on+Don+Quixote - COMPARATIVE LITERATURE STUDIES Vol 43 No 4...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–4. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Unformatted text preview: COMPARATIVE LITERATURE STUDIES, Vol. 43, No. 4, 2006. Copyright © 2006 The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA. 414 COUNTERDEFINITIONS OF REALITY: TRANSLATING THE WORLD IN DON QUIJOTE DE LA MANCHA Álvaro Ramírez After the famous encounter with the windmills in chapter eight of the fi rst part of Don Quixote (1605), Sancho reproaches his master for not heeding his warnings concerning the so-called giants. 1 As usual, Don Quixote does not take it lightly: “‘Calla, amigo Sancho,’ respondió don Qui[x]ote; ‘que las cosas de le guerra, más que otras, están sujetas a continua mudanza; cuanto más, que yo pienso, y es así verdad, que aquel sabio Frestón que me robó el aposento y los libros ha vuelto estos gigantes en molinos’” (58) [“‘Be quiet, Sancho my friend,’ replied Don Quixote. ‘Matters of war, more than any others, are subject to continual change; moreover, I think, and therefore it is true, that the same Frestón the Wise who stole my room and my books has turned these giants into windmills’” (59)]. On the surface, Don Quixote is referring to the theme introduced in the previous chapter that will recur throughout the text; that is, the battle between the knight and the “encanta- dores” [enchanters]. Nonetheless, the statement has a mysterious undertone that will pique the interest of the discreet reader, especially in view of the fact that the knight brings up the issue of mutability of things in the world just as the text is about to deliver one of its biggest surprises, for without any warning we fi nd out in the following chapter that the novel we are reading is a translation from an Arabic manuscript. This episode has received its share of critical attention, especially from Luis Murillo and James Parr who have offered excellent analyses of the authorial imbroglio that ensues with the appearance of a second author and the Arab historian, Cide Hamete Benengeli. 2 Still, I believe it is worthwhile to focus once more on this pivotal 415 TRANSLATING THE WORLD IN DON QUIJOTE DE LA MANCHA point in the narration and explore the obvious connection Cervantes is mak- ing between the act of translating and the mutability of the world. Most people mistakenly assume that translation is an activity that is limited to written and oral texts. According to Valentín García Yebra: “es traducción cualquier actividad expresiva, toda manifestación que sirva para exteriorizar sensaciones, ideas, afectos o sentimientos” [translation is any expressive activity; all manifestations that serve to reveal sensations, ideas, feelings or sentiments]. 3 Therefore, translation is as simple as the gesture of a hand or the glance of the eyes. What is more, the movements in a dance or the colors of a painting are also translations of one medium into another, a process which García Yebra calls “semiotic translation.” Finally, there is “linguistic translation,” both written and oral, which is the activity most of us...
View Full Document

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

Page1 / 15

on+Don+Quixote - COMPARATIVE LITERATURE STUDIES Vol 43 No 4...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 4. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online