A Multilingual Nation: Translation and Language Dynamic in India

ISBN : 9780199478774

Rita Kothari
352 Pages
138 x 216 mm
Pub date
Dec 2017
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This anthology takes head on some of the cardinal principles of translation and illustrates how they do not apply to India. The idea of 'source' - the language and text you translate from - is in a multilingual society slippery and protean, refusing to be confined to any one language. This experience comes to us in this anthology not only from translation theorists, and practitioners, but also from philosophers, historians, and other social scientists. In that sense, the anthology demonstrates the all-pervasive nature of translation in every sphere in India, and in the process it overturns the assumptions of even the steady nature of language, its definition, and the peculiar fragility that is revealed in the process of translation. The anthology provocatively asks if multilingualism in India is itself a translation, an act not an outcome.


Introduction: When We 'Multilingual', Do We Translate?

Part I
Translating in Times of Devotion
1 When a Text is a Song - Linda Hess
2 Na Hindu Na Turk: Shared Languages, Accents and Located Meanings- Francesca Orsini
3 Songs on the Move: Mira in Gujarat, Narasinha Mehta in Rajasthan-Neelima Shukla-Bhatt

Part II
Making and Breaking Boundaries in Colonial India and After
4 Unfixing Multilingualism: India Translated in French Travel Accounts - Sanjukta Banerjee
5 Grierson's Linguistic Survey of India: Acts of Naming and Translating- Rita Kothari
6 Three Languages and a Book: Of Languages and Modernities - Sowmya Dechamma
7 Language as Contestation: Phule's Interventions in Education in Nineteenth-Century Maharashtra - Rohini Mokashi-Punekar
8 Representing Kamrupi: Ideologies of Grammar and the Question of Linguistic Boundaries- Madhumita Sengupta
9 Translation and the Indian Social Sciences - Veena Naregal

Part III
Texts and Practices
10 When India's North-East Is 'Translated' into English - Mitra Phukan
11 On Translating (and-not-translating)Sarasvatichandra - Tridip Suhrud
12 Multilingual Narratives from Western India: Jhaverchand Meghani and the Folk - Krupa Shah
13 Dancing in a Hall of Mirrors: Translation Between Indian Languages- Mini Chandran
14 Translating Belonging in Ahmedabad: Representing Some Malayali Voices- Pooja Thomas

Part IV Re-imagining the Time of Translation
15 Conceptual Priority of Translation Over Language - Madhava Chippali and Sundar Sarukkai
16 Changing Script - Ganesh Devy

Epilogue: Ficus Benghalensisby Supriya Chaudhuri
About the Editor and Contributors

About the author: 

Rita Kothari is a professor of Translation Studies at the Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar. She is one of India's leading theoreticians and practitioners of translation. She straddles a large number of languages and engages with vernacular discourses at several levels. Her acclaimed translations include translation of 'Angaliyat' by Joseph Macwan, a Dalit novel, as 'The Stepchild' (OUP 2003) and 'Vaad' by Ila Arab Mehta as 'Fence' (Zubaan 2015), based on the life of a Muslim woman in Gujarat - both translated from Gujarati. Her work on partition experience of Sindh includes two monographs and a collection of short stories. She has taught widely using multiple perspectives of language, culture, cinema in her pedagogy as well as popular writing. Kothari lives in Ahmedabad and is currently completing a translation of K.M. Munshi's Patan trilogy, for which she has collaborated with Abhijit Kothari.

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