Talking American Literature and Culture: "Deformation Zone: A Translation Poetics"

  • Date: –17:00
  • Location: Zoom meeting: https://uu-se.zoom.us/j/67020387033
  • Lecturer: Johannes Göransson (Poet, Translator, University of Notre Dame)
  • Organiser: Department of English, Uppsala University
  • Contact person: Daniel Kane
  • Föreläsning

Robert Frost famously said that poetry is what is "lost in translation." This quip has become both a truism and a cliché, but what if we took it seriously? I have argued that the statement has defined not just how US poets have thought about translation, but how they think about poetry itself –as uncorrupted communication. As a Swedish poet who emigrated to the US as a teenager, my ideas about poetry are drawn from both cultures, and I have a troubled relationship with this urge of preserving the ‘purity’ of poetry against the noise of translation. In this talk, I’ll oppose the dominant American anti-translation ideology with a model of poetry that is more corrupt and corrupting —a model in many ways based on translation, as exemplified by my own poetry, contaminated with my translations of feminist Swedish avant garde poets like Aase Berg, Eva Kristina Olsson and Ann Jäderlund. I’ll argue for a poetics that not only allows for translation, but that finds poetry in the noise and corruptions of translation, and thus aspires to communication as corruption, deformation.

Zoom https://uu-se.zoom.us/j/67020387033