The words novel, drama and poetry can be translated because they refer to well-known specific concepts. Words referring to endogenous or indigenous forms and norms with cultural codes unknown to us cannot be translated. The translation of these words does not provide much information about them. The word koteba in bambara, a language spoken in Mali, means “a big snail”. The word hainteny (science of speech in Malagasy) refers to a specific type of popular oral poetry. What does the word concert-party (used in Nigeria, Ghana, Togo) or the Swahili word manganja mean? An analysis of these endogenous genres with a heavily anthropological meaning leads to some conclusions about their normative, cultural and communal dimensions.
"Normes endogènes : pratiques culturelles, traduction impossible,"
Présence Francophone: Revue internationale de langue et de littérature: Vol. 76
, Article 9.
Available at: https://crossworks.holycross.edu/pf/vol76/iss1/9