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This Blasted translation: or location, dislocation, relocation

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An analysis of my current practice, this article explores some of the issues surrounding the translation of Sarah Kane's seminal work, Blasted ([1995] 2001), into Brazilian Portuguese. It is an account of the process so far, from the early impulse to translate, through discussions with the director and actor/producer, and the thoughts and doubts that have plagued me since. A fundamental concern relates to the possibility or need to adapt the setting to a Brazilian (and specifically a Rio de Janeiro) context the problem Hale and Upton (2007) have called the dilemma over foreignization or domestication (2000: 7) and the implications of that adaptation. As tensions between the specific and the universal are dislocated, do they also become diluted? Even if the setting remains the same, are not the contingencies of production (accents, knowledge of a particular actor, even the theatre building itself) necessarily relocating an audience's theatrical experience? Where should, then, be the locus of this displacement? In the translation, the production, the performances?

Keywords: Blasted; Brazilian Portuguese; Sarah Kane; procreation; relocation; theatre translation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Buckinghamshire New University.

Publication date: 2009-12-01

More about this publication?
  • Adaptation, or the conversion of oral, historical or fictional narratives into stage drama has been common practice for centuries. In our own time the processes of cross-generic transformation continue to be extremely important in theatre as well as in the film and other media industries. Adaptation and the related areas of translation and intertextuality continue to have a central place in our culture with a profound resonance across our civilisation.
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