非漂 [Fēi Piāo] Quote of the Week: Transcending Mother Tongue

We’re so rooted in the idea of a single language, a mother tongue, and of a person’s identity as in some way correspondingly single and transparent, that any attempt to think in terms of a world or a planet is very difficult. It can feel artificial or unnatural. But what a future world literature will require is the knowledge that a language isn’t something that belongs – to a landscape, or a nation, or a person. Sure, this is an era when heaviness is being asserted at every geopolitical level. But there is another way of thinking, according to the terms of world literature. This method will be a form of créolité; its values will be lightness, multiplicity, transformation; and it will make the history of the art of the novel as much a history of its translations as of its original works.

(Excerpted from World literature: lightness, multiplicity, transformation by Adam Thirlwell)

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