Translating austerity: PIIGS on stage at the Royal Court Theatre

O'Thomas, Mark (2013) Translating austerity: PIIGS on stage at the Royal Court Theatre. In: Version, Subversion: Translation, the Canon and its Discontents, 12-14 December 2013, University of Porto.

Full text not available from this repository.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop contribution (Paper)
Item Status:Live Archive


From 25th–29th June 2013, the Royal Court Theatre in London staged a week-long season of readings of new plays in translation from each of the so-called austerity countries in Europe – Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain – known collectively under the appropriately leprostatic acronym PIIGS. Each night, each of the countries in turn explored the social consequences of economic austerity measures through translational responses that operated at the level of the interlingual, intralingual, and the intersemiotic. More than twenty years after André Lefevère surveyed literary translation foregrounding the concept of rewriting and manipulation, and fifteen years since Lawrence Venuti highlighted translation’s invisibility signalling a clarion call for an ethics of difference, this paper points towards a developmental drift for translation in contemporary cultural life that is vital, unique and potentially radical. With particular reference to the first of the week’s offerings, the paper will explore the translation of Portuguese playwright Sandra Pinheiro’s short play Farewell to the Old Country, April de Angelis’ British response Articipation, and the translated interviews Pinheiro conducted with politicians, the unemployed and the young couple whose story of forced migration provided the impetus and backdrop to Pinheiro’s own play. Taken collectively, these works will demonstrate a subversive radicalism where translation offers a counterpoint to neoliberalism, where new technologies harnessed by the collective enquiry of artists provide new ways of understanding who we are, where we are and the possibility of what we might be.

Keywords:translation, theatre, austerity, troika, playwriting, Royal Court Theatre
Subjects:W Creative Arts and Design > W400 Drama
Q Linguistics, Classics and related subjects > Q910 Translation studies
Divisions:College of Arts > School of Fine & Performing Arts > School of Fine & Performing Arts (Performing Arts)
Related URLs:
ID Code:12747
Deposited On:18 Dec 2013 20:27

Repository Staff Only: item control page