Article published in:Translation and Translanguaging in Multilingual Contexts
Vol. 4:2 (2018) ► pp. 203–222
Where Translation Studies lost the plot
Relations with language teaching
Recent interest in the role of translation in language teaching calls for dialogue between the disciplines of Translation Studies and Language Education. In framing this dialogue, translation scholars would do well to avoid assuming superiority or special knowledge; they would instead do well to reflect on the history of their own discipline, particularly the opposition to language departments that can be found in some countries in the 1980s and 1990s. In politically turning away from language learning, translation scholars left the education field open for unopposed implantation of immersion and communicative teaching methods that ideologically shunned translation. Further, in framing their major internal debates in terms of binary categories, usually involving a good translation method opposed to a bad one, translation scholars themselves all but abandoned the non-binary pedagogical models that once included many types of translation solutions. Those non-binary models should now be investigated anew in order to rebrand translation for the language-education community. In so doing, however, translation scholars may need to break the unspoken pact that they have developed with the translation professions. They should instead adopt a view where everyone can translate, not just professionals, and everyone can be trained to translate better.
Keywords: translation, translation studies, additional language learning, language education, communicative language teaching
Published online: 26 April 2018
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