Translation Scholars to Explore China’s Influence

Understanding Nation's Culture and Literature is Subject of Symposium April 7-8

April 2, 2009

The translator plays a major role in the transmission of knowledge and cross-cultural understanding, making available not only great literature but also documents of everyday life to the rest of the world. Over the past 20 years, China has become a big exporter of art, cultural artifacts and scholarly thought, which has caught the attention of translators interested in studying this development.

Scholars from six countries will gather to discuss the impact and importance of translating Chinese literature and culture in “Translating China into the West,” a symposium scheduled for April 7 and 8 at the McDermott Suite in the UT Dallas McDermott Library.

 “As the trend of globalization has drastically shrunk the distance between countries and cultures, translation has played an ever increasingly important role in the cultural and economic exchanges among nations and regions that use different languages,” said Dr. Ming Dong Gu, director of the Confucius Institute at UT Dallas. “This is even more so in the area of China-West studies.”

Talks begin at 9 a.m. each day. Topics include:

  • “Reflections on Chinese Translation.”
  • “Translation and History.”
  • “Principles of Translation.”
  • “Translation Techniques.”
  • “Poetry Reading and Translation by a Poet.”
  • “Translation at Cross-Cultural Perspective.”
  • “Translation and Media.”

“This symposium, the first of its kind in Texas, brings internationally renowned translators and scholars to UT Dallas to discuss the challenges of translating the ideas and beauty of the Chinese language into English,” said Dr. Dennis Kratz, dean of the School of Arts & Humanities. “China is fast developing a literary and intellectual presence to rival its emergence as an economic powerhouse.” 

“Translating China in the West” is co-sponsored by the Confucius Institute at UT Dallas and the University’s Center for Translation Studies; both are centers in the School of Arts & Humanities. Selected symposium papers will appear as a special issue of Translation Review.

The two-day symposium  is free and open to the public. Reservations are requested for attendance on April 7. Please contact Sharon Yang, assistant director of the Confucius Institute, at 972-883-4860 or email Xiaohong.yang@utdallas.edu. For more information and full schedule of presenters, visit the institute’s Web site.


Media Contact: Karah Hosek, UT Dallas, 972-883-4329, karah.hosek@utdallas.edu
or the Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, newscenter@utdallas.edu

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Dr. Dennis Kratz and Dr. Ming Dong Gu

From left: Dr. Ming Dong Gu, director of the Confucius Institute at UT Dallas; and Dr. Dennis Kratz, dean of the School of Arts & Humanities.

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