Helen Lane (1921 – August 29, 2004) was an American translator of Spanish, Portuguese, French and Italian language literary works into English. She translated works by numerous important authors including Jorge Amado, Augusto Roa Bastos, Marguerite Duras, Juan Goytisolo, Mario Vargas Llosa, Curzio Malaparte, Juan Carlos Onetti, Octavio Paz, Nélida Piñon, and Luisa Valenzuela. She was a recipient of the National Book Award.
Lane began her career in the 1940s as a government translator in Los Angeles, before moving to New York City to work for publishers there. She became a freelance translator in 1970, and moved to the Dordogne in France. In addition to her books, she also provided subtitles for films by Jean-Luc Godard and Haskell Wexler.
She was born Helen Ruth Overholt in Minneapolis and graduated summa cum laude in 1943 from the University of California, Los Angeles, where in 1953 she obtained a master's degree in Romance Languages and Romance Literatures. She continued her coursework at UCLA to the doctoral level. In 1954, Lane was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to France. She studied at the Sorbonne for one year.
List of translations
- On Heroes and Tombs (Ernesto Sabato)
- The Storyteller (Mario Vargas Llosa)
- Count Julian (Juan Goytisolo)
- A Fish in the Water (Mario Vargas Llosa)
- Essays on Mexican Art
- Caetana's Sweet Song
- Massacre in Mexico (Elena Poniatowska)
- The Three Marias: New Portuguese Letters
- State of Siege
- The Perón Novel
- Santa Evita
- The Memoirs of Fray Servando Teresa de Mier (Servando Teresa de Mier)
- I, the Supreme (Augusto Roa Bastos)
- Les choses: a story of the sixties (Georges Perec)
- Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter (Mario Vargas Llosa)
- The War of the End of the World (Mario Vargas Llosa)
- Machiavelli (Edmond Barincou)
- "An Interview with Helen Lane - Center for Translation Studies - The University of Texas at Dallas". translation.utdallas.edu. Retrieved 2018-10-19.
"National Book Awards – 1974". National Book Foundation. Retrieved 2012-03-11.
There was a "Translation" award from 1967 to 1983.
- Saxon, Wolfgang (September 2004). "Helen Lane, a Translator of Literature, Dies at 83". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-04-04.
- Christ, Ronald. "The Translator's Voice: An Interview With Helen R. Lane". Retrieved 2011-06-26.