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Title: Der Schmetterling. Walter Benjamin als Übersetzer seiner selbst
Authors: Giuriato, Davide
Keywords: Writing and translatingWriters translating themselves
Issue Date: 2005
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Davide Giuriato, “Der Schmetterling. Walter Benjamin als Übersetzer seiner selbst", in: Prospero. Rivista di Letterature Straniere, Comparatistica e Studi Culturali, XII (2005), pp. 95-121
Series/Report no.: Prospero XII
During the summer of 1933, in Ibiza, Walter Benjamin begins the translation into French of some parts of his Berliner Kindheit with the help of Jean Selz, an art critic who does not know any German. The work on the translation from German into French is of a peculiar kind, since Benjamin has first to proceed with a rough transcription and then let Selz work on the paraphrases and on the revision of the French text; a process which brings Benjamin to a re-reading of the original German version, thus creating a cycle in the writing/translating activity. According to the author of the essay, the fact that these five translations (“Matinée d’hiver”, “Livres de garçons”, “Loggia”, “Deux fanfares” and “Chasse aux papillons”) by Benjamin himself, went unnoticed, is connected with the ‘secondary’ status attributed to translations. The interesting point is that Benjamin is translating his own memories, while these have not yet been finished in their original German version. The critic should also ask himself which kind of writing activity is here envisaged, if it is deeply and dynamically intermingled with the translation. The article examines this relationship.
Type: Article
ISSN: 1123-2684
Appears in Collections:2005 / 12 Prospero. Rivista di Letterature Straniere, Comparatistica e Studi Culturali

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