Chapter published in:Translating Asymmetry – Rewriting Power
Edited by Ovidi Carbonell i Cortés and Esther Monzó-Nebot
[Benjamins Translation Library 157] 2021
► pp. 15–33
It has been argued that traditional notions of the stranger, as put forward in classical accounts by Simmel, Schütz and others, need to be re-examined in the light of widespread social developments that challenge the divisions between the self and the other that were once taken for granted. This chapter addresses the significance of the cosmopolitan stranger, whose skills are especially important under conditions of generalised societal strangeness. A consideration of the interrelated notions of distance and strangeness in the social experience of the stranger is offered and the specific features of the cosmopolitan stranger examined. After that, the cases of two cosmopolitan strangers (“dog whisperer” Cesar Millan and 9/11 impostor survivor Tania Head) who have played a prominent social role in societies that were not initially their own are discussed. A concluding section returns to the notions of distance and strangeness in order to generalise from these particular cases by relating them to different strategies for translating the foreign.
Keywords: strangeness, cosmopolitan stranger, distance, otherness, cosmopolitanism, Cesar Millan, Tania Head
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