Kalila and Dimna as a case study: Ibn al-Muqaffa''s and Nasrullah Munshi's translations
Wahab Khalifa, A
Routledge Handbook of Arabic Translation
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van Ruymbeke, C. (2020). Kalila and Dimna as a case study: Ibn al-Muqaffa''s and Nasrullah Munshi's translations. In Hanna, SF. Routledge, Routledge Handbook of Arabic Translation. [Book chapter]. https://doi.org/10.17863/CAM.13142
The Book of Kalīla and Dimna (henceforth KD) holds an iconic place in the history of Arabic translations. Its endurance through many centuries, its adoption in many cultural environments and its complex story of propagation through translations and rewritings receive prominent mentions in works on medieval Arabic and Persian literature. These elements alert us to the book’s importance and point towards the universal pertinence of its contents. The book’s broad relevance could explain that the core of the KD transcended the boundaries of time and culture and that it was able to adapt to new contexts, languages and cultures. This core consists of main stories in which are embedded a number of sub-stories. Together, they constitute a mirror for princes of psychological rather than politico-administrative or moral remit. The book examines timeless interactions, denounces manipulative techniques in word and in action, and exposes the positive and negative outcomes of this social manipulation. The stories require thoughtful decoding and their form ensures that these “examples” are adaptable to private as well as political ends, though they seem specifically designed to guide the judgment of rulers within the jungle of the court. The elaborate structure of the text covers contrapuntal contents: several pedagogical levels and voices criss-cross through the work.
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This record's DOI: https://doi.org/10.17863/CAM.13142