Dr. Lilach Nethanel and Prof. Yehouda Shenhav-Shahrabani talk about his new book

Laborers and Actors in Translation: From the Individual Turn to a Bi-National Translation

Wednesday | 12.23.20 | 06:00 pm

Dr. Lilach Nethanel and Prof. Yehouda Shenhav-Shahrabani talk about his new book

Conversation | in Hebrew

Laborers and Actors in Translation is a critical-historical analysis—the first of its kind—of modern translation. The first part of the book presents a genealogy of the field of translation, from its concepts and instances in antiquity, through the Middle Ages, and up to the shift to individualism that developed in Europe during the Renaissance and the beginnings of the modern era. The book exposes the limitations of the neoclassical model of the individual translator, underlying which is seclusion from society. This model excluded dialogue, which characterized the collective model of translation that preceded it, and doomed the translators to silence and isolation. In an original and unique analysis, Yehouda Shenhav-Shahrabani argues that in conditions of colonial relations the neoclassical model generates inherent asymmetry and perpetuates the power relations that exist outside the translator’s room. The second part of the book deals with translation from Arabic to Hebrew and proposes an ideal form of bilingual translation by teams, which allows for polyphony and linguistic multiplicity and restores the value of dialogue to textual translation. The book combines political thought, translation theory, and practices of translation from Western literature to Hebrew in our time (Van Leer Press and Hakibbutz Hameuchad).

Yehouda Shenhav-Shahrabani is a professor of sociology at Tel Aviv University and the editor-in-chief of the Maktoob series of translations from Arabic to Hebrew at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute. For a decade (1999–2010) he edited the journal Theory and
Criticism
at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute and since 2005 he has edited the Theory and Criticism in Context series, of which this book is a part.

Participants

Dr. Lilach Nethanel, Bar-Ilan University

Prof. Yehouda Shenhav-Shahrabani, editor-in-chief of the Maktoob series; Tel Aviv University

Greetings: Prof. Shai Lavi, director, the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute; Tel Aviv University

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