This text by Silvia Rivera Cusicanqui was undertranslated by the third year students of the Critical Studies minor from the Willem de Kooning Academy.
Short intro into Silvia Rivera Cusicanqui, La Paz (Bolivia) 1949. She was once derogatorily called sochologa: a mixture of sociologist and chola. She made the attack her flag. She is also a historian and essayist. She was a professor at the Universidad Mayor de San Andrés. She was director and co-founder of the Andean Oral History Workshop (THOA). She has an extensive militant career. Today she is a member of the Chi’xi Collective.
The word and concept of Ch’ixi is the main concept of her book and work, it is taken from Aymara culture: “It captures the Aymara idea of something that is and is not at the same time. Ch’ixi “expresses the parallel coexistence of multiple cultural differences that do not extinguish but instead antagonize and complement each other.”
Everybody translated one page, interlingualy (between languages) and intralingualy (to your own words, slang) after that we made a coral reading of each of the pages, trying to grasp the concept of micropolicts.
The final text is very difficult to read, and is more the trace of the experience of the undertranslation. As Puerto rican artist Beatriz Santiago recently shared with is: translating is the best way of reading. We got that feeling in the workshop, even with all the difficulties, we left with a feeling that we came close the concept of micropolitics by doing micropolitics, by using decolonial pedagogy.
undertranslators: Vera de Oliveira Martins Machado da Costa, Samyuktha Rajagopal, Camila Trapasso, Dimis Zymaras, Stefanie Essaadi, Frans Wassen and Dodzi Nyaku.