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2nd Boise State Department of World Languages International Conference on Cultural Studies

Boise State Department of World Languages

International Conference on Cultural Studies

Sept. 14-16, 2023

This conference is free and open to the public.

The second Boise State University World Languages International Conference on Cultural Studies, jointly organized with the Center of Basque Studies (UNR), seeks to address the issues of Translation both as a practice and as an object of scholarly inquiry and create a dialogue between translation studies and other areas of cultural studies. The organizers welcome papers reflecting on the link between translation in disciplines such as literature, linguistics, critical theories, sociology, history, ethics, global studies, and technology, among others. The conference invites academics and practitioners to share and discuss innovative ways in which translation can contribute to intercultural understanding.

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About the Conference

Conference Logos

Boise State University College of Arts and Sciences and The William A. Douglass Center for Basque Studies University of Nevada, Reno

The conference will be of interest to readers of translated literature, minority language translators working in the Anglophone market, translation-policy makers, and writers looking to internationalize their literary production. Of interest, in short, to anyone who loves books, cultural exchanges, and translation. The experience of Basque translators will be central to the conference.

The conference will pay special tribute to Professor and translator Nere Lete for her contributions to Basque literary translation and over thirty years of dedication to teaching Basque language.

Translators have been central in the standardization of the Basque language by providing tools for the survival of Basque language and culture. Historically Basque translation has also been an instrument for linguistic normalization and political activity. Within the realm of Basque, translation has also encompassed a process of reflection on the language itself. Translation of foreign literature has been one of the main developments in the Basque literary realm. As such, the contributions made by translators may be deemed at least equal, if not greater, than that made on the part of native Basque writers. The Universal Literature project, funded by the Basque Regional Government and guided and run by EIZIE (The Association of Basque Translators), began in 1989. So far, over 186 canonical (universal) titles have been translated into Basque. How has this practice contributed to the standardization and normalization of the Basque language? How has the public (readership) welcomed these volumes?

Translation of foreign classics has often been seen as a tool to enhance minoritized languages. The conference will help examine the reception of the rendering of universal literary classics into Basque and other minoritized languages. The conference will pay attention to classical and modern translations of William Shakespeare’s works into Basque.

Keynote Speaker

Portrait of Igor

In 2015 the Eloise Garmendia Bieter Chair in Basque Studies was created through an agreement between Boise State and the Etxepare Basque Institute. The goal of this Chair is to strengthen the academic presence of Basque culture at the university and in the Treasure Valley community. Every year the Basque Studies section invites a professor to teach graduate students with the aim of highlighting the study of and research into Basque language and culture.

Igor Leturia will be the visiting scholar for the EGB Chair and the Keynote speaker for the international conference: TRANSLATION: Wor(l)ds in Other Wor(l)ds (September 14-17, 2023).

Igor Leturia holds an Engineer degree in Computer Science from the University of Mondragon (1989-1993), a degree in Computer Science from the Paul Sabatier University of Toulouse (1993-1994), and am Engineer degree in Systems Electronics from the University of Mondragon (1994-1996). He also holds a Master’s Degree in Language Technologies from the University of the Basque Country (2001-2003) and a Master’s Degree in Language Analysis and Processing from the University of the Basque Country (2008-2009). He also holds a Ph.D. in Language Technologies from the University of the Basque Country (2014), for his thesis “The Web as Corpus of Basque”.
During his studies, he worked as a part-time research assistant at the Ikerlan research center (1990-1993 and 1994-1996). He is a founding partner of the company SOME Software Innovation, where he worked as CTO (1996- 1998). He also worked at EMUN Kooperatiba Elkartea as ICT Director (1998-2003).

Since 2003, he has been working at Elhuyar Fundazioa in the department of Research and Development in Language Technologies for Basque, of which he was the Director from 2008 to 2014, and since 2014 he has been the director of the Speech Technologies area. For years, his main research area has been text corpora and, in particular, the use of the web as a source of corpora, which was the subject of his Ph.D. thesis. In recent years, he has been working on speech technologies, both ASR and TTS. In ASR, he has led the development of Aditu, an automatic transcription/subtitling service for the Basque language, which also allows the automatic translation of these transcriptions and subtitles into different languages. In the field of TTS, he has participated in the creation of neural TTS technology for Basque (monospeaker, multispeaker, translingual…). He is also involved in a project that aims to combine ASR, MT and TTS to provide automatic dubbing and speech-to-speech translation between Basque and other languages. He also participates in the development of MT, TTS and ASR technology for other minority languages such as Occitan and its variants or Aragonese, in collaboration with regional agents, as well as in the development of ASR technology for dialectal variants of Basque.

Learn More about the Keynote Speaker

Call for Papers

Conference Information


Boise State University

Our metropolitan campus runs along the banks of the Boise River, just a quick walk from the heart of Idaho’s largest city.

We are home to more than 26,000 students from every state and more than 60 foreign countries.

Our campus is growing right alongside our city, with new, state-of-the art research labs, living and dining spaces, and a brand new high-tech home for visual arts.

Learn More about Boise State


Hotels Near Campus

Our close proximity to downtown Boise gives your family/guests plenty of great hotel options to choose from; the hotels outlined below provide Boise State discounts for families attending orientations.

About Boise

The city of Boise is relatively young. Originally populated by eager gold miners in the late 1800’s, Boise became the capital city of Idaho when the territory became the 43rd state of the union in 1890. One-hundred and thirty years later, the city of Boise is a diverse metropolis with much to see and do.

Downtown Boise

As per the Downtown Boise website, this area of the city is the central hub of business, government, entertainment, and culture. The Idaho State Capital Building is a recommended sight, as it is a mere 11 minute walk from the conference hotel.

Photo by Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce

It is very safe, and there are plenty of businesses and places to explore in the area.

There are several dining opportunities in the downtown area that you can explore on the Dining Page of the Downtown Boise Website.

The Basque Block

Photo by Nicolás Boullosa

Boise is home to one of the largest Basque populations in the United States, numbering about 16,000. Located downtown on Grove St. at Capitol Blvd., the Basque block is only a seven minute walk from the conference hotel. There are several Basque restaurants and venues there:

Bar Gernika (Old-fashioned pub and restaurant): 202 S. Capitol Blvd.

Leku Ona (Basque restaurant): 117 S 6th St.

The Basque Market: 608 W Grove St

The Basque Museum and Cultural Center: 611 W Grove St

Read more about everything Boise has to offer in this article by The Washington Post.