OCCT Conference: Metaphors in Translation (St Anne’s College, Oxford; 26 February 2022)

Saturday 26 February 2022, 9am – 5:15pm (GMT)
Seminar Rooms 10 and 11, St Anne’s College, Oxford, OX2 6HS

To register, please see the event page (https://www.occt.ox.ac.uk/metaphors-translation-conference).

9:00-9:15: Introductory Remarks
9:15-10:45: Postgraduate Roundtable: Metaphors for Translation
11:00-12:30: Workshop with Sophie Seita: Visualising and Performing Translational Metaphors
12:30-13:30: Lunch
13:30-15:00: Translator Roundtable: Translating Metaphors
15:15-16:45: Workshop with Hélène Boisson: Images and Analogies in Children’s Literature
17:00-17:15: Closing Remarks

Hosted by the Oxford Comparative Criticism and Translation research centre (OCCT), this conference will explore the relationship between translation and metaphor through a series of roundtables and workshops. The word translation originates in the past participle of the Latin verb transfero—literally meaning to transfer, to carry beyond. The act of translation can thus be understood as a means of subverting the constraints of language-specific boundaries and transporting signification from one linguistic or modal realm into another. Similarly, the word metaphor—usually defined as ‘a figure of speech in which a name or descriptive word or phrase is transferred to an object or action different from, but analogous to’—is, in fact, the Greek variant of the concept of transfer. With a focus on the interplay between these terms, the day’s events will consider metaphors for translation, and the challenges and creative possibilities of conveying metaphors across languages and media.

Organised by BCLA member Erin Nickalls (Oxford) and Maëlle Nagot (Oxford), the sessions will be moderated by Professor Patrick McGuinness (Oxford) and Dr. Joseph Hankinson (Oxford). Closing remarks will be given by the Chair of OCCT, Professor Matthew Reynolds (Oxford).

All sessions are free and open to the public. There will be coffee, tea and a buffet lunch with vegetarian and vegan options. Please indicate on the registration form if you have any other dietary requirements.

In the first roundtable, Oxford DPhil candidates studying diverse languages and literary traditions will discuss metaphors commonly, or less commonly, used to describe and interpret the act of translation. This session will include contributions from Billy Beswick (Oriental Studies), Isabel Parkinson (German), Trish Bilia (Modern Greek) and Hannah Scheithauer (German and French).

The second roundtable will explore approaches to translating metaphors in practice. This session will feature literary translators working across a range of language combinations: Peter Bush (Catalan, Spanish, Portuguese, and French to English), Jen Calleja (German to English), Mohini Gupta (Hindi to English, English to Hindi), and Ayça Türkoğlu (Turkish and German to English).

The workshops will be led by artist and academic Sophie Seita and translator and professor of French Hélène Boisson (École Normale Supérieure). In Seita’s workshop, participants will try their hands at visualising and performing metaphors through manipulating materials and interacting with their environment. Boisson’s workshop will examine how metaphors, analogies and illustrations interact in the process of translating children’s literature.

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