CFP translation panel Joyce symposium 2018, Antwerp: Let us re-Joyce: Ulysses and creativity in translation

deadline for submissions: 
January 2, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
University of Antwerp

CFP panel Joyce symposium 2018, Antwerp


Let us re-Joyce: Ulysses and creativity in translation


Ever since the publication of Ulysses and its first translations, into German and into French, in the 1920s, Joyce’s work has had the reputation of being “untranslatable”, or at the least extremely challenging for translators. Nonetheless, dozens of translators have risen to the task and have translated Ulysses into more than forty different languages and cultures. Over the course of time, and especially in the last decade, many of these translations have been replaced with new ones (into French, Spanish, German, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Hungarian, Chinese, for instance), i.e., retranslations that more or less overtly take position with regard to the earlier translations, their interpretation of the text and their linguistic and cultural choices (Venuti 2004, Koskinen and Paloposki 2010, Gambier 2011). Many retranslators have commented upon their work, either in progress or published, both in the press and in academia. Many of their retranslations have been reviewed or even have led, as has sometimes been the case, to polemic. At the very heart of this debate on Joyce translations, there is the friction between originality and creativity: in how far can translators be creative without becoming unfaithful to the original? In how far do translators need to be creative in order to be faithful to the original? More importantly, such controversy conveys two fundamental and promising questions: what can Joyce translations and their creative problem solving teach us about questions and difficulties in the interpretation of Ulysses and what can translators’ creativity when translating Joyce teach us about translation as a creative process in general?

In the last few decades, the (re)translation of Joyce’s work has become a key field of study both for Joyce specialists and for scholars interested in literary translation (see, for instance, Lawrence 1998, Lernout and Van Mierlo 2004, O’Neill 2005, Wawrzycka 2010, Sanz Gallego 2013, Peeters 2016). The use of new methodologies and approaches to the study of both literature and translation has led, in particular, to an increase in attention for creativity and creative processes (Perteghella and Loffredo 2006), as is shown for instance by the analysis of manuscripts and editions, by text genetics (Van Hulle 2008), as well as by genetics of translation (Paret Passos 2015, Van Hulle 2015). The field of retranslation has also opened up new perspectives that relate the translator’s creativity and interpretative involvement with the text, to a diachronic appreciation of the text’s reception in different cultures and historical, socio-political contexts.

For the forthcoming 26th International James Joyce Symposium that will be held at the University of Antwerp (Belgium) from 11 to 16 June 2018, we would like to propose a translation panel in order to further explore several aspects related to the translation of Joyce’s work and its reception. In particular, we are interested in papers addressing questions related to the translation of Joyce’s Ulysses as a fundamentally creative enterprise. Possible topics and methodologies we are looking for, are:

-        translation challenges and creative choices and how they affect the text and its interpretation

-        translation as creation, translation as writing, retranslation as rewriting

-        untranslatability and translation: taboo language, register, polysemy, wordplay in translation

-        the influence on translations of historical and socio-political contexts of publication, censorship, normalization and simplification

-        retranslations of Joyce confirming or infirming the ‘retranslation hypothesis’ (Berman 1990, Chesterman 2000)

-        the paratexts of translations and retranslations   

-        the reception of translations and retranslations

-        editors, publishing houses and editorial practices

-        retranslation as reinterpretation and the evolution of Joyce’s work throughout retranslations

-        retranslations as polemic rewriting, polemic on retranslations

-        approaches to the translators’ creativity, translator’s style, translator’s voice, the authorship of the translator

-        Bakhtinian dialogism and the dialogue of voices as an approach to translation and creativity

-        Multilingualism and heteroglossia in translation

-        Intertextuality and polyphony in translation

-        Genetic studies, genetics of translation


Please send 300 word abstracts and a short bio note (100 words) to: and

by 2 January 2018.

Notification of acceptance: 2 February 2018.



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Chesterman, Andrew (2000). A causal model for translation studies. In: Olohan, Maeve (éd). Intercultural faultlines. Research Models in Translation Studies I: Textual and Cognitive Aspects, 15-27. Manchester: St.Jerome.

Gambier, Yves (2011). La retraduction : ambiguïtés et défis. In: Monti, Enrico et Peter Schnyder (eds). Autour de la retraduction. Perspectives littéraires européennes, 49-66. Paris: Orizons.

Koskinen, Kaisa et Outi Paloposki (2010). Retranslation. In: Gambier, Yves and Luc Van Doorslaer (eds). Handbook of Translation Studies, 294-298. Amsterdam and London: John Benjamins.

Lawrence, Karen (ed) (1998). Transcultural Joyce. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.

Lernout, Geert and Wim Van Mierlo (eds) (2004). The reception of James Joyce in Europe. London: Thoemmes Continuum.

O’Neill, Patrick (2005). Polyglot Joyce: fictions of translation. Toronto: Toronto UP.

Paret Passos, Marie Hélène (2015). Les cahiers de travail d’un traducteur : analyse d’un traduire-écrire. Donaldo Schüler traducteur de James Joyce. Linguistica Antverpiensia New Series - Themes In Translation Studies 14. 54-71.

Peeters, Kris (2016). Traduction, retraduction et dialogisme. Meta 61.3: 629-649.

Perteghella, Manuela and Eugenia Loffredo (eds) (2006). Translation and Creativity : Perspectives on Creative Writing and Translation Studies. London and New York: Continuum.

Sanz Gallego, Guillermo (2013). Translating Taboo Language in Joyce’s Ulysses: A Special Edition in Spanish for Franco and Perón. Atlantis 35: 2. 137-154.

Van Hulle, Dirk (2008). Manuscript genetics. Joyce’s know-how, Beckett’s nohow. Gainesville: University Press of Florida.

Van Hulle, Dirk (2015). Translation and genetic criticism: Genetic and editorial approaches to the ‘untranslatable’ in Joyce and Beckett. Linguistica Antverpiensia, New Series: Themes in Translation Studies 14. 40–53.

Venuti, Lawrence (2004). Retranslations : the creation of value. Bucknell Review 47: 1. 25-38.

Wawrzycka Jolanta (2010). Introduction: Translatorial Joyce. James Joyce Quarterly 47: 4. 515-520.