Special Issue "New Trends, Challenges and Discoveries in the Translation of Multilingualism in Fiction"

A special issue of Languages (ISSN 2226-471X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 January 2023 | Viewed by 1684

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Patrick Zabalbeascoa
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Translation and Language Sciences, University Pompeu Fabra, 08018 Barcelona, Spain
Interests: multilingualism in scripts and fiction; audiovisual translation; translation theory; humour translation

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The past decade has seen a substantial rise in research publications focused more and more on the issue of translation tasks and projects having to tackle with texts that are not limited to a single language, dialect, or sociolect (Beseghi 2017, Ranzato and Zanotti 2018, Pérez and de Higes 2019, Rebane and Junkerjürgen 2019, to mention but a few). In other words, they display, and play with, the inclusion of words or phrases that do not belong to the standard language norm of the main language the text is composed in. The decade(s) before that required that such studies be introduced by a justification of the importance or relevance of language variation within texts (e.g., Sternberg 1981, Delabastita and Grutman 2005, Bleichenbacher 2008, Corrius and Zabalbeascoa 2011). This is no longer necessary nor is it accurate to claim that there is a woeful lack of studies on this topic. So, the question now is how far have we come exactly in our progress towards including this kind of sensitivity in the mainstream of translation studies, both theoretically and in the applied domain of professional practice and academic training?

How is (yet another) dichotomy—of foreign vs. non-foreign—called into question by translingualism and multilingual phenomena, such as creoles and code-switching, which are not necessarily based on the same factors as national borders, especially if we take into account multilingual communities and co-official languages within a given country? 

This Special Issue aims to address this question by accepting submissions that deal with it from different angles such as the ones suggested here but not limited to them:

  • Are translators proficient in all the languages of a multilingual fictional text (e.g., a novel or television series), and do they need to be?
  • How is translingualism and multilingualism in fiction an element of an author’s style and how are they dealt with accordingly?
  • What strategies are used by translators in rendering scripted translingualism or multilingualism and how such instances are affected by the habitual strategies involved in translation practices?
  • How have stereotypes (of character portrayal, conversational patterns or topics, or situations or events) developed and changed regarding the strategic use of foreign languages, dialects and non-native use of languages?
  • What are the practices and trends of using and rendering invented languages (e.g., as spoken by aliens from other planets or fantasy worlds)?
  • Are translations becoming more multilingual or linguistically diverse and, if so, by what means?
  • What genres and text-types are more affected by multilingualism, more problematic or innovative in translation?
  • In what aspects can / must we revise traditional theoretical approaches in the light of discoveries made in the area of multilingual translation? What about less traditional approaches, such as taking LGBTiQ+ studies/factors into account, or racial discourse, etc.?
  • To what extent is lingua franca a factor, and directionality, as in the distinction between from English vs. into English, for instance, or between languages that are not widespread on a global level?
  • Are there significant differences depending on whether the texts are written or audiovisual, i.e., mode and multimodality?
  • What are the relations between translation, multilingualism, pseudotranslations, creoles, code-switching, slang, non-native speech and other manifestations of sociolinguistic variation?
  • What historical periods can be meaningfully sketched both in the use of multilingualism in film, television, and video on demand, and the way they were and have been translated? What are the key characteristics of each period and the key factors of change from one period to another?
  • How have the researchers’ interests in the field of translation studies been sparked, what is the focus of their research and how has it evolved? What other aspects of translation has multilingualism been related to?
  • How is multilingualism tackled in machine translation, artificial intelligence, templates for translators, and post-editing practices?

We request that, prior to submitting a manuscript, interested authors initially submit a proposed title and an abstract of 400-600 words summarizing their intended contribution. Please send it to the guest editor ([email protected]) or to Languages editorial office ([email protected]). Abstracts will be reviewed by the guest editor for the purposes of ensuring proper fit within the scope of the Special Issue. Full manuscripts will undergo double-blind peer-review.

Tentative completion schedule:

Abstract submission deadline: 12th October 2022

Notification of abstract acceptance: 20th November 2022

Full manuscript deadline: 20th January 2023


Beseghi, M. 2017. Multilingual Films in Translation. A Sociolingusitic and Intercultural Study of Diasporic Films. Oxford: Peter Lang.

Bleichenbacher, L. 2008. Multilingualism in the Movies: Hollywood Characters and Their Language Choices. Tübingen: Francke.

Corrius, M. & Zabalbeascoa, P. 2011. “Language variation in source texts and their translations. The case of L3 in film translation”. In: Target 23 (1), 113—130.

Delabastita, D. & Grutman, R. (eds.) 2005. Linguistica Antverpiensa 4, 11—34. DOI: https://doi.org/10.52034/lanstts.v4i

Pérez L. de Heredia, M. & de Higes, I. 2019. Revistas - MonTI - 2019, Special Issue 4. Multilingualism and Representation of Identities in Audiovisual Texts. University of Alicante.

Ranzato, I. & Zanotti, S. 2018. Linguistic and Cultural Representations in Audiovisual Translation. New York: Routledge.

Rebane, G. & Junkerjürgen, R. 2019. Multilingualism in Film. Peter Lang.

Sternberg, M. 1981. Polylingualism as reality and translation as mimesis. In: Poetics Today 2 (2), 221—239.

Prof. Dr. Patrick Zabalbeascoa
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Languages is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • multilingualism in scripts and fiction
  • audiovisual translation
  • translator’s styles and solution-types, research trends, language variation, code-switching

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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