/ Download the full version

Abstracts below are arranged in alphabetical order of authors' surnames.

Author Abstract title
Abdulla, A.K. Translation and Subversion
Bahrawi, Nazry Ideology, Patronage and Translation in Malaysia: Malay Supremacy and Umno Politics in the Malay translation of Syed Hussein Alatas' The Myth of the Lazy Native
Chakraborty Dasgupta, Subha Plurilingual Resonances, Concepts and Interventions: Translations in Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century Bengal
Chang Namfung On the Aim of the Asian Translation Traditions Conferences
Cheung, Martha “Beyond Eurocentrism in Translation Studies: Introducing a Research Project for International Collaboration”
Chittiphalangsri, Phrae King Vajiravudh as a Translator: Thai Literary Polysystem at the Era of Modernization
Cho, Sung-Eun Translating Korea’s First Feminist Voice: Case Study of Na Hye-seok' Gyeong-hui
Chou, Andrew Loyal to Whom? Liaison Officers in the Army, ROC, 1950s
Chu Chi Yu

Revisiting Functionalist Text Typology in Translation

Clements, Rebekah Methodological challenges in the study of pre-modern Japanese translation traditions
Cui Wendong Translating National Character: Treatments of Chinese Image in Chinese Translations of The Farther Adventures of Robinson Crusoe in Late Qing
Curran, Beverley Noh Directions: The circulation of ideas in the translation theory and criticism of Nogami Toyoichiro
Faiq, Said A Cultural Assessment of Medieval Arabic translation
Fogel, Joshua Chinese Translations of Japanese Poetry in the Ming Period
Haddadian Moghaddam, Esmaeil Agents of translation in the modernization of Iran: towards an “agent model”
Halkias, Georgios T. Translating the Foreign into the Local: Production and Reproduction of Buddhist Texts from Imperial Tibet
Henitiuk, Valerie Translating Readers: The Initial Western Response to Japanese Literature
Hill, Michael Resisting Translation: Esperanto in Early Twentieth-Century China
Hsu Chu-ching Language Ideology in Translation: Examples from Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Huang Kowo Max Translating “Sociology” in the Late Qing
Huters, Theodore Wenxue and New Practices of Writing
Hyun, Theresa ‘What’s in a Name?’ North Korean Literary Translators and the Appropriation of Foreign Cultures from the Late 1940s to the mid 1960s
Jedamski, Doris Of Butterflies and Camellias – French Literature in Malay
Kar, Supriya The Moon and the Mirror: Changing Images of Literary Translation in Orissa
Kornicki, Peter Why did Hayashi Razan translate Chinese texts?
Kothari, Rita Translating Banni: The Invisible Nation
Kwan Sze Pui Uganda Patriots or traitors? Chinese Protector in the British Colonial Government of the Strait Settlements in the mid nineteenth century.
Lai Tsz-yun Sharon An Ill Fated Translation of Ill Fated Lovers: On the Two Earliest Chinese Translations of Wuthering Heights
Lee Gong-way A Critical Analysis of Lin Yu-tang’s Translation Theory
Lee Ken-fang Manipulating Literary Fame: A Study of Chinese Translations of Virginia Woolf's Works
Li Xilao Who’s Wu Tao? ---A Pioneer Translator’s Life and Work
Liang Zhifang Looking at Self Through Gaze of the Other: Chinese Translations of Pearl Buck’s China Novel The Good Earth
Lung, Rachel Interpreting Traces in an Archived Kirghiz Account in Medieval China
Meade, Ruselle The Cultural Shaping of Engineering: Adaptation of Rankine’s engineering science in early Meiji-era Japan
Mizuno, Akira Development of conflicting translational norms in Meiji and Taisho periods: The influence of translation on the formation of modern Japanese literature
Naganuma, Mikako Nogami Toyoichiro’s “On Translation” and its implications
Nanjo, Etsuko Acceptance of “foreignisation” in translation and school textbooks in Meiji Era (1868-1912)
Okayama, Emiko Translation and Transformation of 水滸伝 (Suikoden) in Japan
Pansare, Megha The Translations of Russian Literature into Marathi Polysystem in the colonial and neo-colonial context
Qian Nanxiu Translating the West in the Name of Reform: The Late Qing Woman-translator Xue Shaohui (1866-1911)
Raine, Roberta “The Translator in Tibetan History”
Ramakrishnan, E.V. Translation and the Literary Public Sphere: The Role of Translation in Radicalizing Literary Sensibility in Malayalam Literature during the 1930s and 40s
Sato, Miki Deviation from or (Re-)Creation of the Translation Tradition in Japan?
Sato-Rossberg, Nana Translator Visibility in Self-Translation: Chiri Yukie and Ainu Myths
Satyanath, T.S. Commentary as Interpretation and Translation in Medieval Indian Representations
Shin Jae-ho Translation and sinicization: Xiaojing translation in Tuoba Wei and Mongol Yüan
St. André, James “Lessons from Chinese History: Translation as a Collaborative and Multi-stage Process”
Uchiyama, Akiko Wakamatsu Shizuko: A Study of a Meiji Female Translator in Japan
Vardar, Ayza Translated West in the Early Modernization Phase of Turkey
Villareal, Corazon D. Translation and Performativity in the Philippines
Wakabayashi, Judy ReOrienting Translation Studies: Toward Commensurability
Wei Ling-Chia Translation Transcends?—Transnational Agents of Religions in China—
Weissbrod, Rachel Translation and its Absence in Israeli Films Featuring Foreign Workers from East Asia
Woesler, Martin Choices of subjectivity and randomness - Non-representativeness as a characteristic of the cultural field of the translation of German literature into Chinese
Wong Man Kong Colonialism and the Politics of Translation in Early Hong Kong
Wong, Lawrence Wang-chi Chouban yiwu (Managing the Barbarians)”: Westerners as Barbarians in the Translation History of the 19th Century China
Xiong Ying Translations and Sino-Japanese Literary Communication in Manchukuo
Yan Tsz Ting Collaborative Translation and the Transmission of Science: A note on Alexander Wylie and Li Shanlan’s translation on western mathematics
Zha Mingjian Power Discourse, Translation Selection and the Manipulation of World Literature: A Chinese Perspective
Zheng, Ethan Yiting Three Ends of the World:  Intertextuality among Camille Flammarion's OMEGA: The Last Days of the World, Liang Qichao's Shijie mori ji, and Bao Tianxiao's “Shijie mori ji.”

Author: Abdulla, A.K.
Affiliation: English Department, University of Sharjah, UAE

Translation and Subversion

Translation has always been described in different metaphors as a vehicle, a means, and a bridge between nations, bringing knowledge, wisdom, and new modes of thinking to the receiving culture. In medieval times, in Baghdad, the House of Wisdom under al-Ma'mūn (reigned 813-833 A.D.) was a unique experience in the Arabic and Islamic culture, which helped not only preserve the philosophy and sciences of the Greeks, Persians and Hindus but also improved them through the numerous translations, commentaries, and explanations which scholars provided for texts, and eventually disseminated them to the Western World.

Unfortunately, there are a few instances when a poor translation damages those bridges and renders the source text inaccessible. The same translators who otherwise are harbingers of new ideas and modes of thought could hinder the communication between nations. The most glaring example in Arabic translation movement is the translation of Aristotle's Poetics into Arabic by Abi Bishr Matta bin Younis al-Qina'ay (935). Two centuries later, Averros [ Ibm Rushd] made an abridgement tin Arabic that was translated into Latin in the thirteenth century by Hermann. Both translation and abridgement had disastrous consequences on Arabic criticism. Because the translator was unfamiliar with the Greek poetic genres and the traditions of poetry, he enforced Arabic poetic traditions, genres, and values on the Greek text. The result was that The Poetics was never understood by the Arabs nor assimilated into their literary studies.



Author: Bahrawi, Nazry
Affiliation: Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies, University of Warwick, UK

Ideology, Patronage and Translation in Malaysia:
Malay Supremacy and Umno Politics in the Malay translation of
Syed Hussein Alatas' The Myth of the Lazy Native

The dominant postcolonial view that translations by the colonised often serve to unshackle hegemony begs the question: Is it always a case of “the Empire translating back” (Bassnett and Trivedi 8)? Put another way, could a translation by formerly colonised group subjugate as much as liberate? Focusing on the Malay translation of Syed Hussein Alatas’ The Myth of the Lazy Native (1977) with the Indonesian translation as a foil for comparison, this paper will argue that a privileged class of the formerly suppressed colonised subjects is indeed capable of reproducing the suppressive rhetoric of their former masters. Hailed as a seminal work that has decentred the European colonial endeavour to subjugate natives into a subservient position, Alatas’ Myth has been described by some scholars as a precursor to Edward Said’s oft-cited theory of Orientalism. Myth’s influence could be gleaned from the fact that it has been cited by at least 76 academic works. With close reference to Lefevere’s concept of patronage in translation, this paper will read the variegated ways in which the Malay adaptation takes a sinister turn in subjugating the Malaysia’s other ethnicities to a racialised ideology known as ketuanan Melayu (Malay supremacy) that is the bedrock philosophy of Malaysia’s ruling political party, the United Malays National Organisation (Umno). By factoring in the extratextual context, this paper will also posit that the Malay translation of Myth qualifies as a political challenge to Dr Mahathir Mohamad, then Malaysian prime minister, when he was seen to be at his weakest.



Author: Chakraborty Dasgupta, Subha
Affiliation: Department of Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University, India

Plurilingual Resonances, Concepts and Interventions:
Translations in Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century Bengal

Translation activity in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century in Bengal emerges from a multilingual context and a multilingual impulse. This is manifested not just in the fact that the same translator often translates from languages as distant as Sanskrit and English or even that compilations consist of translations from many languages, but also the fact that the very language into which one translates bears traces of various forms and idioms as well as of different languages   Also even after translation activities receive an institutionalised form after the Vernacular Literature Society or the Society for Translation into Bangla is set up in 1851, ideas and concepts regarding 'translation' continue to vary and one finds a considerable number of terms by which the transfer from one language to another is designated. These terms are often amorphous and include a whole range of perceptions related to borrowing, imitation and transformation. The plurilingual resonance, the nature of translation and interventions through translation that this basic premise designates would be the subject matter of my paper. I would like to argue that it is possible to think of continuity in terms of the historiography of translation in the region based on an ethics of sharing and of moving together.



Author: Chang Namfung
Affiliation: Department of Translation, Lingnan University, Hong Kong

On the Aim of the Asian Translation Traditions Conferences

The aim of the Asian Translation Traditions conferences, which is “to challenge the Eurocentric bias of Translation Studies by exploring the richness and diversity of non-Western discourses and practices of translation”, is apparently formulated on the still-to-be-proved assumptions that the dominance of Western theories is caused by power differentials instead of academic superiority. Such postcolonialist thinking is based on a strong, prescriptive version of cultural relativism, which claims—without presenting any evidence or even in disregard of evidence to the contrary—that “cultures are equally valid” or that “no culture is superior to another”, presumably on the grounds that any standards for measuring the validity of cultures must be ethnocentric. However, there are objective and cross-culturally intersubjective standards for certain aspects of cultures, such as academic research and human rights, and by these standards some cultures are indeed superior to others. Behind the desire to avoid criticizing peripheral cultures is a concern for political correctness, sometimes at the expense of the truth.



Author: Cheung, Martha
Affiliation: Department of Translation, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong

"Beyond Eurocentrism in Translation Studies:
Introducing a Research Project for International Collaboration"

This article examines, in the context of Chinese discourse on translation, a phenomenon observable in translation studies in the Euro-American world in the last few decades, and that is, the reconceptualization of translation. Based on historical research, the article shows that in different periods in the history of translation in China, there have been repeated attempts to respond to the realities of translation of the time by offering new (as opposed to established) conceptualizations and explications of fanyi 翻譯 (translation). What these conceptualizations are will be analyzed with reference to a number of texts taken from different periods of Chinese discourse on translation. The article will also explore the connections between and amongst these conceptualizations and show how a mental frame could be produced that could serve as the blueprint of a project of international collaborative research, one in which ethnocentric bias of all kinds will have no place. In the last section of the article, the author will carry on with the tradition of reconceptualizing translation by offering one more definition of fanyi (translation).



Author: Chittiphalangsri, Phrae
Affiliation: Department of Comparative Literature, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand

King Vajiravudh as a Translator:
Thai Literary Polysystem at the Era of Modernization

The reign of King Vajiravudh (1910-1925) saw a number of developments as part of the nation’s modernization scheme. Newspaper, university, railway and air transportation were among the long list, which also expands to include more abstract media such as literature. King Vajiravudh, or Rama VI, (1881-1925), who was the first Siamese King to receive an education in the West, introduced a wide range of European literary genres and styles through many of his compositions, translations and adaptations of plays, musicals, novels and short stories, ranging from the works of Shakespeare, Tristan Bernard to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.  It was the first time the Thai audience experienced a European-style play in which actors used everyday language and common gestures, instead of the traditional Thai dramatic piece that was filled with elaborated, poetic verses with which the actors gracefully danced along. His translations of short stories and novels also added new definition to the word ‘literature’ in Siam where wannakadee (literature) referred mainly to works written in verse. While King Vajiravudh was widely seen as a prominent literary figure, very little has been mentioned about him as a translator, whose importation of European literature into Siam changed the Thai literary production and consumption to a large extent, and marked the milestone of literary modernization in the Thai history. Using the framework of Even-Zohar’s polysystem theory, this paper aims to present the case of translation and modernization in Thailand as an interaction between the local and the Western literary systems. It also explores the aspect of ‘adaptation’ in King Vajiravudh’s literary translation agenda, which was partly the result of his nationalism campaign. It then summarises the role of King Vajiravudh as translator and its effect on the country’s literary polysystem.



Author: Cho, Sung-Eun
Affiliation: Department of English Interpretation and Translation, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, South Korea

Translating Korea's First Feminist Voice:
Case Study of Na Hye-seok' Gyeong-hui

This presentation is a case study, from a translator's point of view, of some unique characteristics which mark the process of translating the works of a feminist writer in Colonial Korea. Na Hye-seok is one of the first Koreans to graduate form a Japanese art college and is considered to be the most famous member of the first generation of the so-called “New Women” in Korea. Her short stories, essays and poems reveal her female consciousness, discussing how deeply she thinks about what it means to live as a woman in a deeply patriarchal society and how earnestly she strives to overcome the problems she has had to face as an educated women of the period.

The presentation will attempt to detail the processes that the translator chose to adopt for translating Na Hye-seok's short story Gyeong-hui. The measures that were employed in translating the cultural elements and the uniquely feminine voice in the text will be discussed in the presentation. The presentation will also proceed to discuss why the works and subsequently the translations of Na Hye-seok had been excluded from the literary canon. Translation can be said to be the most active form of reading and interpretation, and this paper aims to offer a viewpoint from a translator involved in translating a minority text into English.



Author: Chou, Andrew
Affiliation: Department of Applied English, Kai-nan University, Taiwan

Loyal to Whom? Liaison Officers in the Army, ROC, 1950s

German Functional School that highlights Skopostheorie leaves one epistemological gap for us to fill in, and that concern may go beyond either Nord or Holz-Mattai harbors. To be sure, unsatisfied with the Theory of Translation Action initiated by Holz-Mattai, who sought to marginalize source texts as information only (Munday: 2001, p. 78), Nord insisted that “faithfulness” and “loyalty” are two binding principles to tackle the current relativist trend (Nord, 1997: p. 125). Nevertheless, the question regarding the object translators’ are loyal to remains. That said, what would translators’ loyalty go to, if a lacuna happens in the translation process? When Nord argued for the need to commission the translators in a top-down mode so that loyalty can be assured (Nord, 1997, p. 67), what if there is no existing hierarchical structure to ensure the top-down order in a multi-national context?

To address the above questions, this paper examined a case “of particular Asian translation traditions” and “particular translators”, as suggested by the 4th Asian Traditions Conference, by observing translation action of the liaison officers in the Taiwanese army, 1951-1958. These translators could be particularly treated in that they were characterized by a set of stable ideologies—patriotism—and relative less freedom of translation strategies in hand. Methodologically, the paper would take Sorokin’s notion of vacancy derived from the lacuna model (Ertelt-Vieth, 2003) as an independent variable to test a hypothesis: these liaison officers could possibly only be “loyal to” their government authorities. After the census of roughly two hundred pieces of documentary texts going between the Liaison Bureau, Ministry of National Defense, Republic of China, and Military Assistance Advisory Groups, US were collected and analyzed, the paper in the end hoped to identify intervening variables in the link between targeted-orientation and loyalty suggested by the Functional School. The result may also falsify the presumed stance of German Functional School that translation is never a-political.

Keywords: Theory of Translation Action, Loyalty, Lacuna

Ertelt-Vieth, A. 2003. How to Analyse and Handle Cultural Gaps in German Everyday Life. Retrieved December 1, 2009 at www.interculture-online.info .
Munday, J. 2001. Introducing Translation Studies: Theories and Applications. London and New York: Routledge.
Nord, C. 1997. Translation as a Purposeful Activity: Functional Approaches Explained. Manchester: St. Jerome.



Author: Chu Chi Yu
Affiliation: Department of Chinese and Bilingual Studies, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Revisiting Functionalist Text Typology in Translation

Translation is a process of decision making. Throughout history, translators and scholars have tried to base their decisions on the text type. On the basis of Karl Buhler’s organon model (1934) and Roman Jakobson’s modified version (1959), Katharina Reiss (1971, 1989) and Peter Newmark (1973, 1981, 1984) developed their text typologies, and established the relationship between text type and translation strategy. However, their categorizations of sub-types -- text varieties under each text type -- deviate from Buhler’s original intention. For example, Reiss restricts expressive texts to solely serious literature, and excludes other non-literary texts which could have an expressive function; Newmark places legal texts first under vocative function and later under expressive function. This paper proposes a categorization of sub-types by going back to Buhler’s model.



Author: Clements, Rebekah
Affiliation: Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge, UK

Methodological challenges in the study of
pre-modern Japanese translation traditions

The shifting and contentious meaning of “translation” in the European tradition(s) has long been a source of debate among translation theorists. Even if a definition could be pinned down for our own time and place, there remains the question of how to deal with past translation cultures where practices and terminology do not usually map neatly on to our own. For scholars based in “the West,” moreover, these problems are compounded when the attempt is made to study translation traditions further afield.

The case of pre-modern Japan is particularly complex, with transfer into a variety of registers and scripts from both classical and vernacular Chinese, classical Japanese, Dutch, Latin, and more. Of the few scholars who have studied “translation” in pre-modern Japan, many have used English terminology unquestioningly, or have employed modern Japanese words(usually hon’yaku and hon’an) as a framework for understanding a time when translational practices and terminology were very different from today. Although “hon’yaku” does appear in some translational works during Edo-period Japan (1600-1868) for example, it does so amongst a plethora of other terms which are no longer used, and which have hardly been investigated. This paper will sketch a historical outline of some of these and what they reveal about the conceptualization of “translation” and the diverse translational activities which existed in pre-modern Japan. It will also consider the question of how to write about this pre-modern, non-Western tradition in English and as a scholar in the modern Western translation studies discipline.



Author: Cui Wendong
Affiliation: School of Chinese, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Translating National Character:
Treatments of Chinese Image in Chinese Translations of
The Farther Adventures of Robinson Crusoe in Late Qing

Although Daniel Defoe distorted the image of Chinese people in The Farther Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, this novel was surprisingly popular in late Qing and three Chinese translations came into publication within four years (1902-1906). Living in the time when China was threatened with colonial intrusion and believing that the decay and decline of China was partly caused by the flaws in Chinese national character, the translators used Defoe's novel as a critique to arouse self-criticism among Chinese readers in the hope of revitalizing the nation. In order to ensure the acceptance of the renditions among readers, most of whom took pride in Chinese culture, these patriotic intellectuals rewrote this part by transforming, deleting and adding information rather than repeat Defoe’s “humiliation” faithfully. Based on the textual and contextual analysis, this article attempts to interpret the historical significance of their treatments of Chinese image. The three versions, related closely with the intellectual trend named “critique of Chinese national character”, marked the beginning of using fictions as tools of critiquing national character in Chinese literary history. By exploring the translators’ anti-colonial stance, this article also aims to differentiate the national character discourse in the translations, a kind of nationalist discourse, from the racist discourse in the original. But when conveying their criticism of Chinese people, the translators all invoked the authority of English culture and did not reflect upon the theory justifying the English cultural hegemony, thus paradoxically contributing to the asymmetrical power relation between Chinese and English culture.

Key words:
Chinese translation, national character, late Qing, nationalism, racism



Author: Curran, Beverley
Affiliation: Department of Intercultural Studies, Aichi Shukutoku University, Nagoya, Japan

Noh Directions: The circulation of ideas
in the translation theory and criticism of Nogami Toyoichiro

In 1932, the influential Japanese publisher Iwanami Shoten issued Honyakuron, a discussion of translation by Noh scholar Nogami Toyoichiro. The concepts are borrowed, as Nogami takes several terms, explanations and examples from Translation and Translations: Theory and Practice, John Percival Postgate’s 1922 study of the principles and practice of translating Latin and Greek verse and prose. In 1938, Nogami published a much-expanded study, Honyakuron – Honyakuronto jissai (Translation: theory and practice); in addition to the first section, which reproduces the 1932 text, this later study contextualizes the Postgate concepts by considering how the translation of classic Japanese works, specifically, Noh plays compares with that of classic Greek poetry. Further Nogami considers the implications of shifting direction in translation in his critical responses to Western translations of Noh works and his suggestions for Japanese translators. In his discussion of translation theory and practice, Nogami pits Japanese against seiyôgo (Western languages), which boils down to English, French and German, but is seldom if ever referred to in such specific linguistic terms, although he takes different approaches to translation depending on the direction it takes.

Since his death in 1950, Nogami has been remembered as a Noh scholar rather than a theorist and practitioner of translation, but his role in the circulation of ideas about translation should not be overlooked. In this paper I would like to discuss Nogami’s text and his views on translation, including how his approach provokes different views of the past and how it is remembered and reconstructed.



Author: Faiq, Said
Affiliation: Department of Arabic & Translation Studies, American University of Sharjah (AUS), UAE

A Cultural Assessment of Medieval Arabic translation

An examination of the history of translation is vital for a discipline that affects the contact between peoples interculturally (even intraculturally). Translation was the first and basic means for civilized interaction (from hieroglyphy into Greek, from Greek into Syriac, from both into Arabic, and finally from Arabic into Latin and other European languages, and today from the latter to the rest of the World).  A historiography of translation should examine translation as a cultural movement that stems from and affects crisis, nation-building, and identity.
Within this context, the purpose of this contribution is to assess what history labels Medieval Arabic Translation (MAT) in terms of its culture and in terms of how it dealt with accommodating foreign cultures into Arabic, a hitherto predominantly literary language and of limited geopolitical influence.



Author: Fogel, Joshua
Affiliation: York Centre for Asian Research, York University, Canada

Chinese Translations of Japanese Poetry in the Ming Period

This paper will examine an extraordinary although little-known text dating to the late sixteenth century, Riben kao (A study of Japan) by Li Yangong and Hao Jie. One fascicle of this work contains a rigorous explication of thirty-nine waka (Japanese poems of thirty-one syllables) and an array of other linguistic devices for explaining to a Chinese readership how Chinese graphs are used by Japanese. This presentation will introduce the Riben kao, show how it explains Japanese poetry, and attempt to trace where its authors may have acquired such phenomenal learning at this early date. At a time when awareness in China of Japan and the Japanese was on the rise, the Wanli reign and the rise of pirate attacks on the South China coast from Japan, a number of important works by Chinese authors attempted brief examinations of the Japanese languages, but these tended to be at best rudimentary and at worst facile or even error-laden. By contrast, the Riben kao is an astonishingly erudite work.



Author: Haddadian Moghaddam, Esmaeil
Affiliation: Translation and Intercultural Studies, Rovira i Virgili University, Spain

Agents of translation in the modernization of Iran: towards an "agent model"

Translation from foreign languages was one of the ways in the “modernization projects” of Iran that began in the Qajar dynasty (1797-1921). Iran’s defeats in her first round of wars (1804-1813) with Russian troops created a pressing need for translation of military texts in order to reform the Iranian troops. Translation shaped the later modernization projects from the establishment of the Dar al-Fonun (House of Techniques) – the first modern school of higher education in Iran in 1851– to the establishment of first modern publishing houses in the early twentieth century. In response to recent calls for the change of focus from translation as texts to the translators themselves (Pym 2006; Milton and Bandia 2009, Chesterman 2009 among others), the aim of this article is twofold. First, it provides a historical account of translation in contemporary Iran in three subsections: modernization and the Qajar dynasty (1797-1921); Pre-Revolution Iran (1922-1979); and Post-Revolution Iran (1979- ). Secondly, in the light of a recent model proposed by Chesterman (2009: 19) as “the agent model” in research in Translation Studies, the focus is given to the critical roles played by translation agents in the historical periods mentioned above. In doing so, particular attention is given to certain Iranians including translators and publishers who played significant roles in the modernization of Iran by highlighting their role as translation agents as opposed to those who have viewed them as “westernized”, “dependent”, and “censor” agents.
Keywords: translation agents, agent model, modernization, contemporary Iran.



Author: Halkias, Georgios T.
Affiliation: School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, UK

Translating the Foreign into the Local:
Production and Reproduction of Buddhist Texts from Imperial Tibet

In the ninth century, the official introduction of Buddhism in Tibet concurred with the systematic translation of nearly one thousand Buddhist scriptures into Tibetan and with the revision and standardization of all previous translations. The empire’s assertion of political authority was inseparable from the project of religious conversion, while bureaucratic mechanisms were in place to monitor the registration and standardization of newly arrived Buddhist doctrines and practices. With the use of officially approved dictionaries, state-translations aimed at finding a suitable and consistent use of language to translate the ‘foreign into local,’ that is to say, render multivalent Sanskrit terminology in Tibetan terms comprehensible to a local audience. This systematic importation of religious texts stands witness to a double process of appropriation: on the one hand, a selective translation of Indian and Chinese Buddhist texts and doctrines into standard Tibetan produced the earliest known forms of the Tibetan Buddhist canon and on the other, this process of appropriation inspired a considerable number of Buddhist compositions authored by Tibetan scholars. Drawing from historical sources, imperial catalogues and official lexicons, this paper will look at the project of translation as part of a wider process of religious conversion, appropriation and transformation that transpired at the centre and the peripheries of the Tibetan empire.



Author: Henitiuk, Valerie
Affiliation: British Centre for Literary Translation, University of East Anglia, UK

Translating Readers: The Initial Western Response to Japanese Literature

This paper will sketch out some highlights of how these two Classical Japanese texts have moved beyond the bounds of a particular national literature to take their place in/as world literature. This trajectory, beginning with their “discovery” by Europeans in the mid-19th century, can be usefully understood in terms of four distinct generations. Within these generations, each translation has functioned as a site for interrogating Western perceptions of Japan as much as it has offered the chance to read these ancient works anew. Murasaki Shikibu and Sei Shônagon and the texts they produced have successively become very different entities by virtue of having been re-produced and received in Western languages over a period of some 130 years. The unceasing exoticization and feminization of not only Japanese literature, but also the entire nation and culture is illuminated by how this pair of women writers are paradoxically honoured even as they may be inherently disrespected (i.e. manipulated and read in what could charitably be called innovative ways or, less charitably, fraudulent ways). It is important to identify and acknowledge the often contradictory rationale supporting any form of “carrying across,” which is necessarily subject to ideology, fashion, and politics, not to mention the limitations of the human mind and imagination when faced with something that simply does not conform to existing prejudices. Without at all denigrating the immensely valuable contribution made by translators—for without their creative intervention, neither the Genji nor the Pillow Book would be in any way known or even knowable by the global audience that has enjoyed them over the past century and a half—it will demonstrate how the very act of “worlding” necessarily re-imagines and contorts literary works.



Author: Hill, Michael
Affiliation: Department of Chinese and Comparative Literature, University of South Carolina, USA

Resisting Translation: Esperanto in Early Twentieth-Century China

The final decades of the nineteenth century witnessed the first of many attempts by Chinese intellectuals, Western missionaries, commercial publishers, and an array of state organizations to consider ways to reform, eliminate, or radically supplement Chinese written character script with phonetic alphabets or with languages such as Esperanto and English. By the beginning of the twentieth century, both left-wing radicals and bourgeois cosmopolitans in Beijing, Shanghai, Japan, and elsewhere had begun to see written Chinese in its current state a leftover of an antiquated, oppressive system that was incompatible both with modern exact sciences and with habits of reading and writing that underpinned the formation of unified, national reading publics in Japan, Western Europe, and North America. This consensus produced a remarkable variety of attempts to work “outside” the character script and the Chinese language itself. My paper examines discourses on Esperanto as an interlanguage that would allow Chinese to communicate around the world and sidestep the inequalities and prejudices built up between individual languages.  I argue that intellectuals’ fascination with Esperanto amounted to an attempt to resist the regime of translation that had reshaped intellectual labor in East Asia at the end of the nineteenth century.  Although the Esperantist movement did not carry the day, it continues to be of great historical and theoretical interest as a critique of turn-of-the-century translation practices and as a way to approach the rise of global languages in our own time.



Author: Hsu Chu-ching
Affiliation: Department of Applied Foreign Languages, Ching Yun University, Taiwan

Language Ideology in Translation:
Examples from Mark Twain's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

This study concerns how ideology is expressed textually in translation and how Taiwanese translators render the “colloquial language” and “dialect” used in Mark Twain’s work. The examples on which I shall draw are taken from Chinese translation of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn where there are several different dialogues written in colloquial language and dialect originally used in Mississippi and in Mark Twain’s English novels and where linguistic communication plays an important role in the society in Taiwan.
Framed and applied Lefevere’s theoretical concept of translating as rewriting, and carried out a chorological study, this research project specifically sets out to investigate the language ideology and translator’s idiolect of Chinese language translations of Twain’s work, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. In particular, the following specific questions are central:

  • How the translators in Taiwan deal with dialectal features encoded in Twain's work;
  • Which type of translator (Faithful translator or Spirited translator) can individual translators be classified and what translation strategies are employed by translator(s) to render Twain’s language style and dialect speech in the novel? Do the translations published in the same period retain similar translation features?
  • How the use of Taiwanese dialect in translation relates to the movement of mother tough language education and language ideology as well as social and political change in Taiwan.

Keywords: language ideology; dialect translation; idiolect; Taiwanese dialect;
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn



Author: Huang Kowu Max
Affiliation: Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, Taiwan

Translating "Sociology" in the Late Qing

Questions of translation and intellectual adaptation of foreign concepts into native idioms have attracted much scholarly attention in recent decades. Chinese understandings of “sociology” illustrate the relationship between translation and complex and ongoing domestic debates. In the case of the late Qing, there is no doubt that sociology was understood at least as much as a mean of changing society as scientific description. This paper examines Yan Fu’s translation of Herbert Spencer’s The Study of Sociology, Liang Qichao’s introduction to Spencer’s sociological thought and Takebe Tongo’s The Introduction of Sociology, and Zhang Binglin’s translation of Kishimoto Nobuta’s Sociology. Yan based his notion of “qunxue”on Spencer’s evolutionary, organismic social theory as informed by the Book of Changes, the Great Learning, and Xunzi. Liang accepted Yan’s views in following Takebe’s merging of Spencerian sociology and Confucianism. Zhang, however, followed the anti-Spencerian sociology of Kishimoto due to his disagreements with Yan since 1898 as well as his Buddhist background and his emphasis on the psychological interpretation of Chinese history and language. Thus, in 1903-4, two ways of seeing sociology formed, Yan and Liang’s accommodative approach to social change and Zhang’s transformative approach, which further influenced the Nation Essence School. After 1907, Zhang criticized Yan’s Shehui tongquan (A general interpretation of society; a translation of Jenks’ A History of Politics) and his blueprint for China’s future from a revolutionary perspective. This divergence was partly rooted in the different understandings of sociology they had developed between 1898 and 1903. Indeed, the problem of the relationship between sociology and political change persisted throughout the twentieth century.



Author: Huters, Theodore
Affiliation: Department of Asian Languages and Cultures, University of California, Los Angeles, USA

Wenxue and New Practices of Writing

It has been known for more than a century that the Chinese term wenxue(文学) in its now ordinary meaning as the equivalent of the English “literature” was a loan-word from Japanese, where it was first used in its modern sense.   While Lydia Liu has informed us of the complications involved with “trans-lingual practice,” there has been very little investigation into the implications of the creation of this new discursive category for Chinese intellectual history.  There was, of course, a large category of aesthetic writing in pre-1900 China that fit into the category of what we now refer to as wenxue, but what are the implications of the fact that there was never a single category that encompassed all the genres and forms we now take for granted as making up the constituent components of wenxue?  In my paper, I intend to look into some of these implications, from the most obvious, such as the consequences entailed by the inclusion of xiaoshuo within “literature,” to the less easily detected, such as how the new category of wenxueaffected the standing of discursive prose and its relation to the expression of ideas.  To what extent, for instance, did Wang Guowei’s notion of the “purposelessness” of literature feed back into the movement to deny the efficacy of  the classical language to express “modernity?”



Author: Hyun, Theresa
Affiliation: Department of Humanities, York University, Canada

'What's in a Name?' North Korean Literary Translators and
the Appropriation of Foreign Cultures from the Late 1940s to the mid 1960s

The period from the late 1940s through the mid 1960s saw the establishment of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the struggles for political and social control. This was a time of relative openness in the literary world when translation was emphasized both as a means of communication with foreign cultures and as a way of enriching the national language and culture.

This paper focuses on an area unexplored by scholars, the translation and reception of Western European literary works, particularly from the mid 1950s to the mid 1960s. The Early 1960s saw the publication of the first volumes of Segye Munhak Sonjip (Anthology of World Literature), which focused on translations of writers such as Shakespeare, Goethe, Byron. The situation of North Korean translators is illustrated by Lim Hak-Su, a scholar of English literature who published literary translations, as well as his own poetry, during the Japanese Colonial period (1930s – 1940s). In the early 1950s he went to North Korea where he wrote literary criticism and translated English authors including Shakespeare.

While there is widespread acknowledgement of the importance of Soviet literature during the formative phase of DPRK culture, this paper provides a preliminary exploration of the role of translations of Western European and North American works by examining some examples of the translations of Lim and other translators. This research is part of a project which studies the constraints governing the work of translators and the roles they played in forming the cultural policies of the emerging socialist society.



Author: Jedamski, Doris
Affiliation: Publieksdiensten & Collecties, Universiteit Leiden, Netherlands

Of Butterflies and Camellias – French Literature in Malay

Towards the end of the 19th century a small number of French novels in Malay translation (mostly titles by Jules Verne and Alexandre Dumas Senior) appeared on the book market in the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia). They turned out to sell well and their success helped pave the way for further commercial translation activities. Throughout the first decades of the 20th century French and other Western novels became a common phenomenon; they appeared in feuilletons or book form, translated mainly by Eurasian and Chinese Malay translators/ publishers who selected them for reasons determined by economic considerations, cultural commitment, political calculus or simply personal taste. Popular literature in particular was in high demand – not yet derogatorily labelled as such. But also authors of so-called ‘high literature’ got translated, such as Molière, Victor Hugo or François Voltaire. Alarmed by the “flood” of popular literature on the indigenous market, the Dutch colonial power decided to react and produced its own selection of translations – also including a range of originally French titles.

By way of adaptation further cultural appropriation of translated Western narratives took place and will be discussed in this paper at greater length on the examples of the two heroines Madame Butterfly (Madame Crysanthème, Pierre Loti) and The Lady of the Camellias (La Dame aux camellias, Alexandre Dumas fils). After positioning the two narratives within the Malay text corpus of French literature, I shall contextualize its emergence with special focus on the (anti-)colonial and gender discourses of the time. I shall discuss in what ways the translations and adaptations in question contributed to the process of negotiating and constituting cultural identity – one that was strongly moving away from colonial hegemony towards nationalism and independence.



Author: Kar, Supriya
Affiliation: Rupantar: A Centre for Translation, India

The Moon and the Mirror: Changing Images of Literary Translation in Orissa

This paper seeks to explore the changing images of literary translation in Orissa with reference to the broader context, India. India has a long tradition of literary translation. The rise of vernaculars created conditions for the diffusion of Sanskrit texts, the great epics in particular, through translation. The translational principle followed, however, was very different from the one followed by the Bible translator, who worked under the shadow of death and persecution. Translators had the freedom to move away from the original, if need be, introduce new forms and techniques.

In Orissa, translations of classical Sanskrit texts like the Mahabharata, the Ramayana and the Srimad Bhagabata were regarded as important works of art in their own right and were immensely popular. But, gradually, another kind of translation culture struck roots in Orissa under the influence of translation practices introduced by British missionaries and colonial administrators. The advent of printing technology which fixed the texts and eroded orality also played an important part in changing the role of the translator. The notion of faithfulness to the original gained ground. However, the tradition of rewriting the original and creating parallel texts did not die out completely. But such experiments were, and still are, conducted in a climate which lays more emphasis on fidelity.

This paper examines the processes which brought about these changes, and discusses ways in which a new image of the translation took shape.



Author: Kornicki, Peter
Affiliation: East Asian Studies, University of Cambridge, UK

Why did Hayashi Razan translate Chinese texts?

This paper concerns the translation activities of Hayashi Razan (1583-1657), who was the librarian and secretary of Tokugawa Ieyasu and a shogunal advisor. For centuries Chinese texts had been read in Japan through the technique of kundoku, a form of bound translation, and vernacular translations of Chinese texts were rarely made, except in the case of the Lotus Sutra and one or two other Buddhist texts. This situation contrasts dramatically with the situation in Korea, where the invention of hangul in the 15th century led almost immediately to the production of bilingual editions of Chinese texts, which are known collectively by the name ŏnhaebon 諺解本.Razan produced and published translations of a number of Chinese texts, including for example, Jōgan seiyō (Ch. Zhenguan zheng yao) 『貞観政要』, but this practice was not followed by later sinologists or scholars in Japan. This paper will explore the reasons for this, trace the connections between Razan and Korean practices and consider the relationship between kundoku and translation.



Author: Kothari, Rita
Affiliation: Department of Culture and Communication, Mudra Institute of Communications Ahmedabad, India

Translating Banni: The Invisible Nation

A cluster of small villages in a sub-region called Banni, dotted along the desert of Kutch which separates (only physically) India from Pakistan forms the focus of my paper. The inhabitants of Banni in Kutch (Gujarat, India) are mostly cattle breeders and artisans — some Muslims and some Dalit communities. Culturally and linguistically, the thirty three odd villages of Banni are a lot closer to people in the Thar Parker region of Pakistan. In what was formerly undivided India, Banni and Sindh were inseparable. In the divided context, Banni appears like an accidental part of Sindh in Gujarat — a state whose self-definition has manifest in exclusivist and dangerous expressions. My paper is based on the testimonials of people who remain outside the mainstream society in Gujarat, whose sense of nationhood disrupts the manufactured and seamless narrative of the subnation called Gujarat. I wish to foreground how my role as a translator and social scientist — my translated and reported testimonies of the Jats, Sodhas, Mutwas and various community members in Banni border on subtextual and unofficial sides of the nationalist project in Gujarat. By focusing on the “globalizing” influence in this rural part of Gujarat, and trying to understand the cusp tradition and modernity I appear as a social scientist to myself and my subjects. However, the questions of “translation” — the ethnographic transmission of subjectivities that do not coincide with national borders – makes me uneasy, and the paper is a documentation of such unease. The paper also proceeds to describing the act of physically and metaphorically translating Banni’s first written narrative — the novel of this invisible nation.

Keywords : Nation, ethnography, borders, translation, mediation, oral narratives.



Author: Kwan Sze Pui Uganda
Affiliation: Chinese Division, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Patriots or traitors? Chinese Protector in the British Colonial Government of
the Strait Settlements in the mid nineteenth century.

The Chinese protector was a special position in the structure of the colonial government of the Strait Settlements of the British imperial empire in the 19-20th centuries. It was not found in all British colonies, but only in places where the population was overwhelmingly Chinese, like Hong Kong and the Strait Settlements. Most significantly, unlike standard officials like the governor, financial secretary or military general, the Chinese protector was not a regular office, but was established only when the colonial government encountered serious problems in ruling the Chinese. The main function of this office was to enhance the communication of the colonial government with the native people. The Chinese Protector was established as a senior office in the government and occupied by a European who supposedly knew the Chinese language and culture well. But many events in the early stage of the colonial government show that the Chinese protector, who possessed local knowledge and necessary communication ability and whose official duty was in the area of interpretation and translation, should not just be seen as a mediator between the colonizer and the colonized. Having access to information about both the ruler and the ruled, he was actually a key factor leading to a successful and efficient colonial administration.

The present paper firstly accounts for the background of setting up the office of Chinese Protector in the Strait Settlements of the British Empire in mid nineteenth century. It will analyze the main roles of the office in the British colonial rule to explain in what ways they contributed to the efficient rule of the colony largely inhabited by the Chinese. It is hoped that we can shed new lights into the understanding of the significance of the role of translator and interpreter in a political context.



Author: Lai Tsz-yun Sharon
Affiliation: Graduate Institute of Translation and Interpretation, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan

An Ill Fated Translation of Ill Fated Lovers:
On the Two Earliest Chinese Translations of Wuthering Heights

This paper aims to examine the translation norm in Taiwan through comparison of the two earliest Chinese translations of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights. The first one, Xialu yuanjia 狹路冤家(the ill-fated lovers) by Woo Kwang Kien 伍光建, was published in 1930 in Shanghai. The other one, Paoxiao shanzhuang 咆哮山莊(the windy mansion) by Liang Shih-chiu 梁實秋, was published in 1942, also in Shanghai. According to Liang’s preface, he was never aware of the existence of the previous translation: he claimed that he was the first to translate this novel. His version, printed by several publishers, dominated the market in Taiwan for decades. From 1978 to 1994, merely Yuanjing Publisher reprinted it over 50 times. The quality of Liang’s version, however, was arguably disappointing. He used a strict literal approach at the expense of readability and coherence of the target text. Compared to his version, Woo’s unknown version was amazingly readable, natural and enjoyable. This paper will analyze the two translations in detail and argue that it’s time to re-evaluate the legacy of Chinese translations before 1949, which has helped shape Taiwan’s translation norm. Since Woo’s other translations, such as those of Jane Eyre and of Vanity Fair, were also underappreciated, this paper concludes that the translation norm rather than translation quality might be the deciding factor to the survival of certain translations.

Key words: Wuthering Heights, Woo Kwang Kien, Liang Shih-chiu, Taiwan,
translation norm



Author: Lee Gong-way
Affiliation: Department of Applied Languages for Interpretation and Translation, Chang Jung Christian University, Taiwan

A Critical Analysis of Lin Yu-tang's Translation Theory

An active translator, writer and editor during 1960s and 1970s, Lin Yu-tang made contributions to Chinese and Western cultures. In his early years, he devoted to linguistic studies and later he turned to translating Chinese classics into English and writing novels in English centered on the subjects of Chinese history, literature and culture. Few of his translation theory is known to the world; thus, this essay aims at analyzing Lin’s translation theory by examining his early essays such as “Lun Fan-Yi” (on translation), “Lun Yi-Shi” (on Translating Poetry) and many other related English essays published in the West. The author tries to apply the concept of translation strategy, domestication and foreignization, to the study of Lin’s practice of written translation. A comparison of Lin’s translation theory to that of modern translation theorists both in China and in West is also one of the purposes of this essay. The author believes that this kind of analysis and comparison will lead the readers to a pilgrimage to the understanding of how Lin formulated his translation and writing career and how he contributed to the cultural life of his contemporaries in both English-speaking and Chinese-speaking worlds. Hopefully those who are interested in translation, culture and international literature will benefit from and be interested in this essay.



Author: Lee Ken-fang
Affiliation: Graduate Institute of Translation and Interpretation, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan

Manipulating Literary Fame:
A Study of Chinese Translations of Virginia Woolf's Works

If we look at theorists’ research endeavors in the West, such as Theo Hermans, André Lefevere, Anthony Pym, we’ll find that even when they focus on theoretical abstractions, they oftentimes refer to translation works and translation practice as the major source of inspiration and historical examples. In light of their contributions, this study aims at examining Chinese translations of Virginia Woolf’s works in Taiwan’s context for the past decades and inquiring how her literary fame are manipulated by poetics, ideology and patronage. Such a project is an attempt to enrich the historiography of translation in contemporary Taiwan’s cultural milieu.
Virginia Woolf with her great talent as a writer and thinker has achieved canonical status in world literature. There is no doubt that she is one of the most distinguished modernist writers in the twentieth century and her works continue to impact on today’s world. When Virginia Woolf was first introduced to Taiwan’s readers in 1960, her works were indeed seen as a stimulus to the then literary production. Not until 1990s were her works translated into Chinese in a larger scale and more acknowledged by Taiwan’s readership, yet only a certain novels were translated and in some cases, one text has three or four different translations. How did different translators of various generations interpret her works? What translation strategies did they adopt to deal with her innovative style? How did ideology and patronage help to shape/represent her image in Chinese translation in Taiwan’s context? This project aims to apply Lefevere’s theoretical framework to investigate Virginia Woolf’s translated works and shed new light on the historiography of translation in Taiwan in particular and translation studies in general.
Keywords: Virginia Woolf, modernism, literary translation, manipulation, André Lefevere



Author: Li Xilao
Affiliation: English Department, Harper College, Illinois, USA

Who's Wu Tao? — A Pioneer Translator's Life and Work

Wu Tao [吳檮] was a highly acclaimed yet largely overlooked translator in the early 1900s. Wu Tao translated about twenty Japanese and Western stories before his sudden disappearance. Although scholars like A Ying, Guo Yanli, Tarumoto, and Chen Pingyuan made insightful commentaries and did introductory, bibliographical studies on the subject, neither has Wu’s translation work been systematically investigated nor has the fundamental question been asked: “Who was Wu Tao?”

My paper intends to unveil the findings resulting from my research of years to solve this identity mystery, delineating his scholarly and artistic preparations during his formative years; chronicling his involvement in the anti-Qing social, cultural, and educational activities under the leadership of Cai Yuanpei [蔡元培]; and examining some of his striking characteristics: his political and literary considerations in selecting source texts, his reliance on Japanese sources for relay translation, his adoption of the short story as a preferred genre, his alternating use of the classical language and vernacular, and his colorful practices such as paraphrasing, rewriting, truncating, and even forging the authorship of his sources, etc. A close study of Wu Tao helps reveal the richness and complexity of the role pre-modern translation played in the process of China’s literary modernization. And my quest for the untold story of Wu Tao has led to the conclusion that “Wu Tao” is a pseudonym used by Zhou Shuren before he became Lu Xun--the Father of Modern Chinese Literature.



Author: Liang Zhifang
Affiliation: Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong

Looking at Self Through Gaze of the Other:
Chinese Translations of Pearl Buck's China Novel The Good Earth

Pearl S. Buck (1892-1973) is a significant and unique figure in 20th century Sino-American interaction. Her nearly forty-year stay in China and the second half of her life back in America, her home country, put her in a unique position in Sino-American conflict. Buck’s masterpiece, The Good Earth is one of the most influential Western books on China in 1930s, while in China the novel became quite controversial in terms of whether the China image depicted in it was authentic. For a long time, Buck and The Good Earth have been misread, or misunderstood in China.

This paper explores how The Good Earth was translated and received in China in three periods of 1932-1948, 1949-1987 and 1988-present, and how Chinese translators re-constructed Buck’s China image. Chinese translators’ rendering the novel back into Chinese language and culture is actually to look at Self through gaze of the Other and a process of self-reconstruction of the China image is thus involved. By locating Chinese translations in contexts of Sino-American ideological, political and cultural conflicts, the paper analyzes the hidden reasons that underlie a big wave of translating the novel into Chinese in the first period, its being completely banned in the second period, and its re-discovery in the third period. The focus will be on how American Orientalism of the ST, the complex Chinese view on America and Chinese anxiety towards their national identity determined the reconstruction and re-shaping of the China image in Chinese translations.



Author: Lung, Rachel
Affiliation: Department of Translation, Lingnan University, Hong Kong

Interpreting Traces in an Archived Kirghiz Account in Medieval China

Interpreters are not only capable of having an impact on historical records of inter-lingual exchanges; their input, often passively left on these records, may also clarify the subtle links between interpreters and the writing of such histories. As a case study to verify this link, this paper will discuss five textual traces of the interpreter and his influence on the Kirghiz account archived in the Xintangshu (A New History of Tang China) in 1061. These textual traces are the frequent use of transliteration of Türkic names; documentary proof of the making of the Kirghiz Memoir from information collected in an interpreter-mediated interview in 843; the interpreter’s mandate to initiate the inquiry in this interview; the textual structure of the Kirghiz account characterized by the recurrent use of reported-speech features; and textual clues of mistranslation by the interpreter. The significance of this paper is that it provides substantial evidence from the Tang Chinese archives to document the connection between interpreters and the making of historical records.



Author: Meade, Ruselle
Affiliation: Centre for Translation and Interpreting (CTIS), University of Manchester, UK

The Cultural Shaping of Engineering:
Adaptation of Rankine's engineering science in early Meiji-era Japan

As the cultural theorist Edward Said noted ‘ideas and theories travel’. The predominant narrative of Meiji-era Japan has indeed been one of vast travel of ideas and expertise. However, Said also reminded that ‘such movement… is never unimpeded.’ That ideas were transformed in transit to Japan is also well accepted. However, this research wishes to adopt a wider focus: instead of unitary ideas, the concern is of epistemological disciplines. It takes the case of academic engineering and asks how this discipline came to exhibit such divergence from its progenitor in Britain.

Academic engineering in Britain and Japan share a common genealogy. Its initial character was largely shaped by W.J.M Rankine during his tenure at the University of Glasgow (1855-1872). Having selected Britain as a model for its engineering education, the Japanese government employed Rankine’s former student Henry Dyer to design its first engineering curriculum. Dyer brought along with him a coterie of British teachers and used Rankine’s textbooks as the core reference.

However, whereas in Britain socially-ambitious engineers sought status by situating themselves as agents of self-directed progress, in early Meiji Japan engineers legitimised themselves differently – by embedding themselves within the nation-building narrative to fit the social and political exigencies of Meiji Japan.

Rankine’s textbooks were not translated until the mid 1880s and initially all instruction was in English. This is, therefore, not translation in the traditional sense. This necessitates looking beyond shifts in lexis to interrogate the sub-structure of translation: the transfer of systems of thought between socio-political environments.



Author: Mizuno, Akira
Affiliation: Rikkyo University Graduate School of Intercultural Communication, Japan

Development of conflicting translational norms in Meiji and Taisho periods:
The influence of translation on the formation of modern Japanese literature

This paper explores the development of translational norms in Meiji and Taisho periods in modern Japan and examines the impact translations of European languages have exerted on the formation of modern Japanese literature and Japanese language.
As translation has occupied the center of the Japanese literary polysystem until around 1887, it has wielded its influence on stylistic norms of literature which were still immature and in confusion in the wake of the Meiji Restoration. Among the conflicting translational norms in those periods, ST-oriented literal translation norm played more important role than other norms. Literal translation strategy, which has been rooted deeply in the translation tradition of Japan, involves the transfer of construals of the source language into the target language, which would shake the taken-for-grantedness or native-likeness of existing expressions by introducing oubunmyaku – a foreign style – into Japanese language. In fact, the development of modern Japanese literature and language in those periods has been the process of incorporation of oubunmyakuthrough translation,which culminated at the end of Taisho period. After tracing and analyzing the negotiation between conflicting translational norms in those periods, the paper discusses the implications of literal translation as a transfer of construals.



Author: Naganuma, Mikako
Affiliation: Rikkyo University, Japan
Title of Abstract:

Nogami Toyoichiro's "On Translation" and its implications

This is a part of the extensive research project which aims to compile and examine Japanese discourses on translation and reconsider them in boarder contexts. The particular focus here is on issues raised by concepts of Nogami Toyoichiro, who published a canonical book entitled “On Translation” in 1938. The author first tries to locate Nogami’s discourse socio-culturally in a context of the late Taisho and early Showa era in Japan. Then, in order to interpret his claim from a novel perspective inspired by Curren (2008), the paper sheds light on J. P. Postgate’s “Translation and Translations: Theory and Practice”. Their shared discourses on translation are analyzed in parallel so that some key concepts are compared with each other, revealing profound insights on how their attitudes on translation intersect.

Curran, B. (2008). Theatre translation theory and performance in contemporary Japan: native voices, foreign bodies. Manchester: St. Jerome.
Nogami, T. (1938). Honyakuron: Honyakuno rironto jissai (On translation: Translation theory and practice). Tokyo: Iwanami Shoten.
Postgate, J.P. (1922). Translation and translations: Theory and practice. London: G. Bell and Sons.



Author: Nanjo, Etsuko
Affiliation: Kobe College postgraduate school, Japan

Acceptance of "foreignisation" in translation
and school textbooks in Meiji Era (1868-1912)

The Ministry of Education was established in 1871. The educational system was promulgated and teachers’ schools were established in 1872. Elementary schools began in 1873, and that same year were published the “Elementary school textbooks /SHOGAKU DOKUHON” by TANAKA Yoshikado. These textbooks consisted of four volumes. The first two volumes were translations of the “Wilson's Readers” from the USA. Further, the textbook adopted for moral education, “Moral Class Book” was a translation, by FUKUZAWA Yukichi, of a work of Robert Champers. Thus from the very beginning of modern Japan translation had an importance influence on school education.

At the beginning of that same period, in literary translations, a dynamic and free style of translating as a form of domesticating translation was popular in Japan, in order that translated works could be more easily accepted by common Japanese readers. This translation attitude changed to become more “foreignising”, first with the publication of “KEISHIDAN” (where in the introduction the translator states his ideal of direct translation), then with the publication of the “Rules of Translation” and the development of a new translation style called “SHUMITSUTAI”, between 1885 and 1888. The reason why the Japanese public could accept such a dramatic change in translation style in the first two decades of Meiji era is, I believe, because they were influenced by the translated school textbooks and the way they were translated. I wish to examine how early Meiji educators regarded “translation” when they developed the education system for Japanese children.



Author: Okayama, Emiko
Affiliation: /

Translation and Transformation of 水滸伝 (Suikoden) in Japan

Suikoden, the Chinese popular novel of the Ming era, arrived in Japan in the early 17th century, and went through a series of transformations to emerge as a 106-volume-yomihon, Nanso Satomi Hakkenden between 1814 and 1842. Suikoden was written in vernacular Chinese (hakuwa), which was unfamiliar to Japanese as they were traditionally educated in Classical Chinese(kanbun). Thus, the process developed as follows: original Chinese text → wakokukanbun kundoku (formal Japanese) →vernacular translation → adaptation → creative writing in Japanese.

Wakoku retained the original hakuwa text, while inserting marks in small print as a reading aid to indicate Japanese word order and inflections. Only a few translators, who had training in hakuwa were capable of wakoku. Kanbun kundoku changed the word order while retaining a large part of the original vocabulary. The vernacular translation replaced Chinese with more familiar Japanese words. At each stage Suikoden lost some of its Chinese elements and gained more Japanese characteristics.

Similarly, early adaptations were often direct copies or parodies of the original, while later ones demonstrated a thorough reworking of the foreign elements to obscure their Chinese origins, and succeeded in creating their own world. At the same time, some hakuwa vocabulary as well as the particular style, shôkai shôsetsu (chapter novels based on story-telling), entered into Japanese literature and were inspirational sources for yomihon novels.

This paper examines each stage and explores a process of transformation from Chinese into Japanese that is unique to kanji culture.



Author: Pansare, Megha
Affiliation: Department of Foreign Languages, Shivaji University, India

The Translations of Russian Literature into Marathi
Polysystem in the colonial and neo-colonial context

The tradition of the Russian literature in Marathi emerged as a part of cultural change that took place in nineteenth and twentieth century Maharashtra in the prominently colonial background. It was in 1932 that Russian fiction appeared in Marathi for the first time during the British colonial period. The present paper seeks to analyze this phenomenon on the basis of the Polysystem Theory advanced by Itamar Even-Johar and further expanded by Gideon Toury.

Translation is not merely a linguistic activity but a cross-cultural phenomenon. It cannot be separated from that society and culture, in fact the social and historical formation, in which it is generated. Hence, it becomes imperative to examine from a historical perspective the conditions in the socio-cultural ethos of Maharashtra in which Marathi translators turned towards the Russian literature. 

Some major factors related with the subsystem of translation culture in Maharashtra are the colonial background, the evolution of translation culture in Marathi literary polysystem, the inter-relations between British, Russia and India in the nineteenth and twentieth century and the political compulsion emerged in the historical course of time.  These are some preconditions, which formulated the subsystem of Russian-Marathi translation in the Marathi literary polysystem.

It is interesting to see the attempts from Marathi scholars to reject the populist English literature and create an alternate translation culture through the translations of serious Russian literature.

In the neo-colonial context today we find tremendous growth in the translations of populist literature from English into Marathi polysystem. However, there seems to be a parallel trend of translations of serious, realistic literature. And that creates a space for Russian literature.



Author: Qian Nanxiu
Affiliation: Asian Studies, Rice University, USA

Translating the West in the Name of Reform:
The Late Qing Woman-translator Xue Shaohui (1866-1911)

An outstanding poet, writer, and educator, Xue Shaohui was among China’s earliest women translators and female journalists. In these capacities, Xue participated actively in the 1898 reforms and was a leading female thinker in the campaign for women’s education from 1897-1898 in Shanghai. After the abrupt termination of the One Hundred Days, Xue and her husband Chen Shoupeng (1857-1922?) continued to advance the goals of the abortive 1898 reforms through co-translating and compiling Western literary, historical, and scientific works. The couple cooperated in the way that Xue recorded and edited Shoupeng’s oral translations from original Western works and thus produced at least four books; hence their joint effort in a serious quest for incorporating Western experiences into Chinese reform practice.

This paper focuses on the couple’s earliest and the most important cooperative project, the Waiguo lienü zhuan 外國列女傳 (Biographies of foreign women; hereafter WGLNZ), arguably the first systematic introduction of foreign women to the Chinese audience. Through a close reading of its 252 entries under twelve biographical categories, this paper will show that the WGLNZ resulted from Xue and her fellow women reformers’ desire to break the longstanding demarcation between the “inner” and “outer” domains and to reposition the ideal “woman” in an ideal space, at home and in society, within the intersecting frameworks of the family, the nation, and the world. In the process, foreign women’s lives served not only as a model for use in educating contemporary Chinese women, but also as a collective site where different visions of ideal womanhood were contested.



Author: Raine, Roberta
Affiliation: Department of Translation, Lingnan University, Hong Kong

"The Translator in Tibetan History"

In Tibet, translators have been revered for centuries for the crucial role that they played in what has been called “the greatest planned and sustained cultural exchange in early world history” (Khyentse 2009: 23) — the translation of the entire Indian Buddhist canon into Tibetan. This monumental project, which took hundreds of years and an unknown number of translators to complete, involved three key phases: first, developing a suitable linguistic vehicle in the target language for receiving and re-coding the Buddha’s teachings; second, countless arduous journeys to India by Tibetan scholars and saints, followed by years of in-depth study of Indic languages and Buddhist teachings; and finally, the painstaking task of translating thousands of sutras, shastras (commentaries), tantras and other texts into Tibetan. Although some of these translators are well known as religious figures in the Tibetan Buddhist world, they have seldom been studied for their translational expertise. One of Tibet’s primary historical chronicles, The Blue Annals, records some of the achievements of these translators. Using this record as a starting point, in this paper I will introduce some of the most influential of these individuals, examine the historical context in which their work took place, highlight the difficulties they faced, and discuss some of the translation strategies these scholar-saints used over a millennium ago.



Author: Ramakrishnan, E.V.
Affiliation: Department of English, Veer Narmad South Gujarat University, India

Translation and the Literary Public Sphere:
The Role of Translation in Radicalizing Literary Sensibility in
Malayalam Literature during the 1930s and 40s

During the period from the 1930s to the 1950s, literatures produced in many Indian languages went through a radical phase which was marked by debates on aesthetics and ideology, decolonization and the emergent nation, modes of representation and changing views on identity. The present paper deals with the case of Malayalam, a language spoken in the South of India with a literary tradition going back to the early centuries of the last millennium.

In 1937, some of the prominent thinkers, activists and writers from Kerala formed a forum called ‘Progressive Literary Association’. Among the major objectives outlined in their manifesto were to write and translate literature of a progressive kind and to bring art and literature closer to the life of common people. The intervention of ideologues in the field of literature brought into the open the differences between existing views of literature as a matter of linguistic competence and stylistic perfection and a radical poetic which emphasized the emancipatory role of literature. It was through translations that the new sensibility got disseminated.

Translations of social realist fiction from European literature played a crucial role in interrogating the prevailing prestige styles of writing in Malayalam literary tradition and creating a socially responsive habitus that confronted the social contradictions between a feudal/ elitist tradition on the one hand, and an emerging democratic/subaltern on the other. As part of the search for a radical poetic, translations of Balzac, Stendhal, Chekhov, Ibsen, Dostoevsky etc appeared during this period. These translations created a new lexicon of experience that enabled the creative writers to speak of experiences that had not found expression earlier. The present paper would focus also focus on the relationship between translation and the literary public sphere.

The paper will discuss theoretical issues of contestations implicit in the radical phase under discussion, the critical discourse made available by translations and their ways negotiating the socio-political conflicts and finally, the cultural implications of this phase of translation for the development of modern Malayalam literature as a whole.



Author: Sato, Miki
Affiliation: Department of English, Faculty of Foreign Languages, Sapporo University, Japan

Deviation from or (Re-)Creation of the Translation Tradition in Japan?

Japan is currently experiencing a particular trend in literary translation, a virtual boom in the re-translation of canonical works of Western literature, works by everyone from Dostoevsky, Standard, and Shakespeare to Fitzgerald and Salinger. This boom has even produced a number of interesting back-translations, typically from the English versions of classical Japanese works, such as back-translation of Arthur Waley’s English version of the Tale of Genji.

Traditionally, Japanese translation-culture has demanded that literary translations be faithful to the originals and be respectful of the originality or authenticity of the source text and author. This source-oriented translation norm requires that re-translations be even more accurate and faithful to source-language texts than earlier translations were. Remarkably, though, some of today’s best-selling re-translations are texts rendered in a target-oriented approach, with a focus more on readers’ accessibility to texts than on making faithful reproductions. There are not a few Japanese scholars who have voiced strong criticism of works translated in this manner. The back-translations have proven to be doubly controversial as they raise important questions of originality, authenticity, and how such texts can be understood.

The recent boom in re-translations and back-translations is a distinctive literary movement in Japan and promises be a leading subject in Translation Studies. This paper will analyse the state of literary translation in Japan and discuss whether the current reader-oriented approach is a deviation from the traditional source-oriented approach to literary translation or re-creation of it.



Author: Sato-Rossberg, Nana
Affiliation: Ritsumeikan University, Japan

Translator Visibility in Self-Translation: Chiri Yukie and Ainu Myths

Yukie Chiri (1903–1922) was a bilingual speaker of Japanese and Ainu. Her best-known work is A Collection of Aynu Myths (1923). The book contains original Ainu texts of myths (transcribed in Roman characters) and Chiri’s Japanese translations. I will suggest in this talk that the book can be understood as a collection of self-translations.

Originally, Ainu myths were not written down but passed on orally. Chiri’s original myths were the stories that her grandmother and aunt had told her at home. So, Chiri’s translation work had to begin with transcribing those oral narratives, before translating them into Japanese. While, from a western perspective, this process might not be recognized as authorship and self-translation, I will argue that the tradition of Ainu oral narration admits such an attribution.

The aim of this paper is to focus on her visibility in self-translation, which is deeply related to her role as author. Fortunately, not only the published book but also Chiri’s notebook documenting the translation process are extant. The notebook reveals several purposeful interventions by Chiri, including modifications of the source text. Although we can only speculate as to the motivations for these interventions, the documents clearly reveal the fluid nature of concepts such as ‘original’, ‘source’, or ‘translation’ in this case. Through this work, I hope we can recognize the agency and visibility of Chiri as an Ainu woman translator, which is not yet well appreciated.



Author: Satyanath, T.S.
Affiliation: Department of Modern Indian Languages and Literary Studies, University of Delhi, India

Commentary as Interpretation and Translation
in Medieval Indian Representations

This paper attempts to understand the role of the commentary tradition in medieval Indian religious traditions as a continuous process of interpretation and thereby constitutes a discursive indigenous translation tradition of medieval India. The movement of Buddhism, Jainsm and Vedic religions, from their place of origin to various parts of South Asia and beyond, necessitated the emergence of interpretation and translation of sectarian texts from Pali, Prakrit and Sanskrit into vernacular writing traditions of India.

The problematic of cultural confluence and religious sycreticism among divergent religious traditions of medieval India concerns us with the dynamics of pluralistic epistemology. On the one hand, these religious traditions demonstrate a structural syncretism by making use of scripto-centic representations (writing culture), phono-centric representations (oral traditions) and body-centric representations (performing traditions) and suggests that apart from the fact that structural similarities have gone into their construction, they also tend to become part of a unified discourse. On the other hand, at the level of interpretation, be it in the form of anvaya (word to word meaning), or tātparya (summary)or laksya(illustration), or tīkā (commentary), all of them become an integral part of  religious traditions, be it a grammatical tradition,or a kāvya (ornate poetry) tradition, or oral tradition or performing tradition. In this process, commentary tradition (vyākhyāna) is not only a continuous and recurring activity, but also becomes a discursive discourse of medieval Indian literary culture. This provides an opportunity for the traditions to sustain their own knowledge and representational systems on the one hand and facilitates to appreciate, respect and accommodate the knowledge and representational systems of the others on the other.

It is in this sense that a process of interpretation as translation within the process of pluralization of cultural space—be it canonical tradition, or textual tradition, or oral tradition, or performing tradition—that eventually leads to the accommodation of pluralistic epistemology through a continuous interpretation activity in the form of commentary. In this process, it not only maintains structural similarities within medieval Indian representational formats, but also facilitates the creation of a confluence within the divergent religious traditions of India.



Author: Shin Jae-ho
Affiliation: Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, University of Pennsylvania, USA

Translation and sinicization:
translation in Tuoba Wei and Mongol Yüan

In 1307 prince Khaishan came to power as a new Khaghan of the Yüan Ulus. Interestingly, the new Khaghan, who is known a one of the most steppe-oriented Khaghan in the Yüan dynasty, ordered to distribute the Mongolian version of Book of Filial Piety, or Xiao Jing, in ‘Phags-pa script only about three months after his enthronement. The translation of Xiao Jing and its distribution may be seen as an example of Confucianization in a conquest dynasty. However, it seems unreasonable to think that the Yüan court encouraged the spread the Confucian family ethics in the book among the Mongols; the controversies over widow remarriage and levirate in the Yüan society exemplify how much the Mongolian family ethics differed from those of Han Chinese people.

The aim of this paper is to provide an explanation for the appearance of Xiao Jing at the Mongol court in 1307. By comparing the multifaceted roles of Xiao Jing in the Han, Tuoba Wei and Mongol Yüan dynasties, I concluded that Khaishan’s decree to distribute the Mongolian version of Xiao Jing had been a political tactic to strengthen his emperorship. To distinguish himself from other Mongol princes, Khaishan tried to imbue them with the Confucian model of emperorship by spreading Xiao Jing. However, unlike Tuoba Wei’s case, Khaishan’s Xiao Jing distribution policy did not mean an unconditional imitation of Chinese culture. Rather, the Mongol court efficiently and selectively exploited Confucian ethics as a political tool by translating the classic.



Author: St. André, James
Affiliation: School of Languages, Linguistics and Cultures, University of Manchester, UK

"Lessons from Chinese History:
Translation as a Collaborative and Multi-stage Process"

This paper examines how the development of translation practice in China under the influence of Buddhism (100-900 CE), and also in the late Qing (1860-1911 CE), both serve to highlight two neglected areas of research in translation studies today: collaboration and relay translation. First, there is the issue of the extent to which translation is often a collaborative process. Buddhist monks pioneered collective translation processes, often involving Chinese and foreigners. Working in groups of up to 1000 monks, explication, discussion, recording, correcting, and confirming were all important steps in the translation of sacred texts. In the late Qing, collaboration between foreign and Chinese translators was again the norm, albeit on a smaller scale, both in state-sponsored institutions (such as the Jiangnan arsenal) and in private endeavours (including foreign-sponsored Biblical translation and Chinese-sponsored fictional translation). Yet the models proposed in ‘classic’ translation studies of the 1960s onwards has consistently theorized the translation process as being accomplished by a lone individual, even though people like Eugene Nida must have been aware that much translation activity was carried out by groups (especially of the Bible). Communication models of translation, for example, have posited the solitary and uni-directionality nature of translation. This has led to the downplaying of teamwork in the study of translation from all periods of time, including the 19th century, with Chinese ‘native informants’ (really collaborators) often going unmentioned, and with descriptions of Lin Shu’s translations assuming that the oral interpretation of the novels he adapted were ‘transparent’ (ie, that any changes in the texts produced were the result of decisions made by Lin Shu, not by the oral interpreter who told Lin Shu the story in Chinese). Two of the most famous literary translators in the 20th century, Yang Hsien-yi and Gladys Yang, always worked as a team, yet there seem to be no studies of the process they employed in working together. The recent growth of translation companies has shown that collaboration is still common today, yet this remains a ‘black hole’ in terms of research. Second, in both periods in China, relay translation through ‘pivot’ languages played a vital role in the translation process. The introduction of Buddhism into China was first accomplished through relay translations of sacred texts that had been translated into various Central Asian languages; in the nineteenth century and early twentieth century, much of European literature was introduced to Chinese through English or Japanese relay, including seminal works such as Ibsen’s Doll House. Again, this is a phenomenon that has been downplayed in translation studies, because relay has been seen as a necessary evil, in a sense replicating the stigma attached to translation itself. Questions of how and why certain languages come to act as pivot languages thus remain unasked. It is hoped that a more careful look at past translation practice will stimulate us to re-examine models of translation, and also current practice.



Author: Uchiyama, Akiko
Affiliation: School of Languages and Comparative Cultural Studies, University of Queensland, Australia

Wakamatsu Shizuko: A Study of a Meiji Female Translator in Japan

This paper focuses on Wakamatsu Shizuko (1864-1896), a female translator who lived in Japan in the Meiji period (1868-1912). She is nowadays best remembered as having introduced Frances Hodgson Burnett’s Little Lord Fauntleroy (1886) to Japanese readers as Shōkōshi. Despite the importance of her translation work in the development of children’s literature in Japan and her use of a then novel colloquial style, only a small number of studies of Wakamatsu have been conducted. The purpose of this paper is twofold: one is to highlight the significance of her work in the history of Japanese translation; the other is, more particularly, to investigate her purpose of and approach to translating children’s literature. The latter is discussed in the context of her awareness of female readers of her translations. Many readers of Shōkōshi, as Nakamura (2002) notes, were middle-class mothers who obtained knowledge of child rearing through printed media and nurtured their children at home. The paper investigates translation “shifts” in translating children’s literature to target adult female readers as well as Wakamatsu’s influence on the female reading experience in Japan.



Author: Vardar, Ayza
Affiliation: Yildiz Technical University, Turkey

Translated West in the Early Modernization Phase of Turkey

Translation has played a significant part in the early modernization phase of the Turkish Republic.  Detachment from the imperial heritage of the Ottoman state was associated with impersonating the cultural and political aspects of the Western civilization, and “modernization” was perceived mostly as “Westernization”.  As a result, modernization in Turkey was mostly led by literature, law, architecture and fashion trends “translated” from the West.  This paper will look into the reforms and changes in literature, law, architecture and attire especially during the early years of the Turkish modernization –or Westernization– movement, construe these as acts of translation, and will investigate the nature and consequences of this translation.  Cited scholars will include Feroz Ahmad and Geoffrey Lewis for the history of the Turkish revolution, Şehnaz Tahir Gürçağlar and Ayşe Banu Karadağ for the history of translation, and Walter Andews, Victoria Holbrook and Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar for the history of Turkish literature.  The urban planning ventures of the Republican era will be studied in reference to Esra Akcan’s Modernity in Translation.



Author: Villareal, Corazon D.
Affiliation: Department of English and Comparative Literature, University of the Philippines, Philippines

Translation and Performativity in the Philippines

The paper is a case study of Rolando S. Tinio (1937-1997), a monumental figure in the translation scene in contemporary Philippines. National Artist for Literature for the year 1997, Tinio translated about 34 plays from Europe and the United States, among them Shakespeare, Miller, Chekov, Ionesco, Ibsen, Beckett, Euripedes. He translated these from English to Pilipino, and using as vehicle, the Teatro Pilipino, resident company of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (1975-86), he produced these plays, many times assuming multiple roles as director, costume and set designer, actor.

But he was a controversial figure in Philippine theatre. He worked with the patronage of  the state dictatorship and staged Western works when nationalistic ferment was at its peak and young, very talented playwrights were writing original plays in Pilipino. Yet, Tinio had a strong sense of mission: he wished to prove the capability of Pilipino to express and embody a wide range of concepts and experience previously thought impossible in a language considered “provincial.” Moreover, his theory of translating plays was tied up closely with his vision of theatre and performativity. A play is successful, he would say, not because of technical and formal advantages but because it embodies a value system the audience upholds.
Using one foreign play and its translation as focus, the paper will seek to show that in creating an “afterlife” for the play, Tinio demonstrated a theory of translation located in  the nexus of tradition and modernity.



Author: Wakabayashi, Judy
Affiliation: Modern and Classical Language Studies, Kent State University, USA

ReOrienting Translation Studies: Toward Commensurability

One aim of the Asian Translation Traditions conference series is to stimulate debate about the relationship between ‘Western’ and ‘non-Western’ traditions and discourses of translation, a question that is linked more broadly to the connection between ‘universal’ and ‘culture-specific’ theories. The imbalance and gaps in the existing ‘international’ discourse highlight the need to ‘reOrient’ the field of Translation Studies from diverse perspectives. Without exploring alternative cultural and intellectual resources, it would be premature to conclude that Western thinking on translation is superior, and it would be anachronistic to compare contemporary Western theories with the traditions that are the focus of this series. The present paper calls for further research and a mutually respectful dialogue between culture-general and culture-relative discourses on translation so as to transcend essentialism and contribute to epistemic change (not conservatism). The paper draws on relevant ideas such as traveling theories, alternative modernities, cosmopolitanism, micro-cosmopolitanism, and commensurability.



Author: Wei Ling-Chia
Affiliation: Department of East Asian Languages and Civilization, University of Pennsylvania, USA; Wenzao Ursuline College of Languages, Taiwan

Translation Transcends?—Transnational Agents of Religions in China—

While more scholarship discusses about the transnational phenomenon in the world, in addition to economy, trade, and immigration, religions also transcend national and cultural borders and boundaries. The monks and missionaries are its transnational agents to disseminate the religious beliefs with the means of translation. This paper aims to use a historical perspective to compare how the Buddhism monks and the Jesuit and Protestant missionaries used translation to bridge the gap and to transcend the national authorities and cultural difference.

The travel of idea, with the vehicle of translation, is accompanied by the struggle of power between the guest language and the host language. According to Lydia Liu (1995), translation is no longer a neural event untouched by the contending interests of political and ideological struggles, and her study of trans-lingual practice examines how the news meaning and representations acquired the legitimacy while facing the confrontation with the guest language. This present study will further employ the theory of transnational community to compare the dilemmas of cultural confrontation faced by the Central Asian Monks from the 2nd century to the 4th century, the Jesuit missionaries and the Protestant missionaries in the early Modern China. Their domestication into the local culture helped their translation transcend the national and cultural borders but diminished their own cultural identities and advantages. By comparing the transnational agents of religions, translation can be examined in a non-Eurocentric context to see how the domination of Chinese culture changed the role of these transnational agents in translation.

Keywords: Transnational, translation, Central Asian Monks, missionaries



Author: Weissbrod, Rachel
Affiliation: Department of Translation and Interpreting Studies, Bar Ilan University, Israel

Translation and its Absence in Israeli Films
Featuring Foreign Workers from East Asia

In Israel, foreign workers and labor immigrants are no longer an exception: "The foreign worker population in Israel currently includes large numbers of Chinese, Romanian, and Turkish workers in construction, Thais in agriculture, and Filipinos in care-giving" (Drori 2009: 9). In line with the tendency of contemporary Israeli cinema for multiculturalism and multilingualism (Weissbrod 2008), they are increasingly represented - and sometimes take center stage - in local documentary and feature films.

While the filmmakers themselves sympathize with the newcomers, they depict the surrounding society as alienating and unreceptive, illustrating the claim that opening the gates to foreign workers does not necessarily entail accepting their culture and language (Appadurai 1990). The alienation is strongly felt when the newcomers try to communicate with the local Hebrew-speaking population. Problems of communication, in the films and elsewhere, are not exclusive to foreign workers from East Asia. In their case, however, the cultural and linguistic distance is huge. Translation is badly needed, but not always provided.

The role of translation and the implications of its absence are manifest on two levels of the films: (a) their themes. Dealing with the issue of translation provides an opportunity to address questions of culture, identity, conflict and representation (Cronin 2009). (b) Their multilingualism. Providing translation to spectators, or abstaining from it, is significant. The aim of my presentation is to examine the issue of translation on these two levels, and to illustrate it in two feature films: Noodle (Menahemi 2007) and Jellyfish (Geffen and Keret 2007).

Appadurai, Arjun, 1990. "Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy", Theory, Culture and Society 7, pp. 295-310.
Cronin, Michael, 2009. Translation Goes to the Movies. London: Routledge.
Drori, Israel, 2009. Foreign Workers in Israel: Global Perspectives. Albany: State University of New York.
Weissbrod, Rachel, 2008. "Implications of Israeli Multilingualism and Multiculturalism for Translation Research", in: Beyond Descriptive Translation Studies: Investigations in Homage to Gideon Toury, Anthony Pym, Miriam Shlesinger and Daniel Simeoni (eds.). Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins, pp. 51-66.



Author: Woesler, Martin
Affiliation: University of Applied Languages, Munich, Germany; Harvard University, USA

Choices of subjectivity and randomness -
Non-representativeness as a characteristic of the cultural field of the translation
of German literature into Chinese

Examining German literature translated into Chinese from the macroperspective, there are some striking statements to draw:

1.  Translations of German literature into Chinese outnumber Chinese literature translated into German by far despite the smaller volume of German literature; the attractiveness of cultures will be discussed in this context.

2.  There are two huge translation waves, one in the early Republican era, one in contemporary China. The paper will discuss thoughts on possible reasons for this phenomenon; like the role of literature as a means of enlightenment, and the impact of literature on societies in transition.

3.  The choice of works translated is not representative, as seen from domestic and international perspectives. This is due to two kinds of choices made by the translator:

3.1  Subjective, deliberate choices for the purpose of
3.1.1  what seems to be historically needed or - from a microperspective –
3.1.2  what is chosen by the translator out of personal preferences;
3.1.3  Random choices of what happens to be textbooks at college (e.g. Guo Moruo's encounter with Goethe's literature) or what somehow is available in libraries, bookstores etc.

The paper concentrates especially on classical German literature of Goethe, Heine, Schiller, Biedermeier literature by Droste and modern literature by Th. Mann, Hesse, Domin, Suskind translated into Chinese, and gives also a few examples of other Western literature both historically and contemporary translated into Chinese. It will also draw comparisons to Chinese early literature (Daodejing, Lunyu), pre-modern literature (Dream of the Red Chamber) and contemporary Chinese literature (books by Mian Mian, by Han Han, web literature) translated into German and other Western languages. The question of the translation of culture is also addressed in this paper, as well as the complex of problems of the subjectivity of the translator especially regarding the literature chosen on purpose as historically needed texts. German literature in China influenced a lot of Republican Chinese intellectuals like Lu Xun, and Guo Moruo as well as 20th century authors like Qian Zhongshu. In today's commercialized literature especially German children's literature (Pfister, Boie) and fantasy (Ende, Hohlbein) is translated.



Author: Wong Man Kong
Affiliation: Department of History, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong

Colonialism and the Politics of Translation in Early Hong Kong

The early history of translation in British colonial Hong Kong is an overlooked topic. This paper aims at filling up parts of the gap by giving an account of how the work of translation had become possible while the British established its colonial rule during the early years. The first part of the paper would try to outline how the translation work was conducted and improved within the government offices and courts. These will include the discussion of the contributions by some outstanding individual officials and missionaries, the few leading English schools, and the creation of the Cadet Scheme. The second part of the paper will discuss how the translation was carried out in specific examples, such as the translation of official passages and the coinage of political and judicial terms. In doing so, we can see how translation had gone through processes of subtle negotiation in the making of new sets of Chinese terms. Special attention will be given to how such terms had become powerful symbols (in terms of their political and cultural connotations) for the colonial rule that helped contribute to perpetuate the British rule among the Chinese in Hong Kong.



Author: Wong Wang-chi Lawrence
Affiliation: Research Centre for Translation, The Chinese University of Hong Kong,
Hong Kong

"Chouban yiwu (Managing the Barbarians)":
Westerners as Barbarians in the Translation History of the 19th Century China

Since ancient times, the Chinese had developed a kind of superiority complex over their neighbours. The word yi or manyi, meaning barbarians, appeared in writings dated back to the Zhou Dynasty about three thousand years ago to denote the steppe nomadic tribes in the surrounding regions. When the Europeans came to China in the 16th century, they were taken as manyi in no different way. Regardless of their nationalities, they were all the same seen as inferior, uncivilized barbarians from the peripheral distant lands.

This Sinocentric attitude of the Chinese had serious impact on their interaction with the world. For a long time, they did not see the need to translate works from the west. Even when translation was required in commercial or diplomatic dealings, translators were skeptically seen as potential traitors, because they were intermediaries with the barbarians. It was only after repeated defeats in the 19th century that the Chinese started to translate western works in their efforts to modernize the country for national salvation.

The present paper explores how this concept of westerners as barbarians in the 18-19th century worked as a key factor in shaping Chinese translation traditions. Such questions as the Chinese concept of translation, the cultural and social position of the translators, and the changing attitude towards translating western works in the late 19th century will be dealt with in the paper.



Author: Xiong Ying
Affiliation: Japanese Department, The University of Sydney, Australia

Translations and Sino-Japanese Literary Communication in Manchukuo

This paper aims to shed light on the Sino-Japanese literary interactions in Manchukuo. The focus of this paper is on the translation practice of Ōuchi Takao (大内隆雄1907-1980), a Japanese translator living in Manchukuo from 1929 to 1946. Around 1940, Ōuchi began to engage himself in translations of Chinese literary writings. Among all the translations of Chinese works that have been resorted after the war, 110 out of 142 were translated by Ōuchi. It is no exaggeration to claim that Ōuchi became a crucial figure bridging the Chinese writers who were under Japanese imperial governance and Japanese readers.

However, my paper will point out that Ōuchi's translation from Chinese to Japanese was by no means literal. Changes were made to the original texts, in accordance with his personal ideology and the political needs in Manchukuo. By Ōuchi’s translations, the Sino-Japanese Literary communications took place in three levels: linguistics, culture and ideology. Translations of Chinese writings became the effective means whereby Ōuchi sought to articulate his identity. In this paper I seek to answer the following questions: 1) what were the alterations Ōuchi made to those Chinese writings; 2) in order to articulate their identity and stance, what strategies did Chinese writers employ in their texts; and 3) what political connotations did Ōuchi alternations bear within a historical context of Japanese control over Manchuria.



Author: Yan Tsz Ting
Affiliation: The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Collaborative Translation and the Transmission of Science:
A note on Alexander Wylie and Li Shanlan’s translation on western mathematics

Collaborative translation, as the predominate mode of translation in China prior to the Late Qing dynasty, was a traditional practice the significance of which left a great deal to be investigated. Many recent researches on Qing translation grew out of interest in its role as the primary means of sino-western transmission of knowledge; varieties of perspectives abound, but few were directed upon the mode of translation and the part it played in shaping translation product.

The purpose of this study is to explore the nature and effect of collaborative translation through examining the work of one of the most acclaimed pairs of collaborative translators, Alexander Wylie and Li Shanlan, who brought into China the major branch of modern mathematics — calculus — for the first time. Noteworthy is the caliber of Li Shanlan being an eminent Chinese mathematician. While most collaborative works in the 19th century suffered from both the western and Chinese translators’ lack of specialized knowledge, the mathematical prowess of Li was a rare exception. How, then, was western mathematics represented and interpreted with the collaboration between a western missionary and a Chinese mathematician is the point in question.

To this end, their translation on calculus was studied. The focus lay on the way of expression and the understanding of mathematical concepts the translation reflected. As such, the respective roles of the two translators in shaping the translation were anatomized, and the significance of collaborative translation in affecting the transmission of science was discussed.



Author: Zha Mingjian
Affiliation: College of English Language & Literature, Shanghai International Studies University, China

Power Discourse, Translation Selection and the Manipulation of
World Literature: A Chinese Perspective

From 1950s to 1970s, China witnessed that power discourse and political ideology exercised more and more influence in literary translation. Translation during the three decades had been mainly done in the service of politics rather than poetics. This has affected the translation choice and consequently the mapping of world literature. Whereas since 1980s, translation, with less political and ideological constraints, was mainly done with literariness-orientation, and reformed a new genealogy of world literature. The western modernist and postmodernist literature were translated with great enthusiasm into Chinese. Socialist realistic and proletarian literatures, once elevated to the level of dynamic canons of modern world literature, now were dramatically expelled to the margin of the literary system. The present paper, based on the analyses of the relationship between power discourse and translation selection, discusses how the power discourse manipulated the mapping of modern China’s “world literature” so as to demonstrate the relationship between world literature and translation.

Keywords: power discourse, translation selection, manipulation, World Literature



Author: Zheng Yiting Ethan
Affiliation: Graduate Institute of International Sinology Studies, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan

Three Ends of the World:
Intertextuality among Camille Flammarion's OMEGA:
The Last Days of the World,
Liang Qichao's Shijie mori ji, and Bao Tianxiao's "Shijie mori ji."

This essay studies three science fiction stories including Camille Flammarion’s OMEGA:The Last Days of the World, its Chinese translation The End of the World (Shijie mori ji  《世界末日記》) translated by Liang Qichao 梁啟超, and Bao Tianxiao’s 包天笑 “The End of the World” (“Shijie mori ji” 〈世界末日記〉) that all dealt with the total destruction of the world.  Liang’s translation of Camille Flammarion science fiction was published in the inaugural issue of New Fiction ( Xin xiaoshuo《新小說》) in 1902.  Although Liang claimed that his work was a rendition of Flammarion’s OMEGA, the plot and theme of Liang’s translation was far from the original work.  Instead, it was full of Liang’s belief in evolutionary theory and Buddhist ideas.  Interestingly, Bao Tianxiao’s “original” creation of “The End of the World,” published in the nineteenth issue of All-Story Monthly (Yueyue xiaoshuo《月月小說》) was very close to Flammarion’s work in many aspects.  It also looked similar to Liang Qichao’s famous incomplete fiction, The Future of New China (Xin Zhongguo weilai ji 《新中國未來記》).  By comparing and contrasting these four literary texts, I would like to show how late Qing fiction writers and/or translators took advantage of literary texts that they were familiar with but their readers weren’t to teach their readers what kind of Western learning (xixue 西學) they wanted their readers to learn.  Additionally, apocalyptic imagination in late Qing science fiction was an unprecedented topic in Chinese literature.  These two early science fiction stories also showed how they treated the end of the world and introduced this new idea to late Qing readers.




Nanyang Technological University


Copyright (C) 2009-2010. All rights reserved. The Fourth Asian Translation Traditions Conference.