Journal of the Transcultural Encyclopedia of Key Words, Images and Concepts


The objective is to provide the international community with a repertoire, gradually made up, of the main keywords and concepts used in communication between the main major cultural areas. They are considered in the form specific to each culture and each language, and by taking into account this perspective, the specific character that these languages ​​and cultures give them.

As a result of globalization, a number of conceptual “models”, most often of Western origin, are being conveyed across the world. They impose themselves at the discretion of ideological, economic, political, cultural exchanges, and, serving as a reference, become, or at least one believes it, universal, and standardized tools in the game of international relations. Sometimes under the same name, and in the original western nominal form, most often marked by Anglo-Saxon usage, they gradually permeate the different cultural areas, giving the illusion of a conceptual universality. Umberto Eco tells us again that, there are no universal concepts. It is therefore a matter of putting into perspective, cross-checking and subjecting to reciprocal criticism, based on a key Western concept – but also why not, in the future, and when times have changed, of an Indian or Chinese keyword that we will have globally appropriate – the words and concepts which, elsewhere, can answer it.

These ambiguities have two sources:

Either the adoption and / or translation of keywords and concepts of “Western” origin, imposed by globalization, by considering the “equivalent” words presented by their translation into non-European languages,

or putting into perspective concepts that are similar, or deemed to be such, but falling within very different semantic fields.

The concept of empire proposed by Chinese researchers was the subject of the first work. It is the “western” concept, in the form of the English word “empire”; referring to the original concept of “imperium” that they highlight, and critically analyze. In counterpoint is proposed the concept of “everything under the sky”, Tian Xia, to bring together, put in perspective, even oppose.

This brings together a critical work of semantic analysis of the main concepts underway in international relations, a work of clarification and a process of discovering and updating “alternative” concepts. Initial research and editorial design were thus carried out on three main keywords: empire (Seminar Cité des Sciences, Paris 2005), law (Merzig, 2006), knowledge (India travelling seminar Goa, Delhi, Pondichér) y. Then were discussed the concepts of Order and disorder (Beijing, 2007), Beau (Paris 2008), Governance (Beijing, Shimla Lyon, 2008), Crisis (Paris 2009).