Cfp: Special Issue on the History of Translation and Interpreting

Guest edited by Myriam Salama-Carr

Translation & Interpreting: The International Journal of Translation and Interpreting Research. Publication date: July 2019

Call for papers

Over the last two decades translation studies has expanded the spatial boundaries of its historical research, and this in a move towards inclusiveness and with a view to foregrounding less visible and uncharted traditions (Gaddis Rose, 2000; Hermans, 2006; Cheung, 2009, 2012 amongst others), which is linked with the ‘international turn in translation studies’ (Cheung, 2005). It is worth noting that this enlarging of historical research on translation thinking and praxis is largely tributary to the crossing of disciplinary boundaries, for instance the role of gender studies and postcolonial studies in researching hitherto neglected voices and constituencies.

Research in the history of translation has not only helped foreground the role of translation in the transmission and construction of knowledge across spatial and temporal boundaries, but it is also seen as a means of studying wider cultural history (Rundle, 2012). Gaps remain, nevertheless, in terms of less researched traditions and modes of mediation. One such gap can be found in the history of interpreting given the scarcity of sources for historians.

A number of scholars have raised the issue of how to carry out research in the field with due attention to epistemological and methodological challenges (D’hulst, 1995; Delisle, 1997; Pym, 1998) and more recent studies, drawing on a wider range of translation and interpreting histories, have problematised further the discourse on translation in terms of metalanguage, periodisation and  underlying assumptions (Foz, 2006; Wakabayashi and Kothari, 2009; Cheung, 2007; O’Sullivan, 2012; Cheung, 2014; D’hulst, 2007, 2014). There is much sharper focus on the way historiography and history of translation is carried out.

This special issue on the history of translation and interpreting invites contributions on the following themes and is particularly interested in submissions of an interdisciplinary nature. It aims to address the following overarching themes:

  • Research methods for the historical study of translation and/or interpreting
  • Further insights on past practices and conceptualisation of translation and interpreting.

Contributions are invited on the following topics:

  • Translation as a historical event
  • Translation in the history of science
  • Translation and intellectual history
  • Translators’ archives
  • Micro-histories of translation
  • Portraits of translators and interpreters
  • Historical perspectives on translation
  • Recording and re-narrating oral traditions
  • Historiographical practices and the history of translation
  • The challenges of periodisation and national boundaries in histories of translation
  • Constructing anthologies of translation and its discourses
  • Digital humanities and the history of translation and interpreting
  • Digitisation of archives and manuscripts

We welcome full-length papers of 6,000-7,000 words (APA style).

Abstract submission: by 30 April 2018, at

Full paper submission: by 30 October 2018, at: information/authors

Myriam Salama-Carr (University of Manchester)



Cheung, M. (2003). From theory to discourse. The making of a translation anthology. Bulletin of the SOAS, 66(3). 390-401

Cheung, M. (2005). ‘To translate’ means ‘to exchange? A new interpretation of the earliest Chinese attempts to define translation (‘fanyi’). Target 17(1). 27-47

Cheung, M. (2007). On thick translation as a mode of cultural representation. In D. Kenny & R. Kyongjoo (Eds.) Across boundaries: International perspectives on Translation Studies (pp. 22-36). Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars.

Cheung, M. (2009). Introduction: Chinese discourses on translation. Positions and perspectives. The Translator 15(2). 223-238.

Cheung, M. (2012). The mediated nature of knowledge and the pushing-hands approach to research on translation history. Translation Studies 5(2). 156-171.

Cheung, M. (2014). An anthology of Chinese discourse on translation. London & New York: Routledge. 2nd edition.

Delisle, J. (1997). Réflexions sur l’historiographie de la traduction et ses exigences scientifiques. Equivalences 26 (2). 21-43

D’hulst, L. (1995). Pour une historiographie des théories de la traduction : questions de méthode. TTR 8(1). 13-33.

D’hulst, L. (2007). Questions d’historiographie de la traduction. In Kittel et al (Eds.) Ubersetzung Translation Traduction (pp. 1063-1073)Berlin & New York: Walter de Gruyter.

D’hulst, L. (2014). Essais d’histoire de la traduction – Avatars de Janus. Paris: Classiques Garnier.Bottom of Form

Foz, C. (2006). Translation, history and the translation scholar. In P. F. Bandia, & G. L. Bastin (Eds.) Charting the future of translation history (pp. 131-143). Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press.

Gaddis Rose, M. (2000) (Ed.). Beyond the Western tradition. Translation perspectives XI. Binghamton: Center for Research in Translation – State.

Hermans, T. (Ed.) (2006). Translating others. 2vols. Manchester: St Jerome.

O’Sullivan, C. (Ed.) (2012).Translation Studies – Special issue on rethinking methods in translation history.  5(2).

Rundle, C. (2012). Translation as an approach to history. Translation Studies 5(2). 232-240.

Wakabayashi, J. & Kothari, R. (Eds) (2009). Decentering Translation Studies – India and beyond. Amsterdam & New York: John Benjamins.

Posted by The Editors on 26th Jan 2018
in Call for Papers

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