Abstract

ABSTRACT:

In Feridun Zaimoglu's and Günter Senkel's adaptation of Othello (2003), the two authors overwrite the standard German translation with a multilingual German hybrid "that is and is not 'German' at the same time"—as Yasemin Yildiz has characterized Zaimoglu's artificial language Kanak Sprak (1995). Zaimoglu and Senkel's Jago appropriates a "Kanak Sprak"-derived "filthy" language, while Othello references the German literary tradition as well as Orientalist narratives, in an attempt to constitute a transcultural self-image. Drawing on Shakespeare scholarship, adaptation studies, and Tom Cheesman's work on Zaimoglu, this article offers a new close-reading of Zaimoglu and Senkel's Othello in light of its original production directed by Luk Perceval. Through the prisms of postmonolingualism theory and Leslie Adelson's work on "Dreck," it describes Jago's dirty speech as a form of racialization that brings to the linguistic surface what monolingualism represses: Germany's racist past. Deprived of his "postmonolingual" idiom, Othello fails to deconstruct coercive monolingualism and produce a strong transcultural identity.

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Additional Information

ISSN
2164-8646
Print ISSN
0149-7952
Pages
pp. 529-550
Launched on MUSE
2018-10-26
Open Access
No
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