The 28th Study Conference of International Association of Scandinavian Studies (IASS) took place in Lund, Sweden 3–7 August 2010 and had as its theme Translation – Adaptation, Interpretation, Transformation as its theme . 241 participants had announced their interest and 225 came to Lund in order to listen to and discuss nearly 200 oral presentations dealing with translation – in a wide sense. In the Call for papers which had been sent out with the invitation it was suggested that papers could be given under headings like ”What is translation?”, ”Literary history and translation”, ”Import”, ”Export” and ”Nordic traffic”. The response was overwhelming. More than70 sessions were arranged, most often guided by thematic critera. Four keynote-speakers literally stroke the cord and demonstrated some important themes in their lectures, which to a great extent contributed to the common frame of reference and to the many lively discussions. Lars Kleberg, professor at Södertörns högskola in Stockholm and initiator to a new Encyclopedia of Swedish Translators talked about ”Översättningens osäkra plats i den svenska litteraturhistorien” (The insecure place of translation in Swedish literary history). Jens Normann Jørgensen, sociolingvist and professor at Institut for Nordiske Studier og Sprogvidenskab, Københavns universitet, problematized the very concept of language in ”Languagers, Languaging, Language, and ’Languages’”. Maaret Koskinen, professor of film studies at Stockholms universitet, pointed out recent tendencies in the interaction between media in”Pictures in the Typewriter, Writings on the Screen. Stieg Larsson, Ingmar Bergman and the lure of media appropriations”, and the author Sigrid Combüchen gave some views on the craft and the great mission of translation in ”Bridges and abridgments”.
In a session dealing with the translation of her work into English the Norwegian poet Eldrid Lunden participated with readings of her poems.
Among the arrangements outside the lectures and the working sessions a literary evening with an open scene can be be mentioned; not few of the conference participants performed with poems of their own, readings and translations. Excursions were made, one of them to the Ystad of film production, and to Ales stenar, another one to North West of Scania, with the castle of Krapperup and Mölle by the sea as some of the halts.
At the General Meeting of the conferenceAugust 7 2010 a Committee of the Association for the next two years was elected, with Ivars Orehovs (Riga) as chair and Maria Sibinska (Gdansk) as secretary. Elected as Committe Members were Per Erik Ljung (Lund), Petra Broomans (Groningen), Anker Gemzøe (Ålborg), Unni Langås (Agder), Malan Marnersdottir (Torshavn), Sven Rossel (Wien) and Karin Sanders (Berkeley). The XXIXth IASS conference 2012 will be held in Riga, Latvia with the theme ”Literature and Law”, with all its literary, cultural and interdisciplinary aspects.
Already at the IASS conference in Gdansk 2008 the possibility of replacing or completing the usual conference volume with a net publication was discussed. With the great amount of texts in mind it seems resonable this time to do so. We publish here 133 papers from the conference. We also plan to edit a less inclusive, thematically structured volume in book form, based on these papers, which will be sent to all the participants of the conference.
We have chosen to structure this net volume in an alphabetical order, after the names of the writers. The alternative, to organize the material in thematical groups, seemed less attractive as we realised that most of the contributions, with good reasons, could be placed under a couple of different labels – the order would appear as too arbitrary or even misleading.
Of course some patterns among the articles are possible to see anyway. In an introduction an effort is made to sketch some lines in the extensive material and to point out possibilities opened up by the study of translation. Our hope is that it should be easy to orient oneself among the many texts – and that the papers and the perspectives will show themselves to be useful.
Many thanks to all the contributors!
Lund, April 2011
Claes-Göran Holmberg Per Erik Ljung