Picture of Open Access badges

Discover Open Access research at Strathprints

It's International Open Access Week, 24-30 October 2016. This year's theme is "Open in Action" and is all about taking meaningful steps towards opening up research and scholarship. The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde research outputs. Explore recent world leading Open Access research content by University of Strathclyde researchers and see how Strathclyde researchers are committing to putting "Open in Action".


Image: h_pampel, CC-BY

Translations in the yard of Africa

Wicomb, Zoe (2002) Translations in the yard of Africa. Journal of Literary Studies, 18 (3-4). pp. 209-223. ISSN 0256-4718

Full text not available in this repository. (Request a copy from the Strathclyde author)


In his account of the style in which Pauline Smith represents Afrikaners, her 'faux-naief' translation or transfer from Afrikaans to English, J.M Coetzee identifies the grammatical error of aspect as evidence that there is no actual Afrikaans original behind the archaic-sounding, ethnicised English: 'no-one speaking his own language makes errors of aspect: the time-system of the verb is too fundamental to language, and therefore to conceptualisation for that to happen'. Two issues in this position relate to my argument about Disgrace as a text that struggles with translation as concept-metaphor for the postapartheid condition: firstly, the question of an original language Coetzee expects to find behind the English 'translation' that claims to retain its trace; and secondly, the grammatical aspect of the perfective that not only preoccupies Lurie, the novel's central character, but also in terms of cultural translation marks the arrival at the target language/culture. In the following examination of the ways in which cultural translation is figured in the text, I also consider the relationship between translation and what has been called the period of transition in South Africa.