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Intersecting Diaspora Boundaries

Portuguese Contexts


Edited By Irene Maria F. Blayer and Dulce Maria Scott

This collection of essays provides both critical and interdisciplinary means for thinking across diasporic travels within the Portuguese experience and its intersection with other peoples and cultures. The chapters are organized into four sections and offer rich, diverse, and insightful studies that provide a conceptualization of the Portuguese diaspora with special attention to the importance of cross-cultural interferences and influences. Within this framework, and from a variety of perspectives, some of the chapters depict identity-formation paths among Portuguese Jews and Luso-Indians in Australia, as well as the historical, cultural, and literary interplay among Portuguese and other diasporas in Goa, the West Indies, and Brazil. Other chapters analyze Portuguese-American literature and poetry, whereby the intersection of memory, dual identity, and place are meticulously explored. The last section of the book addresses Portuguese writers and poets who lived through (in)voluntary exile or were dislocated to Europe and Asia, and how their diasporic conditions interface with their textualized narratives. Place and memory as means of reconstructing a fragmented existence, in the writings of exiled writers, are also explored. The volume closes with a chapter on Portuguese illegal migration to France. The studies herein open new lines of inquiry into diaspora studies.
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Chapter Fifteen: (Re)covering Memories in Translation: Ilse Losa’s Portuguese Translation of Anna Seghers’s Novel, Der Ausflug der toten Mädchen


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(Re)covering Memories IN Translation

Ilse Losa’s Portuguese Translation of Anna Seghers’s Novel, Der Ausflug der toten Mädchen



It is undeniable that authors in exile tend to write about the experiences they have gone through. The periods spent in exile are generally marked by the production of autobiographies (stricto sensu), or autobiographic texts, where the focus is the individual, albeit integrated in a socio-political context. These authors generally consider themselves as witnesses of an era or of a particular historical period. Very often the urge to write their autobiographies has to do with the necessity of conveying their personal experiences to other compatriots, or even to future generations. As stated by Critchfield:

Es is charakteristisch für Exilautobiographen, dass sie sich als Vertreter ihrer Generation beschreiben. Dies gilt für Ernst Toller wie für Stefan Zweig. […] Zweig kommentiert, er erzähle nicht von einem persönlichen Schicksal als von dem Schicksal einer ganzen Generation. (49)

[It is characteristic of exile autobiographers that they describe themselves as representatives of their generation. This is true for Ernst Toller and also for Stefan Zweig. […] Zweig said that he told people not about a personal fate, but about the fate of an entire generation.]

This sense of mission or assignment to report on a collective and generational destiny is often associated with autobiographies written by male authors,...

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