Translation as A Cultural Emissary
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Translation as A Cultural Emissary ---- A review of Intercultural Communication in China from the Perspective of Culture and Translation. Paper by Chen Qingqing Wang Xiaoping Presentation by Chen Qingqing Shanghai International Studies University.

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Translation as A Cultural Emissary---- A review of Intercultural Communication in China from the Perspective of Culture and Translation

Paper by Chen Qingqing

Wang Xiaoping

Presentation by Chen Qingqing

Shanghai International Studies University


I do not want my house to be walled in on all sides and my windows to be stuffed. I want the cultures of all lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any.

----Mohandas K. Gandhi


Intercultural translation theories from home and abroad
Intercultural Translation Theories from Home and Abroad windows to be stuffed. I want the cultures of all lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any.

  • Cultural mediator

    “The translator is a bilingual mediating agent between monolingual communication participants in two different language communities.”

    ----George Sterner (1975:45)


A cultural mediator is a person who facilitates communication, understanding, and action between persons and groups who differ with respect to language and culture. The role of the mediator is performed by interpreting the expressions, intentions, perceptions, and expectations of each cultural group to the other, that is, by establishing and balancing the communication between them. In order to serve a link in this sense, the mediator must be able to participate to some extent in both cultures. Thus a mediator

must be to a certain extent bicultural.

----R. Taft (1981:53)


  • Stephen Bochner’s (1981) communication, understanding, and action between persons and groups who differ with respect to language and culture. The role of the mediator is performed by interpreting the expressions, intentions, perceptions, and expectations of each cultural group to the other, that is, by establishing and balancing the communication between them. In order to serve a link in this sense, the mediator must be able to participate to some extent in both cultures. Thus a mediator The Mediating Person and Cultural Identity

  • David Katan: Translating Cultures: An Introduction for Translators, Interpreters and Mediators


  • Cultural Context communication, understanding, and action between persons and groups who differ with respect to language and culture. The role of the mediator is performed by interpreting the expressions, intentions, perceptions, and expectations of each cultural group to the other, that is, by establishing and balancing the communication between them. In order to serve a link in this sense, the mediator must be able to participate to some extent in both cultures. Thus a mediator

  • Eugene A Nida. (2001) Language and Culture: Contexts in Translating

  • Peter NewmarkA Text Book of Translation

    “Communicative translation attempts to render the exact contextual meaning of the original in such a way that both content and language are readily acceptable and comprehensible to the readership.”


Intercultural communication reflected through intercultural translation in china
Intercultural Communication Reflected through Intercultural Translation in China

Three peak periods of translation in China:

  • Han---Tang and Song Dynasties: Sutra translation

  • Ming and Qing Dynasties: scientific works

  • From May 4th Movement: overall westernization


Papers on ic related translation
Papers on IC-related Translation Translation in China

  • Semiotics Translation and Culture Translation 1994

  • Culture and Translation 1999

  • In Culture and Cultural Exchange 2000

  • Negative Transfer of Culture in Translating Chineseinto English 2000

  • Culture Translation, Cultural Awareness and Cultural Creativity 2003

  • Cultural Contextual Adaptation and Literary Translation Criticism 2004


Thank You! Translation in China


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