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Pirouette on a Sixpence

Christopher Prendergast: Untranslatables, 10 September 2015

Dictionary of Untranslatables: A Philosophical Lexicon 
edited by Barbara Cassin, translated by Emily Apter, Jacques Lezra and Michael Wood.
Princeton, 1297 pp., £44.95, February 2014, 978 0 691 13870 1
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... in managing some of the French, but not an intraduisible in sight. As for the achievement of Emily Apter, Jacques Lezra and Michael Wood in orchestrating the English edition, that qualifies as heroic. The French and English differ in certain important respects concerning both the choice of terms and the word order. The English has ‘philosophical ...

What is concrete?

Michael Wood: Erich Auerbach, 5 March 2015

Time, History and Literature: Selected Essays of Erich Auerbach 
by Erich Auerbach, edited by James Porter, translated by Jane Newman.
Princeton, 284 pp., £27.95, December 2013, 978 0 691 13711 7
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... to derive something like a history of mentalities under the guise of Romance philology’, and Emily Apter, in Against World Literature (2013), connects his secular theology to that of Walter Benjamin. Auerbach was born in Berlin in 1892, took a doctorate in law at the University of Heidelberg, served in the army during World War One, took another ...

The Politics of Translation

Marina Warner: Translate this!, 11 October 2018

This Little Art 
by Kate Briggs.
Fitzcarraldo, 365 pp., £12.99, September 2017, 978 1 910695 45 6
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Translation as Transhumance 
by Mireille Gansel, translated by Ros Schwartz.
Les Fugitives, 150 pp., £10, November 2017, 978 0 9930093 3 4
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Sympathy for the Traitor: A Translation Manifesto 
by Mark Polizzotti.
MIT, 168 pp., £17.99, May 2018, 978 0 262 03799 0
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The 100 Best Novels in Translation 
by Boyd Tonkin.
Galileo, 304 pp., £14.99, June 2018, 978 1 903385 67 8
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The Work of Literary Translation 
by Clive Scott.
Cambridge, 285 pp., £75, June 2018, 978 1 108 42682 4
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... as unchanged and untampered with as possible can lead to despair over the whole enterprise (so Emily Apter has argued in Against World Literature: On the Politics of Untranslatability). Polizzotti rejects this defeatism. While he shares Gansel’s idealism about their calling, he firmly opposes the quasi-Platonist view. The history of translation has ...

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