Translation and memory

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The intersection of Translation and Interpreting Studies and Memory Studies is an emerging area of interdisciplinary research that explores the role translation plays in the journeys of memory across languages, cultures, generations, and media, and the transformations memory undergoes during these processes. It also investigates the influence different forms of memory have on translation. Memory is a dynamic, present-oriented social process in which a narrative of the past is selected as worthy of remembering in accordance with a group's current circumstances and needs and its future aspirations. It is no longer understood as constrained within the borders of the nation-state, but as an unbounded, transcultural phenomena that travels through many processes, including translation.

First, this chapter will briefly outline developments in Memory Studies and define key mnemonic concepts that are relevant to the study of translation (e.g., cultural memory, collective memory, remediation, sites of memory, etc.). After that, it will map out current themes and topics, such as early attempts to link translation to the ‘afterlife’ of texts, the translation and interpreting of traumatic memory, the translation of literary cultural memory, and translation in public spaces of memory, such as memorial and migration museums. Since individual and collective memory permeate all social activities, the chapter will show the possibilities for cross-fertilization between memory and established areas of TIS, such as, literary translation, and recently emerging ones, such as, inter alia, the translation of heritage, translator memory, translation in archives, and translation of indigenous cultures. The chapter will highlight the multivocality of memory transmission processes, revealing the substantial impact agents of translation and other stakeholders have on the reconstruction of collective narratives about the past and, as a result, how history gets to be remembered in the future. It will introduce the reader to currently applied methodologies in this research area. Finally, it will propose possible future directions, particularly in relation to translation in multimodal contexts.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Handbook of Translation and Sociology
EditorsSergey Tyulenev, Wenyan Luo
Place of PublicationAbingdon
Number of pages33
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 30 Jun 2024

Publication series

NameRoutledge Handbooks in Translation and Interpreting Studies


  • translation studies
  • memory studies
  • sociological approaches


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