In several European universities, degrees in economics and management include teaching modules on History of Economic Thought (hereafter HET).
The study and analysis of historical texts of economics allows a useful learning from the past so as to avoid delusions deriving from a blind application of economic models.
Since its origins, the economic science has been a subject of public discussion. The international circulation of economic ideas was fostered by translations of economic texts. These were performed both as individual initiatives and as part of more systematic publishing initiatives such as specialised series of economic texts, digests, handbooks, etc.
In order to fully understand the economic texts of the past it is very important to underline the linguistic aspects. Every economic text of the past has indeed been translated from the original language into other European languages in a specific way, using specific terms that reflect the historical and political context of the period. A linguistic analysis of the different translations made is therefore necessary to fully understand the history of economic thought.
The EE-T project, funded by the European Commission, in the framework of the Lifelong Learning Programme
– Erasmus Subprogramme, has the objective to assess the impact of translations of economic texts on the History of Economic Thought in Europe. Historical and linguistic analysis of the different translations is indeed necessary to fully understand the circulation of economic ideas, in order to provide a richer approach to the History of Economic Thought.
The specific objectives of the EE-T project are:
- To develop an online platform containing a systematic and classified database of digital published translations of economic texts in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries into and from various European languages (English, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Greek, French, Turkish, etc).
- To establish an interdisciplinary collaboration between History of Economic Thought (HET) scholars and linguistics and foreign language scholars, especially experts in Languages for Specific Purposes (LSP).
- To develop multilingualism and inter-culturalism at the European level, as a basis for a more conscious European citizenship.
The project is addressed to:
- Researchers specialised in History of Economic Thought (HET)
- Researchers specialized in Languages for Specific Purposes (LSP) studies.
- Educators in HET, linguistics and experts in pedagogy.
- Graduate students.
Activities and Results
The project activities are organized into 4 main Work Packages (WPs):
WP1 Production of the database of translations of economics texts
Production of the database of translations of economics texts of the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries into and from various European languages in order to make available a systematic and classified collection of all economic translations and of their e-texts, including all editions of each translation.
- Database of translations of economic texts and link to their digital editions
- Online collection of e-texts of translations of economic texts
WP2 Research Activity
Research Activity focussing on the phenomenon of translations of economics in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries into and from various European languages. The research will produce interpretations of the phenomenon of economic translations in the framework of the processes of transnational circulation of economic ideas.
- Availability of original research papers on the historical, social, theoretical and linguistic aspects of translations of economics
WP3 Production of the project portal
Production of the project portal and platform and its educational materials
- Online Project Portal
- Guide for the use of the Database
- Guides to the reading and/or to the linguistic, semantic and textual analysis of economic translations e-texts
- Questionnaires and exercises related to the reading guides
- Online forum on economic translations e-texts
WP4 Online lectures
Creation of online lectures that may function as sample demonstrations of the educational uses of the platform and its various materials: database, e-texts, guides and questionnaires/exercises.