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Translating Virginia Woolf

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Oriana Palusci

Translating Virginia Woolf is a collection of essays that discusses the theory and practice of translation from an interdisciplinary perspective, involving research areas such as literature, linguistics, sociolinguistics, cultural studies, and history. It is the outcome of a selection of papers given at the international conference by the same title, held at the University of Naples ‘L’Orientale’ in 2010.
Interweaving literary threads and target languages such as Arabic, Croatian, Danish, Dutch, German, Italian, Serbian, Spanish, and Swedish, this volume traces the history of the translation and reception of Woolf’s fiction and feminist pamphlets. It investigates the strategies of translation of several of her works in different countries and cultural contexts through the contrastive analysis of one or more editions of the same Woolfian text. The final result is a symphony of languages, spreading the notes of Virginia Woolf’s modernist and feminist discourse across Europe and beyond.

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A Strange Case: The Reception and Translation of Virginia Woolf in the Netherlands - FRANCO PARIS 49

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FRANCO PARIS A Strange Case: The Reception and Translation of Virginia Woolf in the Netherlands The Reception The reception and publication history of Virginia Woolf’s works translated into Dutch will reveal an unexpected picture.1 As Woolf ‘s works were translated and published in the Netherlands only, this pa- per focuses mainly on the reception in the Northern part of the Dutch linguistic area. If on the one hand there is an early and positive recep- tion of many of her books, on the other hand we notice a remarkable lapse of time between the almost immediate review of her works and the publication of the first Dutch translation, Mrs. Dalloway by Nini Brunt, in 1948, a translation that appears late in comparison with Woolf’s publication history in other countries. In terms of critical as- sessment, her work has been systematically studied. Criticism consists mainly of book reviews that appeared shortly after the publication of the original versions. It proves that there is reasonable knowledge of and interest in Woolf’s books, not only among critics, but also among important writers and an educated audience. Twenty-six reviews and essays about Woolf appear in Dutch language newspapers and literary journals, but no translations. The Dutch journalist, poet and critic Jan Greshoff, whose critical articles noticed the decline of bourgeois cul- ture, published an interesting article in 1932 in the weekly Groene Amsterdammer. In those years, a group of Dutch writers were con- 1 For Virginia Woolf’s publication history in the Netherlands and Belgium...

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