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Rethinking Orient

In Search of Sources and Inspirations


Edited By Adam Bednarczyk, Magdalena Kubarek and Maciej Szatkowski

The contributions in this book address a vast variety of questions concerning the sources and mutual inspirations in Oriental and European literatures. The authors discuss selected texts from both historical and synchronic perspectives. They reveal and scrutinise the sedimented layers in their search for the original as well as for the repetitive and universal. The book revolves around the creative reception of one’s own cultural heritage and of works which originated in other cultures.

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The Ethics of Difference: Japanese Writers in Search for Sources and Inspirations (Justyna Weronika Kasza)


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Justyna Weronika Kasza

Nicolaus Copernicus University Poland

The Ethics of Difference: Japanese Writers in Search for Sources and Inspirations

Abstract: The paper examines the works of three Japanese writers: Edogawa Rampo, Endō Shūsaku, and Mizumura Minae and focuses on the way translation influenced the creation of their own texts as well as the instances in which translation becomes the basis and the integral part of their literary work. The project is based on the premises of World Literature and translation as the main methodological framework. The aim is to recreate the process of ‘coming into being’ of writers’ literary workshops, with reference to cultural and linguistic borrowings (specific to different historical periods they represent) and various dimensions of writers’ encounters with and approaches to texts of foreign literature (French, British, American etc. or even Japanese).

Key words: Japanese literature, world literature, translation studies, Lawrence Venuti, ethics of difference, authorship

I would like to begin with the question: what does it mean to explore sources and inspirations of a literary text? Are we able to establish methodologically constructive, systematic, consistent parameters in order to examine sources and inspirations that lie behind the creation of a text? Are these applicable to a wider literary tradition or limited to a single text? Does the examination of sources and inspirations consist in recreating the process of coming into being of a text, as indicated, for example, by genetic criticism? To...

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