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Editor Jay Miskowiec to speak on "Towards a Metaphor of Translation"

Posted by Judy Korn on Friday, Feb. 12, 2010

Event Date/Time: Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010 7:00 pm
Location: HFA 6

Jay Miskowiec, translation editor at Aliform Publishing, an independent publisher that specializes in Latin American and world literature in translation, will visit the University of Minnesota, Morris on Thursday, February 25, 2010, to conduct a translation workshop for students and to provide an evening presentation. The campus and community are invited to attend “Towards a Metaphor of Translation” at 7 p.m. in Humanities Fine Arts room six. A reception follows.

The title of Miskowiec’s presentation comes from an observation he stumbled upon years ago: “translation,” from the Latin trans and latus, and “metaphor,” from the Greek meta and pherein, have the same root meaning—to carry across or beyond.

“Literary translation always rides that uneven knife edge between literal and figurative, or metaphoric, meaning,” reflects Miskowiec. “Of course, any word, in any language, has a specific denotative meaning and the task of the translator is to convey that, but along with the myriad abstract meanings behind it. What I’m going to do in my talk is explain what my own thought process is as I navigate between the literal and the literary. I’ll illustrate the conundrum, but I’ll also discuss the kind of brute labor of reading closely, referring to a wide range of dictionaries, and revising, revising, revising.”

Miskowiec received the first Beca Nacional de Traducción Literaria from the Ministry of Culture of Colombia for his proposal to translate the novel El viaje triunfal by Eduardo García Aguilar. He has received grants from Argentina’s Fundación para la Teoría y Práctica de las Artes, the Ministries of Culture of Brazil, and Mexico’s Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes.

In addition to his work as a translation editor, Miskowiec teaches English and journalism at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. He received a master of arts and a doctorate in comparative literature from City University of New York, where he studied with esteemed translator Gregory Rabassa. He earned a bachelor of arts in Spanish and English from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

Miskowiec’s campus visit is made possible by a gift from an alumnus donor.

For more information about the event, please contact James Wojtaszek, associate professor of Spanish, at 320-589-6295.