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Mind the gap: translation in a fractured African society

journal contribution
posted on 21.08.2014 by Marion Arnold
The spaces and tensions between races, ethnic groups, and communities in late apartheid and post-1994 South African society, and the co-existence of different languages, religions and cultures, generated a society so fractured that cultural translation became a formidably difficult task. The concept of translation in a transforming society is examined through analysing two-dimensional language as a means of translating political events and experiences into visual forms, which attempt to communicate across cultural gaps. Iconic documentary photographs by Sam Nzima (1976) and TRC photographers (1997), struggle posters by cooperatives and formally trained designers, and artworks by Kevin Brand, Sue Williamson and Marion Arnold are discussed. The images reveal that different forms of visual representation encode different relationships of signifying content and aesthetic form to offer alternatives to speech and writing in communicating some implications of apartheid politics, leaving a legacy that validates art and design as tools of political activism.

History

School

  • The Arts, English and Drama

Department

  • Arts

Published in

Third Text: third world perspectives on contemporary art and culture

Volume

27

Issue

3

Pages

419 - 435 (17)

Citation

ARNOLD, M., 2013. Mind the gap: translation in a fractured African society. Third Text, 27 (3), pp. 419 - 435.

Publisher

© Taylor and Francis

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date

2013

Notes

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Third Text on 18th June 2013 available online: http://wwww.tandfonline.com/10.1080/09528822.2013.798179

ISSN

0952-8822

eISSN

1475-5297

Language

en

Exports