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The Center for Early Cultures 2017 Conference – "Many Will Travel": Translation and Travel in Early Cultures

Type: Calls For Papers [View all]
Posted by: UC Irvine
Deadline: Thu, August 31st, 2017

The Center for Early Cultures at UC Irvine is pleased to announce our 2017 Conference – "Many Will Travel": Translation and Travel in Early Cultures. Our keynote speakers will be Cynthia Brown from UCSB and John Ganim from UC Riverside. 

Conference Date: October 13 & 14th 2017.

 Paper Proposal Deadline: August 31st, 2017


Montaigne, in the early modern period, translates songs from the New World in his essay "On the Cannibals," even giving an account of the travel of several natives to Europe and suggesting provocatively the way their values might translate across to ours.  From the ancient  and medieval concept of translatio imperii studii to early modern relationships with the New World, early cultures provide us with an excellent set of ways for thinking about travel and translation.  This year’s Early Cultures Conference is looking for papers that investigate how travel and/or translation figure into ancient, medieval, and early modern cultures. 

In addition to these political and cultural possibilities for travel and translation, we are also curious in the travel to imagined or poetic worlds.  Also welcome are papers that consider travel to spiritual realms, where not all translation is strictly textual.

In concord with these imaginative and religious travels, we also are interested in work that considers the modern need for translation of the past cultures that we are interested in.  The move to "modernize" or "update" early texts like Shakespeare or Chaucer might suggests limits on our capacity to travel to the past.  Indeed, we hope that in a conference where we continually travel to the past we will also shed light on the pressing problems regarding cultural, historical, and actual translation in the present. Papers may address this theme in history, literature, philosophy, and the history of art.


Possible Topics for Papers might Include:

Translatio imperii and the travel of empire

Travel narratives (and their translation)

Travel in romance First contact and translation in the New World

Travel to ruins and sites of the ancient world

Translation and travel between historical periods

Travel and translation against hostile borders

The need to translate the past

Figuration and/or typology

The translation of ideas into new languages and/or disciplines


We invite abstracts of 300 words or less and a 1 page CV to be sent to by August 31, 2017.

Posted on Mon, July 24th, 2017
Expires on Thu, August 31st, 2017

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