Translations

Presentation of Racial Domination: A Comparison between Translations and Song of Soloman College

In ‘Song of Soloman’ and ‘Translations’ Morrison and Friel present racial domination through the viewpoint of the oppressed minority group, respectively African-Americans and Irish nationalists. The concept of racial domination can be defined as the political act of dominating people through the belief in the superiority and inferiority of particular races. Both Friel and Morrison communicate that racial domination is all about power, the level of which determines whether a race is the oppressor or the oppressed in a particular society.

In ‘Translations’, the Irish are ruled by the English who assume the right to rule Ireland and dictate what is and is not acceptable behaviour. Through creating a “new map” of the “whole” of Ireland, the English oppressors impose their own domination on Ireland by ‘rewriting’ the country into cultural submission through the imposition of English as the language of ‘high culture’. However, it is only Manus who understands at first the political implications of such a, what he perceives to be, “military operation” would eventually mean for the longevity of the Irish culture and its national identity. Already Friel presents the act of translating as a form of racial domination and a clear division...

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