Professor Yoon Jeong Oh | M: 11:00 AM - 1:45 PM
What determines the translatability of a language or culture? According to Benjamin, translation is a “mode,” and translatability is a characteristic intrinsic to certain works. That is, if the work contains the essential quality of translatability, it will call for translation. Understanding translatability can thus provide a fruitful approach to a body of literature and its relationship, or kinship, with other languages and cultures. Whereas translation is often represented as articulating different entities of languages and facilitates the construction of national language, translatability highlights how languages are rather intimately related. In this course, after examining how translation plays a role in the formation of national language and literature in Korea, we will focus on the translatability of Korean in its relationship with other languages and cultures in the East and West. In doing so, the course will critique the communication model in the representation of translation and investigate the concepts of equivalence and comparison in translation studies, in theory and practice. Readings will include Walter Benjamin, Samuel Weber, Jacques Derrida, Naoki Sakai, and bilingual/multilingual/translingual writers of Korea, East Asia, and the West, such as Yi Sang, Yi Kwang-su, Tawada Yoko, and others.