Skip to main content Skip to navigation

LN910 Translation and Transcultural Encounters between China and the West

Module Convenor
Dr Qian Liu

There are no specific language requirements for this course

Aims and Objectives

This module introduces students to literary encounters between China and the West in the twentieth century, using theories of translation. Students will learn how the Chinese translation of Western literatures in the first half of the twentieth century impacted on the development of modern Chinese literature; crucially, they will also learn about the influence of Chinese literature, via the conduit of translation, on other Western literatures, such as the literary interactions between classical Chinese poetry and the Imagist Movement, and the translation of contemporary Chinese literature abroad. The hegemonic relationships among languages will also be discussed. In this process, students will analyse how translation plays a role in transcultural negotiations, and will deepen their understanding of the cross-cultural literary encounters between China and the West.


Learning Outcomes
  • have a critical understanding of the facts and features of Chinese translation of foreign literatures in the first few decades of the twentieth century, and of English translation of contemporary Chinese literature.
  • have a profound understanding of important theories of translation studies.
  • be able to apply suitable theories of translation to the study of translation history and transculturalism.
  • be able to present their analytical studies of translators or translated texts in a comparative analysis.


6 x 2-hour lecture+seminars

Teaching Schedule

Session 1: Introduction: Translation and Transcultural Encounters

Session 2: The Translation of Joan Haste and Love as Virtuous Sentiment

Session 3:The Translation and Adaptation of La Dame aux Camelias

Session 4: Translation of Ibsen’s Nora: the Dilemmas of the ‘New Woman’

Session 5: The Chinese Nobel Prize Winner: Mo Yan and his Translators

Session 6: Does ‘World Poetry’ really exist? Debates around the Translation of Bei Dao’s Poems


100% Course Work

Students will write a comparative analysis of 3,000 words, providing a critical analysis of one specific case of transcultural encounters between China and the West which reflects theoretically on issues in translation and transcultural exchanges, supported by detailed textual analyses.

Schedule and Teaching Delivery

Term 2: Monday 9 am to 11 am 




Week 1


Week 2


Week 3


Week 4


Week 5


Week 7


FAB 3.29

LN910 has been developed specifically with MATC students in mind. However, it is open to all PGT students on programmes across SMLC and SCAPVC.

Students from other departments wishing to join are requested to contact the module convenor.