Translated into Swedish. Dedications, prefaces, introductions, and postfaces to Swedish translations of antique literature (16th to 21st centuries)

Project: Research

Layman's description

Throughout the centuries many ancient authors' works have been translated into Swedish. Some have been translated many times, some sporadically, some once, and some partially. I am interested in the translator's view on their work. Why do they translate? What governs their choice of texts? What do they say? Are some texts more problematic than others? What do they expect of the readers?

Ever since the end of the 16th century printed translations of ancient literature have been a small and ever diminishing constant in Swedish literature. As most other translated literature, the translations of the classics have hardly been studied.
The project Translated into Swedish is a first survey of a large field of research. Starting from the tranlators' own words on their translations I study how they have handled their position inbetween the ancient and the Swedish. The paratexts, that is the apparatus in the form of title pages, blurbs, dedications, prefaces, introductions, commentaries etc. surrounding the translated text itself, from 500 years gives a researcher access to the evolution and variation, the similarities and differences of the reception and evaluation of ancient literature in Sweden. Which system has been the normative one for different translators at different times? How has ancient literature been evaluated in comparison to Swedish? What has been the purpos for translating? For whom? What is expected of the reader? Paratexts allow the translator to communicate directly with the reader. Do they take this opportunity to clarify their considerations regarding the relation between the source and goal systems and how they have balanced the literary demands of the two systems.
Effective start/end date2008/01/012010/12/31