Postgraduate Course: Translating the Sacred: Concepts, Texts and Transmission of Religions (CLLC11132)
|School||School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures
||College||College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
||Availability||Not available to visiting students
|Summary||The aim of this course is to engage in a comparative study of translation practices and methods across religious traditions, with particular attention to examining how key translation issues are played out in the context of translating the 'sacred'. This course will explore how religions have adopted various strategies to negotiate a place for themselves amidst competing notions of the sacred in new cultures they enter.
The course is structured around some broad questions: what counts as a sacred text? How can different forms of the sacred be 'translated' across languages and cultures? How is the authority of a sacred text constructed through or maintained despite translation? How are religious concepts translated across vastly different language pairs? How do competing agendas/political, social, literary/direct the translation of religions? Students will be encouraged to investigate how religions define themselves in adopting specific sets of translation practices and interact with 'rival' religions through their choice of translation strategies. The course will promote critical thinking on how principal categories (often binaries) such as, 'sacred'/'secular', 'holy'/'profane' 'scripture'/ 'orality' or 'original'/'translation' dissolve and are exposed as historical constructs in the context of translation.
The course will also encourage students as far as possible to undertake a comparative examination of 'Western' and 'non-Western' translation practices including notions of 'translatability' and 'commensurability' in the religious context, and questions of agency and power in the construction of religious canons and identities.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
||Other requirements|| None
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2022/23, Not available to visiting students (SS1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 10,
Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20,
Feedback/Feedforward Hours 4,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
||Students present their topics for peer review comments and formative feedback in class, usually in Week 6.
A 2,500-word Essay (100%) submitted on or before Week 13.
||The course is assessed by an essay of 2,500 words submitted at the end of the semester. The students will produce a reflective essay critically examining existing translations of sacred texts and how they have been received by their faith communities. Students will be expected to independently choose a topic and texts to focus on. The texts chosen may belong to any faith tradition. Students are expected to meet the course organiser mid-semester for approval of topic when the course organiser will offer feedback on the topic. Full written feedback will be provided when the coursework is marked.
|No Exam Information
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Critically understand and examine how conceptual categories of the sacred travel across languages and cultures and engage in comparative study of how different religious traditions have conceptualised and practice translation
- Demonstrate a critical awareness of the diversity of approaches to translating religious texts/concepts
- Identify, analyse and evaluate case studies of translations from different religious contexts in the light of wider ¿secular¿ social and political issues
- Carry out in-depth research on how translation functions in different religious contexts and develop the capacity to formulate suitable research questions and critical arguments
- Apply and test translation theories with reflective insight in relation to the translation of religious texts
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
|Course organiser||Dr Hephzibah Israel
Tel: (0131 6)50 4467
|Course secretary||Mrs Vivien MacNish Porter
Tel: (0131 6)50 3528