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In Review: Antìgona González by Sara Uribe

2016/6/7 — 16:27

【Text by Laura Ferris】

John Pluecker’s translation on the whole affectingly conveys the stakes of the content and cleverly engages with the documentary nature of the poem

John Pluecker translates the epigraph (from Cristina Rivera Gazra) at the beginning of Antígona González—¿De qué se apropria el que se apropria?—as “What does the appropriator appropriate?” This apparently straightforward translation tellingly reflects the translation strategies he will deploy throughout the book.

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This central question echoes a pronounced tendency in Pluecker’s translation: peopling. “The one who appropriates” becomes “the appropriator,” the agent of appropriation. Throughout this translation, subjects becoming into people from more distant Spanish syntax are an artistic and ethical point of return. “They” appears again and again in sentences without subjects, “una habitante de la frontrera” (a [female] resident of the border) becomes “a woman living on the border,” and “todos” unfailing becomes “all of us.” 

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