Translation from the point of view of the East German censorship files

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East German censorship files provide striking evidence of the ideology of a state whose main goal was to keep control over everyone and everything, including the production of literature. This paper discloses some of the processes that occurred behind the scenes of the publishing industry, particularly with respect to the selection and translation of children’s and youth literature from English. Special attention is paid to the relationship between the entries on the front of each censorship file and their social significance for the publication of a translated book. Further analysis concerns the contents stored in a typical censorship file, focusing on their social, cultural and political relevance. This information allows one to infer the role and responsibilities of the publishing houses, particularly the ways publishers dealt with the constraints imposed on them by the state.*


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