New York City
Written by Brian Friel, Translations, is set during the summer of 1833 in a rural hedge-school in the town of Baile Beag, an Irish-speaking community in County Donegal. A detachment of the Royal Engineers, making the first Ordnance Survey, sets up camp in a nearby field. For purposes of cartography, the local Gaelic place names have to be recorded and rendered into English. In examining the effects of this operation on the lives of a small group, Friel reveals the far-reaching personal and cultural effects of an action which is, at first sight, purely administrative.
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