On the problems of translation in literary study
Emily Apter is Professor of Comparative Literature and French at New York University. Her published works include The Translation Zone: A New Comparative Literature and Against World Literature.
Just following Emily Apter's dizzying array of texts from diverse
traditions and times (including a tightly argued discussion of the
philosophicality of Simone de Beauvoir, lost in translation to the
best of US feminists), embracing much experimental material, all
read with meticulous care, is an education. No one has thought the
question of world literature in greater depth, at once re-thinking
Comparative Literature as translatability studies.
*Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak*
Rarely does one read a book with the title Against that is so much for important causes and ideas: writing, translation, worldliness, diversity, cosmopolitanism, while fully aware of their promises and threats. In this moment of dispossession of the Humanities, we needed just that book to clarify matters and move beyond the contradictions.