Ron Silliman on World Literature

Ron Silliman doesn’t talk much about world literature or translation (in fact, as he notes, “to this date still no books in a foreign language”), but on the tenth anniversary of the birth of Silliman’s blog, he posted part of his take on “the question of national literatures, the Nation Question,” he says, “as my friends in the Old Left might have phrased it.” This is what he writes:

But the movement of capital, of business – and ultimately of jobs and economic futures – gets carried out in language and through many local cultures, and the transformation of poetry from a series of largely self-contained literary enclaves into a global writing is itself a profoundly complicated phenomenon. There are enormous advantages in 2012 to being an American writing in English, but these do not come about free of complicity with the processes that make these advantages real. Similarly, there are enormous complexities to being a non-American writing in English, as there to being a writer in any other language, especially those that are “minority” languages within a given national context.

See more here.