Is the exhaustive expansion of (western) science and technology synonymous with western culture? Are key concepts such as universality, totality and globality synonymous? Can they be validated as concepts outside of dominating western languages and cultures? Postcolonial theory intends to respond to the unshared power of western epistemology by a radical inversion: the oneness of western epistemology, it says, must acknowledge the plurality of repressed forms of knowledge. But turning aside from universality by emphasizing ‘pluriversality’ does not free us from abstraction or warrant that the concepts we are using hereby are entitled to overcome the limits of global western epistemological domination. However, considering translation as a necessary precondition of transcultural negotiation places the paradox of a non-homogeneous universality in a different perspective, once we take into account the dynamics of translation as negotiation of the untranslatable.
Science, technology, Postcolonial theory, translation