Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
New interface
Conference papers

Diglossia, heterophony, superposed voices — obstacles to translation?

Abstract : If diglossia implies a conflation of tongues in real life, in literature, the narrative voice may concentrate several layers of speech and thus provide fruitful grounds for analysis. When individual characters’ voices are also taken into consideration, various lects and further levels on the continuum scale are introduced, thus shaping the whole as a musical assemblage. Then depending on the type of musical score worked out, such complementary elements will either produce polyphony, that is a combination of different parts making up a piece in which the contained whole prevails over the components, or heterophony. What is there to be translated in Caribbean literature? Why am I mentioning shape and volume and omitting meaning? Because meaning in the sense of signified is no longer relevant when translating literature, and could be better replaced by significance, a wider term which can cover several notions – signified, signifying, connotation, intertextuality, referents, musicality, shape, conflation of tongues, etc. all the items serving as indirect vehicles for the so-called meaning. Hence the importance of volume, which is one of the key features of Caribbean writing. In this respect, the concept of heterophony, understood as the situation in which the author maintains contact with, as well as conflict within, the linguistic and cultural system at work, offers a focal point for discussion and may lead to the recognition of dynamic transfer. In texts teeming with elements of cultural diversity there can be two postures in translation: a conservative one or a creative one. Conservative when the translator wants to be sure readers will be familiar with what they are reading, creative when the translator is not frightened to unsettle his/her readers and dares show what the conservative translator would attempt to hide. When a linguistic continuum, in all its diverse forms, is present in an original, and cultural items, unusual to the culture of reception, shape the story, the dynamic translator acts creatively by keeping all these visible.
Document type :
Conference papers
Complete list of metadata

https://shs.hal.science/halshs-01429509
Contributor : Christine Raguet Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Sunday, January 8, 2017 - 5:58:30 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 27, 2021 - 3:48:18 PM

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : halshs-01429509, version 1

Collections

Citation

Christine Raguet. Diglossia, heterophony, superposed voices — obstacles to translation?. Translating Caribbean Voices, Emmanuelle Ertel, New York University, Apr 2013, New York, United States. ⟨halshs-01429509⟩

Share

Metrics

Record views

66