For many writers writing in English today, English is but one of a number of languages, and by extension cultures, to which they have access. The question arises of the impact of this sometimes latent, sometimes explicit, multilingualism on generic and other literary forms and conventions. To what extent is English literature today a literature in translation in the sense that it is formed at the confluence of different literary and cultural traditions and is mediated or brokered by multilingual individuals? And to what extent might literary creativity today be premised on access to more than one language and/or set of cultural and literary traditions? English as a Literature in Translation examines the complexities of writing in English and assesses the extent to which language practices in English have been localized and/or culturally inflected, even as English has become a global medium of communication.
Fiona J. Doloughan is Lecturer in English at The Open University, UK.