“Olha in CETRA-land”: a testimonial by one of our Summer School alumni

We’ve just received another testimonial by one of our alumni. It was entitled “Olha in CETRA-land”:

Lehka-Paul_Olha - CopyOlha Lehka-Paul, PhD, Faculty of English, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland

Olha is a CETRA alumna of 2016. She defended her PhD thesis “The role of the translator’s personality in the process of self-revision”, under the supervision of  Professor Bogusława Whyatt, with distinction in October 2018 at the Faculty of English of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland.

“Thursday, August 25th, 2016: “I had the time of my life. Really. It was fascinating. Fantastic. Unforgettable. Andrew Chesterman was reading his (and not only his) limericks and clerihews (yes, “clerihews” that later became modified and known as “andrihews”), which were met with applause and appreciation from the public. I was sitting right opposite the historical figure in TS, one of its founding fathers, Jose Lambert. We were drinking wine and he was telling us stories about the 70s and 80s when they were struggling for CETRA and TS to develop. About James Holmes and his vision of TS. About Gideon Toury and his strong will. About tennis and the CERA SA Bank. If it hadn’t been for all of this, we wouldn’t have CETRA (and perhaps even TS – who knows?). This is amazing. Alice in Wonderland (read: “CETRAland”). This is how I feel now. Just can’t believe that all the people from the textbooks are now alive in front of me, speaking to me, having wine and chatting. Incredible. Lewis Caroll would be proud. (…)” These are only a few lines from my 35-page long CETRA diary from 2016 Research Summer School. The diary filled with my lecture notes, reflections, ideas, reactions, tips from CETRA professors, and lots of precious memories. That summer was indeed special. Special in terms of both my personal and academic growth. Never before had I felt so immersed in research, so inspired to continue my PhD journey, and so happy to be surrounded by all those amazingly like-minded people from different countries and different research sub-fields.

The School made me realise a few important things. First, the understanding of my own PhD project grew with each tutorial – having to explain and discuss my project with the CETRA staff involved in-depth analysis of what I actually wanted to do, the steps I planned to take, and the outcomes that I sought to achieve. Second, I learnt how important it is to share knowledge and ideas – especially with people who know very little or nothing about our areas of expertise. They can sometimes notice and offer much more than we can expect from them. Third, I realised that being an expert does not necessarily mean knowing everything. Perhaps, it means quite the opposite – being aware of the gaps in our knowledge and willing to fill them in, being eager to learn from mistakes and take charge of any potential outcomes, and being ready to share our experience (both positive and negative) with others. And last but not least, CETRA unites people – where else would one be able to make friends with people from different countries and continents, with both students and professors? CETRA community is composed of so many different people – in terms of age, status, background, area of expertise – that this difference brings them together. In a nutshell, I strongly recommend that everyone who genuinely cares about research in Translation Studies, regardless of how far they have gone with their PhD project, should visit the CETRAland! The advantage is such that (unlike it was in the famous story) as long as you visit it, you will stay in it forever.”

Olha submitted her testimonial in December 2018. You can read more testimonials by our research summer school alumni on this blog page

CETRA video lectures by Ian Mason” (2003): An integrated framework for translated events”, “Transitivity and Institutional Norms of Translating” and “Dialogue Interpreting and Relevance”

On the occasion of its 30th anniversary in the summer of 2018, the KU Leuven Centre for Translation Studies has been, so to speak, browsing its family albums. One of its particularly interesting chapters consists of the recorded lectures by the Chair Professors of our Research Summer School in Translation Studies. We admit that the technological quality of some of these videos is not as good as we would like it to be, but we believe this is generously compensated by the quality of the lectures in question. We are therefore happy to be able to share our collection of recorded CETRA lectures on this blog. We will do this gradually, to prevent indigestion, and in chronological order. An overview of the already published video lectures can be found on this blog page

Today, we would like to invite you to revisit the lectures “An integrated framework for translated events”, “Transitivity and Institutional Norms of Translating” and “Dialogue Interpreting and Relevance”, held by Ian Mason, CETRA Chair Professor of 2003, on 9, 11 and 12 September 2003.




Mission Statement 2019-2023

Looking forward to the next four years, CETRA has just renewed its Mission Statement. Here it is:

Building on its 30-year-old tradition CETRA – Centre for Translation Studies, driven by the research unit Translation Studies of the KU Leuven Faculty of Arts, wants to move forward as a diversified collective of internationally recognized experts, including scholars from outside Europe, who share the ambition not only to follow but also to steer current developments and trends in Translation Studies.

Advocating an open notion of “translation” (e.g., textual transfer practices such as interpreting, adaptation, localization, rewriting, etc.), CETRA wants to expand the field of Translation Studies and embrace recent methodologies (e.g., digital humanities) in order to strengthen its intrinsic intellectual vitality as well as its relevance for the humanities and for society.

In more specific terms, CETRA wants to focus on research training, primarily by organising a yearly intensive and interactive state-of-the-art research summer school. Its participants include PhD students as well as postdoctoral students, representing a wide range of disciplinary and geographical backgrounds. Participation in the summer school should help them shape and refine their research projects, and also empower them to engage in international scholarly debates about translation under all its aspects. In addition, it should advance the careers of the participants both within and outside academia, as well as offering personal enrichment.

Working together with partner institutes and centres, CETRA aims to organise a regular programme of lectures, to be made widely accessible to all interested scholars and students.

CETRA wants to continue playing a leading role in international debates about the future of PhD programmes and research education more generally, in a conscious effort to respond to the continuously changing scientific, professional and societal needs.

By (co-)organising and promoting conferences and symposia, and by developing a new book series in Translation Studies, CETRA wants to serve as a platform for scholars to discuss cutting-edge issues in the field, thus building synergy between researchers from different backgrounds and traditions.

CETRA wants to widen the intellectual horizon of Translation Studies through debate and discussion by hosting visiting scholars for short or long stays and by collaborating with relevant research centres.


Call for Papers: InDialog 3/ENPSIT

“ENPSIT is delighted to announce that the international InDialog Conference series will be continuing under its auspices from 2019. InDialog 3 will be held in Antwerp on 21-22 November 2019 and hosted jointly by the University of Antwerp and KU Leuven Antwerp campus.

Theme: Interpreter Practice, Research and Training: the Impact of Context

Continuing the initiative of the past two conferences in the series, InDialog 3 will deal with dialogue interpreting in its many forms. The conference focuses on the impact of different contexts on the way dialogue interpreting unfolds in practice and how this phenomenon is being researched and addressed in (higher) education and training.

Context is to be understood in a broad sense. Not only does it refer to those dialogue interpreting contexts that may be perceived as the usual contexts, such as institutional health care, legal interpreting and the diverse contexts of public service interpreting more generally. ENPSIT particularly wishes to invite contributions examining dialogue interpreting in other contexts such as conflict situationsrefugee camps, war zones and various other ad hoc interpreting settings. A further aspect will be the potential impact of unusual circumstances on so-called normal working settings and conditions in today’s globalized society. Interpreters are required to deal with the unexpected and to cope with a range of challenges as a matter of course. InDialog 3 will provide a forum to examine how we are dealing with these challenges as practitioners, researchers and trainers. ”

For more information, please visit the InDialog 3 website.

A testimonial from one of the “oldest” participants of the CETRA summer school: Yves Gambier

Yves Gambier, Professor Emeritus in Translation Studies, University of Turku, Finland

Until his well-earned retirement in the summer of 2018, Yves was a member of the international staff of CETRA.  

Beijing_avril2017“I was invited to participate [as a CETRA Chair Professor] in the summer school in 1997, then held in Misano Adriatico (Italy), along the sea. I attended 22 times the school. I learnt a lot about the research process when you start a project, about representations of research and researchers by young PhD students, about the role of interactions in the development of our thinking, about questioning our questions, our assumptions and concepts too often taken for granted. I really appreciated every year the informal and still working atmosphere. Students were coming from quite a number of universities, with different backgrounds and expectations, with also different perceptions about scholars, teachers. I always enjoyed the dynamics of the school, wherever we were – in Misano, Leuven or Antwerp. I thank very warmly all the PhD students and colleagues for their kindness and wisdom. And wish all my best for the future of the school.”

Yves submitted his testimonial in November 2018. Here, you can read testimonials by our alumni. 

CETRA Chair Professor 2019 announced

Jemina-NapierIt is our pleasure to announce that the next CETRA Chair Professor is chosen. Professor Jemina Napier of Heriot-Watt University will be the CETRA Chair Professor of our 2019 Research Summer School in Translation Studies.

Prof. Napier’s research interests and expertise focus around three strands of intercultural communication: (1) language and communication in the context of interpreter-mediated communication – primarily with signed language interpreters and the Deaf community. Adopting sociolinguistic, discourse analytic and sociological explorations of signed language interpretation in context (particularly education, legal and medical) to inform the wider field of interpreting studies, applied linguistics and intercultural communication; (2) how deaf adults actually use signed language to communicate in their lives in terms of bilingualism, language contact and identity; and (3) translation and interpreting pedagogy, using action research to explore aspects of distance education, blended learning, curriculum innovation and discourse-based teaching practices. She has taught, researched and published in all of these areas.

More information about Prof. Napier can be found here.

This summer school will take place at KU Leuven, Belgium, from 19 to 30 August 2019. Detailed information about the exact place, the application procedure, the scholarships, the programme and the venue of our research summer school in Translation Studies will be available on this CETRA blog and on the CETRA website in due time.

CERES and CETRA invite you to a Fall Lecture by Denise Merkle: “Traduire le plurilinguisme littéraire au Canada”

CERES, the KU Leuven Centre for Reception Studies, and CETRA, the KU Leuven Centre for Translation Studies, warmly invite you to attend a lecture by Denise Merkle (Université de Moncton) on (self-)translation of multilingualism in Canadian literature.

This lecture will be held on Wednesday 17 October 2018, from 14:00 to 15:30, in French (with simultaneous interpretation into Dutch). It will take place at our campus in Brussels: Auditorium 6306, Hermesgebouw, Stormstraat 2. Free entrance. Please register by sending an email to cetra@kuleuven.be.

[Dutch below]

1449606071343Traduire le plurilinguisme littéraire au Canada : l’(auto-)traduction dans Petites difficultés d’existence de France Daigle, La Trahison de Laurier Gareau, Kiss of the Fur Queen de Tomson Highway

L’hybridité était perçue sous une lumière défavorable jusqu’à relativement récemment quand des chercheurs postcoloniaux ont réévalué la présence de l’hybridité et de plurilinguisme dans les soi-disant monocultures, et les rôles qu’ils y jouent. L’état-nation considérait sa langue, sa culture et sa nation comme indissociables, malgré l’existence patente de plurilinguisme et de pluriculturalisme, écartés comme étant impurs. Il est aujourd’hui généralement admis que la pure unicité relève du mythe, les cultures étant de nature plutôt plurilingue et hybride du fait d’avoir évolué depuis des siècles et des millénaires. Pourtant, les approches traditionnelles de la traductologie, dont la recherche de l’équivalence, sont ancrées dans le modèle de « une langue, une culture, une nation » (Meylaerts, 2010). Ce sont effectivement des traductologues, dont Sherry Simon (2011), qui ont remis en question ce modèle pendant les dernières décennies du xxe siècle, dans le cadre de leurs études sur le phénomène des langues et cultures en contact dans les contextes postcoloniaux. Dans cette conférence, nous examinerons des définitions de plurilinguisme, pluriculturalisme et hybridité, ainsi que des stratégies d’(auto-) traduction retrouvées dans quelques textes littéraires canadiens plurilingues, Petites difficultés d’existence de France Daigle, La Trahison de Laurier Gareau, Kiss of the Fur Queen de Tomson Highway. Afin de saisir les enjeux du plurilinguisme, du pluriculturalisme et de l’hybridité dans ces textes, il nous faudra d’abord les situer dans leur contexte sociolinguistique respectif.

Meertaligheid in Canadese literatuur in vertaling: (zelf-)vertaling in Petites difficultés d’existence van France Daigle, La Trahison van Laurier Gareau, Kiss of the Fur Queen van Tomson Highway. 

Nog niet zo lang geleden stond hybriditeit in een slecht daglicht, tot onderzoekers uit de Post-Colonial Studies de aanwezigheid van mengvormen en meertaligheid in de zogenaamde monoculturen revalueerden, tezamen met de functies die zij daarin vervullen. De natiestaat beschouwde zijn taal, cultuur en natie als onlosmakelijk met elkaar verbonden – ondanks de onmiskenbare aanwezigheid van meertaligheid en multiculturalisme, die weggezet werden als onrein. Tegenwoordig wordt algemeen aangenomen dat een zuivere eenheid tot de sfeer van de mythes behoort, dat culturen als gevolg van hun eeuwen- en zelfs millenialange ontwikkeling eerder een meertalige en hybride natuur hebben. Niettemin blijven de traditionele benaderingen van de ‘traductologie’, waaronder het equivalentie-onderzoek, verankerd in het “één taal, één cultuur, één natie”-model (Meylaerts 2010). Tijdens de laatste decennia van de 20ste eeuw hebben vertaalwetenschappers als Sherry Simon (2011), in het kader van hun onderzoek naar talen en culturen in postkoloniale contexten, dit model in vraag gesteld.

In deze lezing staat Denise Merkle stil bij de definities meertaligheid, multiculturalisme en hybriditeit, en onderzoekt ze de strategieën die gehanteerd werden bij de (zelf-)vertaling van drie meertalige Canadese literaire teksten: Petites difficultés d’existence van France Daigle, La Trahison van Laurier Gareau, en Kiss of the Fur Queen van Tomson Highway. Om de inzet van de meertaligheid, het multiculturalisme en de hybriditeit in deze teksten te vatten, is het noodzakelijk om eerst hun sociolinguïstische contexten toe te lichten.