Slovenia advocates for translation to promote intercultural dialogue in the Mediterranean region
On the eve of the 25th anniversary of its independence day, Slovenia will host “Translation for Dialogue” Euromed Conference in Piran on 23-24 June 2016. Co-organised by the Anna Lindh Foundation, the Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the University EMUNI, with the institutional support of the European Union, the high-level event will gather over a hundred actors from the region to showcase, debate and advocate for translation as a major tool to achieve intercultural dialogue. It will be the basis and starting point of the Anna Lindh Programme ‘Translation for Dialogue’.
The Euro-Mediterranean region is currently facing many global social challenges that affect both sides of the Mediterranean area, with an increase in extremism, youth unemployment, migration waves and a refugee crisis. A translation policy could be key to foster cultural diversity and promote shared values. As a tool for dialogue and mutual understanding, it would embrace literary translation, social sciences, drama, movies and music and, open up new ways of thinking. An ambitious Euro-Mediterranean policy could also be central for trading, diplomacy and innovation.
“Translation for Dialogue” is the first high-level conference of its kind to take place in the region. It will gather experts and cultural actors involved in the field of translation for two days of intensive discussions and parallel workshops with a focus on the central role of translation in the current emerging sociocultural challenges of the region. The event will involve stakeholders of the “translation chain” – including publishers, authors, academics, translators, libraries, civil society organisations, foundations, public and private institutions. UNESCO will be represented by its Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe, Venice (Italy), in the person of Ana Luiza Thompson-Flores, Director, who - on the occasion the opening ceremony - will read an address by the Director-General of UNESCO.
Five central objectives will underpin the programme of the conference: 1) facilitating the mobility of intercultural knowledge, ideas and actors across the region; 2) promoting a cooperative network among the actors involved in the “translation chain”; 3) channelling resources and funding through ad-hoc financial aids, both public and private; 4) translating cultural diversity and engaging youth; and, 5) showcasing and highlighting good practices.
The conference will include public plenary sessions by prominent key players in the field and organisations that have contributed with their work to the promotion of translation as a tool for intercultural dialogue. Interactive workshops and debates will be held in parallel with various actors from the field contributing to the development of the programme.
The conference will be an opportunity to launch the “Slovenia Manifesto” in support of translation as bridge to a common understanding in the region, and the Euro-Med ‘Translation for Dialogue’ Roadmap with concrete initiatives, funding and renewed platforms for translation.
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