Chess in Translation aims to keep readers up-to-date with chess news and interviews in Russian – still the language of much of the best chess journalism, and the first language of a majority of top players.
For a few years now I’ve been posting as “mishanp” on Mig Greengard’s The Daily Dirt Chess Blog, or occasionally as “polarmis” at Chessgames.com. When I came across something interesting in Russian I’d often add a quick translation or summary. With time the length of the material grew, until during the World Championship match in Sofia I found myself translating vast amounts of Bulgarian (of all things!), and Mig was perhaps only half-joking when he said it was a pleasure to pay his visitors’ hosting bills…
So, following a few suggestions, I set up this site. At the moment (16 June) I’m mainly archiving earlier material (only November 2009-March 2010 are complete) while also adjusting the layout – but I hope to start posting new material soon. I’ve also recently begun to write for Chessvibes, under an unlikely alias.
Finally, I want to encourage readers to visit chess sites in Russian and other languages. With rare exceptions the posts here are summaries or excerpts, so there’s always more available at the original site. Google Translate (and similar services) make it possible to get the gist, and even the mistranslations have a certain charm: the Chess in Translation logo alludes to the fact that the Russian for “bishop” is almost always translated literally… as “elephant”.