It's all in the attitude: Parodies of Rachid Taha and Seu Jorge

Galia Hirsch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Building on various theoretical approaches to translation (Hickey 1998; Bassnett 2001), this article demonstrates the intersection between translation and parody (Aoyama and Wakabayashi 1999) by comparing two musical texts: Rachid Taha's “Douce France” and Seu Jorge's Portuguese translation of David Bowie's “Life on Mars?”. According to Linda Hutcheon's (1985) view of parody as a form of repetition maintaining a critical distance, both texts are parodic. Each parody presents a very different attitude, which influences their ethos. Rachid Taha's cover involves irony, which often marks parody (Hutcheon 1985), and thus a negative ethos: criticizing his new country for grievances against immigrants. Seu Jorge, however, pays tribute to the Bowie song he translates. These observations illustrate the close relationship between parody and translation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)223-241
Number of pages19
JournalTranslation and Interpreting Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - 9 Oct 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© John Benjamins Publishing Company


  • David Bowie
  • Irony
  • Parody
  • Popular music
  • Rachid Taha


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