Tina Benko as the Dancer in They Say Dancing is a Sin, performed at The Lark and Barnard Center for Translation Studies, Columbia University

Left: Tina Benko as the Dancer in They Say Dancing is a Sin, performed at the Barnard Center for Translation Studies, Columbia University

Translation cannot operate strictly on the textual level. It ought to be more than simply a substitution of linguistic equivalents. The translator, I argue, must dissect the political and poetic world of the play in order to reconstruct the text within another language and culture. My translations, therefore, aim to truthfully communicate the layered richness of a text, including the artistic influences and political currents that flowed into the drama. Rather than stressing the foreignness of the source text, I believe in an active translation that aims to convey the aesthetic, social, and political vision of the text for my target audience. My goal is not simply to use theatre to inform English-speaking audiences about the Middle East but to present them with dramatic work that resonates with their own challenges and experiences.

Translations:

To be published in Between Home and Exile: New Plays from Palestine, Martin E. Segal Theatre Center Publications (In-progress). Co-edited with Marvin Carlson and Mas’ud Hamdan

Parallel Time by Bashar Murkus.

Desert of Light by Rama Haydar, co-translated with author.

The Game of the Box and the Scales by Mas’ud Hamdan, co-translated with author.

The Devil’s Pink Cloak by Mas’ud Hamdan, co-translated with author.

 

 Published in Tahrir Tales: Plays from the Egyptian Revolution, Seagull Books (distributed by the University of Chicago Press), August 2016.

They Say Dancing is a Sin by Mohamed Abdel Mu’iz and Hany Abdel Naser, co-translated with Mohammed Albakry.

The Mirror by Yasmeen Emam, co-translated with Mona Ragab.

Report on Revolutionary Circumstances by Magdy El-Hamzawy, co-translated with Amor Eletrebi.

The Window by Said Suleiman, co-translated with Mohammed Albakry.

Comedy of Sorrows by Ibrahim El-Husseini, co-translated with Mohammed Albakry.

In Search of Said Abu-Naga by Ahmed Hassan Al-Banna, co-translated with Mohammed Albakry.