Saturday, February 18, 2017

Wieseneck Symposium: "Multilingualism in Israeli Literature"

Self-translation was one of the topics which has been discussed at the Wieseneck Symposium: "Multilingualism in Israeli Literature" (Thursday, February 16, 2017, University of Michigan).

Until fairly recently, Israeli literature was understood as essentially monolingual, created exclusively in Hebrew. In the last few years, scholars have turned their attention to the many languages in which literature was, and still is written in Israel. The symposium will bring Institute fellows and leading scholars to explore Israel literature written in Yiddish, Arabic, German, Russian, and English, as well as the interplay between these languages and Hebrew. The speakers will explore issues such as translation and self-translation, the politics of language in literature, and the historical shifts that enabled or restricted inter-linguistic contacts.

10:40 am—12:30 pm: Session 1: Multilingual Encounters and Dialogues
Chair and Respondent: Liora Halperin, University of Boulder

Shachar Pinsker, University of Michigan: Between “Loshn-Mame-Koydesh” and the Father Tongue? Israeli-Yiddish Encounters
Adriana X. Jacobs, University of Oxford: Like a Centipede, Multiple Voices: Harold Schimmel’s Translingual Poetry
Alex Moshkin, University of Pennsylvania: Beyond the Wall: The Encounter between Russophone Writers and the State of Israel
Yael Kenan, University of Michigan: “Dialogue in Monologue”: Addressing Mahmoud Darwish in Hebrew

1:30 pm – 3:00 pm: Session II: Between Original and Translation: Rewriting Israeli Literature
Chair and Moderator: Joshua Miller, University of Michigan

Maya Barzilai, University of Michigan
Naomi Brenner, Ohio State University
Rachel Seelig, University of Chicago

3:30 pm—5:30 pm: Session III: Keywords in Multilingualism and Israeli Literature
Chair and Moderator: Shachar Pinsker, University of Michigan

Lital Levy, Princeton University: "Multilingualism, Transnationalism, and World Literature: Theoretical Frameworks for Israeli Literary Studies"

Roundtable Discussion
Maya Barzilai, Naomi Brenner, Adriana Jacobs, Yael Kenan, Lital Levy, Alex Moshkin, Rachel Seelig

For more information the event, please click here.

Politics Of Self-Translation: Authorial Representation, Cultural Identity, And Global Hong Kong Literature

Talk by Uganda Sze-pui KWAN (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore) on Thu, Feb 16, 2017, 4:30 pm at Princeton University.

The talk will discuss a new piece of translation of Hong Kong literature, which was done by the author himself after he had published his original fiction about two decades ago. This English translation, entitled The Atlas: The Archaeology of an Imaginary City by Dung Kai-cheung (Columbia University Press, 2015), not only allowed the author an opportunity to reconnect with his work through the role of an active reader, but it also opened up a new vista for the author to rewrite and deconstruct his original work. However, this is more than a seminal self-translation such as those by Milena Kundera, Samuel Beckett, Vladimir Nabokov or many other bilingual writers. In this work the author had to deal with the hermeneutical power and critical discourses of two other professionals. His freedom to authenticate, interpret and rewrite his own work was constrained under the condition of collaborative translation. How is authorial right limited under this kind of self-collaborative translation? Where are the boundaries and what are the dynamics, synergies and benefits of this new emerging model of self-collaborative-translation?

For more information on the event, please click here.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Cfp Multilingualism in 19th Century European Literature

Call for Contributions to an Edited book on Multilingualism in 19th Century European Literature
Ed. by Olga Anokhina (CNRS, Paris), Till Dembeck (University of Luxemburg), and Dirk Weissmann (University of Paris-Est)

We kindly invite scholars in all disciplines devoted to European (Romance, Germanic, Slavic, Baltic, Finno-Ugric) literature to submit contributions for a collective volume on “Multilingualism in 19th Century European Literature”.

The bilingual English-French book will be published in 2018 by the Lit-Verlag in the “poethik polyglot” series directed by Britta Benert, Rainier Grutman, and Alfons Knauth.
Scholarship on multilingual literature from Europe has up to now mostly focused either on pre-modern periods (e. g., Medieval and Renaissance multilingualism), or on avant-garde modernism, and on the present (e. g., postcolonial literature, literature of migration, etc.). At first sight, the 19th century does not seem to matter for the history of European literary multilingualism. This might seem logical since the 19th century is rightfully considered the epoch that most effectively promoted nationalist monolingualism, in the wake of the European reception of the Post-Herderian theory of culture. Still, it is worth considering forms of multilingualism also in this period. Firstly, not all European countries have undergone a process of nationalization and monolingualization to the same extent. And secondly, recent studies, namely in sociolinguistics, have shown that monolingual norms can be implemented only by massive language-political intervention. Therefore, it is plausible to assume that some forms of multilingualism play a role even in the apparently most monolingual constellations of European literary history. A mapping of literary multilingualism in 19th-century European literature seems thus necessary.

This collective book will propose an investigation into 19th-century European literary multilingualism, particularly into the period from 1800 to 1880. All areas of European literature will be considered. The term ‘multilingualism’ as used in this book includes all kinds of code-mixing, either in single literary texts or in multiple texts produced by the same author.

Topics to be explored might be the following, amongst others:

  • multilingual authors in struggle with monolingual or national frameworks, multilingualism as a (hidden) background for national writers
  • literary subversions of monolingual norms, language normalization processes and literature
  • language contact and literary creativity
  • travel, exile, extraterritoriality and literary multilingualism
  • translation, heterolingualism and language hybridity
  • representations of multilingual realities in monolingual literary writing
  • translingual borrowing of literary, aesthetic and rhetoric structures and strategies
  • multilingualism in writers’ manuscripts, sketches, notebooks, etc. (critique génétique)
  • the heritage of pre-1800 multilingualism and links to modernist literary multilingualism (post-1880), lines of rupture and continuity

Proposals (in English or French) should be send before June 1st 2017 to the following addresses:;;
The full texts (5000-8000 words) of accepted contributions will be expected before December 31st 2017.