On 14 December 2015, as a fringe event of the IV St. Petersburg International Cultural Forum, the St. Petersburg School of Conference Interpreting and Translation organized a special event – a round table entitled Translation Feast: Tradition and Modernity. With the Year of Literature in Russia coming to its finale, this event brought together translation scholars and practitioners, including leading literary translators of Western, Oriental, and Slavonic literature. The round table provided an excellent opportunity for the discussion of the place and the role of literary translation in today’s Russian culture, providing a glimpse of the best examples of the art of translation. Theorists discussed the role of literary translation in contemporary Russian culture, and practitioners gave a recital of their latest translations. They definitely succeeded in delivering to their audience the music and imagery of languages as diverse as Arabic, Japanese, Slovenian, Mongolian, Spanish, Czech, Hungarian, Georgian, and Norwegian, among others.
The round table attracted many Herzen University students and faculty, as well as other guests with an interest in literature and foreign cultures. It demonstrated that the best Russian translations extend the geographical reach and lifespan of the masterpieces of world literature. Translations also make understanding possible between distant cultural traditions, and allow for the creation of a favourable environment for the development of Russian culture itself.