Reading, Writing and Translation in the Relacion Acerca De Las Antiguedades De Los Indios (c.1498) by Fray Ramon Pane

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This critical study examines various readings of Ramón Pané’s Relación acerca de las antigüedades de los indios (c. 1498), telling the story of the multiple layered readings of the 1974 version of the text put together by José Juan Arrom. The original, written by Fray Ramón Pané, a young brother from the Convent of Saint Jerome de la Murta in Badalona, Spain who sailed with Christopher Columbus on his second voyage to the New World, offers a glimpse into the earliest moments of Europe’s encounter with the New World. The centuries of reading to which this work has been subjected have shaped its interpretation and translation as individuals from different times, places, and cultures have tried to associate with those things described in the text while also reflecting on themselves, producing an autoethnography.


“The current study by Constance Janiga-Perkins brings to our attention a highly unusual text, one that exists only in translated versions ... Ramón Pané’s Relación, by virtue of its ethnographic agenda and the humane insights it offers us about the native population it describes, constitutes ideal data and will interest scholars in several different fields.” – Professor Mona Baker, Center for Translation Studies, University of Manchester“This is an innovative, polished, and introspective book written by a seasoned scholar with much to offer. Dr. Janiga-Perkins seems to urge her readers to traverse the multiplicity of textual layers, to dwell on the ‘constellation of meanings,’ and, the same as she has done, to pen their own autoethnography.” – Professor Michael A. Schnepf, The University of Alabama

“Unlike studies appealing to a group of scholars in one area, this study attracts the attention of historians, literary critics, translators and culturalists alike ... Original, insightful and well-written, this book, while revealing Amerindians as ‘more human and “civilized”,’ becomes a deftly crafted dagger in the heart of the monstrous notion of Europeans as ‘civilizers of Indians.’” – Professor José I. Suárez, Department of Hispanic Studies, University of Northern Colorado

Table of Contents

Preface by Mona Baker
1 “Pané, por consiguiente, también fue un gran descubridor”: Relación acerca de las antigüedades de los indios and Early Auto/ethnography
2 José Juan Arrom: Reader and Translator/Writer
3 Mapping the Translating Subject: Punctuation, Marginalia, and Translation in the Body of the 1974 Arrom Edition
4 Translation and Healing: Reading, Writing, and Becoming Whole in the 1974 Relación
Works Cited

Other Ethnicity and Race Books