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«Translatio» et Histoire des idées / «Translatio» and the History of Ideas

Idées, langue, déterminants. Tome 1 / Ideas, language, politics. Volume 1

Edited By Anna Kukułka-Wojtasik

Produit de la conférence Translatio et Histoire des idées, troisième du cycle Translatio, ce livre réunit des contributions reflétant l’actualisation des recherches sur la Translatio et son rôle dans la marche des idées. Nous y voyons diverses conceptualisations de l’image de l’Autre et de son univers, dues aux déterminants idéologiques et politiques du processus du transfert langagier. L’objectif des investigations est de mesurer les infléchissements induits par la Translatio, ce passage d’une culture à l’autre.

Les auteurs abordent aussi bien des cas qui autorisent à identifier motifs et éléments récurrents accompagnant le processus de la Translatio. La récurrence de ces aspects permet des formuler certaines règles concernant le transfert langagier.

This book, a product of the "Translatio and the History of Ideas" conference and the third volume in the Translatio cycle, brings together contributions reflecting the advances in research on the Translatio and its role in the march of ideas. We see various conceptualizations of the image of the Other and his universe, due to the ideological and political determinants of the language transfer process. The objective of the investigations is to measure the inflections induced by the Translatio, this passage from one culture to another.
The authors approach the cases that allow to identify certain patterns and recurring elements accompanying the process of the Translatio. The recurrence of these aspects makes it possible to formulate certain rules and principles concerning language transfer.

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Can We Trust Translators?

Can We Trust Translators?

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Krzysztof Hejwowski

Abstract: The article deals with the problem of translators’ credibility. In recent years it has become fashionable to refer to translation as manipulation and to exaggerate the differences between originals and translations and the differences between different translations of the same text. The author points out that such an approach questions the very foundations of our culture and argues that even literary translations, including translations of poetry, usually preserve much more from the originals than they lose.

Keywords: literary translation, translators, credibility, manipulation, exaggeration

In order to travel through space and time ideas need translators. What if translators cannot be trusted? What if ideas get distorted, twisted, changed in translation?

In the last decades, after the so-called “cultural turn” in translations studies, it has been fashionable to describe translation as “manipulation” (Bassnett & Lefevere, 1992; Hermans, 1985; Lefevere, 1992) or as “ethnocentric violence” (Venuti, 1995). A recent book by Lawrence Venuti is entitled “Translation Changes Everything” (2013). What are the consequences if we accept that point of view?

It is a well-known (though rarely recalled) fact that Jesus spoke Aramaic. Since the gospels were written in Greek it follows that we only know the translated version of his teachings, including the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew Ch. 5, 6, 7) and “the golden rule”: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (Mt 7:12, Luke 6:31) – one of the foundations of our civilization,...

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