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Dutch Crossing - Journal Of Low Countries Studies

Publication date: 2020-06
Volume: 44 Pages: 145 - 164
ISSN: 0309-6564
DOI: 10.1080/03096564.2020.1747006
Publisher: Maney Publishing


Mc Martin, Jack


1901 Art Theory and Criticism, 2005 Literary Studies, 2103 Historical Studies


This article analyzes a dataset of over 11,000 book translations from Dutch published in the last two decades to give a global picture of recent outgoing translation flows. It examines four main categories – genre, author national grouping (Dutch/Flemish), target language, and translation grant status – revealing children’s literature and fiction to be important export genres; a steady increase in the number of translations of works by Dutch authors and a stagnation in the number of translations of works by Flemish authors; central positions for German, English and French as important target languages, semi-peripheral positions for Spanish, Italian and Danish and an emerging position for Chinese; and a remarkable rise in the number and percentage of translations that received translation grants. The article goes on to explore translation grants in more detail, examining the ‘literary quality’ criterium and the ‘market-correcting’ justification used by the Dutch Foundation for Literature and Flanders Literature (formerly known as the Flemish Literature Fund). It concludes by critically evaluating how these two aspects shape outgoing translation flows and potentially reinforce power imbalances within the Dutch-language field.