Call for papers - Thematic section 2023 - Synergies among Audiovisual Translation, Media Accessibility, Film Studies, and related disciplines



Synergies among Audiovisual Translation, Media Accessibility, Film Studies, and related disciplines

Deadline for extended abstracts: 15 June 2022

Deadline for full papers: 10 January 2023

Publication date: November / December 2023

Guest Editors

Blanca Arias-Badia and Patrick Zabalbeascoa

Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Research into Audiovisual Translation (AVT) and Media Accessibility (MA) deals with the multiple elements and details that make up the audiovisual text as a whole, including music and other non-verbal sounds or credits and captions. AVT and MA professionals interpret all these elements to provide solutions and thus become mediators of audiovisual text meaning across different cultures. The interplay of these elements has paved the way for a large cross-fertilisation between AVT/MA and other fields of study: for example, film adaptation as translation, as proposed by Cattrysse (2014), Cornu and O’Sullivan’s (2016) contribution to the history of film and film studies through research into the history of subtitling, and many projects (e.g., Clipflair) that explore the application of AVT in foreign-language learning. This thematic section aims to highlight the interactional process taking place by such a cross-fertilisation.

Translation Studies is a relatively young discipline. To date, some disciplines have been slower than others to embrace what translation has to offer. Literary Studies, for example, has transcended the study of monolingual works and has effectively encompassed the study of translations—with theories as diverse as Even-Zohar's polysystem theory (Codde, 2003), Lefevere's (1992/2016) notion of rewriting (including translation as a form of rewriting) as an overarching concept for literary production, reproduction and fame, and the more recent concepts of transnational novels and disconnection within indirect translation, as proposed by such authors as Brodzki (2007) and Walkowitz (2015), as reactions to globalisation. All of them in their different ways have ceased to subscribe to simplistic one-to-one views of translation as a well-established source text being rendered into an equivalent target text, like Jakobson's (1959/2013) interlingual translation as "translation proper", or the enormous influence of Bible translation practices and scholars (e.g., Nida & Taber, 1966).

As an even younger discipline within Translation Studies, AVT has resorted to areas such as Film and Television Studies as well as to Applied Linguistics repeatedly in search of applicable or adaptable methodologies and theoretical frameworks: for example, Chaume's (2016) application of film studies in AVT studies or projects on the translation of multilingual films which have used Bleichenbacher’s (2008) or Lippi-Green’s (2012) accounts of language and ideology in films as frameworks. Likewise, interdisciplinarity has played a major role in the development of MA: note, for example, the intersections between disability and technology (Roulstone, 2016) or ethics and audio description, the focus of the IDEA project (Royal Holloway, University of London, and VocalEyes), which explored ways to make audio description more inclusive. AVT and MA have, however, come to a point in which as independent areas they are making relevant contributions to related disciplines. In today’s globalised scenario, it hardly seems enough, for example, to offer a complete study of television content without considering translation. How can comparative linguistics and research in multilingualism take into account advances made in translation theory? Surely new products and services could benefit from being designed by considering users’ preferences as revealed by MA studies?

In this context, this thematic section invites articles addressing (but not limited to) the following topics:

  • Advances in theoretical reflection: how have AVT/MA influenced theoretical frameworks of related areas (Film and Television Studies, Gender Studies, Disability Studies, Deaf Studies, Youth Language Studies, Multilingualism Studies, Media Reception Studies…)?
  • Methodological innovation: which methods first applied within AVT/MA may prove useful for related areas?
  • Examples of truly interdisciplinary approaches in AVT/MA studies which have yielded relevant results for the different disciplines involved in the study.
  • Critical reflection on one's own work or that of others: how has interdisciplinarity been applied to previous studies in AVT/MA? What might be perceived as missed opportunities?
  • Prospective synergies: which disciplines can best interact with AVT/MA in the near future? What are the areas of improvement?

Each abstract should contain both research questions/aims, methodology, and results and conclusions. While the length of the abstracts may vary, they should be between 400 and 600 words, supplied with a bibliography and 10 keywords.

Please email your abstract directly to the editors at and Informal enquiries about the thematic section are also welcome.

Important dates
  • Deadline for submission of abstracts (400-600 words): 15 June 2022
  • Notification of provisional acceptance (abstracts): 31 July 2022
  • Submission of full papers (5-7,500 words incl. references and bibliography): 10 January 2022
  • Notification of provisional acceptance: 30 March 2023
  • Submission of revised articles: 30 May 2023
  • Submission of final articles: 15 August 2023
  • Publication: November / December 2023
Guest editors

Blanca Arias-Badia is a tenure-track lecturer at the Department of Translation and Language Sciences at Universitat Pompeu Fabra, where she teaches courses in translation for general purposes and audiovisual translation. She is a member of the InfoLex research group and an external collaborator of TransMedia Catalonia at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. She holds a PhD in Translation and Language Sciences from UPF (2017) and did a postdoc in Audiovisual Translation and Media Accessibility at UAB (2018-2020), awarded by the Spanish Research Agency under the Juan de la Cierva postdoctoral scheme. During her studies, she made stays at King’s College London, University College London, and the University of the Basque Country. She is active in research dissemination: she is the research coordinator of the Catalan Association for the Promotion of Accessibility (ACPA), as well as co-founder and host of En sincronía, a podcast devoted to audiovisual translation and accessibility. Since 2012, she has also worked as a literary translator, and has been involved in audiovisual translation projects.

Patrick Zabalbeascoa is a full professor in Translation Studies at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona). He lectures in translation theory, didactics of translation, and audiovisual translation. His research is almost entirely focused on translation studies, with special attention to the translation of audiovisual texts for the television and the cinema. He also has numerous publications in translation theory, an area in which he has developed a model of priorities and restrictions, and proposed alternative approaches to traditional views on so-called translation techniques, or shifts. He has worked on several EC funded projects and Thematic Networks. He is co-director of the MA in Audiovisual and Literary Translation (UPF-Barcelona School of Management), as well as director of the MA in Translation Studies at UPF.

  1. Bleichenbacher, L. (2008). Multilingualism in the Movies: Hollywood Characters and Their Language Choices. Francke Verlag.
  2. Brodzki, B. (2007). Can These Bones Live? Translation, Survival, and Cultural Memory. Stanford University Press.
  3. Cattrysse, P. (2014). Descriptive Adaptation Studies: Epistemological and Methodological Issues.
  4. Chaume, F. (2016). Los códigos de significación del texto audiovisual: Implicaciones en la traducción para el doblaje, la subtitulación y la accesibilidad. Revista Linguae, 3, 301–
  5. Codde, P. (2003). Polysystem Theory Revisited: A New Comparative Introduction. Poetics Today 24(1), 91–
  6. Cornu, J. F. & O’Sullivan, C. (2016). The Translation of Films: History, Preservation, Research, and Exhibition. Journal of Film Preservation94, 25–
  7. Jakobson, R. (2013). On Linguistic Aspects of Translation. In R. A. Brower (Ed.) On Translation, Harvard University Press (pp. 232–239). (Original work published 1959).
  8. Lefevere, A. (2016). Translation, Rewriting, and the Manipulation of Literary Fame. Routledge. (Original work published 1992).
  9. Lippi-Green, R. (2012). English with an Accent: Language, Ideology and Discrimination in the United States. Routledge.
  10. Nida, E. & Taber, C. (1966). The Theory and Practice of Translation. Brill.
  11. Roulstone, A. (2016). Disability and Technology: An Interdisciplinary and International Approach. Palgrave Macmillan.
  12. Walkowitz, R. (2015). Born Translated. The Contemporary Novel in an Age of World Literature. Columbia University Press.