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The Translator- Centered Multidisciplinary Construction

Douglas Robinson’s Translation Theories Explored

Lin Zhu

This book embraces the epistemological and methodological issues of theoretical construction in the field of Translation Studies from a historical and global perspective. The theoretical stances are explained in detail through a systemic inquiry into the constructive aspects of theoretical innovation of the American translation theorist Douglas Robinson. In order to renew and promote theoretical thinking in the field of Translation Studies, this book aims to reflect on existing theoretical problems in translation, trace the translation theorist’s innovative and constructive ways of thinking about translation theory, and explore productive philosophical and theoretical resources of translation studies. This book will not only be helpful to a further and full understanding of Robinson’s thoughts on translation, but also offers a rethinking of how to advance Translation Studies epistemologically and methodologically.

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1 Introduction: Robinson, Translation, and Translation Studies 23

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23 CHAPTER 1 Introduction: Robinson, Translation, and Translation Studies To prepare the way for the argument in the following chapters, this chapter informs readers about Robinson’s work and provides an outline of the research in the book. It commences with an analysis of the back- ground of the research on Robinson’s translation theories and gives the rationale behind the research. It then presents Robinson’s broad aca- demic background, his translation practice, and his translation research, before providing a detailed literature review on the studies of Robinson’s translation theories in both China and the West. Finally, it outlines the structure of the book. 1.1 Translation Studies: State of the Art Breakthroughs in translation studies have been keeping pace with key paradigm shifts in critical theory, roughly from philological study, to structuralistic study, and then to deconstructive study. These develop- ments have witnessed a broadening of translation studies, with socio- cultural and political elements increasingly incorporated into the field. Deconstruction has stimulated translation studies with its new ways of thinking and its openness to difference and diversity. It frees transla- tion studies from the shackles of the structuralistic paradigm, breaking through the closed, static approach of structuralistic translation studies; it challenges the authority of the original text and opens up the textual structure, pushing various sociocultural and political elements to the foreground of translation studies. Cultural studies and translation stud- ies are becoming closely related. Translation researchers have begun to shift their attention from the dominant textual studies to the study of...

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