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070213 UE Foreign Languages in Historical Science 1 & 2 (2018S)

Translating Work and Labour

5.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 7 - Geschichte
Continuous assessment of course work


Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).


max. 25 participants
Language: English


Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

The course will partly be held in form of Seminar blocks

Tuesday 13.03. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum WISO 1 (ZG1O2.28) Hauptgebäude, Stiege 6 Zwischengeschoß
Tuesday 10.04. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum WISO 1 (ZG1O2.28) Hauptgebäude, Stiege 6 Zwischengeschoß
Monday 30.04. 09:45 - 20:00 Seminarraum 5 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock
Friday 25.05. 09:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 29 Hauptgebäude, 1.Stock, Stiege 7
Saturday 26.05. 10:00 - 13:00 Seminarraum WISO 1 (ZG1O2.28) Hauptgebäude, Stiege 6 Zwischengeschoß


Aims, contents and method of the course

This course will address problems of translation, taking English and German as languages, but also referring to other languages according to the participants. Translation not only requires language skills but equally involves reflections about the different historical, cultural and epistemological contexts in which people have developed different terms to express and denominate things. Often there is no direct correspondence between two languages and it becomes necessary to find appropriate proxies and circumscriptions. Looking for terms leads to reflections about the different historical backgrounds, social structures and ways of thinking.

The examples will come from a thematic field related to work and labour. Komlosy will approach the field as a historian specializing on global labour history, Watson is a translator with specific experience in translating historical social sciences.

The course will combine theoretical reflections with practical opportunities to work with texts and explore the problems that arise in the process of translation from German to English and from English to German, and whichever other languages that you bring to the course.

Assessment and permitted materials

Language requirements: Excellent skills in either German or English, good skills in the other language

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Assignments: Common readings; presentation of background literature; participation in translation and comparison exercises; active participation in class.

Examination topics

Reading list

Common readings:

GERMAN: Andrea Komlosy (2015): Arbeit. 13.-21. Jahrhundert. Eine globalhistorische Perspektive. Wien: Promedia. Auch als e-book erhältlich: http://mediashop.at/buecher/arbeit-2/
ENGLISH.: Andrea Komlosy (2018): Work. The Last 1000 Years. London-New York: Verso, translated by Jacob Watson with Loren Balhorn (available in March 2018), versobooks.com

Wörterbuch der Brüder Grimm and Oxford English Dictionary: Entries Arbeit/Labour and Werken/Work

Association in the course directory

PM4: Wirtschafts- und Sozialgeschichte, Globalgeschichte

Last modified: Mo 07.09.2020 15:30