TRANSLATIONS OF THE TRANSLATION ― AN ATTEMPT OF A CLOSE READING OF WALTER BENJAMIN’S ESSAY ‘THE TASK OF THE TRANSLATOR’ AND PAUL DE MAN'S COMMENTARY ON THIS ESSAY

Authors

Abstract

Walter Benjamin wrote perhaps the most complex, most interesting essay on the process of translation under the title The Task of the Translator in 1923. This very complex work of literary and translation theory has been analysed and referred to by several literary scholars in the past almost 100 years, the Belgian–American literary scholar Paul de Man among them. The present research article makes an attempt to present a comparative analysis based on close reading of the texts between Benjamin’s original essay and Paul de Man’s commentary, figuring out the possible (and necessary) contradictions and ambiguities of the text, trying to find the answer to the question whether or not translation, at least in the successful sense of the word, exist at all. Deconstructionist way of reading literary and theoretical texts may give multiple answers to the questions about translation, and demonstrate the possibility and impossibility of translation at the same time.

Keywords: literary translation, translation theory, literary theory, Walter Benjamin, Paul de Man, deconstruction, close reading.

References

Barbara Johnson, The Task of the Translator, in Barbara Johnson, Mother Tongues: Sexuality, Trials, Motherhood, Translation, Harvard College, 2003, 40–64.

Carol Jacobs, In the Language of Walter Benjamin Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1999.

Hans-Georg Gadamer, Wahrheit und Methode, De Gruyter Verlag, Oldenbourg, 1999.

Iseni, A. (2016). Linguistic and Cultural Issues in Translation with Special Reference on Novels of James Joyce, Saul Bellow, and Vladimir Nabokov Translated from English into Albanian by Betim Muço. ANGLISTICUM. Journal of the Association-Institute for English Language and American Studies, 1(1), 20-26.

Iseni, A. (2016). Translation Features of Vedat Kokona on Several Dramas of Shakespeare. ANGLISTICUM. Journal of the Association-Institute for English Language and American Studies, 1(1), 6-11.

Mihály Szegedy-Maszák, Megértés, fordítás, kánon, Kalligram, Budapest-Bratislava, 2008.

Paul de Man, Walter Benjamin A műfordító feladata című írásáról. trans. Edit Király, Átváltozások., 1994/2. 65-80.

Walter Benjamin, A műfordító feladata. trans. Csaba Szabó. In: Walter Benjamin, A szirének hallgatása. Válogatott írások. Osiris, Budapest, 2001. 71-83.

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Published

2021-07-14

How to Cite

Kántás, B., & Iseni, A. (2021). TRANSLATIONS OF THE TRANSLATION ― AN ATTEMPT OF A CLOSE READING OF WALTER BENJAMIN’S ESSAY ‘THE TASK OF THE TRANSLATOR’ AND PAUL DE MAN’S COMMENTARY ON THIS ESSAY. ANGLISTICUM. Journal of the Association-Institute for English Language and American Studies, 10(7), pp.11–18. Retrieved from https://anglisticum.org.mk/index.php/IJLLIS/article/view/2222

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Section

Volume 10, No.7, July 2021

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