24 October, 2017

18 out of 100 world`s best textbooks have already been translated to Kazakh

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The Public Fund “National Translation Bureau” (NTB) announced that it has already translated 18 books under the project “New Humanitarian Knowledge. 100 New Textbooks in the Kazakh language” initiated by President Nazarbayev.

Earlier this year President Nazarbayev published his programmatic article “Course towards the future: modernization of Kazakhstan’s identity” in which he proposed the project “New Humanitarian Knowledge. 100 New Textbooks in the Kazakh Language” on social and human sciences.

In order to justify the project, President Nazarbayev writes, “For many years our social and humanitarian knowledge was constrained within the framework of one doctrine and one worldview. The publication in the Kazakh language of the 100 best textbooks of the world will come into effect within 5-6 years. It is necessary to take all the most modern and valuable textbooks and translate them into the state Kazakh language. This should be the task of the state.”

According to the Head of State, the textbooks should be available to educate our students by the 2018/2019 academic year. He also pointed out the necessity of creating a non-state National Translation Bureau to accomplish all works on the translation.

NTB started operating immediately after President`s article and began to select the first 18 books to translate this year. The bureau`s head Rauan Kenzhekhanuly then shared two criteria to select the textbooks. First, the book should be used in the libraries of the world’s top 100 universities such as Harvard University, Columbia University, University of Oxford, and the University of Cambridge. Second, the book should have at least three edition and the last edition should be published within the last three years or not earlier than 2014. It is to make sure that the content has been renewed and includes recent cases of study. 

Recently Mr. Kenzhekhanuly announced that all 18 textbooks have already been translated. Soon readers can see the translations of books on the website 100kitap.kz.

Mr. Kenzhekhanuly said that the bureau encountered some problems while working on the translation of the books. One of the problems is that the direct translation of even the titles might give ambiguous meaning or sound negatively.  For instance, the book “The Social Animal” by Elliot Aronson in Kazakh literally means “The Social Beast”. If the word “animal” has a neutral connotation in English, it has the negative connotation in Kazakh.

The books will be published in a paper after the Head of State will approve the translation. By the way, the books are going to be released in Latin script to which Kazakhstan is going to switch its alphabet by 2025.

The list of 18 textbooks:

1. Derek Johnston. A Brief History of Philosophy: From Socrates to Derrida

2. Anthony John Patrick Kenny. A New History of Western Philosophy (In Four Volumes). Volume 1

3. Anthony John Patrick Kenny. A New History of Western Philosophy (In Four Volumes). Volume 2

4. Remi Hess. 25 key books on philosophy

5. David Brinkerhoff, Suzanne Ortega, Rose Weitz. Essentials of Sociology. 9th Edition

6. George Ritzer. Sociological Theory. 10th Edition

7. Elliot Aronson. The Social Animal. 11th Edition

8. Duane P. Schultz, Sydney Ellen Schultz. A History of Modern Psychology. 11th Edition

9. David Myers. Social Psychology

10. Gregory Mankiw. Economics. 4th Edition

11. Donald F. Kuratko. Entrepreneurship: Theory, Process, and Practice. 10th Edition

12. Ricky W. Griffin. Management. 12th Edition

13. Karen Armstrong. A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam

14. Victoria Fromkin, Robert Rodman, Nina Hyams. An Introduction to Language, International Edition

15. Svetlana Ter-Minasova. Language and Intercultural Communication

16. Alan Barnard. History and Theory in Anthropology Theory

17. Klaus Schwab. The Fourth Industrial Revolution

18. Lee Anne Peck, Guy S Reel. Media Ethics at Work: True Stories from Young Professionals

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