Call for Papers



(Hi)stories of Translation and Translators: Past, Present and Future


Department of Translation and Interpreting Studies

Boğaziçi University, Istanbul 

(The conference will be held online via Zoom Video Conferencing)

12-13 NOVEMBER 2020




Anthony Pym has suggested that translation history has three main arteries: “translation archeology” (discourses on the questions of who translated what, how, where, when, for whom and with what effect?); “historical criticism” (discourses assessing the ways translations help or hinder progress); and “explanation” (tackling the question “why?”) (1998, 5-6). Pym’s conception of translation history undoubtedly opens up a systematic method of dealing with extensive and detailed data from either a macro- or micro-historical perspective. The invaluable findings of traditional macro-historical studies have certainly triggered new approaches, such as the focus on agents of translation and the examination of extratextual sources that help us (re)construct the history of translation and translators.

There is no doubt that the past two decades have marked a substantial shift of focus in the field of Translation Studies from the translated text to the actors involved in the translation process, leading to the birth of the new branch of (what Andrew Chesterman calls) “Translator Studies” (2009). In line with this shift of focus, historical research investigating the role and position of translational and cultural agents has gained increasing attention. As a result, the method of micro-history has become instrumental in uncovering the voices of these agents in social and cultural history, thereby enriching the literature on translation history, which previously tended to concentrate on macro dimensions of translation. The micro-historical approach has motivated researchers to examine primary sources such as personal papers, manuscripts, post-hoc accounts and interviews. By looking into these previously neglected archival documents, researchers aim to shed light on “the translator’s decision-making process” (Munday, 2013), on “the collaboration in the production of translations” (Paloposki, 2017) and on “the place of literary translators and their social situatedness and agency” (Constanza Guzmán, 2013). In doing so, they have initiated new discussions, which promise to broaden the horizons of Translation Studies as a discipline.

Lieven D’hulst and Yves Gambier argue that “histories of translation knowledge may be written about all periods, all areas and all domains of translational communication” (2018, 10). In that spirit, we, as Ph.D. candidates in the Department of Translation and Interpreting Studies, Boğaziçi University, plan to organize a conference that takes a look at the past, present and future of macro- and micro-histories of translation. In collaboration with the ID-TS, we invite doctoral students to present their research at this graduate event, which will be held online due to the restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The book of abstracts is published here. We also hope to include the papers presented in a special journal issue dedicated to the event.


Topics to be addressed in the conference include, but are not limited to, the following:

●Translation and history

●Macro-/Micro-history & translation

●Archival research in the digital age


●Translation sociology

●Translator & Interpreter Studies

●Interpreting Studies & history

●Gender and translation

●Interdisciplinarity in TS

●Ethical aspects of historical research in TS


Submission of Abstracts

Participants are invited to submit proposals for 15-minute presentations. Abstracts of maximum 300 words should be submitted by the deadline indicated below, including the participant’s name, affiliation and contact information.

Please note that the conference language is English and abstracts and papers must be submitted in English only.

There is no conference registration fee for authors of accepted papers but we do ask participants to register through the conference website which is now under construction.

For the submission of abstracts and all general enquiries, please contact:



Chesterman, A. (2009). The name and nature of translator studies. Journal of language and communication studies. 42. 13-22.

D’hulst, L. & Yves Gambier. (2018) A History of Modern Translation Knowledge: Sources, concepts, effects. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

Guzmán, M. C. (2013). Translation North and South: Composing the Translator’s Archive. TTR, 26 (2). 171–191. Available at <> [consulted July 1, 2020].

Munday, J. (2013). The role of archival and manuscript research in the investigation of translator decision-making. Target, 25(1). 125-139.

Paloposki, O. (2017). “In Search of an Ordinary Translator: Translator Histories, Working Practices and Translator-Publisher Relations in the light of Archival Documents.” The Translator, 23, 1. 31-48.

Pym, A. (1998). Method in Translation History. Manchester, UK: St. Jerome.


Further Readings

D’hulst, L. (2015) The Figure of the translator revisited: A theoretical overview and a case study. Convergences francophones. 2(2). 1-11.

Milton, J. & Paul Bandia. (2009). Introduction: Agents of translation and Translation Studies. Agents of Translation. Amsterdam: John Benjamin’s Publishing.

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

Wakabayashi, J. (2012). Japanese translation historiography: Origins, strengths, weaknesses and lessons. Translation Studies. 5(2), 172-188.

Son Güncelleme: 00:35:14 - 11.11.2020