• Speaking of Grief and the Grief of Speaking: Martyrs' Speech and the Perils of Translation

    Author(s):
    Maia Kotrosits (see profile)
    Date:
    2017
    Group(s):
    Cultural Studies, Philosophy
    Subject(s):
    Cultural studies, Diaspora studies, Early Christianity, Roman history, Translation studies
    Item Type:
    Article
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M61552
    Abstract:
    In Derrida’s Monolinguism of the Other, Or The Prosthesis of Origin, a theory about the universal and constitutive alienation of the speaking subject from language finds its exemplary grounding in Derrida’s own experience as an Algerian Jew, one whose relationship to the French language is both totalizing and exiled: “I have only one language, it is not mine.” He equates speaking not only with contingent citizenship and a divestment of what one never really had in the first place, but also with the extreme experiences of torture, threat, and physical violence. He indeed uses the words “passion” and “martyr” to describe his experience. In this essay, I read Derrida “backwards,” and against the universalizing move Derrida and those following him make in order to suggest a way of reading some scenes of so-called martyrdom as scenes about diasporic cultural divestment. I’ll specifically attend to martyrs’ speech, and do so reading them as archives of the perils and inescapable expenses of entering dominant cultural “languages.”
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    1 year ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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