Reading Group

The CIMS Reading Group aims to stimulate interdisciplinary discussion about the importance of cultural identity and memory in society. We will take as our starting point for the sessions some canonical texts, as well as more recent interventions, and will explore these works and their implications for cultural understanding and change.


27 February, 1pm (Room TBC) : ‘Translation, ecology, and deep time’ by Michael Cronin

Our next interdisciplinary reading group will focus on the chapter ‘Translation, ecology, and deep time’ by Michael Cronin, published in 2022 the volume Time, space, matter in translation edited by Pamela Beattie, Simona Bertacco, and Tatjana Soldat-Jaffe. As always, students and staff from all disciplines are most welcome to join in the conversation. Below is the chapter’s abstract:

This chapter takes the discussion of translation to the ecological humanities. It investigates the radically  changed environmental circumstances of humanity and asks why this should be of concern to debates around language, culture and translation. It opens with an examination of the notion of the Anthropocene—the new geological era of human-induced climate change—and looks at the shift in the status of the human from biological to geological agent. This shift in status means that the history of the planet and the history of humanity begin to converge. The long-standing division between the human and social sciences and the natural and physical sciences is no longer tenable in a world where we cannot remain indifferent to the more than human. From this new awareness comes a need for the development of a post-anthropocentric identity which naturally affects all human activities including translation. In placing the future of the planet at the center of our preoccupations, rather than our all too human selves, this chapter introduces the notions of place, resilience and relatedness in the context of the formulation of a new political ecology for translation.

Professor Michael Cronin will be giving a talk on ‘The “terrestrial” university – why our universities are no longer fit for purpose in the age of the Anthropocene and how they might change’ on 7 March at 4pm – more details to follow.

If you would like to join the reading group (whether in-person or online), please email Clara at [email protected] to register your interest – I will circulate the article and the room number once it is available.


Click here to find info about previous CIMS Reading Groups.