Pluralizing Shakespeare : a discussion on the "afterlife" of Shakespeare and the languages of the stage in cross-cultural representations

Dorothy WONG

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentation

Abstract

The heterogeneity and the heteroglossic potential in Shakespearean plays are discovered and rediscovered in the constant interplay between these plays and other forms of theatre across cultural borders. The crossing is made possible by the incessant explorations of universal values embedded in them. This, however, does not mean an overlook of cultural differences. Walter Benjamin, when conceptualizing his theory of translation, adopts the metaphor “afterlife” to describe the relationship between an original and its translation. Translation is empowered with the ability to transform the original and to make it anew. It is separated from its original text and at the same time it is rooted in this original. This finds resonance on stage in where performing a text connote variations giving the performance an essence of newness of the original. The paper discusses Shakespearean plays and the languages of the stage in Hong Kong context in which Benjamin’s concept of “afterlife” can provide a framework to approach the transculturation of these plays. Shakespeare is able to cross cultural borders not just because of the presence of universal values but also being an original text which “is an eddy in the stream of becoming” in Benjamin’s dictum. This explains the change of Shakespeare into Shakespeares.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jul 2016
Event21st World Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association: The Many Languages of Comparative Literature - University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
Duration: 21 Jul 201627 Jul 2016
https://icla2016.univie.ac.at/home/

Conference

Conference21st World Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association
Abbreviated titleICLA2016
CountryAustria
CityVienna
Period21/07/1627/07/16
Internet address

Fingerprint

Cultural Representations
William Shakespeare
Language
Afterlife
Newness
Hong Kong
Walter Benjamin
Essence
Cultural Differences
Onstage
Transculturation
Dictum

Cite this

WONG, D. (2016). Pluralizing Shakespeare : a discussion on the "afterlife" of Shakespeare and the languages of the stage in cross-cultural representations. 21st World Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association, Vienna, Austria.
WONG, Dorothy. / Pluralizing Shakespeare : a discussion on the "afterlife" of Shakespeare and the languages of the stage in cross-cultural representations. 21st World Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association, Vienna, Austria.
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WONG, D 2016, 'Pluralizing Shakespeare : a discussion on the "afterlife" of Shakespeare and the languages of the stage in cross-cultural representations', 21st World Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association, Vienna, Austria, 21/07/16 - 27/07/16.

Pluralizing Shakespeare : a discussion on the "afterlife" of Shakespeare and the languages of the stage in cross-cultural representations. / WONG, Dorothy.

2016. 21st World Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association, Vienna, Austria.

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentation

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WONG D. Pluralizing Shakespeare : a discussion on the "afterlife" of Shakespeare and the languages of the stage in cross-cultural representations. 2016. 21st World Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association, Vienna, Austria.