chapter
Epilogue
Pages 6

Today, nearly two centuries after the Romantics proclaimed their new philosophy of language, many studies of self-translators are still premised on the structure of a “split” into languages, cultures, identities, even warring selves, as we saw apropos of Charles d’Orléans, Goldoni, and Green, for example. We have discovered that it is rather a structure of continuities, on the order of repetition with variation, that best characterizes the self-translators’ enterprise over the centuries. Moreover it has become clear to us that a great deal of fine comparative work can be done on bilingual texts by using standard literary-critical analysis, of the sort that examines the interrelations of monolingual texts by a given writer, like Petrarch’s sonnets as a group or Tolstoy’s novels, or the poems or successive autobiographies of any monolingual writer: once one overleaps the monolingual horizon and can read stereoscopically, the similarities signify as instantiations of a singular poetics in dual discourse. We have found that this is so primarily because bilingual writers across the centuries seem to share certain notions about language.