Imagining Europe as a Realm of Transfiguration
Keywords:translation, Europe, visual media, Turkish literature, Orientalism, borders, film
This essay considers Bilge Karasu’s novel The Garden of Departed Cats (Göçmüş kediler bahçesi, 1979) as a dynamic text reconceptualizing Europe through the transfiguration of humans and animals, porous borders, East-West dichotomies, inside-outside structurations, local-foreign designations, and questions of translatability. Göktürk, a film and media scholar and translator of Karasu into German, examines both the virtual location of Europe and the function of cinema within the novel, arenas through which Karasu refigures geographic positionings and identities. Because of its evocative mobile depictions, Karasu’s text operates for Göktürk as a cinematic text, one in implicit conversation with Walerian Browczyk’s Blanche (1972) and Werner Herzog’s Gesualdo: Death for Five Voices (1995).
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