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The TraFilm Conference: Multilingualism and Audiovisual Translation

1/27/2017 - Stavroula


Registration now open 

Click here to register at the conference Early bird registration: 26th July

A remarkable number of films and television shows display more than one language (Inglourious Basterds, Jane the Virgin, The Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones…); they include different languages or a language with significant internal variation. The translation of such written and audiovisual texts poses important theoretical and practical challenges, since language variation can manifest itself in different forms and fulfil various functions, which might be stylistic, pragmatic or discursive. These texts are often referred to as multilingual, polylingual, plurilingual or even heterolingual.

The TRAFILM project aims to describe the reality of the translation of multilingual audiovisual texts. We aim to discover professional and social practices along with the norms and criteria of this specific translation challenge. We also hope to validate and refine existing theoretical models on audiovisual translation and multilingualism by describing and analysing a rich collection of data. The TraFilm Conference is conceived of as a meeting point for exchanges, research experiences and proposals for an increasingly important topic within Translation Studies.


• The translation of language combinations within the same film, videogame, TV product, or written work of fiction.
• Multilingualism and Audiovisual accessibility (Audio Description, Subtitling for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Sign Language Interpretation.
• The translation (or nontranslation) of constructed languages, i.e., languages made up by the author within a work of fiction.
• The translation of conditioned language utterances within a work of fiction, i.e. when communication is conditioned by cognitive or articulatory hindrances, because of the effects of overexcitement, intoxication, exhaustion, psychological condition, speech impairment.
• The rendering of dialects and/or sociolects within a work of fiction or non-fiction, when they are used as distinct forms of communication from a standard language operating as the main language of the source text.
• Translation creativity when dealing with stylistic and/or linguistic varieties and language combinations

• Instances of code-switching, diglossia, bilingualism, heritage languages within works of fiction or as parts of translation of non-fiction. 
• The stylistic and functional effects and implications of linguistic variety as explained in the previous points, above, e.g. humour, stereotyping, xenophobia, censorship, character portrayal, narrative and rhetorical devices.
• Reports of professional experiences and practices on translation and multilingualism.

Abstracts (up to 300 words), along with the author’s name, communication information, and short bio-bibliographical note should be sent to trafilmproject@gmail.com by 18th May (extended deadline) with the indication “Trafilm Conference Proposal” on the subject line.

Important dates

Submission of abstracts: 18th May (expired) 

Notification of acceptance: 8th June

Early bird registration: 26th July


For any queries regarding the conference or Trafilm in general, feel free to contact us at trafilmproject@gmail.com


Participant: 110€ (early bird)  - 140€ (after 9th July)
Student concession: 40€ (early bird) - 60€ (after 9th July)

Organizing committee

Montse Corrius (Universitat de Vic-UCC, Spain)
Eva Espasa (Universitat de Vic-UCC, Spain)
Miquel Pujol (Universitat de Vic-UCC, Spain)
Laura Santamaria (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain)
Patrick Zabalbeascoa (Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain)

Scientific committee

Frederic Chaume (Universitat Jaume I, Spain)
Irene De Higes (Universitat Jaume I, Spain)
Jorge Díaz-Cintas (University College London, United Kingdom)
Elena Di Giovanni (Università di Macerata, Italy)
Eva Duran-Eppler (Roehampton University, United Kingdom)
Irene Ranzato (Università la Sapienza, Italy)
Marta Mateo (Universidad de Oviedo, Spain)
Stavroula Sokoli (Hellenic Open University, Greece)

Keynote speakers

Michael Cronin (Dublin City University, Ireland)
Reyne Meylaerts (University of Leuven, Belgium)
Marta Mateo (Universidad de Oviedo, Spain)


Espai UVic
Via Augusta, 123, 08006 Barcelona

Rated 4.20, 5 vote(s). 

Trafilm's participation in Languages and the Media

11/7/2016 - Stavroula

It was a great experience for the Trafilm group to participate at the Languages and the Media Conference in Berlin last week. There was a great turn-up and lots of questions in the end. Some participants expressed their interested in becoming associate members, including Heike Juengst, something the whole team is looking forward to.

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Trafilm in Languages and the Media Conference

10/31/2016 - Stavroula

Our team is going to participate in the Languages and the Media Conference!
In the dedicated session titled: Multilingual / Third Languages, Patrick Zabalbeascoa and Montse Corrius will present Code-Switching as an Instance of L3 Combinations. The Case of Alternating Languages in ‘Spanglish’ .
Then Eva Espasa and Stavroula Sokoli will talk about Researching the Translation of Multilingual Films in Spain: The TRAFILM project
Guillermo Parra is also going to speak about Translating the Effects of Alcohol and other Drugs on Audiovisual Dialogue
For more details, have a look at the conference programme http://www.languages-media.com/conference_programme.php

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Report on the Symposium "The Translation of Multilingual Films"

10/3/2016 - Stavroula

This symposium was the first public presentation of the TRAFILM project (FFI2014-55952-P), which researches the phenomenon of multilingualism in films. The seminar started with a plenary lecture by Dr. Carol O’Sullivan, University of Bristol, “Translating Multilingual Films: from the Multiplex to the Arthouse” which presented an inspiring historical and theoretical overview of multilingualism in the cinema and its relevance for translation.
This was followed by papers from all TRAFILM members.  Dr. Corrius and Dr. Espasa, as coordinators of the project, reviewed the general theoretical and methodological framework of the project. The titles of their papers were
“From multilingual texts to Trafilm: A pathway to validate and refine the theoretical models on AVT” (Corrius), and “An overview of Trafilm project: methodological considerations and corpus selection” (Espasa).
Then, Dr. Zabalbeascoa and Dr. Sokoli showed how the theoretical and methodological foundations of the project can be articulated and integrated in an online plataform of metadata, an essential tool for the TRAFILM group, which is open to the collaboration of other researchers working in this field. The titles of their papers were “
From pretty theory to messy reality: adapting L3 models and variables to the Trafilm design of a usable online form for collecting metadata” (Zabalbeascoa), and “Collecting data analyses of L3 instances in multilingual films: towards the Trafilm consultable database” (Sokoli).
Last but definitely not least, the seminar ended with papers by Dr. Santamaria and Dr. Pujol, who showed the versatility of the TRAFILM project to account for relevant phenomena in multilingualism in film, such as cultural referents, or the presence of constructed languages in films and transmedia projects: “L3 as a cultural referent” (Santamaria), and “Constructed languages as L3 in Transmedia films” (Pujol).

This was followed by a hands-on open research seminar in the afternoon, which let all participants test the design and use of the TRAFILM database. Among the participants, Dr. Carol O’Sullivan, who provided feedback from her expertise, as well as doctoral students, including Guillermo Parra, who officially joined the TRAFILM team in that seminar and incorporated his findings from his ongoing PhD project. A phrase in the seminar that was often repeated wasFrom pretty theory to messy reality”. This does show the complexity of this research, but does not do justice to its positive effects: the richness involved in collaborative research, and the fruitful interchange of information and perspectives that this provides.

A total of 36 people attended this seminar: apart from guest speaker Dr. O’Sullivan, all TRAFILM members, lecturers of the Department of Translation and Interpretation (UVic), doctoral students of translation (UVic, UPF and UAB), as well as students of Translation and Interpretation (UVic).

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Announcing Symposium "The Translation of Multilingual Films"

6/7/2016 - Stavroula

 Next Friday, 17th June, in the context of the International Workshop on Higher Education at the University of Vic - UCC, the symposium The Translation of Multilingual Films will offer an overview of the research project TRAFILM (FFI2014-55952-P).

The seminar will start with a plenary lecture by Dr. Carol O’Sullivan (University of Bristol), who will examine the state of the art on multilingual film translation. This will dialogue with the rest of the interventions, all by TRAFILM members, specialists in audiovisual translation: Dr. Patrick Zabalbeascoa (UPF), Dr. Laura Santamaria (UAB), Dr. Stavroula Sokoli (HOU, CTI), Dr. Miquel Pujol (UVic - UCC), and project coordinators Dr. Montse Corrius (UVic - UCC) and Dr. Eva Espasa (UVic - UCC). They will analyse the theoretical model of the project; its methodological and technological implications and applications, as well as the connections between multilingual films and cultural and ideological issues involved in their translation.


More information on venue and times:



Registration is free but compulsory in order to obtain an attendance certificate.


Please note that you have to include the name of the activity in the registration form: The Translation of Multilingual Films. An Overview of TRAFILM Research Project.

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Anunciem el Simposi "The Translation of Multilingual Films"

6/6/2016 - Stavroula


El proper divendres 17 de juny, dins de l’International Workshop on Higher Education, tindrà lloc el simposi The Translation of Multilingual Films en el marc del projecte de recerca TRAFILM, vinculat al grup de recerca TRACTE. El simposi, en anglès, tracta el fenomen de les pel·lícules multilingües, que presenten fascinants reptes per a la professió i per a la recerca sobre traducció audiovisual.


Encetarà el simposi la conferència plenària de la Dra. Carol O’Sullivan, reconeguda especialista en traducció audiovisual i literària de la Universitat de Bristol, i continuarà amb les intervencions dels diferents membres del projecte, especialistes en traducció audiovisual: Dr. Patrick Zabalbeascoa (UPF), Dra. Laura Santamaria (UAB), Dra. Stavroula Sokoli (HOU, CTI), Dr. Miquel Pujol (UVic) i de les coordinadores del projecte Dra. Montse Corrius (UVic) i Dra. Eva Espasa (UVic).


Per la tarda, el seminari es clourà amb un taller de recerca, a càrrec dels membres del projecte i obert a tothom interessat en el fenomen de la traducció audiovisual i el multilingüisme.


Més informació i horari:



La inscripció és gratuïta però indispensable, per logística i per obtenir certificat d’assistència.


Cal tenir en compte que el formulari d’inscripció demana fer-hi constar el nom de l’activitat: The Translation of Multilingual Films. An Overview of TRAFILM Research Project.


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Introduction to project Trafilm

6/5/2016 - Admin

A large number of films and television series, and written literature portray more than one (type of) language (than just standard British English, for instance), because they include different languages or significant linguistic variations. The translation of such texts poses certain challenges, since language variation can fulfil certain functions (stylistic, pragmatic or discursive). These texts are often referred to as multilingual (or polylingual, plurilingual or even heterolingual).

The TRAFILM project aims to describe the reality of the translation of multilingual audiovisual texts. We aim to discover professional and social practices along with the norms and criteria of this specific translation challenge. We will analyse films translated in Spain from the beginning of the new millennium onward, in order to compare the norms and tendencies when rendering linguistic diversity for dubbing and subtitling. We will deal with translations from English (because of its prevalence in the audiovisual markets), and into Spanish and Catalan (the target languages of the academic, professional and social context of the research team). The project pays special attention to gathering a representative number of samples of how the phenomenon of multilingualism has been dealt with in 21st-century films. We do not restrict the number of language varieties that constitute the “third language,” i. e. the variety that is not the source or target language, since this research intends to analyse the functions of this variety in order to deal with the related criteria for its translation. We will also study the case whereby the presence of the “other” language happens to be exactly the same language as the main target language for the translation (for example, American English-language films which include scenes in Spanish, and their dubbed or subtitled versions for Spain). Thus, we intend to provide reliable data for refining existing theoretical models of multilingualism in audiovisual translation, and to compare tendencies across translation types. 

The TRAFILM project also aims to create a consultable database, where excerpts from multilingual films will be spotted and transcribed, allowing the user to search languages and language variations with a range of translation options. This database will offer quantitative and qualitative data for research. It will also provide audiovisual materials for translation training and foreign language acquisition. Finally, it will provide a set of guidelines for translating multilingualism, including diverse translation options.

The project aims to validate and refine the theoretical models on audiovisual translation and multilingualism by describing and analysing a rich collection of data. It also intends to provide useful material resources, such as the consultable database and a set of guidelines for translators, trainers and trainees.

The project TRAFILM (FFI2014-55952-P) is funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness

Categories: Trafilm

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