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Living Translation

A collection that brings together Spivak’s wide-ranging writings on translation for the first time.

Living Translation offers a powerful perspective on the work of distinguished thinker and writer Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, revealing how, throughout her long career, she has made translation a central concern of the comparative humanities.

Starting with her landmark “Translator’s Preface” to Jacques Derrida’s Of Grammatology in 1976, and continuing with her foreword to Mahasweta Devi’s Draupadi and afterword to Devi’s Chotti MundaandHis Arrow, Spivak has tackled questions of translatability. She has been interested in interrogating the act of translation from the ground up and at the political limit. She sees at play at border checkpoints, at sites of colonial pedagogy, in acts of resistance to monolingual regimes of national language, at the borders of minor literature and schizo-analysis, in the deficits of cultural debt and linguistic expropriation, and, more generally, at theory’s edge, which is to say, where practical criticism yields to theorizing in untranslatables. This volume also addresses how Spivak’s institution-building as director of comparative literature at the University of Iowa—and in her subsequent places of employment—began at the same time. From this perspective, Spivak takes her place within a distinguished line-up of translator-theorists who have been particularly attuned to the processes of cognizing in languages, all of them alive to the coproductivity of thinking, translating, writing.

288 pages | 5 halftones | 6 x 9

Culture Studies

Language and Linguistics: Language Studies

Literature and Literary Criticism: General Criticism and Critical Theory

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Table of Contents

“Foreword” by Emily Apter
“Preface: Earliest Engagements with Translation: Institution-Building” by Aron Aji and Maureen Robertson
Politics of Translation
Translator’s Preface to Of Grammatology by Jacques Derrida
The Politics of Translation
Cultures of Translation
Translation as Culture
Translating into English
The Most Intimate Act of Reading
Translator’s Afterword to Chotti Munda and His Arrow by Mahasweta Devi
Necessary, Yet Impossible
Questioned on Translation: Adrift
Necessary, Yet Impossible
What Is It, Then, to Translate?
Teaching, Learning, Unlearning Translation
Translation in the Undergraduate Curriculum
Scattered Speculations on Translation Studies
Translating in a World of Languages
Teaching Black Skin
“Afterword: Translating the Planet?” by Avishek Ganguly
“Gramsci and Spivak: Politics of Translation” by Mauro Pala

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