Abstracts Multitudes 29 (2007)

Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak
Draupadi. Avant-propos de la traductrice

In her translator’s foreword, Spivak focuses on Draupadi, the protagonist in the short story by Mahasweta Devi published in English in this issue. Oppressed, Draupadi is capable of rebellion, of resistance to the death. She does not seek compassion. Naked before the enemy, she resists: her last act is an act of resistance in which she defies her enemy with the force of an (en)counter. For the first time, her enemy, Senanayak, feels fear, the fear of facing an “unarmed objective”. But who is Senanayak? In the story, he is an army officer for the government of Bengal who orders the arrest and humiliation of Draupadi, the woman who led the tribal revolt in the Naxalites’ struggle for agrarian reform during the 1960s. Significantly, Spivak relates the figure of Senanayak to that of the First-World intellectual, complicit in spite of himself in the regimes of exploitation and domination in the Third World. Her point of view concerning the commitment of Western feminists is clear: “We will not be able to speak about women over there if we depend entirely on conferences and anthologies of informants educated in the West “.

Gloria Anzaldua
Movimientos de rebeldía y las culturas que traicionan

A man and a woman at the same time, borne by the desire for freedom – free, against all psychoanalytical dogmas, to move between two worlds. She invokes her Chicana identity, created in the history of resistance of the Indian woman; she asserts her mestiza culture – white, Mexican, and Indian at the same time, a culture developed according to a feminist plan. Chicanas live between several worlds, and tell their story in their own words: a first-person narrative, narrative as theory.

Alessandra Gribaldo et Giovanna Zapperi
Un autre regard. Ethnographie, narration et postcolonialisme

The crisis, characteristic of our present postcolonial era, in the historically codified forms of talking about alterity has permitted the emergence of what can be called “stories of the other” – stories about those who have been implicitly excluded from the position of the subject. This crisis is particularly evident in a discipline such as anthropology, which is founded precisely upon narratives of the Other. Beginning with the problems posed by the possibility of a visual narration of alterity, this article proposes to analyze the connections among narrative, representation, and identity in the works of Tracey Moffat, Isaac Julien, and Fiona Tan. In their videos and installations, the question of the gaze fixed on the other is articulated around the themes of memory and the crisis of ethnography as a means of representation of or narrative about cultural alterity. These artists stage an “other” gaze capable of bringing out repressed and subaltern histories. They affirm an identity that is marginal and hybrid at the same time, beyond the myths of origin and purity that delineate colonial and colonialist thought.

Fatimah Tobing Rony
Le Troisième Œil

This text is comprised of three extracts from Fatima Tobing Rony’s study The Third Eye: Race, Cinema, and Ethnographic Spectacle, in which the author explores early-twentieth-century representations of non-Western “indigenous peoples” in cinema, popular culture, and ethnography. She focuses on the role of image in the perception of otherness by applying her notion of the “third eye”, which details the experience of watching whilst all the while being perceived as an Other. Part autobiographical account, part reflection on the relation between history and narration, and part analysis of the films of Zora Neale Hurston, this text deals with the resistance strategies which dismantle Western constructions of “primitivism”.

Nirmal Puwar
Architectures de la mémoire. Image, son et pierre

This article moves at the tempo of visual and aural repertoires that float in and out of the making of a film-based project on public spheres within a postwar, postcolonial landscape. Seeking a set of conversations which offer clues to the habitation and production of public spheres within the zone of cinemas, the article considers the creative process at work in the writing of these iterative histories of the very ways in which cities are imagined, lost, and perhaps regained through poetic reflection.

Romaine Moreton
Quand la parole libère (de) l’écrit, et l’écrit (de) la parole

To make the voice heard of those for whom the written word is not part of their cultural tradition is Romaine Moreton’s project as aboriginal poetess and performer. We publish in this issue two poems from her collection Post Me to the Prime Minister. Flowing by the beat of the bongo, originally written in English, manoeuvring between the written language of the colonizer and the music of the colonized, they forcefully express Moreton’s struggle: the combat of a people for the right to represent itself and to be the author of its own existence.

François Matheron
L’homme qui ne savait plus écrire

A day in November 2005, it was a Saturday, I remember very well, my life changed, radically. I am not sure how to define this moment; for convenience it could be called “the accident”. This accident has many faces, but it is first and foremost a revolution, a return to the starting point of my relationship with language. Since it is still very difficult for me to conjugate verbs properly, I will write my story mostly in the present tense.

Benoît Durandin
Subbotniki / Rumeurs d’une ville sur sol instable

These notes refer to the experience of Siberian cities, particularly that of Yakutsk; they delve into the problematics in which those cities are caught as well as those that are refracted therein; to the endogenous factors that refashion them as well as those which have been globally contaminated by their presence. There where the parameters of analysis have either atrophied or dilated beyond use, we can attempt to circumscribe anew the different ways of living in an unstable world with its coming transformations, regardless of their nature. The notes and the photographs in this dossier are taken from an archive that went online at the end of April 2007, at www.subbotniki.eu.

Kuniichi Uno
Traduire des voix

Some people ask how you can possibly translate Deleuze into Japanese. This is an interesting question that I’d never asked myself previously. According to W. Benjamin, a work’s essence only emerges through translation. Yet, when translating Deleuze and other authors into another language, whatever this may be, it’s also important to translate the text’s voice, along with all the underlying voices it bears within it. As the very flesh of thought, it’s the voice that we want to translate, and in seeking to do so we experiment with the impossible. Whatever may come of this, through experimenting with the impossible many things happen.

Sergueï Fokine
Traduire celui qui veut écrire ” dans une sorte de langue étrangère ” : Langue-Deleuze

The questions of “why” and “how” to translate Deleuze are examined by way of considerations concerning the recent penetration of Deleuze into Russian philosophical culture and the effect this has had on the manner in which one translates philosophy today in Russia. Under the sway of a strange misinterpretation, Deleuze’s thought has been diffused as a sort of introduction to capitalist life, by which philosophy can be “de-Marxised” and Russian thought freed from the burden of Marxism or, rather, pseudo-Marxism. At the same time, the translation of Deleuze has become a site of conflict between traditionalists who reduce Deleuze’s language to that of classical philosophy and proponents of new practices who defend the singularity of Deleuze’s language and style.

Mihalis Matsas
Traduire L’Image-mouvement et L’Image-temps en grec. Entretien avec Jehanne Dautrey

Mihalis Matsas situates the specific questions raised by the translation of Deleuze into Greek within the more general context of philosophical translation and the difficulties raised by the translation of Deleuze’s two books on the cinema.

Ali Akay
Gilles Deleuze en turc

This text examines the conditions under which Deleuze’s philosophy was introduced into the Turkish language. By taking on the “task of the translator”, I had the good fortune of experiencing what it was like to translate Deleuze’s work “from the middle”, being both inspired by and working with Deleuze to do so. The question that arises when translating “déterrorialisation” is that of ensuring that this concept is not confused with either the earth or the territory of the nation-state. In the same way, one has to translate “machines désirantes” outside of any influence by the way this has been rendered in English, since this inadvertently refers to phenomenology (the intentionality of the subject), precisely that which Deleuze contested in his philosophy.

Louise Burchill
Deleuze comme ” traductologue ” ? ou le temps de traduire

The importance that Deleuze attributes to syntax, as that which tends towards the movement of the concept, along with his analyses of the different ways in which English and French relate to “becoming”, form the basis on which this article investigates the question of whether a “theory of translation” can be found in Deleuze’s thought. In this perspective, we examine the intersection between several key concepts in Deleuze’s philosophy and theories of translation dealing with the comparative syntax of English and French. Analysis of the concepts of actualisation, virtual and actual, as used by both Deleuze and comparative syntax theorists, indicates that the internal temporality Deleuze attributes to language would play a critical role in translation.

Michèle Collin
Giselle Donnard (1938-2006)

We have chosen to include here two unpublished texts by Giselle which seemed to us to express the originality of her truly political life, as someone who was both extremely close to Felix Guattari in theoretical terms, and was a very concrete actor on the front lines of various citizen movements, which assert a specific relation to political action and to life.

Giselle Donnard
L’Urgence à développer une citoyenneté planétaire

The urgency of today’s conjuncture calls to us in a number of ways: to develop planetary citizenship and the solidarities it implies; to promote and help those subjectivities which gain autonomy in the processes of resistance and alternative construction; to develop myriad transversal encounters; and finally not to hand the planet over to destructive forces of all kinds.

Giselle Donnard
Femmes dans la guerre aujourd’hui

The fate of women in times of war has always been considered something of a non-issue, buried as it was, and made banal as part and parcel of the lot of civilian population in general, since women were non-combatants. But looking at more recent conflicts, we can no longer pretend that women are in a home front of sorts, as opposed to soldiers in battle, because there is no home front anymore. Women are now in the middle of armed conflicts, as, for instance, in Algeria and in Bosnia.

Madeleine Hersent
Construire des subjectivités collectives féministes

The thought and actions of Giselle Donnard opened singular spaces of analysis, anchored in the apprehension of manifold international realities. Giselle was a ‘go-between’ of the sort that rejects binary choices and performs improbable hybridizations. She sought to make the complexity and diversity of social evolutions heard, by being radical and pragmatic at the same time, bringing together singularities and multitudes.

Published 9 July 2007
Original in French

Contributed by Multitudes © Multitudes Eurozine

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