Why Is Translation Important for Indian Literature?

Why Translation of Literature is important in a country like India?

The relevance of vernacular language literature and translations in India has been in talk of the town owing to Indian novelist Geetanjali Shree’s Hindi novel Ret Samadhi, which was recently translated into English as Tomb of Sand by Daisy Rockwell and won the prestigious International Booker Prize in the last month. This comes at a time when the publishing industry has just witnessed a resurrection in promoting translation. Publishers have realized the value of translations and have begun to invest in their promotion.

Are we going through a changing time? 

Even a few years ago many publishers were doubtful to invest money on translations, claiming the possibility that they would not be appealing to the global readers and hence would not be consumed internationally and subsequently become a commercial failure. The translation scenario in India has definitely improved, owing to the concentrated efforts of various people and organizations. Whereas Indian languages like Bengali, Malayalam, and Tamil, have a greater number of translations into other regional languages as well as English, many other Indian languages require ongoing support to bring their literature to the larger audience. Translation became an equally important part of the publishing vision as you can’t run your business in the publishing industry in a country like India, with is a multicultural as well as multilingual nation without publishing translation. The media exposure and prizes that regional authors are receiving  have greatly aided in bringing these wonderful, captivating literary works to the attention of the people.

Is translation of the vernacular Indian literature necessary?

India has always been a country with a diverse range of culture and languages. As India has a diverse range of languages, with hundreds still spoken today contemporary laws give equitable representation in the constitution, respecting the feelings of all language speakers. In India, English literature grew in popularity during the previous century. An examination of Indian literatures in the last few decades of nineteenth century and first few years of twentieth century demonstrates that translation as an art and practice was significantly responsible for its expansion. Many Indian authors might have stayed unknown beyond India if it hadn’t been for translation. Without the English translated version of the masterpiece Gitanjali, who would have known of Rabindranath Tagore?Translators are recognizing the value of translations, particularly when it comes to translating not only classics but also the modern literary texts. Most of the Indian writers and scholars have come to the conclusion that translation aids in the integration of India and the rest of the world. By removing linguistic restrictions, writers and publishing houses will have a better opportunity to showcase their creativity, perception, and insights. It easily facilitates in adding a variety of your work and ensuring that it reaches a large number of people who are interested. Aside from the assistance of linguistic professionals, one can communicate considerably more effectively in foreign nations. It can be said that it fosters unity across diverse cultures, which is fascinating. It not only brings that language to the forefront, but it also allows the rest of the world to see India from a unique perspective. When a writer translates, they get the ability to share their views and to constantly expand.

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