|POR Cultura SPA Cultura|
Of multiple origins. Partly a borrowing from French. Partly a borrowing from Latin. Etymons: French culture; Latin cultūra. […] French culture shows a learned borrowing from Latin, the regular development of the Latin word being shown by Old French, Middle French couture 'cultivated land' (12th cent.) ("culture, n." OED Online, Oxford University Press, March 2020).
The relevance of notions of ‘culture’ for any sustained discussion of translation has been amply confirmed in the entanglements that the two concepts have entered, repeatedly, in the intellectual environment of the late twentieth and early twenty-first century. Such entanglements have proved central to the rise of Translation Studies (TS) to its current disciplinary prominence, and have arguably been favoured by an element that discussions of ‘culture’ and ‘translation’ have long held in common: an ambitious conceptual scope, a tendency to extend (indefinitely, it sometimes seems) the terms’ semantic range. Such ambitions have a rich lineage, and have fostered key elements within our range of inquiry.
Indeed, culture is construed in this entry as the way of life of a community considered, synchronically and/or diachronically, in the fullness of its material and non-material conditions. This includes the rapport between language and experience, and its impact on the delineation of distinctive mindsets, patterns of behaviour, intellectual achievements and material achievements.
This very broad use of the concept of culture can be traced to arguments developed over the past century. The work of anthropologists (e.g. Ruth Benedict) in the period between the two world wars yielded the most influential definition of culture in our age, as ‘a whole way of life.’ Such contributions foreshadowed key developments in the disciplinary landscape of the late twentieth century that encompass the rise of ‘cultural studies’ (following the seminal work of authors like Raymond Williams), and the pervasive influence of those French thinkers of the 1960s and ‘70s (Barthes, Foucault, Kristeva) who enacted the transition from structuralism to poststructuralism. A key notion prompted by such developments is that, rather than residing in essence or inherence, meaning is relationally constituted – or (in Stuart Hall’s phrasing) it arises from a process of ‘articulation.'
This entry delineates the intellectual consequences of such discourses on culture for the disciplinary fashioning of TS. The approaches covered range from polysystem theory to the ‘cultural turn’ and insights from postcolonial theory; and from thence to more recent developments such as the emphasis on ‘multimodality’ and arguments for the inception of ‘post-translation studies’.
|Rui Carvalho Homem|
|Homem, Rui Carvalho. 2022. "Culture" @ ENTI (Encyclopedia of translation & interpreting). AIETI.|