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Translation Strategies

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Presentation on theme: "Translation Strategies"— Presentation transcript:

1 Translation Strategies
Ways of dealing with structural and lexical differences between English and Italian.

2 Malone’s Strategies Equation Substitution Divergence Convergence
Amplification Reduction Diffusion condensation Reordering By referring to these strategies translators can justify adjustments of form depending on the semantic, stylistic and communicative requirements of the TT.

3 Equation: the soft translation option
Equation: refers to some form of automatic equivalence. Loan words are the most obvious example, when the loan word has the same referent in both languages: software, rap. Sometimes loan words can achieve equation even when the equivalent term exists in two language. e.g. rucola Calques: e.g. dribblare, crossare, faxare Equation is, however, considered to be the default position. An item should be translated by it’s clear one-to-one equivalent, unless there is asemantic, pragmatic, culturally motivated or stylistic reason for doing so. E.g. ‘man’ in Taylor (p.49)

4 Further reasons for abandoning Equivalence
e.g. Lorenzo fermò la macchina e si voltò verso il giovane: ’Allora tu vieni su o vuoi restare qui?’ Lorenzo stopped the car and turned towards the youth: ‘Well, then, are you coming up or d’you want to stay here?’ The continuous tense replace the simple present to express the imminent nature of the event. False cognates are the most well known examples of lexical items that require substitution because despite their morphological similarities their meanings diverge. e.g. editore/ editor (publisher). Partial cognates can be translated with equation or substitution, depending on context: (Taylor p.50) e.g. direttore Abstractions e.g. realtà Taylor (p.50-51) However it is important to remember that equation and word-for-word translation is justified where cognates match in terms of meanings as well as morphology. Literal translation should where possible be adopted, but in most translations others strategies are needed.

5 Substitution The implementation of a translation that bears little or no morphological resemblance or semantic relation to the ST. Often a feature of grammar (certain aspects of verbs); prepositional phrases instead of Saxon genitive. At a semantic level rather than a morpho-syntactic one, proverbs, sayings and idiomatic expressions often require substitution, songs (in which rhyme and scanning plays a part). Taylor 53

6 Divergence Divergence consists in choosing a suitable translation from a potential range of alternatives, e.g. girare Sempre/niente (see taylor p.53-p54) Grammatical paradigms: e.g. dovesse succedere/ you’d better go early/ non serve lamentarsi (Taylor 54) As always contextual and co-textual clues help translators in making the right use of divergence.

7 convergence Rendering a range of alternatives with a single lexical item: e.g. tu,Lei voi, Loro with ‘you’ commercialista, ragioniere, contabile, with ‘accountant’.

8 Amplification Requires the translator to add some element to the ST to facilitate comprehension. e.g. translator’s notes, Though many additions are structural: e.g. collocation gaps. When a single lexical item in one language requires a co- selected collocate. e.g. hanno interesse a tenere il prezzo basso/ a vested interest (Taylor p-55). Amplification often is required to decode certain ST items whose linguistic, semantic, or cultural components may not be immediately clear. It is especially typical of proper nouns. e.g. County lost four none/ (Taylor 55) dopo Courtrai/ after the Battle of Courtrai It is also fairly frequent in technical and academic texts as an aid to comprehension.

9 Reduction Reduction consist of omitting an element in the TT text because it is regarded as redundant, or even misleading. e.g. carta geografica/ maps; globo terrestre/ globe /esporre in modo visibile/ display.

10 Diffusion While amplification and condensation refer to addition or subtraction of elements to a lexical item, diffusion refers to providing elaboration to bring out its meaning. e.g. Magari!/ If only I could/ would that it were/ I wish that were the case. e.g. Perfect conditional La banda avrebbe rapinato altre tre banche Requires use of the allegation form: e.g. The gang is alleged/ said/ thought/ reported to have robbed three other banks. The common imperfect form of dovere, in sentences like ‘doveva saperelo’, needs diffusing to: he should have known that. The same principle is at work when tackling certain Italian lexemes which are count nouns in English and often require premodifying determiners and prepositional phrases.

11 condensation This entails producing a more economic text in the TT.
e.g. A buon prezzo/ cheaply far vedere/show When Italian is the TT, prepositional verbs are regularly condensed. to make up for/ compensare A noted example of condensation is the use of compounding and noun strings and univariate strings to translate corresponding Italian sentences marked by verbs, adjectivals, and adverbial or prepositional phrases. e.g. Environmental Department Air Pollution Report Findings scandal/ Lo scandalo suscitato dai risultati del rapporto del Ministero dell’Ambiente sull’inquinamento dell’aria. (see Taylor pp for commonest types of compounds).


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