When Cultural Evolution Calls for Translation Revolution: Resistance and Rupture in Brazilian Translations

When Cultural Evolution Calls for Translation Revolution: Resistance and Rupture in Brazilian Translations

Vanessa Lopes Lourenço Hanes (Universidade Federal Fluminense, Brazil)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2832-6.ch009
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Abstract

Given the massive changes that Brazil has undergone in the past century, particularly in distancing itself linguistically from its former colonizer, this study is an attempt to determine the role of translation in the country's cultural evolution. Translational approaches have developed along opposing poles: on the one hand, a strong resistance to incorporating orally-driven alterations in the written language, while on the other, a slow, halting movement toward convergence of the two, and both approaches are charged with political and ideological intentionality. Publishing houses, editors and translators are gatekeepers and agents whose activities provide a glimpse into the mechanism of national linguistic identity, either contributing to or resisting the myth of a homogenized Portuguese language.
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Turning and turning in the widening gyre

The falcon cannot hear the falconer

WB Yeats (The Second Coming, 1920)

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Background: The Language(S) Of Brazil

Brazil’s two official languages, Portuguese and Brazilian Sign Language, are accompanied by a number of minority languages still spoken in the country. According to the 2010 Census, 274 different indigenous languages are in use in Brazilian territory, mainly in the north (i.e. Amazonian) and midwest regions, even though many of these are at risk of extinction. Furthermore, there are significant bilingual communities, particularly in the south. Although most of these consist of German and Italian descendants, Japanese-, Dutch-, Arabic- and Spanish-speaking communities also exist. But this is not the full extent of the national linguistic panorama.

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