Translation as Social Representation: A Model for Translation Criticism

Date: 17/12/2001

Time: 7:00-9:00PM

Location: Centre for Translation, DLB 701, David C. Lam Building, Shaw Campus, Hong Kong Baptist University, Renfrew Road, Kowloon Tong

Speaker: Prof Annie Brisset

Translation Seminar Series


There is a need for a better understanding of what structures the relationship between the (translating) subject and the object (matter) of translation. What are the cultural parameters of this relationship? A culture that creates a demand for translation also supplies a framework of references (ideas, beliefs, and values) which accompany the subsequent interpretation of the text in that culture. As research on cognitive processes tends to show, it is these particular representations which, at a given point in a culture’s social history, render a translation relevant. The sociocritical model aims at showing how the translator articulates the sociocultural representations at play in the source text and the target society. It focuses on the cultural causes prompting translation choices. Examples drawn from the Canadian context will show how the intentio culturae (intention of culture, as opposed to Eco’s intention of the author, the text and the reader) acts as the prime locus of meaning, and throws light on the collective identity of the translator-subject.

About the Speaker:

Annie Brisset is professor and Director of Graduate Studies at the School of Translation and Interpretation, University of Ottawa, where she teaches discourse theory and intercultural communication. Her present research is on translation and knowledge transfer. As a consultant to UNESCO (development of multilingual communication in Central and Eastern Europe), she has recently published Developing Multilingual Communication in Azerbaijan. An Action Plan (Baku, 2001). She is the author of A Sociocritique of Translation (U. of Toronto Press, 1996) and co-editor with Paul St-Pierre of Translation and Globalization. Cross-Cultural Communication in the New World Order (U. of Ottawa Press; forthcoming).

Translation as Social Representation: A Model for Translation Criticism
Scroll to top