A Comparative Study of the Concept of Ideology in Marxism and in Translation Studies
Keywords:Marxism, Ideology, Hegemony, Translation Studies, False consciousness
Both Marxism and Translation Studies have a great body of writings on ideology. The close relationship between ideology and translation was first acknowledged by those scholars who used Cultural Studies’ theories and conceptions in Translation Studies (e.g., Susan Bassnett, Andre Lefevere, Theo Hermans, etc.), but There exists little consensus on the definition of the concept in the field. The present research is an attempt to review the origins and the history of the concept of ideology, and the engagement of Marx and Marxist tradition with the concept, in order to shed some light on the ambiguous state of the concept in Translation Studies. The available literature on ideology was reviewed in both Marxism and Translation Studies. Marxist theories of ideology were classified into three categories: critical, positive, and descriptive. The critical sense—ideology as false consciousness—is prominent in the writings of Marx. The positive notion of ideology is associated with class distinction and class consciousness. Finally the descriptive theories of ideology involve an anthropological study of the beliefs and rituals of certain groups. A survey of studies conducted on ideology in Translation Studies showed that except a few (e.g. Lefevere 1987 and Jacquemond 1992), majority of the studies used the concept of ideology in its descriptive sense.
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