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Specimen – The Babel Review of Translations

Would you like to read an online review that is dynamic and interactive, but as fine as a prestigious printed publication? Made only of brilliant texts written by a family of writers apt at second languages and acquainted with borders? Featuring texts which will be then translated in various languages? A review that you can customize to create your own special version? We are glad to introduce you to Specimen – The Babel Review of Translations.

Specimen offers content chosen by an always-expanding international network of collaborators. It features articles (of fiction, poetry, reportage and mostly their combinations), both in their original language and alphabet as well as in an ever-growing number of translations.

Specimen opposes globalisation on its own territory by embracing the entire word in its diversity and, through translation and correlation, creates a dialogue among languages, cultures, areas, voices and characters.

The editorial board is composed of writers, translators and artists under the influence of the second language, in all of its forms.

Why different?

Specimen is interactive and customizable: you can change texture and background colour thanks to the special slider feature, choose the font size and the article layout, create relations among articles, receive notifications for your favourite topics and thus create your own magazine.

Specimen also brings to the Web the typographical and editorial touch of the finest publications on paper, thanks to a graphic design studied in every detail (see a preview in the picture below).

Morevoer, Specimen returns to be book, in the form of fine prints or on-demand publications, as well as through public debate on the occasion of special events and festivals.

Specimen will be launched during the first London edition of Babel Festival, June 18th 2016 in London, in the stunning Wilton’s Music Hall. Please see the full program here:


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Who is behind Specimen?

Babel, the literary festival focused on translation that in 10 years of activity brought to Switzerland multiple cultures and has already curated the publication of books, reviews and special issues. In today’s international and multilingual context, Specimen aims at overcoming the boundaries of Babel and opens up to the world through the web.


Why support Specimen?

Specimen has already met the interest of cultural bodies and institutions that, both in Switzerland and abroad, decided to fund this project. But it is an ambitious project!

Specimen is completely free, does not require a subscription and publishes high quality content for everybody to access. Specimen will translate the commissioned articles in as many languages as possibile, duly paying the intellectual work of the writers and traslators involved.

Thanks to this campaign, we will be able to pay the translators and the due translation rights in the first stage of the project.

Help Specimen to become a space of discussion, identification, and debate for everybody.