Francesc Payarols and Andreu Nin, agents of the Catalan polysystem. Unmediated translations from Russian in the 1930s: a critical overview.

Llamas Gomez, Noemi (2018) Francesc Payarols and Andreu Nin, agents of the Catalan polysystem. Unmediated translations from Russian in the 1930s: a critical overview. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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This thesis addresses the contribution of Francesc Payarols and Andreu Nin to the Catalan literary system between 1928 and 1937 via the introduction of unmediated translations from Russian into Catalan. This contribution has been studied by comparing it to previous translation activity from Russian into Catalan, to translations in literary systems that due to prestige and geographical proximity can be considered neighbouring systems to the Catalan system (the French, the British and the Spanish), and by reviewing some of the critical reception that these publications gathered in the Catalan press of the time. Selected terminology and theoretical concepts of Polysystem Theory (PST) have been used critically in the methodological framing. This study occupies the gap of knowledge in current scholarship around the work of Payarols, whilst also building on previous and contemporaneous research on Nin.

The evolution of translation from Russian into Catalan is contextualised from its introduction in 1879 until the establishment of Edicions Proa in 1928, the platform from which Payarols and Nin published the majority of the texts studied. The role of the translators as agents of the system is particularly highlighted, given both the influence of their translations in creating examples of models of prose that autochthonous novelists could use, and the power of their textual choices outside of the primary authors (Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Chekhov). Joan Puig i Ferreter’s agency is also explored, as the figure behind Proa’s success and one of the main promoters of the reintroduction of novels into the literary repertoire in Catalan from the late 1920s.

This research studies the unmediated Catalan translations of Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Chekhov, and a selection of nineteenth and twentieth century authors carried out by Payarols and Nin, and reviews some of the impact that these had upon Catalan writers such as Mercè Rodoreda, Sebastià Juan Arbó and Joan Sales. Overall, these translations largely exceeded the previous available items of Russian literature in Catalan, and in cases such as Dostoevsky and Chekhov, they established a textual presence to go with their already existing literary fame.

This process establishes that power dynamics were in operation between these translators, and that Nin had higher esteem from the literary milieu, which in turn affected the prestige of the texts he was commissioned to translate. I then contribute to the debate on the mythologisation of Nin’s work by suggesting a revision of his texts, supported by a comparison with the recently revised versions of some of Payarols translations.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Francesc Payarols, Andreu Nin, polysystem theory, Catalan literature, Russian literature, translation.
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PG Slavic, Baltic, Albanian languages and literature
P Language and Literature > PQ Romance literatures
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Modern Languages and Cultures > Hispanic Studies
Supervisor's Name: Crameri, Professor Kathryn and Tejerizo, Dr. Margaret
Date of Award: 2018
Depositing User: MS Noemi Llamas Gomez
Unique ID: glathesis:2018-30794
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 21 Sep 2018 09:56
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2018 14:01

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