Advertisement

Self-Translation as Testimony: Halide Edib Rewrites The Turkish Ordeal

  • Mehtap Ozdemir
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting book series (PTTI)

Abstract

This chapter looks at the phenomenon of self-translation not just as a case of textual migration of works between cultures, but also as a case of lingual migration of author-translator. The comparative examination of the memoirs of Halide Edib in the English version The Turkish Ordeal (1928) and in its self-translated Turkish edition published as Türk’ün Ateşle İmtihanı [Turk’s Ordeal With Fire] in 1962 shows how and why a Turkish woman writer decides to write and rewrite the national history and the self-narration when addressing two different audiences. Reframing self-translation as rewriting, the study reads Halide Edib’s process of self-translation as a case of strategic self-censorship that entails partial and multilateral ideological and linguistic alignments. For Edib’s initial choice of English as her narrative space emerges an example of self-translation as a means to promote the positive development of the self, while the Turkish translation of the memoir is carried out to pre-empt the charges of political, cultural and literary treason from its Turkish audience. Read together with the Turkish version, the English memoir acquires the status of testimonial writing, merging self-narration with national history. This act of self-translation, therefore, explores one of the most profound relationships with national history, authorial identity and language.

References

  1. Adak, Hülya. 2003. National Myths and Self-Na(rra)tions: Mustafa Kemal’s Nutuk and Halide Edib’s Memoirs and The Turkish Ordeal. The South Atlantic Quarterly 102 (2/3): 509–527.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. ———. 2007. Suffragettes of the Empire, Daughters of the Republic: Women Auto/biographers Narrate National History. New Perspectives on Turkey 36: 27–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bassnett, Susan. 2013. Self-Translator as Rewriter. In Self-Translation Brokering Originality in Hybrid Culture, ed. Anthony Cordingley, 13–26. London: Continuum.Google Scholar
  4. Çalışlar, İpek. 2010. Halide Edib: Biyografisine Sığmayan Kadın. Istanbul: Everest Yayınları.Google Scholar
  5. Cordingley, Anthony. 2013. Introduction: Self-Translation, Going Global. In Self-Translation: Brokering Originality in Hybrid Culture, ed. Anthony Cordingley, 1–10. London: Continuum.Google Scholar
  6. Edib, Halide. 1926. Memoirs of Halide Edib. New York: Arno Press.Google Scholar
  7. ———. 1928. The Turkish Ordeal. New York: The Century Company.Google Scholar
  8. ———. 1962/2013. Türk’ün Ateşle İmtihanı. Istanbul: Can Yayınları.Google Scholar
  9. ———. 2009. House with Wisteria: Memoirs of Turkey Old and New. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers.Google Scholar
  10. Erol, Sibel. 1926/2009. Introduction. In House with Wisteria: Memoirs of Turkey Old and New. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers.Google Scholar
  11. Gramsci, Antonio. 1948/1971. The Prison Notebooks: Selections. (Trans. and ed. Quintin Hoare and Geoffrey Nowell Smith). New York: International Publishers.Google Scholar
  12. Gürçağlar, Şehnaz Tahir. 2008. The Politics and Poetics of Translation in Turkey, 1923–1960. Amsterdam: Rodopi.Google Scholar
  13. Hokenson, Jan, and Marcella Munson. 2007. The Bilingual Text: History and Theory of Literary Self-Translation. Manchester: St. Jerome Publishing.Google Scholar
  14. Kadıoğlu, Ayşe. 1996. The Paradox of Turkish Nationalism and the Construction of Official Identity. Middle Eastern Studies 32 (2): 177–193.Google Scholar
  15. Kemal, Mustafa. 1928/1984. Nutuk-Söylev. Ankara: Türk Tarih Kurumu.Google Scholar
  16. Merkle, Denis. 2004. External and Internal Pressures on the Translator: Relationship to Censorship. Association Internationale de Littérature Comparée/International Comparative Literature Association. http://www.ailc-icla.org/2004/Denise%20Merkle.doc. Accessed 12 Mar 2016.
  17. Tymoczko, Maria. 2009. Censorship and Self-Censorship in Translation: Ethics and Ideology, Resistance and Collusion. In Translation and Censorship: Patterns of Communication and Interference, ed. Eiléan Ni Chuilleanáin, Cormac Ó. Cuilleanáin, and David Parris, 24–45. Dublin: Four Courts Press.Google Scholar
  18. Tymoczko, Maria, and Edwin Gentzler. 2002. Introduction. In Translation and Power. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press.Google Scholar
  19. Zürcher, Eric J. 1998. Turkey: A Modern History. New York: I.B. Tauris and Co.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mehtap Ozdemir
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Massachusetts–AmherstAmherstUSA

Personalised recommendations