An obsession: .com Between the Rocky Shores of Myth and the New Balance of Powers


  • Yves Gambier University of the Free State



Using translation to illustrate and justify some of the changes we are facing today, I will follow a three-step move:

-          What are the biases towards purely technological interpretations of the “medium”?  Technology is changing our perception of time and space; in particular, the power of instant seems to override any other feelings of long-term perspective and continuity.

-          Crowd is also changing, from the lonely crowd to the crowdsourcing: it takes nowadays the public sphere in different ways. This metamorphosis can be traced in translation: for a long time, translation has been denied as a need, an effort, a profession, a discipline. Today, because of the new work environment, translation becomes a desire, more easily accessible and practised by non-professionals. The evolution is technical, economic and social. It is also textual.

-          An historical overview sheds light on the impact of media technology in translation. In fact, certain concepts are under the influence of the materiality of the work. Among those concepts, “text” draws our attention: it has often been characterised by only linguistic features; today, it intertwines quite a number of different types of signs. The multimodal text challenges certain current concepts of Translation Studies.