Monday, May 14, 2018

Conference on self-translation in Rome 18-19 May 2018

Autotraduzione: motivi, studi, strategie // Self-Translation: Teloi, Studies, Strategies
Convegno internazionale 18-19 maggio 2018 a cura di Bruno Berni e Alessandra D’Atena

Istituto Italiano di Studi Germanici Villa Sciarra-Wurts sul Gianicolo. Via Calandrelli, 25 / Viale delle Mura Gianicolensi, 11. Roma

Venerdì 18 maggio 2018
15.00 Saluti istituzionali: Roberta Ascarelli
          Apertura dei lavori: Bruno Berni e Alessandra D’Atena 
          Modera: Rossana Sebellin
15.30 Simona Anselmi (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore - Piacenza):
          Le ragioni  dell'autotraduzione/Self-translators' Teloi
16.00 Eva Gentes (Heinrich Heine Universität - Düsseldorf)
          An Introduction to Self-translation Studies
16.30 Discussione Pausa Modera: Gabriella Catalano
17.00 Bruno Berni (Istituto Italiano di Studi Germanici) «
          Pura pedanteria e annotazioni inutili»: Holberg traduttore di Holberg
17.30 Alessandra D’Atena (Mediatori e Traduttori Europei, Università di Roma Tor Vergata)                        L’autotraduzione poetica in Stefan George
18.00 Discussione

Sabato 19 maggio 2018
Modera: Alessandra D’Atena
10.00 Thomas Wisniewski (Harvard University)
          Karen Blixen Between Writing and Rewriting: Aesthetics and Self-translation in the Early
10.30 Rossana Sebellin (Mediatori e Traduttori Europei, Università di Roma Tor Vergata)
          Samuel Beckett e l'autotraduzione teatrale
11.00 Lucia Salvato (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore - Milano)
          Scelte linguistiche e strategie comunicative nell’autotraduzione tedesca: Ruth Klüger e                        Wolfgang Hildesheimer a confronto
11.30 Discussione
12.00 Bruno Berni Conclusione dei lavori

Solo di recente l’autotraduzione si è profilata quale campo di ricerca con una propria e
avvincente peculiarità all’interno dei translation studies. Il convegno a carattere internazionale e interdisciplinare, nato dalla collaborazione tra l’Istituto Italiano di Studi Germanici e il gruppo di ricerca Mediatori e Traduttori Europei dell’Università di Roma Tor Vergata, si propone di indagare l’autotraduzione da più prospettive facendo dialogare fra loro approcci critico-letterari e linguistici.
Al centro della riflessione saranno posti gli sviluppi degli studi dedicati al fenomeno, i motivi che spingono gli autori a tradurre le proprie opere, nonché i processi di autotraduzione con le rispettive strategie traduttive.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

NeMLA 2018 roundtable on self-translation

At the 49th annual convention of the Northeast Modern Language Association (April 12- April 15, 2018) a roundtable "Self-translation is Not Translation at All" took place with the following contributions:
  • “Self-translation: When Herman Melville becomes Marcel Proust and the White Whale becomes a Cookie” Yves Cloarec, Queens College, CUNY
  • “Oscillations: Translation and Re-translation in It’s Out Now” Mona Eikel-Pohen, Syracuse University
  • “Self-translation as a Compositional Method” Piotr Gwiazda, University of Pittsburgh
  • “Why in French?” Sultana Raza, Freelance writer, editor, and educator
  • “Lolita in Russian: Translation or Revision?” Zhanna Yablokova, Borough of Manhattan Community College, CUNY

Monday, April 16, 2018

Update Bibliography on self-translation

The bibliography on self-translation has been updated. To download the pdf-file please click here. If you have any suggestions for further entries, please leave a comment. The next update is scheduled for 1st of  July 2018.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

CfP: CSIS Panel on self-translation: Perché autotradursi? (Why should one self-translate?)

Deadline for submission: February 25, 2018

** CSIS Annual Conference in Ottawa, Canada (May 11-13, 2018)

Panel on self-translation: Perché autotradursi? (Why should one self-translate?)

Self-translation has always been present in the Italian literary scene, although this practice has rarely been acknowledged and its study has been most often neglected.
In the past, self-translations by Italian writers have been offered, at various times, and in different language combinations  (e.g., Italo Calvino, Beppe Fenoglio, Carlo Goldoni, Luigi Pirandello). More recently, a high level of bilingualism due migration, exile, or transnational lifestyles triggered by post-colonial and post-war developments has produced a new wave of self-translations, within and outside Italy. We are inviting proposals to reveal and dissect the practice of self-translation both as a process – of linguistic mediation, cultural negotiation and/or creative “transmutation” (Octavio Paz) – and as a product, with all that concerns publication trends, market-related restrictions, readers’ response and critics’ reception.

The reasons that lead a writer to self-translate (or not to self-translate, as Tim Parks argues) his/her work are manifold and often overlapping. It is striking, however, that publishers are rarely keen to advertise their publications as self-translations. Again, the reasons behind this reticence are manifold and require further study.

This panel offers the opportunity to explore the question of its title  – “Perché autotradursi?” – in the widest possible way, embracing any historical time-frame and from any specific point of view, be it that of:

- the emerging or already established writer;
- the independent or trade publisher;
- the monolingual or bilingual (if not multilingual) reader;
- the literary critic or the scholar;
- the language combination itself, and its relation to the socio-linguistic web of global power dynamics.

Please submit an abstract in English, Italian, French or Spanish and a short bio to Arianna Dagnino, The University of Ottawa,,  by February 25, 2018.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Update Bibliography on Self-translation

The bibliography on self-translation has been updated. To download the pdf-file please click here. If you have any suggestions for further entries, please leave a comment. The next update is scheduled for 1st of  April 2018.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Interview with Andre Brink on self-translation

In one of his lasts interviews, South-African writer Andre Brink shares some fascinating insights into his process of self-translation with Maria Recuenco. Brink and Recuenco discuss the differences between translating his own works and the works of others, the idea of being translated by someone else, the notion of translation, the advantage of being a self-translator, his thoughts on collaborative translations etc. I will share some interesting quotes, but I highly recommend reading the whole interview.

On the process of self-translation:
"It is never a mechanical process of translating, it is writing a book and then going back to it and redoing it in the other language. I rewrite it from scratch. Therefore, the two versions are always different" (p. 149)
On the reasons for self-translation:
"I like to be hands on when it comes to the translating. I won’t easily ask somebody else to do it. Or even allow somebody else to do it." (p. 150)
On self-translation being an exception:
"There are still very few writers that do it regularly, all the time they write. Apparently it happens in the Slavic languages more often that writers write in two languages." (p. 152)
On research on self-translation:
 "I would find it very interesting if somebody would write a thesis, for example, about a specific text in two languages and see how it differs, or when it differs, and find out why. That would fascinate me very much." (p. 153)
Peñalver, M. R. "Encounter with André Brink: Looking on … Self-Translation." Research in African Literatures, vol. 46 no. 2, 2015, pp. 146-156. Project MUSE,

Monday, November 27, 2017

Cfp: Glendon Graduate Student Conference in Translation Studies (3rd March 2018, Toronto)

Conference: Glendon Graduate Student Conference in Translation Studies
Date and place: 3rd March 2018, Glendon College, York University (Toronto)
Topic:Translation and (De)colonization
Deadline: Abstract 250-300 words by December 1, 2017

Call for papers

Translation has long played a key role in processes of colonization, often being used as a tool of the colonizer. However, as Indigenous peoples and settler allies have progressively worked toward dismantling oppressive institutions and divesting from colonial power, the function of translation has increasingly expanded to include practices that give voice to colonized and Indigenous peoples and move toward justice, reconciliation, and social solidarity. This year’s graduate conference aims to explore the complex, dynamic relationship between translation and decolonization.

We invite proposals for papers from a variety of fields and perspectives that engage with issues including, but not limited to:

  • Translation, history, and collective memory
  • Translation, solidarity, and social change
  • Translation, power, authority, and dominance
  • Translation as a tool of resistance and subversion
  • Literary translation and self-translation in postcolonial contexts
  • Indigenous language preservation and revitalization
  • Legal translation and interpretation as a tool for decolonization
  • Censorship, manipulation, and historical narratives
  • Translation, orality, and transmission
  • Voice, identity, and visibility in translation

Our one-day multilingual conference will address these and related topics. We welcome proposals for papers (20-minute presentations) and posters. Those interested are invited to submit an abstract of 250-300 words by December 1, 2017 to or Submissions should include the title of the paper and the author’s name, affiliations, and contact information.

Call for papers in English, French, and Spanish. To download the cfp as a pdf file please click here.