Translating Religion advances thinking about translation as a critical category in religious studies, combining theoretical reflection about processes of translation in religion with focused case studies that are international, interdisciplinary, and interreligious. By operating with broad conceptions of both religion and translation, this volume makes clear that processes of translation, broadly construed, are everywhere in both religious life and the study of religion; at the same time, the theory and practice of translation and the advancement of translation studies as a field has developed in the context of concerns about the possibility and propriety of translating religious texts. The nature of religions as living historical traditions depends on the translation of religion from the past into the present. Interreligious dialogue and the comparative study of religion require the translation of religion from one tradition to another. Understanding the historical diffusion of the world’s religions requires coming to terms with the success and failure of translating a religion from one cultural context into another. Contributors ask what it means to translate religion, both textually and conceptually, and how the translation of religious content might differ from the translation of other aspects of human culture. This volume proposes that questions on the nature of translation find particularly acute expression in the domains of religion, and argues that theoretical approaches from translation studies can be fruitfully brought to bear on contemporary religious studies.
"A timely and relevant contribution to the debate concerning translation and the study of religion. It combines 'grounded' studies of the 'nitty gritty' of translation activity with broader theoretical reflection. It is thus inclusive and yet satisfyingly specialized." —James Hegarty, Cardiff University, UK
Introduction Michael DeJonge and Christiane Tietz 1. Translating Dao: Cross-Cultural Translation as a Hermeneutic of Edification Wei Zhang 2. Historical Translation: Pseudo-Dionysius, Thomas Aquinas, and the Unknown God Michael DeJonge 3. Philological Limits of Translating Religion: śraddhā and dharma in Hindu Texts Carlos Lopez 4. Translating Religion between Parents and Children Andrea Schulte 5. Thick Translation of Religion between Cultures: The Basel Mission in Ghana Ulrike Sill 6. Habermas’s Call for Translating Religion into Secular Language Christiane Tietz 7. Does Allah Translate ‘God’? Translating Concepts between Religions Klaus von Stosch 8. Translating Religious Symbol Systems: Some Preliminary Remarks on Christian Art in China Volker Küster 9. Conclusion: What’s Lost and Gained? Michael DeJonge and Christiane Tietz