Monday, August 2, 2021

WITMonth Day 2 | Explaining myself | Thoughts

This will be a musing sort of blog post.

One of my great struggles over the years has been explaining to people what the women in translation movement is. I have tried - and often failed - to convey what exactly we're trying to achieve here with this work. The truth is that most people who are not avid readers have never quite been able to understand what WIT is. Tomorrow's post will delve into this in a bit more depth; today I simply want to explore what it even means to explain myself. Because it often feels like that's all I do.

I explain that WIT isn't necessarily about translations into English, but it's not about translations from English. I explain that WIT is about women writers, not translators. I explain that WIT is about having fun, not a burden or expectation on readers. I explain the origins, I explain the credits, I explain my role. My explanations never quite feel like enough.

Part of the problem is, of course, that I embedded far too many ambiguities in the original project title. "Women in Translation" is contextually snappy and accurate, but it gets extremely confusing when, well, translated. More than that, the original meaning behind the project seems to get lost and watered down. I have had extremely lovely readers reach out to me (in private and in public) asking as to the "rules" of WITMonth. One likened it to a readathon, asking whether it was okay to read books from regions or genres not mentioned in the bingo card I recently uploaded. I found myself in the rather odd position of explaining that WITMonth carries absolutely no obligations with it and that the ultimate purpose is awareness and enjoyment. I suppose it's inevitable that the project origins will get a little muddled as it moves further and further away from me (which remains a good thing! even if it occasionally leave me melancholic), but that doesn't mean there is no hope, right?

I will continue to explain myself. Tomorrow, the day after, and every day to come. With the new website and here and everywhere else. But I hope that I can find the right words.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Anonymous comments have been disabled due to an increase in spam. Sorry!