Translation between Pacification and Polarization


  • Salah Basalamah University of ottawa



In the context of the growing lack of understanding and even cultural conflict that plague the heterogeneous societies of today, translation naturally has its place in mass communication. Seen as the privileged locus of intercultural communication, translation is not only the expression of the necessity of intercomprehension between differences, but also, and more importantly, the necessity of the determined search for areas of incommunication (Wolton). Hence, taking into account the difficulties and the points of discord as a priority instead of aiming for compromise and pacific appeasement in the citizen-translational operation takes the shape of an emergency. Translating means, first and foremost, translating that which is not going well, that which we understand the least. In the same vein as Jakobson's project, who suggested the three categories of translation, it is our aim to show the relevance of going beyond those categories in light of a short case study undertaken in the context of the media's discourse in Quebec concerning the management of cultural diversity. It is in this sense that we are submitting, in this article, the outline of an ongoing reflection pertaining to a fourth category of translation, which we will call “inter-referential translation”.


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Author Biography

Salah Basalamah, University of ottawa

Salah Basalamah, assistant professor, School of Translation and Interpretation