Benjamin

In The Translators Task, Benjamin relates translation to “a form of art”. He explains that both art and translation should not be concerned with their communicative purposes but rather their “pure form of language”. In accordance with Benjamin, I believe that such a “pure form of language” cannot exist. For instance, if one considers a sentence “I love dogs”, the sentence itself prevents language from becoming pure. The three words strung together in a sentence producing “I love dogs” communicates a particular idea since it possesses meaning. But, as Benjamin argues, the sentence itself is “the wall in front of the language of the original”. Is this to say that in a single work of translation one must have an understanding of all the languages of the world to break such a barrier? Would this mean the only way to achieve a “pure form” of language is via the sum of all languages?

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