Emergence of sociology in translation studies
Disciplinary awareness and understanding of various patterns and factors of emergence for ideas, consolidation and the diffusion of ideas and knowledge are as crucial in modern academic fields as in the wider context of a highly globalised and digitalised world. They ensure academic rigour and sustainable and effective development of scholarship. As a field that has at its very core the communication and procurement of ideas across linguistic and cultural boundaries, the discipline of Translation Studies is situated at a nexus of decoding, encoding, and facilitating the spread of ideas, thereby introducing new ideas to other disciplinary, linguistic or cultural contexts. The sociology of translation and of the translator, as the figure at the heart of this transmission process for ideas, have become prominent focal points for recent research in Translation Studies with scholarly activities largely focusing on linguistic, cultural, textual, or professional challenges related to the work of translators, scribes and language mediators. The aspect and role of epistemic structures, patterns for the emergence of ideas, and the differentiated positions of scholarly communities in the manifold process of the emergence and diffusion of ideas in the discipline of Translation Studies have so far received less attention though. This thesis investigates how ideas emerge and are transmitted into and across the discipline of Translation Studies. It considers different pathways and points of entry for new ideas that are transported across not just linguistic or cultural but also disciplinary boundaries, explores epistemic structures and processes, characteristics such as citation chains, and the rise and development of ideas in the field. Particular emphasis has been given to the topic of sociology as an area of interest for a number of pathways of recent research in Translation Studies, including for instance the concepts of agency, habitus, or narratology. The thesis explores a kaleidoscope of linguistic, publication, theoretical, and ideational factors contributing and influencing the emergence of ideas in general, in translation and Translation Studies especially, and investigates the field of sociology as an emerging idea in Translation Studies over the course of the last approximately 50 years. By contextualising this study within a wider framework of the history of ideas and by drawing on perspectives from different approaches to the emergence of innovative or new ideas and the growth of knowledge theories, the inclusion of aspects such as publication language and platform, issues of language hegemony, geographical bearings and ideational correlations further contribute to the complex picture. In order to examine the emergence of sociologically inspired and influenced approaches in Translation Studies research output, this study draws on the collation and analysis of a corpus of annotated academic publication data, including monographs and edited volumes, from the TSB database. Furthermore, this study also considers bibliographic data on monographs, as well as a survey of a number of handbooks and encyclopaedia on the field of Translation Studies. It proposes a bibliometric approach for the analysis of keywords in the collated data in order to identify indicators of a conscious employment of or engagement with ideas, theories, or methods from the field of sociology as well as their respective emergence patterns and points of entry. The evaluation of the collated bibliographic data and complementary strands of analysis indicates that the emergence of sociology in Translation Studies over the course of the last approximately 50 years examined presents as overall strongly exponential, with a high tendency for diversification, and generally de-centralised, although the discourse appears to be shaped by limited geographical and linguistic areas of input for sociological theories in TS. Going forward, the investigation thus suggests an exigency to continue engagement with ideational entry points and features of the emergence of interdisciplinary ideas, and to continue investigations into epistemic structures on a discipline wide level in Translation Studies as a useful tool to reflect on disciplinary habits and to further consolidate cross- disciplinary approaches in theory and practice.