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The ASSITEJ Playwrights network, Write Local.  Play Global.  was honored and delighted to collaborate with the German chapter of the International Theatre Institute (ITI) on Friday, April 24, on Public Moment we called

Translation: Words, Culture and Zeitgeist.

We wanted to focus on looking at translation in intercultural contexts through an holistic lens.  Against this background the network partners will discuss to what extent the “zeitgeist” of the writer at the time the play was

written can be translated into the “zeitgeist” of the time, language and country of the recipient.

After welcomes from Andrea Zagorski of ITI and Kim Peter Kovac of WLPG. Dr. Barbara Christ from Frankfurt am Main gave an important context for the afternoon with some of the issues and objectives of her work as a translator.  We then divided into four discussion groups

  1. “Zeitgeist and cultural translations” with Karin Serres of France as moderator
  2.  “Zeitgeist and languages” with Andrea Zagorski as moderator
  3.  “How do we get more translations to happen?” with Kim Peter Kovac of the USA as moderator
  4.  “How can we help to learn more about plays from other countries?” with Henning Fangauf of Germany as moderator

Over fifty people were in attendance, which was terrific.  We did not reach any ‘absolute’ conclusions, nor did we expect to, but everyone left with more appreciation and knowledge of how to move forward with this very important part of our profession.


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