Exploring Transdisciplinary Futures of Global South: A South-South Dialogue in Translation Studies

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Rindon Kundu


Since the late 1960s, a substantial quantity of literature has been produced in response to the discussion over the North-South split. South is a notion that deals with geographical representations of inequality. It is useful for assessing difficulties affecting peripheral civilizations, but it does not have much to say about issues affecting countries that are classified as 'Northern' societies. The geographical region that has been termed as 'Global South' has always been considered at the receiving end of ‘theory’ with no exception in the field of translation studies Translation Studies, like other disciplines of social sciences and liberal arts, has treated the Eurocentric ideas as universal and thereby homogenized the differences by non-recognizing the non-European ideas. When we discuss translation studies discipline in the Global South or form syllabus, have we ever referred “Equivalence theory”, “Skopos theorie”, “Polysystem Theory” as Western translation theories. We have not because we have internalized these theories from Europe as universal and the concepts from the non-European space as ‘other’, as ‘area’. The Global South in terms of knowledge production or if we think specifically from the context of the discipline of Translation Studies, has been non-recognised, silenced, disregarded, and marginalised.

The idea of ‘non-recognition’ therefore, should be used as a weapon, political, social, racial, academic to challenge the subtlety through which the Global North operates and tags everything as ‘global’, ‘universal’. Can the notion of the South be applied to areas of social life that are not directly related to development differences, such as those involving the formation of one's own identity? In terms of knowledge generation, the South has shown to be an excellent location to dump the theories of Humanities, Natural / Pure Sciences from the Global North without taking into consideration the fundamental difference between these two halves. Can we, scholars from Global South challenge the unidirectional traffic of knowledge production and theorisation of it in the Global North and then setting it as a homogenous ‘norm’ in the Global South? The paper argues that a South-South dialogue is necessary which will try to erase the ‘universal’ imagination of the discipline by thinking deeply and discursively about alternative discourses of translation as a field of study from Global South.

Published: Nov 14, 2022

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Global South and Global North