International Research Training Event I


Programme  Registration  Venue  Readings


Paratextual Framing: Theory and Methodology

Shanghai, China
29-30 June 2018


Workshop Leaders

Dr Sameh Hanna, University of Leeds, UK

Professor Mona Baker, Director of the Jiao Tong Baker Centre for Translation & Intercultural Studies

A growing number of studies are now acknowledging the role that paratexts play in mediating the interpretation and reception of translations. These studies draw primarily on Gerard Genette’s seminal publication Seuils (1987, translated into English in 1997 as Paratexts: Thresholds of Interpretation), which remains highly influential. Genette’s study, however, is limited by its exclusive focus on books, as opposed to other types of publication, as well as its neglect of paratextual framing in non-print media. Even within the narrow confines of the printed word in book format, vital elements (such as the choice of script) that have been shown to frame the interpretation of translated text in certain contexts receive no attention in Genette’s work. Traditional paratext theory is also unable to address the diversity and complexity of settings within which translations are increasingly mediated and framed. New environments in which diverse types of translation are undertaken now offer scholars richer material and a wider range of paratexts to study – including blogs, hyper links, film trailers and DVD covers.

This two-day workshop will offer a robust, critical introduction to the theory of paratext and its application in translation studies to date. It will examine methodological principles and challenges involved in studying various types of paratext that frame translations in a wide range of contexts, from the traditional world of book publishing to the world of audiovisual translation and digital culture. In addition, the workshop will feature sessions on how early career researchers may best position themselves in the academy, including sessions on publishing in international journals, applying for research grants, and negotiating the tension between an increased emphasis on interdisciplinarity and the restrictive reality of being based within a specific discipline in the academy.