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Thursday, 31 October 2013 09:35

Self-Translation and Power: Negotiating Identities in Multilingual Contexts in Europe

Call for Papers for chapters and contributions to the collection of essays edited by Olga Castro, Sergi Mainer and Svetlana Skomorokhova.

Deadline for proposals: 1 March 2014

Rationale and Possible Topics:

The question of power has been central in the development of Translation Studies as a discipline in the last few decades. Edited collections such as Translation, Power, Subversion (Álvarez and Vidal 1996) or Translation and Power (Tymoczko and Gentzler 2002), published in the wake of the cultural/ideological turn, put the word ‘power’ in the axis of debate in Translation Studies. Ever since, the symbiosis between ‘power’ and translation has yielded fruitful academic outcomes.

When focusing on the topic of self-translation, the growing scholarly attention it has received in the last few years also proves its dynamism, strength and potential for further research. Different conferences have recently taken place in Europe (Barcelona, Pescara, Bologna, Perpignan, Cork) and a number of special issues and collections of articles have been published focusing mainly on the Iberian Peninsula and touching upon power relations and the specificities of self-translation.

The forthcoming collection of essays Self-Translation and Power: Negotiating Identities in European Multilingual Contextsseeks to contribute to current debates on self-translation by placing an emphasis on the role of power within it and by opening new avenues of enquiry to encompass different milieus in Europe. Multilingual situations in Europe offer a prolific intercultural and intracultural context to examine power relations with regards to the political, social, cultural and economic implications and consequences of self-translation. Indeed, the interactions between official state languages and both non-state official and unofficial languages tend to generate a series of cultural and linguistic tensions affecting the notions of hegemony, resistance, dominance, subversion and (inter-)dependency between literary polysystems. Given their double affiliation as authors and translators, self-translators are placed in a privileged position to problematize power and to scrutinise minorized/peripheral and hegemonic/central cultural identities. Self-Translation and Power: Negotiating Identities in European Multilingual Contexts aims to explore the self-translators’ powerful role as cultural and ideological mediators between languages and literatures of disparate status in Europe from interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary approaches.

The volume pursues a balance between theoretical/methodological chapters and empirical chapters focused on contextualised case studies.

Suggested topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Power relations between translations and self-translations
  • Self-translator as an Empowered Translator
  • Conflicting ideologies in self-translation
  • (In)visibility in self-translation
  • Language politics: diglossia, bilingualism, multilingualism
  • Language and cultural planning
  • The book market and reception
  • Cultural mediation
  • National/territorial identities
  • Hegemony and resistance
  • Self-Translation as rewriting
  • Authorial voice/intervention/representation

Submitting a Proposal:

All potential contributors are requested to send in a detailed summary of their proposed paper by 1 March 2014 to the editors.


  • Title of the article
  • Author’s name, affiliation, e-mail
  • Proposal of 500 words, including the description of the proposed article and the ways in which it fits with the general aim of the edited collection.
  • Keywords
  • Short biographical statement (approx. 150 words)
  • Times New Roman, 12 pt, single space

Language of the Publication: The language of the publication is English.


  • Deadline for submitting proposals: 1 March 2014
  • Notifications of provisional acceptance will be sent by: 15 April 2014
  • Deadline for submitting full articles: 15 December 2014

Contact: Please email enquiries to the editors:

  • Dr Olga Castro, Aston University, Birmingham – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Dr Sergi Mainer, the University of Edinburgh – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
  • Dr Svetlana Skomorokhova, the University of Warwick –This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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