Cover image for DisOrientations: German-Turkish Cultural Contact in Translation, 1811-1946 By Kristin Dickinson

DisOrientations

German-Turkish Cultural Contact in Translation, 1811-1946

Kristin Dickinson

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$84.95 | Hardcover Edition
ISBN: 978-0-271-08984-3
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248 pages
6" × 9"
2021

Max Kade Research Institute: Germans Beyond Europe

DisOrientations

German-Turkish Cultural Contact in Translation, 1811-1946

Kristin Dickinson

“The strength of DisOrientations lies in Dickinson’s erudition and linguistic astuteness, the historical extensivity of the research, and the high standard this book sets for Turkish-German studies of any kind, going forward. This is the kind of trenchant, rough-and-tumble literary analysis that goes far beyond the comforts of Eurocentric, theoreticist comparative literature, and its groundbreaking scope is a sight to behold.”

 

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The fields of comparative and world literature tend to have a unidirectional, Eurocentric focus, with attention to concepts of “origin” and “arrival.” DisOrientations challenges this viewpoint. Kristin Dickinson employs a unique multilingual archive of German and Turkish translated texts from the early nineteenth through the mid-twentieth century. In this analysis, she reveals the omnidirectional and transtemporal movements of translations, which, she argues, harbor the disorienting potential to reconfigure the relationships of original to translation, past to present, and West to East.

Through the work of three key figures—Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Friedrich Schrader, and Sabahattin Ali—Dickinson develops a concept of translational orientation as a mode of omnidirectional encounter. She sheds light on translations that are not bound by the terms of economic imperialism, Orientalism, or Westernization, focusing on case studies that work against the basic premises of containment and originality that undergird Orientalism’s system of discursive knowledge production. By linking literary traditions across retroactively applied periodizations, the translations examined in this book act as points of connection that produce new directionalities and open new configurations of a future German-Turkish relationship.

Groundbreaking and erudite, DisOrientations examines literary translation as a complex mode of cultural, political, and linguistic orientation. This book will appeal to scholars and students of translation theory, comparative literature, Orientalism, and the history of German-Turkish cultural relations.

“The strength of DisOrientations lies in Dickinson’s erudition and linguistic astuteness, the historical extensivity of the research, and the high standard this book sets for Turkish-German studies of any kind, going forward. This is the kind of trenchant, rough-and-tumble literary analysis that goes far beyond the comforts of Eurocentric, theoreticist comparative literature, and its groundbreaking scope is a sight to behold.”
“Kristin Dickinson sheds remarkable new light on myriad ways in which thoroughly entangled German and Turkish modernities compel us to rethink world literature, cultural contact, postcolonial theories of Orientalism, ethnic nationalisms, untranslatability, and much more. She effectively wields specific case histories of translation practice to reconceptualize modernity and translation as a cultural form. Her stunning results will speak to scholars in the humanities, social sciences, and history alike.”

Kristin Dickinson is Assistant Professor of German Studies at the University of Michigan.