You are on page 1of 28


´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010


José Lambert is a proíessor and scholar in Comparati·e Literature and 1ranslation Studies,
and one oí the íounders oí CL1RA - Centre íor 1ranslation Studies
- at the Uni·ersity oí Leu·en,
Belgium. Initially, when it was created in 1989, what later became CL1RA consisted oí a special
research program whose purpose was the promotion oí high-le·el research in in 1ranslation Studies, a
perennial goal still pursued to this day. Nowadays, José Lambert ser·es as its honorary chairman. le is
also a co-editor oí 1arget - ívtervatiovat ]ovrvat of 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie.
and the author oí more than 100
articles. Additionally, he co-edited such ·olumes as íiteratvre ava 1rav.tatiov: ^er Per.¡ectire. iv íiterar,
´tvaie. ,19¯8,, 1rav.tatiov iv tbe Dereto¡vevt of íiteratvre. - íe. 1raavctiov.
aav. te aereto¡¡evevt ae. íitteratvre. ,1993,, 1rav.tatiov ava Moaervi¸atiov ,1995,, 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie. iv
ívvgar, ,1996, and Cro..cvttvrat ava íivgvi.tic Per.¡ectire. ov ívro¡eav O¡ev ava Di.tavce íearvivg ,1998,.
le has been a guest proíessor at many uni·ersities around the world such as Penn Uni·ersity, New
\ork Uni·ersity, Uni·ersity oí Alberta, Uni·ersity oí Amsterdam and the Sorbonne, ha·ing lectured in
many others as well. Starting in 2010,2 he will ser·e a 2-year tenure as a guest proíessor at
Uni·ersidade lederal de Santa Catarina.

1he inter·iew here presented is an excerpt oí a larger project still in the making and with a
broader agenda. In its broader ·ersion the project aims at collecting José Lambert`s opinions and
·iews on a ·ariety oí subjects related to 1ranslation Studies, írom its history to its many conceptual
and theoretical debates. In this excerpt the íocus oí the inter·iew is on the history oí our discipline as
seen írom his pri·ileged point oí ·iew. Moreo·er, a íew questions make reíerence to subjects
discussed by Gideon 1oury in his ,recent, article Incubation, birth and growth: Obser·ations on the
íirst 20 years oí 1arget`, published in 1arget 21:2, and to some assertions brought up in Alice Leal`s
text Being a CL1RA Student: A Critical Account oí the 2009 Summer School`, published herein. As
a complement to the answers to the questions that reíer to the latter text, José Lambert has added a
notice that reílects his ulterior reading oí that text, which he carried out sometime aíter he had already
answered the questions íormulated íor this inter·iew.

Gusta·o Althoíí
and Lilian lleuri

Gusta·o Althoíí has a major in Social Sciences írom Uni·ersidade lederal de Santa Catarina ,UlSC, and is a
PhD candidate at the Postgraduate 1ranslation Studies programme ,Pós-Graduaçao em Lstudos da 1raduçao -
PGL1, in the same institution. le is also the assistant editor oí ´cievtia 1raavctiovi. and a researcher at Núcleo de
Lstudos do Pensamento Político ,NLPP, at UlSC. lis research interests include the theory and the history oí
translation, the translation oí philosophical texts and its problems, and political theory.
Lilian lleuri has a major in Portuguese Language and Brazilian Literature, a masters in 1ranslation Studies, and
has taught Brazilian Portuguese at Middlebury College ,Vermont, USA,. She is currently a PhD candidate at the
Postgraduate 1ranslation Studies programme ,Pós-Graduaçao em Lstudos da 1raduçao - PGL1, at
Uni·ersidade lederal de Santa Catarina ,Brazil,. ler íocus research area in 1ranslation Studies is Discourse
Analysis, Systemic-lunctional Linguistics, and Corpus Linguistics.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

July, 2010

"#$%&#' ()'*+"&#,%#-. /$ 0,+1* 1#2$ &, '-2 3,+ ' 1#&&1$ 4#& '4,+& &5$
5#-&,)3 ,6 &5$ #%-&#&+&#,% ,6 05#"5 3,+ 0$)$ ' 6,+%*$) '%* 5'- 4$$% '
7$74$) 6,) 7'%3 3$')-8 9:(;<= /5'& #- &5$ 5#-&,)3 4$5#%* &5$
")$'&#,% ,6 &5#- "$%&)$ *$*#"'&$* $>"1+-#?$13 &, ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$-A /5'& 0$)$ &5$
*#66#"+1&#$- 6'"$* #% -$&&#%B #& +CA <%* 05'& ),1$ 5'- #& 4$$% C1'3#%B %,0'*'3- '-
()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$- 4$",7$- 7,)$ '%* 7,)$ ' *#-"#C1#%$ ,6 B1,4'1 -",C$ '%* 3$& ,6
1,"'1 C)'"&#"$A D,$- 9:(;< $66$"&#?$13 6+%"&#,% '- '% '&&)'"&#%B C,1$ 6,) 7'%3
*#66$)$%& $>C$)#$%"$- '%* *#-"+--#,%- 5$1* '& &5$ 1,"'1 1$?$1 #% ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$-
&5),+B5,+& &5$ 0,)1*A
JOSL LAMBLR1: 1his is a íull program in itselí! 1hese are e·en, I would say, kind questions. I
mean, part oí the answer is implied. It means that you are con·inced that CL1RA means
something not just íor a local institution but íor the discipline. Now, I would say that this was
the initial ambition. Oí course, being aíterwards responsible íor what we ha·e done I am
con·inced that we achie·ed at least part oí the goals. But that is maybe promotional talk on
my behalí. I would not try to be simply someone who promotes his own initiati·e. I would
like to examine this in a more critical way - so selí-criticism is not bad.
1here is quite some literature written about CL1RA - so it is not íor the íirst time that many
people ha·e talked about the initiati·e, and e·en big names in the discipline ha·e written
about it, like Daniel Gile
, lranz Pochhacker
, Andrew Chesterman
, etc, and this e·en
happened írom the ·ery start. Aíter all, in Leu·en, we started CL1RA as people who ha·e
always belonged to, say, departments oí Literary Studies, which was ambiguous because
starting up a new discipline within existing departments is, by deíinition, schizophrenic. And
we were in trouble. And by many people we ha·e been identiíied, e·en up to this ·ery day, as
people who are not really experts in 1ranslation Studies and who are supposed to be linked,
rather, with literary translation, and so on.
I can reíer to my article that I published in a Portuguese journal called Ceve.i.
in 2005 with
the pro·ocati·e question, the ironical title: Is 1ranslation Studies too literary·`
Now, this
was, oí course, not about CL1RA, not about me, but about the discipline - but oí course I
was taking it on behalí oí myselí and oí se·eral things. Now, indeed, lots oí things that we
ha·e tried to de·elop ha·e been linked, íor a certain time, with the question oí literature,
translated literature, and many people dealing with translation were con·inced that, aíter all,
our positions were not really rele·ant íor translation but íor particular areas in translation.
And in íact this ambiguity - that`s what I explain in the article - was also linked with the íirst

http:,,,database,datasheet.cím,int1206.htm & http:,,,DGCVLN.htm
Is 1ranslation Studies too Literary·`, Génesis. Re·ista cientiíica do ISAI. 1raduçao e Interpretaçao, 2005, 5 :

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
maniíestations oí the colleagues coming írom 1el A·i· and Israel to Leu·en - these include
Gideon 1oury, Itamar L·en-Zohar, Zohar Sha·it, Rakeíet Sheííy ,now Rakeíet Sela-Sheííy,,
Nitsa Ben-Ary and Shelly \ahalom ,now Shelly Charles,. And this initiati·e is not a matter oí
people, but it was the real start, íirst oí all, oí research on translation at my uni·ersity and,
indeed, on translated literature, but with a larger ambition. But at that moment we were much
more narrowly linked with the Department oí Literature. lence the title oí our íirst
important and still íamous book - Susan Bassnett says this is really the historic symposium on
translation: Literature and 1ranslation: New Perspecti·es in Literary Studies`
. Now, in that
article I tried to show that this title was much too narrow. But oí course, aíter all you are
linked with institutional conditions, including e·en the people that came to us - and there
were lots oí people who were not at all linked with Literary Studies! 1he most iníluential
people in that symposium ·ery oíten happened to ha·e partly literary background but this did
not really explain or account íor e·erything that they were suggesting and proposing.
1he origin oí our ambition with CL1RA was to work out something that was de·eloping
already in the mid-19¯0s. But a íew people among us were young people and we were all
starting intellectuals at the uni·ersity, and we had no power. \e had important meetings at
the end oí the 19¯0s and beginning oí the 1980s, and the ambition to work out a new íorum
íor research on translation, this ambition was de·eloping because there was a group and there
were international contacts. So there was something like networking and we were meeting in
diííerent symposia and diííerent disciplines, and we deíinitely wanted to do something. But
then working this out was more diííicult because, íinally, when you get into action the
agreement is not that ob·ious. 1he real initiati·e was taken by Gideon 1oury
, who, íirst oí
all, wanted to start a journal. 1he second mo·ement, which came a little bit in the continuity
oí that journal - 1arget - was that we started to plan this institute - CL1RA. 1his institute
was not really planned together by 1el A·i· and Leu·en. It was mainly an initiati·e, say, in
Leu·en and by se·eral local people, well, locals and íriends írom international institutions. So
the institutional conditions were a little bit better. And the íact that we had already a íorum
and that we had taken part in publications and so on constituted a stronger basis.
1here were also local ambitions and local possibilities that were impro·ing. \e got some
external íinance írom a bank in Belgium, CLRA Bank - and the name CL1RA is still
reíerring to that. So due to some local conditions and due also to the Penn-Leu·en Institute
which was a new institute íor ad·anced studies in the area oí literary and culture studies, we
had the opportunity to integrate translation as a pri·ileged area íor high le·el training oí
young scholars, say, PhD scholars, and also beyond. And this Penn-Leu·en Institute was ·ery
important and ga·e us the opportunity to start up the training oí researchers in translation,
and this was new. Now, I can tell that our initiati·e has been used aíterwards, se·eral years

1he Penn-Leu·en Institute íor Literary and Cultural Studies ,198¯-1989, was a joint ·enture between the
Uni·ersity oí Pennsyl·ania ,nicknamed: Penn, and K.U.Leu·en. It consisted oí a Summer School entitled "1he
Penn-Leu·en Institute íor Literary and Cultural Studies" whose goal was to oííer high le·el sessions organized
and pro·ided by prominent international staíí to students írom ,at least, both continents. 1he Institute does not
exist any more ,198¯-1989,. ,1his iníormation was pro·ided by the inter·iewee.,

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

later, by se·eral other institutes. So it has been copied. Now uni·ersities try to attract young
scholars in 1ranslation Studies and try to pro·ide them with, say, specialized research
methodology. I can tell you that whether they say so or not it has been copied írom CL1RA.
So CL1RA has been the model íor an international training oí a new generation oí scholars
in 1ranslation Studies and the number oí people who publish about translation nowadays, the
number that has been in·ol·ed in the training sessions in Leu·en is, I would say, in itselí, I
am ·ery proud about it, impressi·e! I could gi·e you long lists oí names and you can e·en see
them on the website oí CL1RA, we ha·e about 500 hundred student-researchers or PhDs on
íi·e continents.
So we started in 1989 and attracted people írom íi·e continents. But we also ha·e a list oí top
people who ha·e been CL1RA Proíessors and, uníortunately, some among these colleagues
ha·e already died, they belong to history. All this means that CL1RA is also part oí the
history oí a new discipline. And I am con·inced that CL1RA as well as our journal - 1arget -
ha·e played a ·ery important role in the establishment oí 1ranslation Studies as a new
discipline, and e·en, I would say, in something that you notice locally in llorianópolis
. I
mean the institutionalization oí a PhD program in 1ranslation Studies which in itselí is more
than symbolic, and which is absolutely new in the history oí uni·ersities at the moment when,
in íact, disciplines in the lumanities are rather under threat. So I am con·inced that CL1RA
played a role in the international institutionalization oí 1ranslation Studies not only because
there were new topics and new PhDs - PhDs are important! - but also new proíiles and
people as well as the organization oí scholarly societies, and so on. So I would say this is
probably the most important component in my answer.
And what were the goals· Notwithstanding our origins, that is, our literary institutional
background, our goals were to establish 1ranslation Studies and not the study oí translated
literature, and this is made clear in the article in Ceve.i..
@(. D, 3,+ &5#%2 ')&#"1$- #% E,+)%'1- '%* C'C$)- C)$-$%&$* #% ",%B)$--$- 5'?$ 5'* '
*#-&#%B+#-5'41$ 0$#B5& #% 5$1C#%B &, ",%-&#&+&$ ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$- '- ' *#-"#C1#%$A
/5'& 0$)$ &5$#) ),1$- #% &5$ ",%-&#&+&#,% ,6 ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$-A
LAMBLR1: I would say that these are important and interesting questions. Now, my main
answer is ·ery simple. \ithout claiming to answer on behalí oí the íull world oí 1ranslation
Studies, but while being conscious oí the íact that I represent a particular approach to this
discipline and to its history, I would say my reply is deíiniti·ely positi·e. So meetings and the
interaction between people studying translation ha·e been ·ery iníluential - I am not sure ií
they are as iníluential now but I know ·ery particular moments where meeting people has
been ·ery important, not just because the people in·ol·ed were picturesque, or interesting, or
kind, or wonderíul, but because oí the things that happened when these people ha·e met.

1he mentioning oí llorianópolis reíers to Santa Catarina lederal Uni·ersity`s Postgraduate 1ranslation
Studies programme ,PGL1,: http:,,www.pget.uí,·l~en.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
Now, the question is more complex. It is concentrating on journals and papers at congresses.
Certainly írom the contemporary point oí ·iew I would distinguish hea·ily between
congresses. So the sociological phenomenon oí people meeting during organized meetings -
congresses, seminars, and so on - that's one thing. Very oíten papers ha·e been published,
not always. Sometimes, some among these meetings were ·ery iníluential without publishing.
But se·eral among these meetings ha·e been iníluential because the papers ha·e been
published and distributed. Now, in our contemporary age, and maybe at the beginning, this
was not that clear.
1here is also a book market in 1ranslation Studies, and a hea·y book market. Now, I do not
say that books are not iníluential but in the use oí books, journals and articles by centers, by
students, as in llorianópolis, íor instance, I would say that I see diííerent options and
priorities. And I, myselí, am a little bit skeptical about the impact that the contemporary book
market has on the discipline. Lspecially when I go to uni·ersities I can see in their libraries
,·ery oíten little libraries, because, oí course, 1ranslation Studies is not a discipline like, say,
listoriography, that institutes are hea·ily dependent on indi·idual books and, say,
monographical approaches to 1ranslation Studies. And I would say this is ·ery diííerent írom
what is íirst asked here: journals and paper and congresses.
Now, without saying that one is good and the other is bad, I would like to be more concrete
and more descripti·e in my answer to this question by gi·ing examples oí cases that are really
oí historical importance in the de·elopment oí the discipline. 1he íirst example is the ·ery
well known article by James lolmes - I would say it is a classic!: "1he Name and Nature oí
1ranslation Studies"
. It has been published íirst as what we used to call at that moment, at
the beginning oí the 19¯0s, a "preprint". And it has been published as a preprint in 19¯2 íirst
and then in 19¯5. 1he article has been published again in book íorm - as one oí the more
modern approaches to 1ranslation Studies is in book íorm - in 1988, edited by Raymond ·an
den Broeck, írom Antwerp, another ·ery important colleague in the history oí 1ranslation
Studies at that age ,he was already, say, near the end oí his career,
. But this article, a little by
little brushed up, was already known in 19¯5 and was quoted beíore, and I am sure that the
íirst ·ersion oí this article goes back to the 1960s.
lolmes is not a gentleman who published that much and many among his key articles ha·e
been used se·eral times. But this article was so programmatic and so central, and it was
recognized as such a basic contribution that lolmes himselí worked it out and it was really
the program oí the discipline. Now, just to coníirm or to make clear how iníluential it was I
am almost sure that it is on the basis oí this article that the name oí the discipline,
"1ranslation Studies", has been disseminating. And I would say that a second ·ery important
moment in the dissemination oí this concept, and e·en oí the iníluence oí this article, but not
only this article, is the little book - it was not a big book - by Mary Snell-lornby

lolmes, James S. ,19¯2,1988,. "1he Name and Nature oí 1ranslation Studies." In: James S. lolmes,
1ranslated! Papers on Literary 1ranslation and 1ranslation Studies, Amsterdam: Rodopi, pp. 6¯-80.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

"1ranslation Studies: An Integrated Approach"

, published by Benjamins at the end oí the
1980s. 1hat is because on behalí oí Mary Snell-lornby, and so on, íor the íirst time, íor a real
international audience, and with a book that was going to be iníluential - in this case we talk
about a book, not about articles, but she is reíerring to that article - 1ranslation Studies was
in íact integrated into the linguistic approach and e·en into large circles oí translation
training. So this article by lolmes, which is used and quoted in all the basic texts by, say,
people like 1oury - but also by many, many people who nowadays, íor instance, would ha·e
·ery diííerent approaches than 1oury`s - was really used in many meetings.
I would e·en say that the íull career oí James lolmes was a coníirmation oí the importance
oí the social component in the interaction between scholars in 1ranslation Studies írom
·arious íields and írom many countries. It must be noted that lolmes was a globetrotter.
And one oí his secrets, one oí the reasons why he was so iníluential, is that he collected
people. le was a great tra·eler, e·en in Lastern Lurope. le was an American li·ing in
Amsterdam, he was a poet, but also a scholar, and a scholar with a ·ery particular status in
Amsterdam - I had been working in his institute and I know ·ery well how he was beha·ing.
le brought together people like Itamar L·en-Zohar
, íirst, and L·en-Zohar then brought
1oury into the picture. But lolmes had contacts with the people írom Czechoslo·akia, and
many among them, Russians, Van Den Broeck, who was a ·ery personal íriend oí lolmes,
and etc. So there was something like, I would say, a social phenomenon beíore there was a
real question oí publications. 1he publications came aíterwards. And ·ery oíten the
publications did not e·en come. So I know oí lots oí documents that ha·e been produced
and discussed and that ha·e ne·er really been published. So at the beginning there was maybe
e·en the non-publication oí se·eral papers - and aíter all lolmes himselí did not publish that
much but was iníluential and symptomatic.
Now, 1oury's paper, íor instance, is a ·ery similar example. 1he íirst íormulation oí the idea
oí norms in 1ranslation Studies, I can locate it ·ery well, was the result oí the selection oí
three proposals by 1oury to the organizing committee oí the Leu·en Coníerence írom
. 1oury produced three proposals and we selected that one on "1he Nature and Role oí
Norms in Literary 1ranslation". 1his was the íirst íormulation oí his article - it is on his
. Aíter all, the íull career oí 1oury and the íull de·elopment oí, say, Descripti·e

Snell-lornby, Mary ,1988,1995,. 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie.. .v ívtegratea .¡¡roacb. Amsterdam: Benjamins. More inío:
It was entitled`Coníerence on Literature and 1ranslation`.
http:,,,~toury,works,G1-Role-Norms.htm. 1he title oí the book chapter a·ailable ·ia this link
is a little bit diííerent than the original paper: 1he Nature and Role oí Norms in 1ranslation`. It is the chapter
n.2 oí 1oury`s iníluential book Descripti·e 1ranslation Studies and Beyond, published by John Benjamins in

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
1ranslation Studies ,D1S, goes back to that article. So these are really the most programmatic
articles that I know in 1ranslation Studies, say, beíore the 1990s.

L·en in the beginning oí the Luropean Society íor 1ranslation Studies ,LS1,
in Vienna, in
, at the International Congress 1ranslation Studies - An Interdiscipline`, the
introduction and se·eral discussions held there - Mary Snell-lornby was the initiator there -
are ·ery much linked, and narrowly linked, with these texts. I know se·eral other cases. And I
know also oí coníerences with ·ery inno·ati·e approaches to translation, and short meetings,
and so on, that were not really that iníluential - which does not mean they were not
important. I do not really try to support only my own ·iew, but the most impressi·e
discussions at coníerences that I ha·e e·er attended were the ones that took place in 19¯6 at
the Leu·en Coníerence, where discussions were held during three, íour days between James
lolmes, Itamar L·en-Zohar, Gideon 1oury, Andre Leíe·ere
, Susan Bassnett
, say, José
Lambert, and a íew others. 1here were also íi·e students oí mine among them and there is at
least one who is sur·i·ing well in 1ranslation Studies, Lie·en D`hulst
, but there was also
Kitty ·an Leu·en and etc - the list oí names that probably are indebted to this coníerence íor
their careers in 1ranslation Studies, this list is extremely impressi·e. So what were their roles
in the constitution oí 1ranslations Studies· Notwithstanding the íact that I am reducing my
scope because, well, I am a simple indi·idual being in my career, I think that the ·ery origin oí
1ranslation Studies is linked with meetings, seminars and discussions, publications aíterwards,
and the willingness to de·elop new mo·ements and networking, international networking -
e·en beyond the borderlines between, say, communist and non-communist Lurope - and
e·en intercontinental contacts.
So the real origin was meetings and the second thing was publishing - though in the
beginning we did not ha·e publishing. \hen I argue a little bit about these books it is because
I íelt a little bit disappointed. 1he international inírastructure íor publishing books is so
poweríul now - e·en íor 1ranslation studies. So what I missed at the beginning was exactly
that. I had tapes recorded oí all these discussions that I call historic. I was so disappointed at
a gi·en moment that I ha·e destroyed them. So it is a real shame about my own career
noticing that we had no publishing power. Now this publishing power is a·ailable. So
something changed.
@(. F,+ 7$%&#,% &5'& G,17$-H #%61+$%"$ #% &5$ 6#$1* "'% 4$ '&&)#4+&$* &, 5#7 4$#%B '
IB1,4$&),&&$)J '%* &5'& 5$ ",11$"&$* C$,C1$ '%* -, 6,)&5= K,08 3,+ 3,+)-$16 5'?$ 4$$%
&)'?$11#%B '),+%* &5$ B1,4$ 6,) ' 05#1$8 5'?#%B $-&'41#-5$* ",%&'"&- '%* '&&$%*$*

Also critical in the establishment oí D1S was 1oury`s book Descripti·e 1ranslation Studies and beyond
whose reíerences and 1able oí Contents can also be íound on his website:
http:,,,constitution.html : At the International 1ranslation Studies Congress
1ranslation Studies - An Interdiscipline in Vienna, the participants agreed on 12 September 1992 to establish an
international association to be known as the Luropean Society lor 1ranslation Studies - LS1.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

",%6$)$%"$- #% 7'%3 *#66$)$%& ",%&#%$%&- '%* $&"= /5'& "'% 3,+ &$11 +- '4,+& 3,+)
$66,)&-8 '%* &5$ $66,)&- ,6 6#B+)$- -+"5 '- G,17$-8 &, $-&'41#-5 ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$- '- '
*#-"#C1#%$ #% ?')#,+- C')&- ,6 &5$ 0,)1*A
LAMBLR1: \ell, I would say it is ·ery simple and that this is ·ery ob·ious. It is like public
relations. It is an ambassador`s íunction that is important and iníluential also in research. Oí
course, I ha·e tried to do this and I was happy enough to be supported to do this. And oí
course, I was not the only one. Gideon 1oury did the same, but in a diííerent style. Now, the
íact that he belongs to a country that has been in ·ery diííicult situations and that is e·en,
let`s say this, boycotted by quite a íew people, e·en in the scholarly acti·ities, was not ·ery
promotional íor him.
Now, I was able to use lots oí networks and I am grateíul íor the openness oí my own
academic world e·en though I am ·ery oíten ·ery se·ere with uni·ersities, including with my
own. I ha·e been able to tra·el and to work abroad and to do this in a ·ery liberal, I would
say, spirit. I happened to be lucky also in Comparati·e Literature because the day I became
the secretary oí Comparati·e Literature

, that is how I got to Canada ,Ldmonton, Montreal,.
I was also in·ited e·en by the South Aírican Research Council
- well, Mandela was coming,
it was clear. I was in·ol·ed in distance learning, I was in·ol·ed in so many Luropean Union
projects, and etc. So I ha·e been lucky. But, oí course, you ha·e to do it. And sometimes you
ha·e to do it though it is a mad world when you are tra·elling all the time, this is not simple,
e·en íor íamily reasons, and so on. But I am also grateíul to my íamily, to my colleagues -
not to all oí them ;tavgb.). In íact, my uni·ersity has been a real uni·ersity and e·en I ha·e
been more in trouble when trying to establish 1ranslation Studies than when trying to do
international research. So 1ranslation Studies was an enemy among many colleagues at my
uni·ersity. Notwithstanding this I could do it - oí course, you need some support... Also it
was íull oí interesting people írom the same generation, new people, new students, young
people, etc. I would say the academic career, whate·er we may say and think about it, is a
wonderíul and íascinating world and it is worthwhile.
Now, I would be much more se·ere with our uni·ersities as íar as the treatment oí translation
as an academic issue is concerned. And now I do not mean it in terms oí bureaucratic things.
But I think the real issue oí translation is not really a question oí language, and certainly not
oí literature - this schizophrenic ·iew on translation as belonging to Linguistics or Literary
Studies, this is so old íashioned. I am con·inced that translation is really at the heart oí the
matter íor uni·erse-city`. 1he world oí knowledge cannot work without the dynamics oí
translation. And e·en up to now, in the scholarship about this subject, this has hardly been
written down! Ií uni·ersities, íirst oí all, do not de·elop, in an energetic way, an international
communication language - and íor me it may be Lnglish, it may be other languages - they
will not support the world oí knowledge. So they will not be worthy oí being the leaders oí

Associate Secretary oí the lederation Internationale des Langues and Litteratures Modernes
1he Council íor Scientiíic and Industrial Research ,CSIR, - http:,,,

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
the uni·erse-city`. 1hat`s one thing. But something else is needed in addition: ií they go íor
one language only, they kill research! Now, one international language íor scholarship, yes, we
need it! \our country has to de·elop and to promote the knowledge oí Lnglish, certainly, but
also oí Spanish. But you need more, and you cannot ha·e two or three languages without
translation. And ií they treat translation they will do exactly what the Belgians ha·e done with
languages. And ií you obser·e a little bit international policy and politics, including in my
country, you will see what happens in countries where the question oí languages and cultures
and translations is not really taken seriously, not e·en by intellectuals and by uni·ersities. So
this is really a matter oí liíe and death íor scholarship.
@(. F,+) ",%"$)% 0#&5 ")+"#'1 "),--),'*- #% '"'*$7#' 1$'*- +- &, 4)#%B +C &5$ &,C#" ,6
2$3 7,7$%&-8 ,) &+)%#%B C,#%&-8 #% ,+) *#-"#C1#%$= (5$)$6,)$8 #% 3,+) ?#$0 05'& ')$
&5$ 7'#% &+)%#%B C,#%&- &5'& ,""+))$* #% ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$-A G'?$ &5$-$ &+)%#%B
C,#%&- ,""'-#,%$* #%*#-C+&'41$ &5$,)$&#"'1 '%* ",%"$C&+'1 "5'%B$- &5'& )$1$B'&$*
C)$?#,+- &5$,)#$- ,) 'CC),'"5$- &, '% ,+&*'&$* ,) #%6$)#,) -&'&+-A
LAMBLR1: \ell, this is, oí course, a question like write another book aíter Mary Snell-
lornby`s 1he 1urns oí 1ranslation Studies`
. ;tavgb.) But I am joking. I appreciate the
I will try to keep a distance between, say, my indi·idual reply and possible replies on behalí oí
colleagues who would disagree with me or who would ha·e a ·ery diííerent approach to these
kinds oí questions. But, still, oí course, I ha·e my responsibility and I take it íully. Now, oí
course, this is like writing another book. So by deíinition my reply is selecti·e. I do my best
íor not being eclectic as íor me that is something diííerent. So I gi·e a selecti·e answer to
these questions, more by examples and on the basis oí the selection oí important key
moments. I do not íully impro·ise here. I ha·e seen these questions. I ha·e been thinking a
little bit about them and I ha·e been writing about this. lor instance, one oí the articles where
I discuss a little bit this kind oí questions is the article that I ha·e written íor Ceve.i.
- e·en
though it is a journal that is not that well known, I did my best and it is one the articles that I
still am ·ery happy to ha·e written recently. Now, oí course, its title, Is 1ranslation Studies
too Literary·`, is a little bit oí an ironical question and I borrow it írom a colleague as it was
íormulated íor the íirst time not by me but by \·es Gambier
, who at the moment oí its
íormulation was the president oí LS1. So because it was used in LS1 I would say it is an
institutional question. le was asking the question whether 1ranslation Studies was too
literary, on behalí, say, oí people íocusing on the question oí translation and research on
translation, which means that this question was being institutionalized at that moment. \·es
Gambier was the successor oí Mary Snell-lornby as the president oí LS1, which means,
again, that these questions are not simply, say, ·ery isolated questions, I think they are more
or less symptomatic.

Snell-lornby, Mary. 1be 1vrv. of 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie.: ^er Paraaigv. or ´biftivg 1ier¡oivt.. Benjamins 1ranslation
Library Vol. 66. Amsterdam,Philadelphia: John Benjamins, 2006. 205 pp. ISBN 90 2¯2 16¯4 6
Is 1ranslation Studies too Literary·`, Génesis. Re·ista cientiíica do ISAI. 1raduçao e Interpretaçao, 2005, 5 :

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

Now, why is the question oí translated literature, or literary approaches to translation, why is
it something, like, key· \hy is it a pri·ileged entry· \ell, I will try not to íorget that question
when I am supposed to indicate a íew turning points in the discipline. I go back to lolmes.
James lolmes is supposed to be one oí the real íathers oí the discipline, although he is not
the only one. I know quite a bit oí the listoriography oí this discipline and ·ery oíten I íully
disagree with, say, the key moments in the discipline and its main turning points, as you call
them. 1hat is the case because ·ery oíten historians, in general, start writing about history
long aíter the object oí study has died out. Maybe I am also biased because I did not start
writing about this, say, many years later, but I did so írom the beginning oí the history oí the
concept oí 1ranslation Studies. Now, I do not claim to be, say, the representati·e oí the
discipline, but at least I ha·e seen key moments and I ha·e seen, íor instance, the interaction
between lolmes, 1oury and other names, and also where their ·iews were not coinciding at
all, whether they were changing, whether there ha·e been conílicts, and so on.
As íor the main turning points, I get back to the question oí 1ranslation Studies being
literary, or too literary. 1he question by Gambier was asked at the beginning oí the century, in
2001 I guess, in Copenhagen. I wrote my article in 2005. I selected it because the question oí
approaches to translation írom the point oí ·iew oí literature or Literary Studies - those are
not the same things - concerned many people in·ol·ed with research on translation, as it
related to the traditional position oí 1ranslation Studies at uni·ersities. Now, I can shorten
my story and make a point, so this is really a thesis. It is ·ery clear that until this ·ery day in
uni·ersities 1ranslation Studies tends to be located somewhere - sometimes in Lnglish
Literature, sometimes in Comparati·e Literature, sometimes in Computer Linguistics, and etc.
But the dominant dilemma is still simply, and still nowadays, either Linguistics or Literary
Studies. I would say that when we started dealing with translation, íor us this was indeed more
or less una·oidable. Nowadays, I would say this is a íully outdated dilemma and I think this
deser·es to be treated as a turning point - I mean, the redeíinition oí the position oí research
on translation in the uni·ersity on the basis oí, say, already established disciplines, such as
Linguistics and others.
Now, to summarize - and you can really check this in almost all handbooks, all basic books
on translation -, almost e·erywhere you will see that 1ranslation Studies is still either
approached - not only 1ranslation Studies, but translation in general - írom the point oí ·iew
oí people who are in·ol·ed in issues oí language or people who are in·ol·ed in the question
oí literature. But in general the people who deal with literature and who include translation as
part oí their approach to literature are the people who opened Literary Studies to cultural
issues. So this is a little bit oí a larger approach. But oí course I do not want to reduce
Linguistics to more narrow-minded boundaries than it deser·es to be done, as Linguistics is a
·ery large íield. But it is either Linguistics or Literary Studies. Now, the dilemma and also the
question Is it too literary·`, írom my point oí ·iew, this looks like a rather local debate. So
íor me, it is an outdated dilemma. And this outdated dilemma has a lot to do with the íact
that, oí course, 1ranslation Studies, or research on translation, which are also not necessarily
the same thing, has been de·eloped and initiated by se·eral groups - aíter all, in the Middle

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
Ages and throughout history the people who were starting to think about translation were
·ery oíten translators and sometimes philosophers. In íact, literary theory or the theory oí
language was hardly in·ol·ed.
One oí the striking phenomena until today is the íact that handbooks in Linguistics ha·e
hardly a spot íor the question oí translation. But translation theory, which is not 1ranslation
Studies, de·eloped to a large extent in Linguistics, and in a particular kind oí Linguistics as it
was part oí the new kind oí Linguistics that was ·ery hea·ily theoretical and e·en a little bit
structuralist. In íact, there were quite a íew translators who also wrote on translation whereas
people dealing with the literary phenomena, which were reading and using translations all the
time, hardly thought about translation. It is only at the end oí the 1960s that this changed a
little bit because there were a íew people who started approaching translation, say, on a
literary background. Now, to what extent they integrated the knowledge that had been
collected and gathered and de·eloped in the area oí Linguistics, this input was rather limited.
Among the íirst books - and these were already mini-turning points - there were two or three
or íour German books with a more literary background that integrated a little bit better the
linguistic de·elopments. lor me, the real key book was the book by the Czech Jiií Le·

because he knew the bibliography in se·eral languages and írom se·eral countries - just look
at his bibliography, not only the bibliography írom Linguistics but e·en Sociology - and he
knew the eastern Luropean de·elopments, írom Roman Jakobson
to Juri Lotman
, and so
many other areas, up to the contemporary Czech structuralists, and so on. 1his was a turning
point because, íor the íirst time, someone was speaking about diííerent disciplines. So there
was a struggle between disciplines.
Now, Mary Snell-lornby, 20 years later, published her ·ery successíul book "1ranslation
Studies: An Integrated Approach"
. \hy is it a turning point· Because this book is one oí the
best-sellers in 1ranslation Studies. It was extremely iníluential! It was one oí the íirst times
that reíerences to the tradition oí 1ranslation Studies and translation theory were
systematically selected not only írom Linguistics but also írom the more literary background.
And there was one common name used: 1ranslation Studies. And here the use oí the label
de·eloped by lolmes was extremely iníluential. Now, is 1ranslation Studies too literary·
1here were se·eral groups that according to Snell-lornby were representati·es oí the new
approach to translation. One among them was the so called Manipulation School`. 1his is
the name that a íew people ha·e used - they ha·e not used it beíore the mid 1980s - and
Manipulation School` was e·en used in a book published in 1985 by 1heo lermans
although lermans used the word manipulation` in the title oí his book he told me one day
that it was a little bit oí a kind oí a joke. \e ne·er used it. In the 19¯0s, and e·en in the

Le·, Jiii ,1969,. Die Literarische •bersetzung: 1heorie einer Kunstgattung`'. Athen€um, lrankíurt.
lermans, 1heo ,org,. 1be Mavi¡vtatiov of íiteratvre: ´tvaie. iv íiterar, 1rav.tatiov. London and Sydney : Croom
lelm, 1985.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

1980s, when discussing 1oury and other people, we ne·er used the word manipulation`. So
this is a label that has sold well. Now, I do not ha·e too many problems with this concept.
But Mary Snell-lornby talks about the Manipulation School` and since this book has been
iníluential many people do so on the basis oí what Mary Snell-lornby has written. So this is
really a turning point in the íormulation oí the goals oí a new discipline. And the íirst
íormulation was, say, somewhere to be located in Gottingen, in Germany, in the Gottingen
group, which is and was also a literary group, and Snell-lornby does not talk too much about
that. Now, in that book, the manipulation` is supposed to be a literary approach to
\ou asked in one oí your pre·ious questions about congresses, papers, and so on, that ha·e
been decisi·e. I remember ·ery well the question I ha·e asked during the lirst James S.
lolmes Symposium on 1ranslation Studies", in Amsterdam, in 1990 ,the proceedings were
published in 1991
,. 1he keynote speakers, ií I remember well, were íirst Mary Snell-lornby
and then Lambert. And aíter Mary Snell-lornby`s paper I ha·e asked her íor an answer to
one oí the ·ery particular paragraphs about the Manipulation School` in her book entitled
1ranslation Studies: An Integrated Approach`
. She said that according to 1heo lermans
one oí the basic principles oí what he called Manipulation School` in his book was that,
agreed on the íollowing rule, translation phenomenon cannot be accounted íor on the basis
oí Linguistics only. My question to her in 1990 or 1991 was: 1ell me, Mrs. Snell-lornby,
would you be con·inced that the approach to translation can be based on linguistic
approaches only·` And her answer was No!` So I consider this as a turning point. 1here are
so many other ones. 1here are se·eral moments oí that kind. 1hey may not ha·e been
recognized in public. Mary Snell-lornby in the publication oí her paper in Amsterdam has
ne·er reíerred to that question, but e·eryone has noticed her answer. So there is a distance
between publications, congresses, and so on. But the dynamics oí the discipline is indebted to
Now, there are other turning points. So let`s lea·e that kind oí soít talk. One oí the turning
points in the discipline is certainly, íirst oí all, the recognition oí the dialogue on behalí oí not
only Linguistics but the new deíinition oí translation training in relation with research, in
particular, íor instance, the de·elopment oí Skopos theory
. Skopos theory comes with a
background in translation training. 1heir attempt to link translation training with translation
research, and e·en the attempt to integrate translation history and listoriography, I consider
this as a ·ery important decisi·e moment.

Kitty M. Van Leu·en-Zwart and 1on Naaijkens. 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie.: 1be .tate of tbe .rt. Proceeaivg. of tbe íir.t
]ave. ´ íotve. ´,v¡o.ivv ov 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie.. Amsterdam - Atlanta, Ropodi, Approaches to 1ranslation
Studies` 9, 1991, 208 p.
Snell-lornby, Mary ,1988,1995,. 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie.: .v ívtegratea .¡¡roacb. Amsterdam: Benjamins.
1wo rel·ant reíerences: Sch€ííner, Christina. Skopos theory.` In Baker, Mona, ed. Routledge Lncyclopedia
oí 1ranslation Studies. London: Routledge, 2001. 235-38. & Vermeer, lans J. A Skopos 1heory oí 1ranslation:
Some Arguments lor and Against. leidelberg: 1extcontext, 1996.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
Another ·ery important and real decisi·e moment, íor instance, is the shiít into Corpus
, say, since the people around Mona Baker
and so many more. \hy is this
important· \e had Mona Baker as a CL1RA proíessor and CL1RA ob·iously is hea·ily
indebted to D1S because it was on the basis oí their ideas that we were con·inced that you
cannot deal with translation without locating your insights on research, and this research, by
deíinition, is linked with culture, and there is no íundamental conílict between culture írom
the past and culture in our contemporary point oí ·iew. Now, what has happened· \hen
Corpus Linguistics has been integrated into research on translation what happened was in íact
that the idea oí research became linked with the idea oí translation theory and theories once
and íor all as an una·oidable principle. 1his is not made that explicit. 1his is more explicit in
the case oí 1oury and D1S, but the other approaches do not contradict this principle, so they
take it íor granted. Now, in íact, Corpus Linguistics, as I see it, and in its de·elopment, is a
·ery important coníirmation oí the integration oí translation research and translation history
into the entire discipline. Now, there is something else. It also shows that people who
represent these other approaches írom, say, pre·ious years, cannot ignore írom now on the
contribution oí Corpus Linguistics as one oí the arguments íor a systematic approach to
translation. 1hese are absolute key moments.
I see another key moment, but this is less clear - and I would e·en say that our discipline is to
be blamed íor its late awareness oí this problem. In my article in the de Gruyter
where I ha·e treated the question oí translation and globalization I ha·e
indicated that the idea oí translation and globalization has been accepted, say, with great
diííiculties, mainly aíter 2000, hardly beíore. Now, there is one exception - I know the
articles, I know almost the bibliography by heart. Anthony Pym
, André Leíe·ere, myselí, we
had written a lot on the phenomenon oí internationalization - the word globalization` was
not used, but the description and the analysis oí these phenomena since the end oí the 1980s
and during the 1990s is ·ery systematic. Now, in the bibliography oí many people who now
deal with globalization I see that these people really are not aware oí that bibliography - I
would say e·en scholars in 1ranslation Studies sometimes ha·e problems with iníormation,
maybe e·en with amnesia. So why is it so important· Because suddenly it becomes clear that
the question oí translation cannot be approached only in binary terms, say, on the basis oí the
dilemma source-target. It is clear that in many cultural en·ironments there are multilateral
distributions and kinds oí dissemination. Now, many people tend to belie·e and to assume
that this is a phenomenon oí the end oí the 20
or the beginning oí the 21
century. 1his is
absolutely wrong! Otherwise, how can you deal with the history oí translation ,with the Bible,
religious phenomena, legislation,· So it means that the de·elopments and the dynamics oí
research on translation, little by little, redisco·er the past on the basis oí new trends in our

http:,,,wiki,Corpus_linguistics & http:,,,
José Lambert: •1ranslation and Globalization.‚ Armin lrank, Norbert Greiner, 1heo lermans, larald Kittel,
\erner Koller, José Lambert, lritz Paul, lrsg. •bersetzung - 1ranslation - 1raduction. Lin Internationales
landbuch zur •bersetzungsíorschung. An International Lncyclopedia oí 1ranslation Studies. Lncyclopédie
internationale de la recherche sur la traduction. Berlin & New \ork: de Gruyter,landbƒcher zur Sprach- und
Kommunikationswissenschaít,, Bd. II, 200¯: 1680-1¯00.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

contemporary ·iew on translation. But I would say: is this a problem· I think that most
disciplines work and de·elop in such a way.
@(. <- 6,) &5#- )$*#-",?$)3 ,6 &5$ C'-& &5'& 3,+ 7$%&#,% #& #- ,+) C$)"$C&#,% &5'& &5$
-+46#$1* ,6 &)'%-1'&#,% 5#-&,)3 -$$7- &, 5'?$ B'#%$* '% +C0')* 7,7$%&+7 #% )$"$%&
3$')-= D$?$1,C7$%&- -+"5 '- &5$ Re ¡e rt oi re vovai at ae . bi . t ori ev. ae t a t raavc t i ov
+%*$) &5$ *#)$"&#,% ,6 N$'% D$1#-1$
8 P$,)B$ Q= R'-&#%S-
íi . t ori a ae t a 1raavc c i óv e v
.ve ri c a íat i va
8 '%* &5$ V%&$)%'&#,%'1 /,)2-5,C ,% I;$&5#%2#%B W$&5,*- #%
()'%-1'&#,% G#-&,)3J8 05#"5 &,,2 C1'"$ '& X2'% Y%#?$)-#&38 (+)2$38 4$&0$$% Z[ \ZO
@$C&$74$) Z]]U
8 -$)?$ '- $?#*$%"$ &, &5'&= V% &5'& /,)2-5,CS- ^_),B)'77$
8 6,) #%-&'%"$8 7'%3 a+$-&#,%- 0$)$ C),C,-$* #% ,)*$) &, *#)$"& &5$ *$4'&$-=
X%$ ,6 &5,-$ a+$-&#,%- "'11$* ,+) '&&$%&#,% '%* 0$ 0,+1* 1#2$ &, 5'?$ 3,+) ,C#%#,% ,%
#&= (5$ a+$-&#,% #-. IV% 05'& 0'3- "'% &)'%-1'&#,% 5#-&,)3 4$ #%-&)+7$%&'1 #% 6+)&5$)#%B
+%*$)-&'%*#%B ,6 5,0 "+1&+)$- #%&$))$1'&$ 0#&5 ,&5$) "+1&+)$- ,) 0#&5 &5$#) "+1&+)'1
LAMBLR1: I agree that translation history has gained an upward momentum in recent years.
But I would e·en say that James lolmes already insisted ·ery much on listoriography and its
position in the discipline, including also 1oury, and so on.
I íocus on your question. I was in that coníerence, it was a good coníerence, well organized,
with good people. I would e·en say I was a little bit disappointed at the end by the reduction
oí their goals. So I think, indeed, that there you ha·e a group that might be able to de·elop a
real better methodology oí 1ranslation listoriography. My paper was not on translation
history but on translation listoriography, and I think they ·ery oíten simpliíy that.
\our question: can translation history be instrumental· My answer is, ·ery simply, yes! And I
am e·en working a lot in that area. I am trying to de·elop se·eral articles on the whole
question oí uni·ersities and their responsibilities in any discipline írom the point oí ·iew oí
the history oí their own discipline. Say, Mathematics, Medicine, Lngineering, ií they are not
worried about the diachronics in their own discipline, they may notice, one day or another,
what the consequences oí amnesia may be - íor any society, including scholarly societies.
So the íunction oí listory and listoriography has always been to íunction as a scholarly-
based model íor a better hypothetical approach to the íuture. 1his implies that the íuture is,
by deíinition, diííerent írom the past. So then you might say, in simple terms, one is not
linked with the other. But írom the moment you say e·en that it is not linked, you ha·e to
examine what your basis íor comparison is. Now, I was a comparatist in the good old days -


´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
without comparison we are not ·ery wise. So historical analysis oí any tradition may be a
better way into the íuture ií people at least know what the rules oí the game are. 1hat is why
you need concepts!
Now, to what extent can translation and translation history play a role· I try to simpliíy, but I
make it short - so ív.eigver c`e.t .iv¡tifier. Mathematics, Philosophy, Medicine, Sociology, any
discipline - and we use these disciplines in our uni·ersities -, they ha·e been de·eloped
somewhere at a gi·en moment, they ha·e a past and they ha·e an intercultural past. 1here is
no discipline that has not been obliged to reíormulate in a gi·en language things that ha·e
been íormulated in diííerent languages. So the ·ery basis oí any scholarly work is conditioned
by interlinguistic phenomena and translation can ne·er be ·oided as part oí it. So I would say,
at least in theoretical-conceptual terms, translation is one oí the key problems oí uni·ersity -
but uni·ersities ha·e ne·er accepted this. So uni·erse-cities` are more cities` than
uni·erse`! 1hey are local manipulations oí would-be uni·ersal knowledge. And dealing with
that issue should be one oí the íunctions oí translation and 1ranslation Studies in uni·ersities.
@(. D,$- &5$ 5#-&,)3 ,6 &)'%-1'&#,% &5$,)3 5'?$ ' ),1$ #% &5$ C),*+"&#,% ,6 &)'%-1'&#,%
&5$,)3A X) ')$ &5$ *#-",+)-$- ,% &)'%-1'&#,% 6),7 &5$ C'-& 7$)$ "+)#,-#&#$-8 ,)
'%&#a+$-8 &5'& *$'1& 0#&5 ",%"$C&#,%- ,6 &)'%-1'&#,% '%* 1'%B+'B$ &5'& 5'?$ 1#&&1$ &, *,
0#&5 &5$ ",%"$C&#,%- '%* 'CC),'"5$- "+))$%&13 $-&'41#-5$*A G'?$ &5,-$ *#-",+)-$-
1,-& 7+"5 ,6 &5$#) 4$')#%B ,% 05'& "'% 4$ -'#* '4,+& &)'%-1'&#,%A
LAMBLR1: I think I ha·e answered the íirst question implicitly - oí course, íor wise people -
and my reply is yes!
As íor the second question, I like you íormulation here: mere curiosities, or antiques`. I
would say, in íact, one cannot a·oid thinking oí, say, picturesque listoriography, but I know
other kinds oí listoriography - so this is a particular way oí dealing with history. So your
íormulation is a little bit - and I don`t blame you - a kind oí a parody oí real listoriography.
I mean, this is no real listoriography. 1hat is why in the coníerence in 1urkey I said: I do
not see why you talk about translation history and not about listoriography. \hen you deal
with listoriography you make explicit in conceptual terms what your goals are and the rules`.
\ou ha·e already noticed that I am not someone who tries to exclude too many things. So I
ha·e nothing against e·en bad listoriography. 1hat is what you describe here. I call it bad
listoriography, but between brackets. It can be interesting and I know people who are ·ery
wise people and who know a lot in this area - and, aíter all, ·ery oíten we need them. \e
should not try to exclude people, we should try to promote people who ha·e explicit goals
that go íor, say, priorities in our area. So excluding particular approaches to history,
listoriography, translation history. \ell, I don`t know how well you know Don „uixote
and his battles against mills. \hy would we worry about that· \hat we need is to know íor
what kind oí priorities we want to work and what kind oí priorities in uni·ersities ha·e not
been recognized. So, íor instance, the history oí disciplines, and, say, the listoriography oí
these disciplines, the history oí sciences - I ha·e some contacts with some ·ery interesting
people there -, I think this is being underestimated because uni·ersities are not

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

interdisciplinary enough. Now, translation without interdisciplinarity, I am aíraid that this
does not make sense in uni·ersities. So only interdisciplinary approaches deser·e to be really
linked with 1ranslation Studies.
\ell, íor me 1ranslation Studies changed rather basically - and that`s one oí its turning points
again - the ·ery day when PhD titles and diplomas íor 1ranslation Studies were accepted.
1his is ·ery important because it gi·es another position to listoriography, to
interdisciplinarity, to Sociology, to Political Sciences, to the history oí religions, and so on.
Now, I ha·e nothing against people who are into, say, a literary approach to translation or a
linguistic one because they need to know well their íield. But they ha·e no arguments íor
saying that they represent, simply, 1ranslation Studies. So that the idea oí the Linguistic 1urn
in 1ranslation Studies, and so on, íor me this is íully outdated. I ha·e nothing against this
attempt but it cannot be the goal oí 1ranslation Studies as a discipline.
@(. V% &5#- #--+$ ,6 ´c i e vt i a 1raavc t i ovi . 8 <1#"$ Q$'1
8 ' 6,)7$) ",11$'B+$ ,6 ,+)- '&
Yb@9S- _,-&B)'*+'&$ ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$- C),B)'77$ c_d-eP)'*+'fg, $7 :-&+*,- *'
()'*+fg, \ _P:(h
8 '%* 05, %,0 5,1*- ' &$'"5#%B C,-#&#,% '& &5$ Y%#?$)-#&3 ,6
j#$%%'8 5'- 0)#&&$% '% ')&#"1$ '4,+& 5$) $>C$)#$%"$ #% 9:(;<S- @+77$) @"5,,1 &5'&
&,,2 C1'"$ 4$&0$$% &5$ `O
'%* &5$ ZT
,6 <+B+-&8 Z]]U
= Q$'1H- '"",+%& 4)#%B- &,
1#B5& -,7$ ")#&#"#-7- &5'& W')&5' 95$+%B
8 &5$ Z]]U 9:(;< _),6$--,)8 )$"$#?$* 6),7
5$) C$$)- '- I-5$ $7C5'-#-$* &5$ #7C,)&'%"$ ,6 ^&5$ 1,"'1S #% &5$ 95#%$-$ &)'*#&#,% '-
' 7$'%- &, 6#%* ^&5$ ,&5$)SJ= @5$ ",%&#%+$-. IV%*$$*8 &5#- a+$-&#,% ,6 05$&5$)
()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$- -5,+1* 4$ 7,)$ 1,"'1 '- ,CC,-$* &, 7,)$ B1,4'1 "'7$ +C
&5),+B5,+& &5$ @+77$) @"5,,1 '%* &5$ #%&$)%'&#,%'1 ",%6$)$%"$ cI(5$ k%,0%
Y%2%,0%- ,6 ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$-J
h &5'& 6,11,0$*8 0#&5 <%*)$0 95$-&$)7'% )'%2#%B
#& '7,%B-& &5$ 7,-& -#B%#6#"'%& ",%&$7C,)')3 a+$-&#,%- &5'& &)'%-1'&#,% -"5,1')-
-5,+1* &)3 &, '%-0$)=J /5'& #- 3,+) ?#$0 ,% &5#-A V%"#*$%&'1138 0,+1* #& 4$ ",))$"& &,
-'3 &5'& &5$)$ #- ' :+),C$'% '%* K,)&5e<7$)#"'% 5$B$7,%3 #% ,+) *#-"#C1#%$A @5,+1*
0$ '-C#)$ 6,) 7,)$ *#?$)-#&3A
LAMBLR1: I start by the last part oí your question because it is the most simple one and then I
get to the beginning. As íor the question ií it would it be correct to say that there is a
Luropean and North-American hegemony in our discipline I would say that I know this
position and I ha·e e·en read it on the Internet. lor me this question is symbolic. It indicates
that the language oí the Internet that is used íor the interaction, and the obser·ation oí the
interaction, between Lurope and other countries is being used as a key to the question oí
1ranslation Studies, which, aíter all, in my mind, as íar as I know the history oí this new

1his e·ent took place at the K.U.Leu·en between the 28
and 29
oí August oí 2009, and was organized as
an international coníerence in honour oí the twentieth anni·ersary oí CL1RA and 1arget ,1989-2009,. lor more
iníormation on the e·ent, please check http:,,www.kuleu·,CL1RA,anni·ersary,index.html.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
discipline, I simply íind it ridiculous! It is simply ridiculous because it means that the channels
íor communication - which is another matter than the question oí research - and the political
power, and e·en the economic power, are used as a solution oí scholarly questions. But ok,
that is íor later. \et I am upset by this impression. I do not see this as the question oí this or
that person, but I know it. I remember a similar discussion írom Comparati·e Literature - so
I come írom Literary Studies, I learned something there - and there it was used in particular
to distinguish between Chinese Comparati·e Literature and western Comparati·e Literature.
1he American comparatists, years ago, distinguished between the Americans and the western
Luropeans. 1his is all, I would say, political and e·en partly nationalistic - I call it nationalistic
in order not to use a more hea·y word. 1his is simply a nonsensical simpliíication oí research
Now I come to the beginning oí the question. Oí course, Alice Leal belongs to the 2009
generation oí CL1RA. 1here were 20 generations more beíore her and in those generations
the question that Martha Cheung asks was not inexistant but it was not ·ery important. It was
a ·ery central question in all the lectures by Martha Cheung. Now, I ha·e e·en taken part in
the discussion - not ·ery íundamentally - and I e·en intend to write to Martha Cheung
because I know what she is puzzled about and this is indeed one oí her key questions. 1his is
a ·ery typical question íor scholars coming írom China and she is íormulating these questions
well and they are interesting. And it is clear, indeed, that the western world is too much
unaware oí all the ·arious traditions in other parts oí the world.
Now, as íor the importance oí the local and the question oí the other`, I would not call it
the other`. I do not know oí any research discipline at uni·ersities where, I would say, the
challenge oí the concept oí uni·erse-city` is not central. All uni·ersities are in trouble with
regard to ha·ing iníormation about what is going on elsewhere. I would say that it is
symbolic, probably, that people coming írom China and in a discipline like 1ranslation
Studies - notwithstanding the ·ery rich tradition oí discussions about translation in Chinese
and Ancient Studies ,and I am a little bit in·ol·ed with it since the 1990s, so since the
beginning oí CL1RA, - ha·e that impression, so this is all ·ery important and ·ery
symptomatic. lowe·er, it does not mean that this is, I would say, the key problem oí
1ranslation Studies, it is one oí the many key problems, as in all disciplines.
My main answer is that indeed the question, or the challenge, oí uni·ersity is ·ery much in
parallel with what is now called globalization. But globalization is, in íact, a ·ery economic
reductionist ·iew on the question oí uni·ersity. My basic discussions oí these issues are made
clear in the Vol.2 oí the de Gruyter encyclopedia, the German encyclopedia, a remarkable
encyclopedia, under the item globalization`

. Is globalization an issue íor 1ranslation
Studies· Oí course it is. lence, I understand ·ery well Martha Cheung`s problems, especially
since she is coming írom a culture that was not really directly in·ol·ed in the de·elopment oí
1ranslation Studies.

Cí. íootnote 46.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

Now, what I am sure is that Alice Leal is not reíerring, íor instance, to the mo·ements that
ha·e taken place since the 1990s. In 1991, I organized, together with 1heo lermans and
other people, in 1okyo, a ·ery successíul seminar in Comparati·e Literature on translation
1his has been published, with lots oí questions. But since then so much has been achie·ed in
this area, with contributions írom Southeast Asia and India. I mean, so much has been done
in the international channels, mainly in the Anglophone channels. So I would e·en say that
part oí the questions asked by Martha Cheung is still partly conditioned e·en by, I would say,
colonial models. But this is a long story, although it is an interesting issue. 1he people who
work with us in 1ranslation Studies, well, you, oí course, ha·e neighbours and neighbours
·ery oíten happen to li·e next door and the internet does not sol·e all the problems.
So it is an important issue, I would not simpliíy it and I would recommend using that article
on globalization where I indicate that, aíter all, many, many among our colleagues had hardly
disco·ered that concept beíore the beginning oí the 21
century. And in that article I also
indicate that beíore we started CL1RA, we already talked about internationalization. But
many people in 1ranslation Studies coming írom translation training institutes did not read
us! \hy· Because they were con·inced that we were literary people. But we didn`t talk about
literature: we talked about internationalization and not literature. I organized a session in the
lilm Congress in Brasília
- oh, hea·en, in Brasília! - in 1993 or 1994 on the subject oí
translation and the global ·illage. Nowhere in all the discussions on globalization írom recent
years has this been mentioned at all! And in the íirst issue oí 1arget I published an article on
translation and the internationalization oí communication. Among, say, the prominent
translation scholars who reíer to this article I see only Anthony Pym. Now, I guess that my
colleagues know the re·iew oí the journal 1arget. So they ha·e disco·ered globalization and
internationalization at the beginning oí the 21
century. 1his was not the case, I would say,
íor us, neither at the origins oí 1arget, nor at the origins oí CL1RA.
@(. ;$B')*#%B &5$,)$&#"'1 5$B$7,%38 Q$'1 C,#%&- ,+& &5'& D(@ -$$7$* &, 4$ &5$
*,7#%'%& &5$,)$&#"'1 6)'7$0,)2 #% *#-C1'3 '& 9:(;<S- @+77$) @"5,,1= V%
,CC,-#&#,% &, &5'&8 -5$ 5'- "'11$* +C G'%- j$)7$$)S- 0,)2 '- '% $>'7C1$ ,6 '
",%&)#4+&#,% &5'& -5,+1* 4$ 7$%&#,%$* #% &5$ -'7$ 4)$'&5 '- (,+)3S-= @5$ 5'- '1-,
'**$* &5'& 95)#-&#'%$ K,)*
0'- ")#&#"#-$* I6,) &5$ 6'"& &5'& &5$ P$)7'% 6+%"&#,%'1
'CC),'"5 #- '11$B$*13 -,1$13 C)$-")#C&#?$ '%* 5'- %,& )'#-$* '%3 53C,&5$-$-J8 '%* -5$
'**$* -5$ 4$1#$?$- &5'& &5'& #- 4,&5 I#))$1$?'%& '%* +%6'#)J= @5$ &5$% )$?$'1- W')3
@%$11eG,)%43S- &5,+B5& ,% &5$ 7'&&$)8 %'7$13 &5'& &5$ *,7#%'%"$ 43 D(@8 '%* &5$
1'"2 ,6 #%&$)$-& #% &5$ P$)7'% 6+%"&#,%'1 'CC),'"58 6,) #%-&'%"$8 5'- ' 1,& &, *, 0#&5
&5$ 1'%B+'B$- #% 05#"5 &5$3 0$)$ 0)#&&$%8 %'7$13 :%B1#-5 '%* P$)7'% )$-C$"&#?$13=
G,0 *, 3,+ -$$ &5#- 05,1$ #--+$A

1he e·ent was the …IIIth Congress oí the ICLA ,International Comparati·e Literature Association,. 1okyo,
23-28 August 1991.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
LAMBLR1: In this case, gi·en that there are ·ery precise diííerent questions, I will try to
answer them bit by bit. 1he questions are interesting and, to tell the truth, I would say I ha·e
a lot to say about them.
I would say I disagree! But the íeeling and the impression is interesting. And I ha·e an easy
point oí reíerence íor answering these questions. I would say that lots oí things about these
questions I would answer them also in relation to Mary Snell-lornby`s book 1he 1urns oí
1ranslation Studies`
. Now, let me try to be more clear.
Oí course, the questions are interesting. 1hey are a little bit linked with old traditional
discussions about what your approach is, what kind oí school you are, etc. So CL1RA`s
summer school is a summer school and it is certainly iníluenced, in particular, by the concepts
in D1S, no doubt about this. But I would disagree íundamentally with this íeeling that there
is an explicit willingness to reduce, say, research on translation to that approach. Not at all!
And it is ·ery simple. As a critical example - it may still be biased or limited - I reíer to all the
seminars that Dirk Delabastita has gi·en, year aíter year, íor 20 years, on the ·arious
approaches to translation. So his panoramic ·iew on the ·arious methodological models and
so on is an illustration oí the íact that this impression gi·en here by Alice Leal is really
narrow. But there is more.
I understand a little bit this íeeling. lor instance, myselí, I ha·e no problem recognizing this: I
am a strong ad·ocate, still, oí lots oí the key tendencies oí D1S, which does not mean at all
that I would o·erlook contributions pro·ided, íor instance, by lans Vermeer
,well, oí
course, they will in general be indicated as Skopos theory, but that is a little bit reductionistic
and I would a·oid that,, and so on. But, íirst oí all, I would say that both 1arget and CL1RA,
which are not the same things, ha·e clearly indicated that, say, lans Vermeer, Christiane
Nord, the German íunctional approach, or whate·er you call it, or Skopos theory, are ·ery
welcome in our world·iew on translation. lans Vermeer was the second CL1RA Proíessor
and Christiane Nord was one oí the others. As íor Mary Snell-lornby, I would not treat her
as someone who really belongs to the same group, but she is ·ery much in sympathy with it.
In her book it is so clear that all the time she tries to show that the German orientation, or
what she calls the German íunctional approach, has also done this and that and that. And
e·en one oí the sensiti·e points is that, all the time, she tries to show that the German
íunctional approach has also some ·ery basic insights in the area oí the study oí translated
literature, which means that there is something like a polemical relationship here. I do not
think at all that this polemical relationship is supported, íirst oí all, neither by 1arget nor by
CL1RA. And I am ·ery bad at ease with this quote: She has also added that Christiane Nord
was criticised íor the íact that the German íunctional approach is allegedly solely prescripti·e
and has not raised any hypotheses``. I would like to know who among the staíí members
írom CL1RA would e·er ha·e produced such a quotation! I would say that I am bad at ease
with this idea because raising any hypotheses` or being solely prescripti·e` are not rele·ant

Snell-lornby, Mary ,2006, 1be 1vrv. of 1rav.tatiov ´tvaie., Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins &

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

concerns neither íor lans Vermeer nor íor Christiane Nord nor íor the other representati·es
oí what Mary Snell-lornby calls the German íunctional approach. So this is absolutely not
íair play. Now, maybe there was a misunderstanding or whate·er.
Oí course, there are diííerent approaches to the question oí translation. And what Alice Leal
says is correct at least in one point. I do not see why in the de·elopment oí 1ranslation
Studies and the establishment oí a scholarly basis íor translation, why Vermeer and the
German colleagues should be put aside - there are many other ones such as lrank G.
, Paul Kussmaul
, lans G. lonig
, and e·en the younger generation, certainly the
Vienna generation, lranz Pochhacker, Klaus Kaindl
, e·en írom other centers. \hat is called
here the German íunctional school, well, maybe they happen to make use oí German, but I
am ·ery bad at ease when in international scholarship they try to link schools with nations and
languages. And I am aíraid that this is the origin oí this misunderstanding. Now, what
German group should we reíer to here· 1here are other Germans than these ones - Vermeer
himselí uses the concept oí Skopos theory, no worry about that.
I was the chairman oí a debate oí a roundtable discussion oí ·ery high le·el in the second
year oí CL1RA with 1oury and Vermeer. Now, what turned out to be ·ery clear, indeed, was
that their initial and íinal goals in relation to translation were not really coinciding. \hat
1oury wanted to do írom the ·ery beginning was to establish a research discipline. Vermeer
was not excluding this but he was working in institutes where they were training translators,
whereas we were working in departments oí Literary Studies. Now, Christiane Nord, Mary
Snell-lornby, they all come írom institutes where the training oí translators was more central
than research about translation. And the issue is not about interdisciplinarity, because these
people are good in interdisciplinarity requirements. But they are more íocusing on the
perspecti·e oí the translator. Now, ií one thing is clear e·en in 1he 1urns oí 1ranslation
Studies` by Snell-lornby is that their íocus and the íirst goal is not really to establish an
academic discipline dealing with research on translation and methodology. 1his is one oí the
reasons, íor instance, why in her book, as one oí the achie·ements oí 1ranslation Studies,
there is no explicit mention oí the new networking and cooperation, íor instance, in PhD
le·els, the de·elopment oí academic programs and PhDs in uni·ersities in so many countries,
and so on. It is ·ery clear that there is complementarity and that there is no radical opposition
here. And I am a little bit upset when this has turned up into a polemical distinction and
misunderstanding. So that instead oí working on translation so many oí my excellent
colleagues try to show that Mr. So and So is better than Mrs. So and So, or ·ice ·ersa, as ií
this were the real issue. And sometimes this has to do with academic success, and so íorth.
Aíter all, we are all human beings. 1his is my real explicit position on this question.


´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
@(. Q$'1 7$%&#,%- &5'& :+),C$'% -"5,1')- '"2%,01$*B$ &5$ $>#-&$%"$ ,6 ' C,-&e
-&)+"&+)'1#-& c*$",%-&)+"&#,%#-&h &5,+B5& #% ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$- \ '*?,"'&$* 43 -+"5
6#B+)$- '- G'),1*, *$ 9'7C,-
'%* ;,-$7')3 <)),E,
\ 4+& &5'& &5$3 *,%H& 6$$1 &5'&
7+"5 #%61+$%"$* 43 #& \ -5$ $?$% C,#%&- ,+& &5'& &5$ 1'&&$)S- ",%&)#4+&#,%- #- %,&
'10'3- a+#&$ 0$11 +%*$)-&,,* 43 -+"5 -"5,1')- '& &5$#) ,0% '*7#--#,%= @5$ '**- &5'&
I*+)#%B &5$ ",%6$)$%"$ &5'& 6,11,0$* &5$ @+77$) @"5,,18 <%&5,%3 _37 -C,2$ '4,+&
&5#- #--+$ c#=$= &5$ 1'"2 ,6 #%&$)$-& #% D$",%-&)+"&#,% #% :+),C$h '- ' ^5#-&,)#"'1
",%61#"&S '%* '- ' ^7'#% C),41$7S 0#&5 05#"5 ^0$S 0#11 5'?$ &, *$'1 '& -,7$ C,#%&J=
/5'& #- 3,+) &'2$ ,% #&A V- _37 )#B5&A
LAMBLR1: \ell, I happen to ha·e rather explicit positions about this too. As íor Pym being
right, I would say yes and no. \hat Pym said, I don`t remember ·ery well. I always listen to
Pym with great attention, and I know his style ·ery well and it is always interesting to listen to
him. But he is not saying exactly the same thing as Alice Leal is saying.
Deconstructionist ·iews are not a monopoly oí laroldo de Campos and Rosemary Arrojo -
this looks ·ery Brazilian, by the way. I e·en ha·e indirect ·iews on, say, the reductionist ·iew
on research on translation in Brazil as it is displayed in a panoramic and explicit way not only
by Alice Leal here but also in Mary Snell-lornby`s book. One oí the things I did at the
coníerence in Ouro Preto
, and there were some representati·es oí the deconstructionist
·iew in that coníerence, I said that notwithstanding the tendency to summarize research on
translation in Brazil as being a little bit linked with laroldo de Campos` model or with
Deconstructionism - in a coníerence with quite a íew people, a large number oí people, one
that looked more or less like a normal coníerence on 1ranslation Studies that could take place
in Canada or in \estern Lurope -, although this deconstructionist ·iew has been prominent
at a gi·en moment, a little bit íashionable, at the present moment it does not really ha·e such
an impact on the actual research going on. Now, when saying so I do not mean at all that this
deconstructionist ·iew is not important. I would also add that I know oí research done on
that basis in lrance and elsewhere - well, there is Derrida and the whole tradition, so you
ha·e it e·erywhere. And oí course, Alice Leal here doesn`t say it is Brazilian, but many people
ha·e said so, that it is linked with Brazil. \ell, I am not that sure about that. I ha·e read a
PhD thesis in my country - well, more than one - on the basis oí the Derrida research.
Is the Deconstructionist ·iew important in matters oí translation· I am sure that it is an
interesting approach. But I remember one oí my discussions with Rosemary Arrojo - I know
her rather well and I was well in touch with her. Aíter one oí her coníerences I made a ·ery
general remark and asked ií, aíter all, her ·iews that she links with Deconstructionism are that
diííerent írom basic questions in research and she was ·ery bad at ease.
Now, when Pym says that there is a historical conílict, maybe there is, and that there are
contributions coming írom that area, maybe there are. I am sure there is an important

http:,,,wiki,laroldo_de_Campos & http:,,,donaldo,epicoí.htm
10th Brazilian 1ranslation lorum , 4th International 1ranslation lorum: Along the Paths oí 1ranslation.
September ¯-10, 2009 - Ouro Preto, Brazil.

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

contribution to be disco·ered there. But I know oí other kinds oí approaches about which
Anthony Pym has said the same. It is one oí his critical roles in the discipline and he is plays it
·ery well. So why not·
I don`t try to summarize but I link this again with the tendency to stereotype approaches to
1ranslation Studies. Ií we ha·e tried to do something in the de·elopment oí a new discipline,
it was exactly the opposite, and I still belie·e in it. I know weaknesses in our approaches and I
am sure that I am, myselí, struck with blindness and that I am limiting myselí. But we do our
best! Our goal was to de·elop research on translation, not to go íor one school or another
one. Now, again, as I said, many people try to sell their books well and to be better than their
neighbors. I would say I do not think I was really in·ol·ed in that area.
@(. V% ' )$"$%& #--+$ ,6 1ar ge t \ j,1= Z`8 V--+$ Z
\ P#*$,% (,+)38 ",e6,+%*$) ,6
1arge t '1,%B 3,+)-$168 C+41#-5$* '% ')&#"1$ "'11$* IV%"+4'&#,%8 4#)&5 '%* B),0&5.
X4-$)?'&#,%- ,% &5$ 6#)-& Z] 3$')- ,6 1arge t J= V% #& 5$ ,66$)- ' -$)#$- ,6 ,4-$)?'&#,%- \
5'16e4'2$*8 5$ -'3- \ '4,+& 1arge t S- 6#)-& &0$%&3 3$')-= <& &5$ ,C$%#%B ,6 5#- ')&#"1$ 5$
-&'&$-. IV 5'?$ '10'3- 4$$% ,6 &5$ ,C#%#,% &5'& '"'*$7#" C$)#,*#"'1-8 "$)&'#%13 &5,-$
&5'& 0#-5 &, 7'2$ ' *#66$)$%"$8 -5,+1* %,& -#7C13 '"",7C'%3 ' 6#$1* ,6 -&+*38
*,"+7$%&#%B #&- '"&#?#&#$- c05#"5 &5$3 "$)&'#%13 *,h= (5$3 -5,+1* '1-, &'2$ C')& #%
-5'C#%B &5$ $?,1+&#,% ,6 &5$ *#-"#C1#%$ #% a+$-&#,%l 05$&5$) ",%")$&$138 43 C+&&#%B
6,)0')* ')$'-8 &,C#"- '%* a+$-&#,%- 6,) -&+*3 '%* *#-"+--#,%8 ,) 7,)$ '4-&)'"&138 43
#%-&#B'&#%B ' B$%$)'1 -"5,1')13 '&7,-C5$)$ 6,) ,&5$)- &, 4'-2 #% '%* C,--#413 '4-,)4=J
G'- 1arge t -+""$$*$* #% -5'C#%B &5$ $?,1+&#,% ,6 &5$ *#-"#C1#%$ ,6 ()'%-1'&#,%
@&+*#$-A V6 3$-8 #% 3,+) ?#$0 05'& $*#&,)#'1 *$"#-#,%- C),?$* &, 4$ 2$3 #% '&&'#%#%B &5'&
LAMBLR1: 1his quote írom 1oury`s article and your question, this is really ·ery important.
And this is ·ery good and critical, but it is not easy to answer. Ne·ertheless, I do my best.
And, oí course, I know that I must be, or I must look, ·ery biased because as íor the last one
who can make such a critical selí-e·aluation is the person who is in the picture and 1oury was
more in the picture than I was. So I really consider 1oury as the most creati·e scholar in
1ranslation Studies - I ha·e said so in other circumstances. And I would say that e·en his
sentences here about his ·iew on 1arget, as you íormulated here - well, I ha·e read it in his
article but this is well íormulated -, it takes it seriously, and it also indicates a ·ery strong
critical distance towards his own initiati·es.
Now, as has been the case, I simply try to indicate arguments - I am sure that I didn`t see
e·erything. But I try to show how and why, probably, 1arget played an important role in the
institutionalization oí the discipline. But, oí course, not 1arget only, as there were other
initiati·es. And I would e·en say that, íor instance, LS1 was established with the same
ambitions - and as it was mentioned beíore the íirst president was Mary Snell-lornby. And
in their íirst publications, e·en including publications by Daniel Gile, myselí and Mary Snell-


´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
lornby, one oí the reasons why they were looking íor PhD and research training was exactly
that. So the LS1 established in Vienna in 1992 used lots oí ideas that were de·eloped a íew
years earlier in other areas and, aíter all, this was, I would say, a good coincidence because this
indicates how there was something like a common con·iction and a common willingness to
establish the discipline. So it is as simple as that.
Now, how can we distinguish and indicate, well, which is due to 1arget or to LS1 or to
CL1RA and to other centers and indi·iduals· \ell, look in the Bible. 1here is something
written there like Let`s gi·e to Caesar what belongs to Caesar`, which is a beautiíul opinion
but I am not always able to indicate that as well. But I see at least a íew íeatures and I know
that they were explicit ambitions oí 1arget, and explicit ambitions oí 1oury. Oí course, they
ha·e also been iníluential in our situation in CL1RA. I am absolutely sure that we ha·e ne·er
worried about the question oí what belongs to Caesar or what not. \e wanted to de·elop a
discipline! But I was thinking about these questions and among the things in 1arget that
probably reílect, in a ·ery íundamental way, a gi·en ·iew on research on translation it is that
there is this willingness to establish a new academic discipline, and to do that on the le·el oí
PhD and post-PhD project-oriented or project-based research.
Now, I gi·e you a íew indications and I can tell you that, íor instance, in our e·aluation oí the
new contributions, we had a model, we had questions. Among the questions, íor instance,
there was the absolute requirement in any contribution, and you can check it, that any one oí
them was based on research ambitions, and that it was looking ií the research situation was
new or not, ií anything had already been established in that area, what was the state oí the art,
whate·er e·en the languages - but oí course our languages are limited, and there, ·ery
honestly, we ha·e to recognize that our world·iew is limited. But as íar as possible we were
looking íor this ·ery international - I wouldn`t say planetarian - challenge. Now, the link with
the state oí the art, gi·en basic publications - írom whate·er orientation - that were known
and a·ailable, that had to be taken into consideration. And ií the contributors were not aware
oí that, except ií they were working along a ·ery diííerent model, we accepted also that. So
contributions coming írom particular paradigms - ií we can call them this -, we accepted
them ií they had their own internal coherence. But in general we obliged the authors to make
clear what their assumptions were. 1his was linked with requirements that are basic
requirements íor any discipline. \e tried to treat approaches to translation in the same way as
any scholarly topic in any discipline was treated and we had ideas about this. 1he same stood
íor the cultural situation írom where the gi·en data were taken, and also íor the
contextualization oí these data and a possibility, e·en, to ha·e alternati·e hypotheses, and so
íorth. la·ing said that, the institutionalization oí the discipline was the absolute priority in
the journal.
Another requirement, íor instance, was to know also ií a gi·en approach applied to ·ery
particular data. So ·ery microscopic research was welcomed as well as macroscopic research.
But ·ery microscopic research, when it cannot be established as a certain exemplary oí
paradigmatic ·alue, that should be indicated - how general and how particular are the insights
that are established at the end oí the article, what is the scholarly contribution, to what extent
is a gi·en contribution really a contribution to research and a contribution in a gi·en tradition,

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

and not necessarily only in 1ranslation Studies as such. Now, I would say a lot can be said
about 1ranslation Studies írom this point oí ·iew and I am not going to insist much on this -
so the interdisciplinarity oí 1ranslation Studies is one oí the critical issues nowadays. Among
the other priorities and ambitions oí 1arget when we were e·aluating and selecting and
planning articles was also, íor instance, to what extent was a gi·en contribution a contribution
to the dialogue and to the interaction with neighbouring disciplines, and the extension oí the
íield oí scholarship, where, íor instance, research on language, on social relationships, on
media and e·en on business was in·ol·ed. So this was additional criteria íor positi·e
Another thing, oí course, this is ·ery clear, but also this is a ·ery critical point, is the
intercultural representati·eness oí what we were doing. Now, without saying at all that írom
this point oí ·iew we were not supposed to be blamed or not to be under threat, I would say
that there was a ·ery systematic eííort in that direction. And I would say that e·en the
Chinese, or the Southeast Asian or the Latin American orientation that are de·eloping in a
spectacular way nowadays, íor us, this was one oí the positi·e things, and we tried to promote
it, and it is certainly one oí the consequences oí the mo·ement de·eloped not only by 1arget,
not only by CL1RA, but by so many people, that exactly this new world·iew, an enlarged
world·iew, was taken seriously and had a chance to, say, get through.
Now I ha·e been worried írom the beginning with something. \hen LS1 was íounded, we
had no money, CL1RA had no money, 1arget had no money either. So we could not go íor, I
would say, diplomatic íunctions and network e·erywhere around the world. 1here was no
money íor that. But e·erything we could do, we did it. lor instance, when we went to 1okyo,
and so íorth, íor Comparati·e Literature, we were working íor 1ranslation Studies also. So
with limited resources we tried to do ·ery hea·y things also íor the internationalization and
the international institutionalization oí the discipline.
Now, 1oury`s article is analyzing the contributions írom the many countries and it also
indicates, say, surprising components oí these eííorts. I know ·ery well that there are other
countries, other cultures and other centers that do the same and that maybe nowadays are
more successíul. \e started it up and I think we opened the gates. Now, it is good that other
people continue.
@(. (,+)3 -&'&$- #% 5#- ')&#"1$ &5'& #% &5$ $')13 `UT]- '% <7$)#"'% ,) R)#&#-5 C+41#-5$)
0,+1* C),4'413 5'?$ )$-C,%*$* 0#&5 &5$ C+mm1#%B )$7')2 I&)'%-1'&#,% 05'&AJ &, '
C),C,-'1 ,6 C+41#-5#%B ' E,+)%'1 ,% ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$-= G$ ",%&#%+$-. I(5$ 6'"& &5'&
&5#- #- %, 1,%B$) &5$ "'-$ -5,+1* "$)&'#%13 4$ '&&)#4+&$*8 '& 1$'-& #% C')&8 &, 1arge t S-
,0% '"5#$?$7$%&- #% C+&&#%B &5$ *#-"#C1#%$ ,% &5$ 7'C=J /5'& ,&5$) E,+)%'1- 5'?$
'1-, 5$1C$* C+& ()'%-1'&#,% @&+*#$- ,% &5$ 7'C '%* -5'C$ &5$ $?,1+&#,% ,6 ,+)
*#-"#C1#%$8 4$ &5$3 C)$"+)-,)- ,) -+""$--,)- &, 1arge t cMe t a
8 11R
'%* ßabe t
7$%&#,%$* 43 (,+)3 $1-$05$)$8 ",7$- &, 7#%*hA


´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
LAMBLR1: Oí course, so simply, like that, I cannot immediately say what is the picture, but
there is a picture. lirst, let me make one point about the origin oí 1arget. Beíore 1arget existed
we were dreaming about it - I knew all about the project. \e ha·e shown our proposal, say,
our business plan, to Gerald Prince
, a prominent expert in Narratology in the United States,
írom the Uni·ersity oí Pennsyl·ania, an absolute top guy, and he said: No doubt, you will
get it! \ou are sure to íind a top publisher íor this journal.` And he was not an expert in
1ranslation Studies but he was an experienced, say, a world le·el specialist in Narratology.
As íor other journals, well, I would distinguish between journals de·oted to translation that
existed already and new journals. And the íact that I make this distinction already indicates
that the idea oí establishing a new discipline has been successíul - as 1oury says, to a large
extent this was one oí the indications oí the impact that 1arget had on the map íor the
research on translation. I know lots oí journals that existed beíore, like Meta, and etc. A new
journal was 11R, and oí course 1be 1rav.tator
, the St. Jerome`s one. Now, it is clear that the
new journals, in the íormulation oí their goals, ha·e certainly established their positions in
relation to the position oí 1arget. Now, oí course, they all tried to ha·e something like a
proíile, that is, a proíile oí their own. It means that 1ranslation Studies had become a market
e·en íor research. So the 1ranslation Studies market exists. And it existed since a gi·en
moment. And the traditional journals e·en adapted their goals. lor instance, Meta was a
journal that supported ·ery hea·ily the production oí translations, and good translations, and
the e·aluation oí translations. But it opened up its gates to be more research oriented. 1he
íact that translation was not limited anymore to the question low to produce good
translations·` is an illustration oí the impact oí a new paradigm.
Now, when Alice Leal, íor instance, says that D1S is too dominating at CL1RA, not like the
ideas oí Vermeer or oí the proponents oí the German íunctional approach, there is at least
one diííerence: the goals, neither oí Vermeer nor oí Nord nor oí Snell-lornby, who ha·e
always been CL1RA proíessors
, their goals were not, íirst oí all, to establish the academic
discipline. And the establishment oí the PhD programs and research on translation is the
achie·ement not oí one person nor another person nor one journal, and so íorth: it is the
result oí collecti·e eííorts. But these collecti·e eííorts are nearer the goals oí D1S, as we see
it, than the goals oí, say, the Skopos theory. And I do not blame anyone at all. I would say
that in the Skopos theory and in the German school there ha·e been excellent PhDs and I
know excellent and successíul scholars who would now speak, indeed, about the
establishment oí the discipline, and they will not try to say that this is due to this person or to
that person. It means that there is a new ·iew, a collecti·e assumption oí what the tasks and
responsibilities in this area are. Making PhDs on translation that were not linked with, say, the
pragmatics oí the translation task and the training oí translators, this idea, beíore the 1990s, I

http:,,,re·ue,ttr,apropos.html & http:,,,associations,act-

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

would like to see, so people can demonstrate to me, where it has been expressed. So this is
new in the academic world and I would say that the progressi·e deletion oí the borderline
between translation training institutes and uni·ersities, which was one oí the íeatures since
\orld \ar II, this has disappeared, and this has partly disappeared because there is a
common ground now in the area oí PhD on 1ranslation Studies - I would say I know írom
which area in 1ranslation Studies this comes and írom which area it does not really come. So,
I would say, is this coming írom 1arget· It is certainly not only 1arget and CL1RA, but the
common eííorts and the parallel orientations, and also the íact that so many people who also
came, íor instance, írom the German íield. Apropos, so íar we did not mention at all - and
in your documents they are not mentioned at all - this ·ery impressi·e and remarkable center
in Gottingen, with their dozens oí hea·y books and their dozens oí PhDs
. \ell, they really
ha·e accepted the idea oí research. And they would not say: \ell, we work along 1oury`
1hey e·en didn`t like his proposals too much, but they did exactly the research that he was
promoting - with diííerent rules - and they went íor PhDs degrees. And I ha·e been myselí
super·isor oí one oí the PhDs coming írom Gottingen with a colleague member in the PhD
committee coming írom Gottingen to Leu·en. So we worked together. So these are
achie·ements that in many panoramic states oí the art ·ery oíten are íorgotten, but Gottingen
has been extremely important.
Now, there are more than journals. By the way, I should add that there are ·ery important
book series. And in these book series one oí the important contributions comes írom the new
PhDs degrees. So this promotional mo·ement in the book market is hea·ily supported by
PhDs. L·en yesterday on the Internet I disco·ered a PhD írom Massachusetts, írom
, whose ad·isor was Ldwin Gentzler
. le was one oí our alumni in the year that
Susan Bassnett was teaching and I do not see that he is simply applying principles írom D1S,
he e·en tries to show that he is a little bit in disagreement, and ·ery oíten he tries to show
e·en that he is in agreement with me but not really with 1oury nor with D1S, and so on. So
this is all looking íor your position. But I don`t think that this is really the point. It indicates
that something has been achie·ed in common and in interaction. So the impact oí the things
that I ha·e been discussing, this impact is ·ery ob·ious, I would say, on almost e·ery place.
@(. <- 6,) &5$ *$"#-#,% &, 5'?$ :%B1#-5 '- &5$ 7'#%8 ,) '17,-& -,1$8 1'%B+'B$ ,6
C+41#"'&#,%8 (,+)3 -'3- &5'& I&5#- *#"&'&$ 5'* #7C,)&'%& #7C1#"'&#,%- 6,) 1arge t 8
$-C$"#'113 #% ?#$0 ,6 &5$ 6'"& &5'& #& 5'- &)'%-1'&#,% '- #&- -+4E$"&e7'&&$)=J G$ '1-,
-&'&$- &5'& I&5$ )$-&)#"&#,% ,% &5$ +-$ ,6 1'%B+'B$- 5'- %, *,+4& $>$)&$* '
",%-#*$)'41$ #7C'"& ,% &5$ B),0#%B 7')B#%'1#m'&#,% #% 1arge t ,6 )$-$')"5 "'))#$* ,+&
#% "$)&'#% C')&- ,6 &5$ 0,)1*8 +-#%B 1'%B+'B$- -+"5 '- V&'1#'% ,) _,)&+B+$-$8 $?$%
P$)7'%8 %,& &, 7$%&#,% 95#%$-$ '%* N'C'%$-$= <- #- 0$11 2%,0%8 '%* *$-C#&$ -,7$
"5'%B$- &5'& 5'?$ &'2$% C1'"$ ,6 1'&$8 7'%3 -"5,1')- -&#11 C)$6$) &, 0)#&$ '%* C+41#-5 #%

Proíessor Lmeritus Armin Paul lrank oí Georg-August-Uni·ersit€t Gottingen is a standout representati·e oí
the Gottingen group and his books on the subject oí translation are important representati·es oí the production
oí that group. More inío: http:,,,personal.php·mit_id~89&bereich~personal

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010
0,)1* 1'%B+'B$- ,&5$) &5'% :%B1#-58 %,& &, 7$%&#,% &5$#) ,0% C')1'%"$= X%$ C1'"$
05$)$ &5#- -&'&$ ,6 '66'#)- 5'- 4$$% +%*$)B,#%B -,7$ "5'%B$ #- @C'#%8 05$)$ :%B1#-5
5'- 4$",7$ 7,)$ '%* 7,)$ ' 1'%B+'B$ ,6 -"#$%&#6#" ",77+%#"'&#,%=J (5$-$ ?')#,+-
-&'&$7$%&- #%-C#)$ ' -$)#$- ,6 a+$-&#,%- 05,-$ B$%$)'1 &,C#" 3,+ 5'?$ '1)$'*3 *$'1&
0#&58 #% 4),'*$) &$)7-8 ,% &5#- #%&$)?#$0l 1$& +- %')),0 #&- 6,"+- ' 1#&&1$ 4#& '- &, 5,0 #&
)$1'&$- &, C+41#"'&#,%-= `h G,0 *,$- &5#- 7,%,1#%B+'1 'CC),'"5 &, C+41#-5#%B ",C$
0#&5 &5$ 6'"& &5'& &5$ -+4E$"&e7'&&$) #% a+$-&#,%8 &)'%-1'&#,%8 C)$-+CC,-$- &5$
#%&$)C1'3 ,6 '& 1$'-& &0, 1'%B+'B$-A Zh 9,%-#*$)#%B (,+)3S- ,0% '*7#--#,% ,6 &5$
C),41$7 ,6 7')B#%'1#m'&#,% ,6 )$-$')"5 *+$ &, 1'%B+'B$ C,1#"#$- &5'& *, %,& C)#?#1$B$
*#?$)-#&38 05#"5 &,,1- "'% 4$ +-$* &, '11,0 1#%B+#-&#"'113e?')#$B'&$* ",%&)#4+&#,%- &,
&5$ 6#$1* &, B'#% 7,)$ ?#-#4#1#&3A ih X% &5$ 61#C-#*$8 05'& ')$ &5$ '*?'%&'B$- ,6 5'?#%B
' t i vgva f ravc a '- &5$ 1#%B+#-&#" ?$5#"1$ 6,) I#%&$)e'"'*$7#" ",77+%#"'&#,%-JA
LAMBLR1: So it is a long question. It is an interesting and complicated question and I am sure
that you remember well that last year ,2009, in llorianópolis I was hea·ily insisting on that.
As íor 1oury`s position about this question oí languages, I would say it is íor the íirst time
that I see, myselí, this ·ery explicit positioning on his behalí. \e hardly discussed it in the
history oí 1arget and I would say I blame myselí and I would blame the 1arget team íor this.
But his ·iews are interesting and in general I would support them, but I would go íurther.
Aíter all, your questions go into that direction too.
Now, I would say that I am one oí the ad·ocates oí a change oí the language policy in
research on translation. Maybe we could not e·en aííord talking about it at the beginning,
because you depend on publishing houses, you depend on publication channels, you need to
get recognized in the market situation, and so on. It is due to the íact that, little by little,
1ranslation Studies and certain areas oí publications ha·e been institutionalized that you can
try to mo·e and redeíine the borderlines. But it is also because the issue oí Lnglish as an
academic language is now much more oí a hot topic, and I hope it will still become hotter
than it is now - it deser·es to be so. I would say that the reduction oí the language oí
publication to mainly Lnglish - Lnglish as a dominant language - is one oí the weaknesses oí
our discipline and it is also a little bit counterproducti·e. And you can see it reílected in many
publications. L·en our top colleagues ·ery oíten are themsel·es simpliíying because they do
not look into other languages than Lnglish anymore. I published in lrench in the beginning
and more and more I mo·ed into Lnglish because I realized that people did not e·en look at
the articles in lrench since they were not ·ery good at it. Now, Gideon 1oury, to be írank, is
not the most polyglot scholar in translation, but he knows a íew languages. le is ·ery much
aware oí it. I know many among his countrymen who are much better in the
internationalization oí languages. And one oí the reasons, I would say, why he tried to work
with us was that at least we had access not only to lrench but also to the Latin languages. But
oí course this is only a small part oí this globe and we need much more.
Now, I would e·en say that this issue that you ha·e brought up here and your questions at the
end are particularly interesting and important because you write them írom Brazil. And I
would apply most oí these questions to the academic policy oí your country. I would say that
you absolutely need, íirst oí all, a better mastery, an acti·e mastery, oí the dominant

´cievtia 1raavctiovi., v.¨, 2010

international language, which is Lnglish ,e·en in my country, ·ery oíten the people írom the
positi·e sciences say e·erything in Lnglish`, but they need some specialists in Lnglish in
order to brush up their own articles,.
I ha·e written a lot about this and I am going to take part in an important coníerence in
Lurope, in Lisbon, a coníerence on Social Psychology, Organization 1heory, Management
Research, , and so on
. It is about multilingualism that we talk there and the role played by
translation in multilingualism, something you ha·e in e·eryday language. But the question oí
academic communication is a ·ery particular and pri·ileged area, and this is still ·ery diííerent
írom the question oí translation in general. But to show that this is absolutely crucial and that
the academic world is on the borderline oí business, I would say, look at the Internet and the
impact that the internet has on our world oí publication and research.
@(. b#%'1138 1arge t #- '?'#1'41$ $1$"&),%#"'113 ,% ívge vt ac ovve c t = G,0$?$)8 #&- ,%1#%$
'?'#1'4#1#&3 #- )$-&)#"&$* &, #&- 7,-& )$"$%& Z] #--+$-= G,0 '4,+& *,#%B -,7$ IE,+)%'1
')"5$,1,B3J '%* 7'2#%B &5$ $')1#$) #--+$- ,6 1arge t '?'#1'41$ $1$"&),%#"'113 '- 0$11A
LAMBLR1: 1his is a good question, it makes períect sense and it will be communicated to my
colleagues, so we will work on that. So by deíinition the answer can only be yes!

]o.e íavbert

1be ivterrier ra. covavctea b, Cv.taro .ttboff c íitiav ítevri
|virer.iaaae íeaerat ae ´avta Catariva
gvattboff¸gvait.cov c titiavftevri¸gvait.cov

26th LGOS Colloquium, Lisbon, 2010. \a·es oí Globalization: Repetition and diííerence in organizing o·er
time and space. July 1 - 3, 2010