Giuliana Benvenuti

Politics of Translation: Translation and Postcolonial Studies

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: translation, identity, transnationalism, hegemony, literature

The aim of this article is to discuss the questions around the salience of "translation" in the field of postcolonial studies. It focuses on the persistent hierarchy between languages and cultures, the translatability of concepts and meanings, how the problems of equivalency are faced, the contemporary politics of translation and the ongoing claim of permanent "untranslatable" areas against the risk that translation becomes the place where "epistemic violence" is generated. Indeed, according to the ideal of the "invisibility" of the translator, the translation is supposed to "normalize" the alterity which is defined and articulated by it in order to produce easily readable texts, giving the illusion of cancelling out estrangement though actually it elides and/or marginalizes cultural alterity. The representation of the translation has socio-political effects and works as a device through which the individual imagines his relationship with national or ethnic community. This is the reason why the article takes into particular consideration the arguments coming from non-Euro-American cultures.

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