AUC Philologica (Acta Universitatis Carolinae Philologica) is an academic journal published by Charles University. It publishes scholarly articles in a large number of disciplines (English, German, Greek and Latin, Oriental, Romance and Slavonic studies, as well as in phonetics and translation studies), both on linguistic and on literary and cultural topics. Apart from articles it publishes reviews of new academic books or special issues of academic journals.

The journal is indexed in CEEOL, DOAJ, EBSCO, and ERIH PLUS.

AUC PHILOLOGICA, Vol 2015 No 3 (2015), 7–18

Translation studies meets linguistics: pre-structuralism, structuralism, post-structuralism

Elżbieta Tabakowska

published online: 10. 03. 2016


Although the founding father of (European) structuralism was a linguist, apart from linguistics and philosophy its main tenets were applied chiefly to the literary strand of the discipline which is known today under the umbrella term of Translation Studies. The relationship between translation and linguistics has always been rather difficult, and at the end of the 1970’s the shift from prescriptive to descriptive approaches did not make it any easier. East European structuralist approaches to translation were developed within literature oriented theories, focusing mainly on poetics of literary translation. The original fascination with linguistic structuralism as possible foundation of “scientific” (or scientist?) translation theory soon gave way to disappointment: structural models and structuralist methodologies proved to be too limited to account for the intricacies of the translation process. The reaction was the “cultural turn” of the 1990’s. Paradoxically enough, linguistic post-structuralism in translation studies implies a more general “turn” towards pre-structuralist or traditional linguistic paradigms, with their emphasis on indeterminateness of non-objectivist meaning, on the role of motivation and of the cultural and social context. All these insights gain new significance within contemporary “post-structuralist” linguistic frameworks. In the last decades of the 20th century one such framework emerged, known under the umbrella term of Cognitive Linguistics. The relevance of CL for TS lies in its recognition of the role of human experience and cognition.

keywords: cognitive linguistics; conceptualization; context; cultural turn; experience; motivation; non-objectivist meaning; pre-structuralism; post-structuralism; text linguistics

periodicity: 4 x per year
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ISSN: 0567-8269
E-ISSN: 2464-6830