Master of Arts in Cultural Translation
Works of art and culture are not created in a vacuum; context is crucial. The field of cultural translation takes the practical and theoretical aspects of translation—its creativity, rigor, and deep reflection—and draws them into an active debate with our world.
A dialogue between the humanities and social sciences helps us understand and inhabit local and global realities. With its international and multilingual student body—and in the cosmopolitan city of Paris—AUP is the perfect setting for these studies.
First program of its kind
The Master of Arts in Cultural Translation is a unique initiative, the first of its kind. A recent panel at the Modern Language Association asserted that cultural translation is 'the most important concept in cultural theory today.'
Translation has never been only a linguistic activity; translators negotiate between two cultures, they create pathways for meaning where there were none, and they find themselves intimately engaged – ethically, politically, creatively – with distant and different worlds and lives.
The field of Cultural Translation takes the creativity and rigor of the practice of translation, and the deep reflection of contemporary theories of translation, and brings them into active debate with our world. Questions from the humanities meet questions from political science or from international business, as we try to understand and to inhabit the forms of life that are emerging locally and globally.
Translation is the mediation between the plurality of cultures and the unity of humanity. - Paul Ricoeur
The MA can be completed in 12 months
The MA in Cultural Translation is a 40-credit Coursework Masters taken over the course of 2.5 semesters (usually, Fall, Spring, Summer). Residence is not absolutely required for the Summer semester – you might want to combine writing your thesis with fieldwork, or travel to an appropriate location while you refine your translation project. The program is taught through tutorials, individual directed study, seminars, workshops, and skill modules, supplemented by access to regular visiting speakers and your introduction to the resources available within the city of Paris. The curriculum blends theory and the gathering of knowledge with practical and creative experience; courses take advantage of the resources available in the city of Paris. The 2-credit Seminar in Global Studies gives you an opportunity to meet and collaborate with students in our other graduate programs, including students in Fashion Communication, International and Sustainable Business, and Public Policy, for example.
Tailored to your passions: individual support for research and translation projects
This is a tailored program, built on the individual passions and ambitions of students, and our faculty expertise. Each student is supported by an individual tutor for the full year as they develop and complete their thesis or translation project. That means that you can specialize in any language and focus on any topic, as long as we can find an expert to work with you.
The program is ideal for:
- students of the humanities looking to broaden the scope of their study and bring it to bear on contemporary global issues
- translators who wish to sharpen their conceptual tools and receive expert support for translation projects
- those pursuing careers in the international cultural industries
All courses are taught as small, seminar-style classes and workshops, in which singular projects are brought into productive conversation. Students who wish to concentrate on translating literature will find themselves brainstorming with other students who aim to reform refugee resettlement policy and with others whose ambitions lie in the creative industries; students who will go on to PhD programs in the humanities engage with colleagues who will work in NGOs.
Find out more
Thought in cultural translation is reforming and challenging the disciplines of cultural studies, post-colonial studies, comparative literature, and even the very idea of the humanities itself. Our challenge – in the program and when our students graduate – is to take that energy of thought, and apply it to creative production, professional translation, and to questions of policy. We hope that you will join us in facing this challenge. This is an exciting field and we hope you will join us.
Please feel free to have a look at our program requirements to see if the MA in Cultural Translation might be right for you. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us or get in touch with graduate admissions. We look forward to hearing from you.