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Intimate EnemiesTranslation in Francophone Contexts$
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Kathryn Batchelor and Claire Bisdorff

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781846318672

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781846318672.001.0001

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Translation – A Listening Art

Translation – A Listening Art

(p.109) Translation – A Listening Art
Intimate Enemies

Marjolijn de Jager

Liverpool University Press

The article is a very personal description of what brought the author to translation in general and to the translation of Francophone African literature in particular. As a child of generations of colonialists in Indonesia (known at the time as the Netherlands East Indies) she realized early on that something was seriously wrong with this system of exploitation, and this realization led to her view that translation is an inherently political act. In this paper, the author also discusses the creative aspect of the translation process, arguing that the senses are an integral part of translation, the ear being the most important, just as the sound of the word is also a form of music. Listening, in turn, means becoming part of what one hears and trying to erase the self in that process, in order to come as close as possible to the voice being heard and then to be transposed to a different language.

Keywords:   Colonialism, Political action, Women writers, Social consciousness, Bridging gaps, Translation, Music, Listening

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