Translatable – Creativity and Knowledge Formation Across Cultures

  • Fricker, C. (Organiser)
  • Erdag Göknar (Organiser)
  • Peter Burian (Organiser)
  • Eric Downing (Organiser)

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference


This large international, interdisciplinary, and transcultural conference brought together writers and scholars who translate literary texts as well as cultural theorists, publishers and editors, and others interested in many facets of the process of translation between and among languages and media, and the politics and influence of translation in today's increasingly globalized culture.

Its keynote speakers were David Ricks (KCL) and Haun Saussy (Yale). Other notable participants included Jon Galassi, the President of FSG, as well as translators Gregson Davis, Ariel Dorfman, Madeline Levine and Alan Shapiro.

Meetings were organized around two overarching themes:

1) translation and creation, including such topics as translation as a mode of thought, the influence of translation and translated texts on the development of national literatures, the role of translation in the artistic development and expression of creative writers, poetics of translation, translation and adaptation in multiple media; and

2) translation in the formation and dissemination of knowledge, including such topics as post-colonial translation in the age of English-language hegemony, translating Islam for the West and the West for Islam, translation in the economy of contemporary cultures, translation as a model—or models—for intercultural communication, translation in the age of global English.

This conference took advantage of demonstrated interest in literary translation, both as an activity and a subject of scholarly inquiry, at Duke University and its neighbour, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a cost-host of the event. It had been prepared by a series of well-attended "Translatable" events at Duke over the previous two years, featuring prominent literary translators from a number of linguistic, literary, and cultural traditions.

Period24 Apr 200925 Apr 2009
Event typeConference
LocationDurham, United States, North CarolinaShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational