Against world literature : on the politics of untranslatability / Emily Apter.Material type: TextPublication details: London ; New York : Verso, 2013. Description: viii, 358 p., 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illus. (some col.) ; 24 cmISBN: 9781844679706Subject(s): Translating and interpretingLOC classification: PN241 | .A675 2013
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Includes bibliographical references and index.
Part one. Oneworldliness. Untranslatables: a world-system -- Moretti's literary world-systems -- Eurochronology and periodicity -- Paranoid globalism -- Checkpoints and sovereign borders -- part two. Doing things with untranslatables. Keywords 1: "Cyclopaedia" -- Keywords 2: "Peace" -- Keywords 3: "Fado" and "Saudade" -- Keywords 4: "Sex" and "Gender" -- Keywords 5: "Monde" -- part three. Translating "world literature." Auerbach's Welt-theology -- Said's terrestrial humanism -- Derrida's theologies of translation -- Kilito's injunction: "Thow shalt not translate me" -- part four. Who owns my translations? Marx's Bovary -- What is yours, ours, and mine -- Dispossessive collectivism -- Planetary dysphoria -- Index.
The book engages in a polemical critique of recent efforts to revive World Literature models of literary studies (Moretti, Casanova, etc) on the grounds that they construct their curricula on an assumption of translatability. As a result, incommensurability and what Apter calls the "untranslatable" are insufficiently built into the literary heuristic. Drawing on philosophies of translation developed by de Man, Derrida, Sam Weber, Barbara Johnson, Abdelfattah Kilito and Édouard Glissant, as well as on the way in which "the untranslatable" is given substancein the context of Barbara Cassin's Vocabulaire européen des philosophies: Dictionnaire des intraduisibles, the aim is to activate Untranslatability as a theoretical fulcrum of Comparative Literature with bearing on approaches to world literature, literary world systems and literary history, the politics of periodization, the translation of philosophy and theory, and the bounds of non-secular proscription and cultural sanction.