Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


College of Humanities and Social Sciences



Thesis Sponsor/Dissertation Chair/Project Chair

Sharon Lewis

Committee Member

Wendy Nielsen

Committee Member

Marie Léticée


How is a literary text—and the culture it represents—translated? Is the translated text a hindrance to the unique voice of an author, or is it beneficial for the circulation of the text in a culture that is not the author’s own? Must the translator be an insider to the author’s culture, or can any translator take up the task of interpretation? This thesis seeks to investigate these questions by examining the English translation of Simone Schwarz - Bart’s Pluie et Vent Sur Télumée Miracle. Barbara Bray, the translator of Pluie et Vent, renames the book in English as The Bridge of Beyond. How does this renaming affect a reader’s perception of the novel, especially when the reader is unfamiliar with French Caribbean Creole culture? What responsibilities does a translator have in remaining as faithful to the novel as possible?

In the case of the translation of Schwarz-Bart’s novel, which is so closely tied to Créolité and Caribbean feminist discourse, there are certain cultural and linguistic differences that exist between the French original and the English translation. What might have caused the translator to make such changes from the original, and what effect might these changes have on the reader, if any?

I argue that because translators do not render in a vacuum, all rewritings are never exactly as the original. There is always a set of cultural, historical, and political beliefs that influence the rewriting of a literary text. Because of this fact, readers should become aware of these influences and understand that manipulations in the rewriting of literature exist. Also, instead of being unknown names alongside the author on a title page, translators should make their intentions, objectives, and choices known through prefaces, introductions, or footnotes.

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