at City University’s annual summer school, Translate in the City (since 2016).

She has most recently translated a history of horses in 19th century art and literature, Farewell to the Horse: The Final Century of Our Relationship, by Ulrich Raulff (Allen Lane, May 2017) and a DIY/craft book for kids by Thomas Bärnthaler (Phaidon, 2017, co-translation with Jessica West).

She is currently translating a German children's book for Darf: Apple Cake and Baklava: A New Home for Leila, by Kathrin Rohmann.

Ruth has published translations in The Guardian, The Observer, Banipal, Words Without Borders, Index on Censorship, The Massachusetts Review, The Common, Art and Thought magazine, and in an anthology published by Pushkin Press. She has translated and edited children's books for Outside in World and Neem Tree Press.

She is also a very experienced commercial translator and editor, and regularly translates for a range of research institutions, charities and NGOs.

She holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Arabic Translation (IOLET, 2013), an MA in Translation and Interpreting (University of Bath, 2006) and an MA in Medieval and Modern Language and Literature (Russian and German) from St Hilda’s College, University of Oxford (2003).

In 2016 she was shortlisted by The Arts Foundation for a literary translation fellowship.


Fiction, literary fiction, non-fiction, children's literature, picture books, translation, editing, reader's reports, contemporary fiction, reference books, publicity, children's events
Fiction, children's fiction, history, politics, travel, ecology, journalism, human rights, anthropology, linguistics, education, journalism, crime, thrillers, historical fiction, political fiction, children's non-fiction, picture books, reference books, world kid lit, young adult, early readers, chapter books