Language and Translation in Postcolonial Literatures


Language and Translation in Postcolonial Literatures

Multilingual Contexts, Translational Texts

Simona Bertacco 2014

E-Book: 461 pages

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This collection gathers together a stellar group of contributors offering innovative perspectives on the issues of language and translation in postcolonial studies. In a world where bi- and multilingualism have become quite normal, this volume identifies a gap in the critical apparatus in postcolonial studies in order to read cultural texts emerging out of multilingual contexts. The role of translation and an awareness of the multilingual spaces in which many postcolonial texts are written are fundamental issues with which postcolonial studies needs to engage in a far more concerted fashion. The essays in this book by contributors from Australia, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Cyprus, Malaysia, Quebec, Ireland, France, Scotland, the US, and Italy outline a pragmatics of language and translation of value to scholars with an interest in the changing forms of literature and culture in our times. Essay topics include: multilingual textual politics; the benefits of multilingual education in postcolonial countries; the language of gender and sexuality in postcolonial literatures; translational cities; postcolonial calligraphy; globalization and the new digital ecology.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Fact of Translation in Postcolonial Literatures Simona Bertacco

Part I. Translational Texts

1. Bridging the Silence: Inner Translation and the Metonymic Gap Bill Ashcroft

2. From the Early Decolonization to Contemporary Gender Issues in the African Novel in English, French and ArabicChantal Zabus

3. Learning to Shant Well and the Art of the Good Translator Roberta Cimarosti

4. The ‘Gift’ of Translation to Postcolonial Literatures Simona Bertacco

Part II. Translation as Pre-text

5. ‘Make a Plan’: Pre-Texts in Zimbabwe Doris Sommer and Naseemah Mohamed

6. Postcolonial Cities and the Culture of Translation Sherry Simon

7. Elli, Lella, Elengou: A Vernacular Poetics for the MediterraneanStephanos Stephanides

8. The Politics of Language Choice in the ‘English-Language’ Theater of Malaysia Susan Philip

Part III. Contexts of Translation

9. ‘Word of Struggle’: The Politics of Translation in Indigenous Pacific Literature Michelle Keown

10. Translation and Creation in a Postcolonial ContextFranca Cavagnoli

11. Opening Up to Complexity in the Global Era: Translating Postcolonial LiteraturesBiancamaria Rizzardi Perutelli

Part IV. Colonial Past, Digital Future

12. Civilized, Globalized, or Nationalized?: Peter Greenaway’s Pillowbook and Post-Colonial CalligraphyEvelyn Nien-Ming Ch’ien

13. Doing the Translation Sums: Colonial Pasts and Digital Futures Michael Cronin

About the Editor

Simona Bertacco is an Assistant Professor of Humanities at the University of Louisville, USA, and was previously a ‘ricercatrice’ at the University of Milan, Italy. Her research focuses on issues in postcolonialism, women’s and gender studies and translation studies. Her publications include: ‘Skepticism and the Idea of an Other: Reflections on Cavell and Postcolonialism’, in Stanley Cavell and Literary Studies (2011); Death and Its Rites in Contemporary Art & Culture(Altre Modernità #4 2010) co-edited with N. Vallorani; ‘Postcolonialism’, in The Oxford Companion of Philosophy and Literature (2009).


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