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Friday, 10 March 2023 14:36

Call for chapter proposals for an edited volume: Translation and Neoliberalism

In today’s globalized world, the socio-political and economic conditions in most societies are
closely linked to prevailing global trends. Within this context, neoliberalism – the idea of a free
market within a deregulated economy – has dominated the world through a combination of
willing acceptance and enforcement, bringing about many fundamental changes within
multiple contemporary societies, which have in turn given rise to a plethora of studies in
different fields.

In Applied Linguistics, Block, Gray and Holborow (2012) have made some initial attempts to
conceptualize the ways in which neoliberal ideology plays out in the areas of language teaching
and language teacher education. Since then, a growing number of researchers have further
explored interlinked concepts of neoliberalism, mainly within the English Language Teaching
industry, including the discourse of neoliberalism in ELT textbooks (e.g., Copley, 2018),
neoliberalism and teacher education (e.g., Furlong, 2013), linguistic imperialism (e.g.,

Phillipson, 2013) and the commodification of English language pedagogy (e.g., Soto & Pérez-
Milans, 2018), to mention but a few.

By contrast, the online Translation Studies Bibliography (TSB) records only a handful of
English-language publications worldwide that are related to globalization in general, and
hardly any on neoliberalism and translation in particular. In his book Translation and
Globalization (2003/2013) Michael Cronin looks at the changing geography of translation
practice and offers new ways of understanding the role of translators in globalized societies
and economies. The author focuses on the part played by translation and translators in

safeguarding linguistic and cultural diversity. From a different standpoint, Bielsa (2005) makes
an attempt to understand the significance of translation in the global context, conceptualising
its analytical place in globalisation theory and its key role in articulating the global and the

Language and translation have an essential function in the production, circulation and reception
of neoliberalist texts. Not only do the socio-political and economic policies adopted in different
contexts influence the choice of texts to be translated (Richner & Olesen, 2019), but translation
practices have an impact on the communication of the discourses and narratives of
neoliberalism (Ban, 2011).

In response to the forces of globalization and also to ongoing technological advances,
translations of technology, electronics, financial and economic texts, subtitled and dubbed
versions of films, and other multimedia products have driven the transformation of values and
ways of thinking across linguistic and cultural borders (Tang & Gentzler, 2009). While this has
provided great opportunities for the translation market, employment conditions for translators
“have moved towards a model of freelance and contingent work, whereby they struggle with
speed and productivity demands, the unilateral imposition of technologies, and constant
downward pressure on price” (Moorkens, 2020, p.23).

To conclude, while translation studies is interdisciplinary in essence, the way in which the
political economy – and more specifically neoliberally socio-political and economically
informed factors – interact with translation has been downplayed. The aim of this volume is to
enhance our understanding of the evolving practices adopted by the translation industry and
the stakeholders in the neoliberal era and to exploit whatever concepts and methodologies can
be adopted for researching translation in the light of neoliberal tendencies existing in different

Recommended topics
Possible topics include but are not limited to the following:
• Neoliberalism and translation policies
• Neoliberalism and translator training
• Neoliberalism and translation quality
• Neoliberal discourses and narratives in translation
• Neoliberalism, technology and translation
• Neoliberalism and the translation profession

  • Translation of neoliberalism through history
    • Neoliberalism and machine translation
    • Neoliberalism and translation across time and space
    • Neoliberalism and translation in postcolonial contexts
    • Neoliberalism, translation and social inequality
    • Neoliberalism, translation and consumerism
    • Neoliberalism, translation and identity
    • Neoliberalism and the role of translators
    • Neoliberalism, translation and agency

For more information, click here

Deadline for applications: 30 April 2023

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