Panels

Genealogies of Knowledge

Genealogies of Knowledge I

Translating Political and Scientific Thought

across Time and Space

The University of Manchester
7-9 December 2017

 

Conference Panels

 

 

Lingua Francas of Knowledges
Convenor: Karen Bennett Universidade Nova, Lisbon

Genealogies of Knowledge

This panel seeks to stimulate reflection about the role played by different vehicular languages in the transmission of knowledge over the centuries, and the philosophical, political and commercial implications of a lingua franca culture (as opposed to a translation culture). Proposals are welcome from scholars working in fields such as linguistics, translation studies, history of science/philosophy, cultural history and epistemology, as well as specialists in particular languages and cultures.
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The Magic of ‘Classical’ Languages: Script, Sound and Sense in the Translation of Sacred Concepts
Convenor: Hephzibah Israel University of Edinburgh

Genealogies of Knowledge

This panel seeks to explore the specific links between translation, knowledge construction and modes of signalling the sacred. Contributions to the panel are invited to address translations of concepts from any religious tradition and in any historical period but must focus on translations in the Arabic, Greek, Latin and Sanskrit contexts. Papers should examine the interface between script, sound, orality and textuality in the conception and the reception of the sacred in translation: to what extent do translators rely on the ocular, the aural, the textual and oral to reconstruct key sacred concepts in new contexts?
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Translation and Health Humanities:The Role of Translated Personal Narratives in the Co-creation of Medical Knowledge
Convenor: Şebnem Susam-Saraeva University of Edinburgh

Genealogies of Knowledge

Both health and medical humanities are increasingly acknowledging the role of personal narratives and testimonies in challenging, complementing and contesting ‘abstract expert knowledge’. This panel will examine the production and dissemination of new knowledge regarding health and well-being through translations of personal narratives and testimonies in various areas (e.g. mental health, maternal and neonatal health, and cancer care), focusing on the co-creation of medical knowledge by and for lay people.
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Dissemination, Contestation, and Mediation of Knowledge between Asia and the West
Convenors: Kyung Hye Kim, Dang Li, Yifan Zhu (Shanghai Jiao Tong University)

Genealogies of Knowledge

This panel will attempt to explore the dissemination, contestation and transformation of concepts as they travel between Asian and Western countries, with particular emphasis on two aspects of this exchange: the flow of knowledge from Asia to the West through translation, and the way western primacy is sometimes asserted and sometimes challenged as western concepts enter the Asian world through translation. The panel thus seeks to provide an opportunity for scholars to engage critically with the flow of knowledge between Asia and the West at both macro and micro levels.
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Science and Translation as Culturally Embedded Practices
Convenor: Maeve Olohan (University of Manchester)

Genealogies of Knowledge

This panel aims to explore a range of themes that arise from conceptualising both science and translation as culturally embedded practices. Contributions are invited from scholars who foreground cultural perspectives in the study of scientific translation and the communication of scientific ideas across epistemic and linguistic cultures.
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Data-driven conceptual history: new methods and approaches
Convenors: Jaap Verheul, Pim Huijnen (Utrecht University)

Genealogies of Knowledge

This panel aims to bring together scholars to present the state-of-the-art in digital conceptual history and to discuss epistemological and methodological questions related to computational approaches to conceptual change.
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Seams of Knowledge: Geology, translation and Anglo-European scientific exchange
Convenor: Alison E. Martin (University of Reading, UK)

Genealogies of Knowledge

The history of geology (and its related sub-discipline mineralogy) has recently attracted renewed attention, as scholars of literature and history of science explore how earth history contributed to the emergence of new literary, cultural and historical discourses in eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Europe. While the scientific practitioners who produced these texts have often been the subject of in-depth studies, scant attention has been paid to the often forgotten middle-men and -women who ensured that their writing traversed national, cultural and linguistic boundaries to reach new audiences abroad.

The sociological turn in translation studies (Milton & Bandia 2009; Wolf & Fukari 2007) has called for closer attention to be paid to the ‘agents’ in the circulation of scientific knowledge: the translators who, along with editors, illustrators, publishers and critics, stimulated the international circulation of scientific knowledge in the Enlightenment and Romantic periods. Taking as its focus Anglo-European scientific exchange in the field of geology, this panel argues that by studying the role these translators played, we can uncover their rhetorical strategies for promoting scientific expertise, their networks of collaboration, the conduits they used for disseminating scientific knowledge, and how they helped shape the place of geology in the intellectual life of various European nations.

References

Milton, J. & P. Bandia (eds) (2009) Agents of Translation, Amsterdam & Philadelphia: Benjamins.

Wolf, M. & A. Fukari (eds) (2007) Constructing a Sociology of Translation,Amsterdam & Philadelphia: Benjamins.

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Scientific Translation during the Cold War: Perspectives from the peripheries

Convenor: Jan Jakub Surman (University of Erfurt, Germany)

Genealogies of Knowledge

During the Cold War period, translation facilitated the circulation of knowledge both across the Iron Curtain and within the camps on either side thereof. Within the communist bloc, for instance, translation enabled the dissemination of the work of communist intellectuals, including Western ones, across individual states and their languages. But translation also provided Russia’s satellite countries – such as the Polish People’s Republic and Czechoslovakia, and even some constitutive parts of the Soviet Union, e.g. the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic – with a certain degree of intellectual autonomy. Their respective publishing industries had some flexibility to make decisions on what to translate and, more importantly, how to do so based, to some extent, on the interests of local publishers and scholars. Significantly, while all scholarly fields were influenced by the geopolitics of the Cold War, policies on the translation of scientific knowledge were less rigid than those enforced within the Humanities, which remained under close scrutiny of the state.In light of the role that Russian has played as a language of international scholarly communication following the establishment of the Communist regime in Russia and, in particular, since 1945, research on scientific translation during the Cold War has so far tended to focus exclusively on (American) English-Russian communication. This panel therefore aims to widen the scope of previous research on scientific translation activities during the Cold War. In addition to translations making their way across the Iron Curtain, it also examines those involving other states and languages within the former Soviet bloc. Christopher Hollings (Oxford) explores the role that the oft-vaunted universality and symbolism of mathematical language played in East-West scientific exchanges, and how they affected both the translation and the linguistic skills of mathematicians. Philipp Hofeneder (Graz) looks at the translation of scientific journals within the Socialist Camp, focusing on German-Russian flows. These translations exemplify that the idea of mutual friendship was in this case more important than ideological constraints within the Soviet bloc. Finally, Jan Surman (Erfurt) examines the translation policies of the most important scholarly publishing houses in the People’s Republic of Poland (Panstwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe) and Czechoslovakia (Nakladatelství Ceskoslovenské Akademie ved/from 1966: Academia) to show how their monopolistic positions influenced the circulation of knowledge in these two socialist states.

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Translating Translation: Convergence and divergence of translation across epistemic and cultural boundaries

Convenor: John Ødemark (University of Oslo, Norway)

Genealogies of Knowledge

‘Translation’ has emerged as a key word in disciplines such as history, anthropology and science and technology studies (STS). Since around 2000 it has become institutionalized in medicine as so-called knowledge translation (KT). While the turn to translation in the humanities could be seen as an index of contemporary epistemological predicaments and the almost obligatory requirement to cross disciplinary and cultural boundaries in a ‘global age’, medical translation is of a different nature. KT denotes a scientific and purportedly non-cultural practice that defines social and cultural difference as a ‘barrier’ to the transmission of medical science. In contrast, STS have celebrated the productivity of translation as the condition of possibility for science and society, and aimed to incorporate material and natural actors in the analysis of translation processes. The aim of these two connected panels is to use and challenge different disciplinary notions of translation as textual, cultural and material transfer by construing translation as a historical concept that is mobilized in a network comprising diverse textual and cultural genres. To do this we will explore a set of cases studies at the interface between medicine, the medical humanities, cultural history and anthropology.

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