Chartered Institute
of Linguists

Translating China Conference - April 2016

The Third Conference on Translating China, supported by CIOL, was held on 16-17 April 2016 at the Shanghai University of Electric Power. The conference theme was 'Reflections on Chinese and Western Translation Theories’ and was held in response to China’s ‘Go Global’ strategy. Topics for the conference included:

  • Inheritance of Chinese translation theories
  • Reflection on western translation theories
  • Criticism on literature translation
  • Translation of Chinese classics
  • China's "Going Global" strategy
  • Language service and translation technology

The conference was chaired by Professor Weimin Pan FCIL CL from Shanghai University of Electric Power. Professor Pan gave a speech on Translation of the Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung and their Influence in Africa in which he offered the view that translation is in essence a matter of culture and mother tongue is the glass ceiling. He said that global awareness must be cultivated to serve China's 'Going Global' strategy and the 'Belt and Road' initiative. In his speech, he took the opportunity to promote the new CIOL China Association and CIOL membership.

In other speeches: Professor Mengzhi Fang, a senior translator from Shanghai University, expressed concern about the translation ecology in China, especially the lack of qualified translators; Professor Zhenwu Zhu from East China Normal University, offered the view that translators should bear in mind the cultural responsibility and translation awareness; and Professor Yanchun Zhao from Tianjin Foreign Studies University, explained the whys and hows in translating the Chinese classic “Three Word Essence” into English.

The conference was attended by over 200 delegates from mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, India and the UK, and concluded with a concert featuring arrangements of traditional Chinese classics and poems into English song.