Welcome to Hopscotch Translation

Selfishness and Process: Translating Claudia Ulloa Donoso’s Pajarito

by Lily Meyer

Let me begin with a promise. This will be, by the end, a craft essay, or a description of one approach to translation craft. First, though, I want to talk about selfishness—a human trait I don’t necessarily condemn. I would say I’m pro-selfishness, to a point. Very few people are genuinely selfless, and, as far as I can tell, those who are come by it naturally. It seems to me that, for the rest of us… READ MORE

“Occupation: Composer and Writer”: A Translator As Well

by Vincent Kling

The Three Overcoats is indeed modeled on Kafka, but to stop there is to do this complex, many-layered story a disservice. The endless loop of bureaucratic frustration, the shunting from office to office, the dismissal by bored, condescending, fake-sincere officials ready to apply dehumanizing, arid legalities, the reduction to facelessness and consuming loneliness, the raising and dashing of false hopes: readers are well acquainted with these aspects of Kafka’s art… READ MORE

Mahagony: A Colloquy of French-American Voices

by Matt Reeck

Mahagony is a postmodern hybrid chronicle. The novel alternates between chapters written in the voice of the narrator Mathieu Béluse, Glissant’s stand-in, and chapters written in the first-person voices of the many characters whose composite history spans two hundred years of Martinican life. The novel begins with Mathieu ruminating upon the challenge of writing a history for an area overwritten and ignored by History… READ MORE

Translationships 3: Pedro Almodóvar’s Translationship with Jean Cocteau’s La Voix Humaine: The Translator as Director

by Magdalena Edwards

Almodóvar has Swinton accomplish a number of tasks before she speaks on the phone, and these actions contrast starkly with her stillness and her complete absorption in the conversation once it begins. One could say that Almodóvar does faithfully render the sequence of “poses” Cocteau designed for the actress of his play. Swinton’s hands may be free due to her AirPods and yet her body is entirely occupied by the phone call when… READ MORE

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