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(Self-)transformation as translation : the birth of the individual from German Bildung and Japanese kata

Kenklies, Karsten (2018) (Self-)transformation as translation : the birth of the individual from German Bildung and Japanese kata. Tetsugaku: International Journal of the philosophical Association of Japan, 2. pp. 248-262. ISSN 2432-8995

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Pedagogical processes are always connected to translation. This is very obvious in those practices of teaching where knowledge is transmitted through mediation. However, processes of self-formation or self-education, and especially the development of individuality, don’t seem to be connected directly to processes of translation. The following paper suggests that processes of individuation, too, can be understood as translations. In contrasting two culturally very different positions — the German idea of Bildung and the Japanese practice of exercising kata — it should become clear that both cannot be understood without referring to a concept of translation.