1. Multimodality in translation studies has mostly been associated with audiovisual or multimedia texts, but little is known about how translations interact with three-dimensional material space.
2. Geosemiotics, which studies the social meaning of the material placement of signs in the world, provides a theoretical framework for exploring how translations interact with museum space and visitors.
3. The case study at St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art in Glasgow reveals that translated exhibition texts interact with different ranks of spaces to minimize Christian heritage narratives and manifest a multi-religious and multi-ethnic Scottish identity. The provision (or non-provision) of translations can influence the construction of in-place meaning in the multimodal museum space.
The article "Translating multimodal texts in space: A case study of St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art" by Min-Hsiu Liao explores the interaction between translations and three-dimensional material space, using the St Mungo Museum in Glasgow as a case study. While the concept of multimodality has received considerable attention in Translation Studies, this article proposes to use geosemiotics as a theoretical framework to explore this new territory.
However, the article suffers from several potential biases and limitations. Firstly, it focuses solely on written translations in a museum site, neglecting other forms of translation such as oral interpretation or audio guides. Secondly, while the author acknowledges that museums have often been chosen for collecting data for exploring three-dimensional space, there is no discussion of how this choice may limit the generalizability of the findings to other contexts. Thirdly, the article assumes that translations have a significant impact on visitors' perception of exhibitions without providing sufficient evidence to support this claim.
Moreover, the article's main argument - that translated exhibition texts at St Mungo Museum consistently minimize Christian heritage in Glasgow and manifest a multi-religious and multi-ethnic Scottish identity - is based on a limited analysis of four ranks of museum space: surroundings, building, exhibition, and objects. The author does not consider other factors that may influence visitors' perception of exhibitions such as lighting or sound design.
Furthermore, while geosemiotics provides a useful framework for analyzing in-place meaning, it is unclear how well it applies to translation studies. The theory's focus on social actors and their habitus may not be relevant to all translation contexts.
Overall, while "Translating multimodal texts in space" offers an interesting perspective on museum translation and its interaction with three-dimensional material space, its narrow focus and lack of evidence weaken its arguments. Further research is needed to explore how translations interact with different types of spaces and how they influence visitors' perception of exhibitions.