Translation as blockage, propagation and recreation of ethnic images

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This paper draws on insights from Translation Studies and Imagology in order to highlight the specific ways in which ethnic images, which are present in literary texts, travel across ideological and linguistic borderlines through translations. Thus, the analyses of a series of case studies of literary translations from and into Romanian provide evidence in support of the idea that, depending on particular configurations of power relations at particular times in history, such ethnic clichés were carefully negotiated by translators, who faithfully propagated but also blocked or recreated the initial images which were present in the source texts. Secondly, the paper aims to show that the very presence of such images in a number of source texts played a significant part in their selection for translation in view of the political and diplomatic benefits that could be reaped from both positive and negative stereotyping.


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