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Geopolitics of literary translation. The Literary Colloquium Berlin and the streams of translation in Europe (2021-)

Heribert Tommek, Research Area 4: "Literary Currencies"
Associated Research Project

The project examines the development of the Literary Colloquium Berlin (LCB) into a centre of literary translation funding in a national and European context. The aim of the project is, firstly, the historical reconstruction of this development, and secondly, a translation-sociological analysis and interpretation of the translation transfers undertaken by the LCB, especially in the years 1993-2009, when the Foreign Office and other funding institutions supported the translations of literatures from Central and Eastern Europe at the LCB. The investigation is based on archive studies, on the one hand, and, on the other, it draws on methods of translation studies following Bourdieu’s field theory. The main questions of the project are: how was the LCB able to develop into a central location for literary translation funding? What literary-symbolic, cultural-political and economic strategies (of publishing) were associated with this development? And finally: what was the influence of a growing diversity – resulting from the translation of "minor literatures" from Middle- and Eastern Europe – on the modernisation of contemporary German-language literature in a transnational context?