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Les intraduisibles du patrimoine en Afrique subsaharienne

Danièle Wozny
Barbara Cassin

In English. Heritage Untranslatables in Sub-Saharan Africa

List of contributors

Texte intégral

1Born and educated in Tanzania, HERMAN BATIBO has been fascinated by multilingualism ever since primary school, where he and his schoolmates, who spoke dozens of different languages, were taught in Swahili and English. He studied at the University of Dar es salam before coming to Paris, where, after reading Classics, learning French and studying linguistics, his interest turned to African languages, including his native Sukuma. He taught at the University of Dar es salam, in Tanzania, before taking up a position at the University of Botswana, where he was Head of the Department of African Languages and Literatures between 1994 and 2003. He joined the Acalan team in 2006. His book Language Decline and Death in Africa: Causes, Consequences and Challenges (2005) examines African languages threatened with extinction, especially by other more dominant and widely-spoken African languages. His research focuses on linguistic domination, the role of attitudes to language, the processes at work in language switching, and the measures needed to reverse these processes.

2HAMADY BOCOUM is an archaeologist, anthropologist and art historian. He has been Director of Senegal’s Cultural Heritage Department since 2001, and at the head of its Architecture and Listed Monuments Bureau since 2005. He is General Director of IFAN (Institut Fondamental d’Afrique Noire) at Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar, where he teaches and carries out research, notably on iron metallurgy in Africa. He regularly represents Senegal, as well as the African continent as a whole, at international heritage conventions: in particular, he sits on the Management Council of the African World Heritage Fund, is a member of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, and is President of ICOMOS Senegal.

3He works in French, English, Wolof and Pulaar (or Fulfulde) and actively promotes the international recognition of African cultural productions through exhibitions, publications and conferences. He curated Arts d’Afrique, an exhibition held during the third World Festival of Black Arts in Dakar in December 2010.

4BARBARA CASSIN is a philologist and a philosopher who specialises in Greek thought. Her work covers discursive practices, philosophy, rhetoric, sophism, politics, and translation. Among other things, she is the editor of Vocabulaire européen des philosophies. Dictionnaire des intraduisibles (Seuil, le Robert, 2004), which has been and/or is being translated and adapted into American English (Dictionary of Untranslatables, Princeton, 2014), Ukrainian (L’Esprit et la lettre, 3 vols published so far), Arabic (Centre Culturel arabe, one vol. published to date), Romanian (Polirom, in press), Mexican Spanish (Siglo XXI), Brazilian Portuguese, Russian, Italian, Greek and Hebrew. She is a CNRS Research Director, and was awarded the Académie Française’s philosophy prize in 2012 in recognition of her work as a whole.

5MOULAYE COULIBALY holds a Master of Advanced Studies in Ethnology from Saint Petersburg State University (Russia). He first held a position in Mali’s Department of Cultural Heritage before becoming Head of the “Ethnographic Heritage” Division in Mali’s National Directorate of Cultural Heritage and the Ministry of Culture. He is now Deputy National Director of Mali’s Department of Cultural Heritage and lectures on cultural heritage management at Bamako’s Institut universitaire du Développement territorial. Between 1995 and 2014, he undertook several heritage research projects at the national and international levels on heritage conservation, promotion and dissemination, including monitoring and evaluating cultural projects and implementing cultural heritage legislation issued by national bodies and international conventions. In 1994, he published Traditions et innovations dans la société bambara (éd. du Cercle de Ségou).

6A former preparatory class student in France – where he studied Greek and Latin at the Lycée Champollion in Grenoble before securing his doctorate from the Sorbonne (1977) – FARY SILATE KA is a researcher in linguistics and a specialist of Pulaar-Fulfulde based at IFAN-Ch. Anta Diop, at Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar. His work is essentially concerned with promoting African languages, with a focus on comparative dialectology, terminology and lexicography. Being familiar with almost all of the languages spoken in Senegal as well as a few other African languages – notably Arabic, Serer and Wolof – he is also interested in comparative and genetic linguistics. Select publications include Le pulaar au Sénégal, étude dialectologique (1983), Problématique de la standardisation linguistique: le cas du pulaar/fulfulde (1991), De l’oral à la publication: guide de l’éditeur en langues africaines (2006), and Pourquoi et comment l’Afrique doit s’unir? (2012). An earnest Panafricanist and an active supporter of Africa’s unity and cultural renaissance, he has always made his skills available to development organisations delivering education and training in African languages. He is the President of the Senegalese Academy of National Languages (ASLN) and of ACALAN’s Fulfulde commission (Fulcom). At present, he is also in charge of the Linguistics Laboratory at IFAN-Ch. A. Diop. He is the author of this work’s translation into Fulfulde.

7SOUMANA KANE, who has translated this work into Bamanakan, works at the Centre national des ressources de l’éducation non formelle (CNR-ENF), in Bamako, Mali.

8FRANCISCO SOZINHO MATSINHE holds a PhD in Linguistics from the School of Oriental and African Languages (SOAS) at the University of London. His research focuses on language contact, bilingual education in schools, the use of African languages in the delivery of teaching in the school system, and the morphology and syntax of Bantu languages. From 1992 to 2009, he lectured in the Department of African Languages at the University of South Australia (UNISA). Since 2009, he has held the position of Executive Secretary at Acalan, an agency of the African Union which seeks to promote the use of African languages in all areas of social life, in partnership with Africa’s former colonial languages. He has been invited to speak at a large number of African, Brazilian, Australian, Canadian and American universities.

9VINCENT NÉGRI is a CNRS researcher at the Centre for Studies on International Legal Cooperation (CECOJI). His research focuses on comparative and international law in the areas of culture and cultural heritage, as well as on the relationship between norms and cultures. He is also an Associate Professor at Senghor University in Alexandria and lectures at the Universities of Paris 1, Paris 11 and Lyon 3. Since 1995, he has worked as a consultant for UNESCO and other international bodies (ICOM, ICCROM, the Council of Europe, etc). He has co-authored Le Dictionnaire comparé du droit du patrimoine culturel, (composite work), CNRS éditions, 2012. Recent publications include Le patrimoine culturel, cible des conflits armés. De la guerre civile espagnole aux guerres du XXIe siècle, (editor), Bruylant, 2014.

10MARGARET RIGAUD has translated this work into English. She was educated in Paris (ENS of Fontenay/Saint-Cloud) and Oxford (DPhil, 2000) and specialises in the translation of works in the human and social sciences.

11NATHAN SCHLANGER (Cambridge PhD, 1995) is an archaeologist and a historian of the social sciences. He is interested in technology and material culture, as well as the history of archaeology and the politics of heritage, particularly in colonial and contemporary Africa. Select publications include L’Archéologie préventive en Afrique: enjeux et perspectives (2008, coeditor, éditions Sépia), La Préhistoire des autres. Perspectives archéologiques et anthropologiques (2012, coeditor, éditions La Découverte), and European Archaeology Abroad. Global Settings, Comparative Perspectives (2013, coeditor, Sidestone Press). In addition to his functions at INRAP, he is a member of the Ecole du Louvre research team and the UMR 8215 Trajectoires, and also an expert and board member of ICOMOS’ International Committee for Archaeological Heritage Management (ICAHM). Since September 2014, he has been Director of Studies in Archaeology at the Ecole nationale des Chartes.

12DANIÈLE WOZNY taught Classics before becoming interested in the dissemination and mediation of knowledge. She is the editor of the “alors” series at the Pompidou Centre. In 1998, she curated Train des sciences en Inde, the first exhibition of science media held at the National Museum of Natural History (MNHN) in Paris. She also co-curated Parfums d’Egypte at the National Museum of Cairo; Quand les sciences parlent arabe at the Cairo Museum of Islamic Art; and Tisser le paradis at the Carpet Museum of Iran, in Tehran. She has also organised meetings, conferences, seminars, and television and radio shows in the context of her career as a cultural attaché at various French embassies. Between 2008 and 2013, she was at the head of the World Heritage Department at the French Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

13The contributors met at the Fondation des Treilles, collectively setting out the outline of this work through group discussions, followed by solitary writing sessions which were then appraised and validated by the group as a whole. Some of the more contentious passages were written collectively. Email was used to carry on with this work after everyone went home.

© Demopolis, 2014

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