Translation, Resistance, Activism

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Maria Tymoczko
Univ of Massachusetts Press, 2010 - History - 299 pages
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More than merely linguistic transposition, translation is a vector of power, resistance, rebellion, and even revolution. Exploring these facets of the ideology of translation, the contributors to this volume focus on the agency of translators and their activism. Spanning two centuries and reaching across the globe, the essays examine the varied activist strategies of key translators and translation movements.

From silence to radical manipulation of texts, translation strategies are instrumental in significant historical interventions and cultural change. Translation plays a pivotal role in ideological dialogue and struggle, including resistance to oppression and cultural straitjackets of all types, from sexual puritanism to military dictatorships. Situated in their own space, time, history, and political contexts, translators promote ideological agendas by creating new cultural narratives, pragmatically adjusting tactics so as to maximize the social and political impact.

The essays in this volume explore ways to read translations as records of cultural contestation and ideological struggle; as means of fighting censorship, physical coercion, cultural repression, and political dominance; and as texts that foster a wide variety of goals from cultural nationalism to armed confrontation. Translations are set in relief as central cultural documents rather than derivative, peripheral, or marginalized productions. They are seen as forms of ethical, political, and ideological activity rather than as mere communicative transactions or creative literary exercises.

The contributors demonstrate that engaged and activist translations are performative acts within broader political and ideological contexts. The essays detail the initiative, resourcefulness, and courage of individual translators, whose willingness to put themselves on the line for social change can sometimes move the world.

In addition to Maria Tymoczko, contributors include Pua'ala'okalani D. Aiu, Brian James Baer, Mona Baker, Paul F. Bandia, Georges L. Bastin, Nitsa Ben-Ari, Ángela Campo, Antonia Carcelen-Estrada, Álvaro Echeverri, Denise Merkle, John Milton, and Else R.P. Vieira.


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Translation Resistance Activism An Overview
Translation and Activism Emerging Patterns of Narrative Community
Translation and the Emancipation of Hispanic America
Covert and Overt Ideologies in the Translation of the Bible into Huao Terero
Nee Papa I Ke Ō Mau Language as an Indicator of Hawaiian Resistance and Power
Secret Literary Societies in Late Victorian England
Reclaiming the Erotic Hebrew Translations from 1930 to 1980
Literary Translation and the Construction of a Soviet Intelligentsia
The Resistant Political Translations of Monteiro Lobato
Growing Agency The Labors of Political Translation
The Space and Time of Activist Translation
Works Cited
Notes on Contributors
Back Cover

Literary Heteroglossia and Translation Translating Resistance in Contemporary African Francophone Writing

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About the author (2010)

Maria Tymoczko is professor of comparative literature at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She is coeditor of Translation and Power and author of Enlarging Translation, Empowering Translators.

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