Alfred Birnbaum (born 1955) is an American translator.
Alfred Birnbaum was born in the United States and raised in Japan from age five. He studied at Waseda University, Tokyo, under a Japanese Ministry of Education scholarship, and has been a freelance literary and cultural translator since 1980.
From March 1977 to June 1979 Birnbaum, William Shurtleff, and Akiko Aoyagi did extensive field research and translation in Japan on natto, hamanatto and Daitokuji natto. This material was later published (in various formats) by Soyinfo Center, a research and publishing company in Lafayette, California. In the 1990s, while studying in Yangon, he helped document architecture that was being replaced or destroyed.
Birnbaum's translations include Haruki Murakami's Hear the Wind Sing, Pinball, 1973, A Wild Sheep Chase, Dance Dance Dance, Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, Underground, and other works; Miyabe Miyuki's All She Was Worth; and Natsuki Ikezawa's A Burden of Flowers. He also compiled the short story anthology Monkey Brain Sushi: New Tastes in Japanese Fiction. With his wife Thi Thi Aye he translated Smile as they Bow by Nu Nu Yi from Burmese into English.
- Our Authors: Alfred Birnbaum. Hyperion Books. Accessed March 10, 2010.
- "Speaker Profile". A Wild Haruki Chase: How the World Is Reading and Translating Murakami. The Japan Foundation. March 2006. Archived from the original on 2009-12-16. Retrieved 1 February 2010.
- Palmer, Alex (November 13, 2014). "The Race to Save Architecture in Myanmar's Biggest City". National Geographic. Retrieved August 8, 2018.
- Morgan, Ann (January 12, 2016). "Literary travel: around the world in 10 must-read books". The Guardian. Retrieved August 8, 2018.