SOAS University of London

Department of Linguistics, School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics

Dr Burçin K. Mustafa

  • Teaching


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Department of Linguistics, School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics

Senior Teaching Fellow

Dr Burçin K. Mustafa
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After obtaining an undergraduate degree in Arabic and International Relations at the University of Westminster, I enrolled in 2009 onto a Master’s course in the theory and practice of translation with the aim of pursuing a career in translation. However, after being exposed to the theoretical complexities of translation I instead embarked on a PhD research programme into the political influences on the translation process within the post 9/11 conflicts. In May 2017 I was granted an unconditional pass in my viva exanimation by Dr Dr Ayman El-Desouky and Dr El Mustapha Lahlali, and currently convene a MA course in translation technology and lecture on translation theory at SOAS.

PhD Research

In the broad sense my PhD research explores the political, social, ideological and psychological factors that determine the manner we derive meaning from events and texts and then translate them.  The main enquiry I undertake is into the role translation has played in propagating state sanctioned narratives and subverting opposing ones. In this vein I specifically look into the use of translation to advance the war on terror. The main argument I present is that translation is not approached with the normative feature of ‘faithfully’ transferring meaning but rather as an apparatus of statecraft through which the translation can utterly betray its source. Interwoven with this area of focus, I also explore issues related to social narratives, hegemony, domination, ideology, discourse and the historical misrepresentation of otherness. To achieve my analysis and present a more holistic account of the phenomena under study, I produced hybrid approaches through the interaction of various disciplines including international relations theory and postcolonial studies. I also developed a theoretical model of state structures to map the process by which ideological objectives of the state are able to affect, through non-direct means, social subjective reproductions including translation.