Kelletat A.F. The “Internationalist” Rosa Luxemburg as a Translator [Kelletat A.F. Die «Internationalistin» Rosa Luxemburg als Übersetzerin]


Andreas F. Kelletat

Doctor, Professor, Head of the Department of German Language and Intercultural German Studies, Institute of Translation Studies, Linguistics and Cultural Studies, The Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz

An der Hochschule, 2, D-76726 Germersheim, Mainz, Germany

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idn = 122945212 (Deutsche National Bibliothek)

Abstract. This article is devoted to the description of the translation activity of Rosa Luxemburg, one of the most influential representatives of the German and European revolutionary left-wing Social Democracy. She was proficient in the Polish, Russian, German and French languages, and she conducted active propaganda, an important component of which consisted in the translation of works and articles by prominent Social Democrats into German and Polish. The author of the article carries out a diachronic analysis of the translation activity of Rosa Luxemburg. It is noted that translations from Russian and Polish played an important role in the preparation of the doctoral dissertation by Rosa Luxemburg. The dissertation was presented in Switzerland and dealt with the problems of Poland's industrial development. The translatological evaluation of Rosa Luxemburg's translations has not yet been undertaken, and the relevance of the given research consists in the new interpretation of the ways of forming the political discourse of the Social Democrats in Europe at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. Analysis of Rosa Luxemburg's main translations allows noting that the translation of Vladimir Korolenko's book The History of my Contemporary, which was published after her tragic death, is of the highest importance among all the translations. The translation of V. Korolenko's book was republished many times, and the prospect of the article consists both in evaluating the quality of R. Luxemburg's translation and in analyzing the perception of this book in Europe during the entire 20th century until 1985, when it was included in the Library of World Literature of the Zurich publishing house Manesse-Verlag.

Key words: Rosa Luxemburg, internationalist, social democrat, translator, translation, translation activity, propaganda, The History of my Contemporary.

Citation. Kelletat A.F. Die «Internationalistin» Rosa Luxemburg als Übersetzerin. Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 2, Yazykoznanie [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. Linguistics], 2017, vol. 16, no. 3, pp. 41-47. DOI:

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