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11. Translation Equivalence. V. Ivir (1981) 'Formal Correspondence vs. Translation Equivalence Revisited', Poetics Today, 51-59 Ivir (1978) Teorija i.

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Presentation on theme: "11. Translation Equivalence. V. Ivir (1981) 'Formal Correspondence vs. Translation Equivalence Revisited', Poetics Today, 51-59 Ivir (1978) Teorija i."— Presentation transcript:

1 11. Translation Equivalence

2 V. Ivir (1981) 'Formal Correspondence vs. Translation Equivalence Revisited', Poetics Today, Ivir (1978) Teorija i tehnika prevođenja. Centar “Karlovačka gimnazija” Chesterman, A. (1998) Contrastive Functional Analysis. J. Benjamins Fawcett, P. (1997) Translation and Language. J. Benjamins Munday, J. (2001) Introducing Translation Studies. Routledge Marton (1968), Ivir (1978, 1970, 1991), Krzeszowsky (1071, 1972), Raabe (1972)

3 FC & TE: different though not unrelated concepts FORMAL CORRESPONDENCE TRANSLATION EQUIVALENCE - CA-metalanguage of TR - role of FC in TR - concerns the role of linguistics in translation - TE in CA concerns the role of CA in translating - concerns the place of linguistics in TR theory

4 Aim of paper: place an role of CA & TR in FC place and role of CA & TR theory in TE: both FC & TE are needed in TR and CA

5 Main topics: TE FC FC & TE in the Process of TR (Model)

6 TRANSLATION EQUIVALENCE - views TE as a product TE as a process

7 TE viewed as a TEXT / product STATIC VIEW, i.e.linguistic view: TEXT as a unit of TR TR - 'the replacement of textual material in one language (SL) by equivalent textual material in another language (TL)' - Catford ) 'rendition of a text from one language to another (Bolinger 1966:130) TE holds between linguistic units (texts):  TLR's task - to find those units in SL and TL TR - also concerned with: textual features text structure (lower units) text typology (Bühler, Reiss, Nord)

8 TR viewed as a process DYNAMIC VIEW, i.e. COMMUNICATIVE APPROACH = message as the basic unit of comunication TR = substituting messages in one language for messages in another language' (Jakobson 1959:235), i.e.: TR = 'reproducing in the receptor language the closest natural equivalent of the message of the source language (Nida 1969:495)

9 COMMUNICATIVE VIEW of TR: TRANSLATION viewed: NOT as a static relationship between texts in different languages BUT: TR as a product of the dynamic process of communication between: the SENDER of the original message and the ULTIMATE RECEIVER of the translated message via the TRANSLATOR, who is the receiver of the original message and the sender of the translated message

10 MESSAGE = DEF: 'configurations of extralinguistic features communicated in a given situation' (Ivir 1981:52)

11 COMMUNICATION - as a PROCESS: ORIGINAL SENDER starts from the extralinguistic features in the communicative situation (extralinguistic content) relies on the resources of SL to express/convy these features depends on his own command of SL (age, sex, profession, education…) must assess the nature of sociolinguistic relationship between him and his actual potential receivers CODES all the above to produce SL text TRANSLATOR: the coded message reaches the TLR via the spatio-temporal channel decodes the SL message / text CODES THE MESSAGE AGAIN, relying on: The resources of the TL (linguistic nature) His command of the TL (linguistic person) His assessment of the relationship between him and the TL receiver ULTIMATE RECEIVER receives and decodes the translated message restrictions & limitations

12 Key issue: WHAT DOES / SHOULD REMAIN CONSTANT? WHAT IS REVERTED TO? message rather than text

13 TRANSLATOR: does not proceed directly from the SLT to TLT goes back to the configuration of extralinguistic features of the SL message re-codes the message produces a text in the TL (BUT in a new and different communicative situation) for the benefit of the (ultimate), i.e. TL receiver

14 COMMENTS: (TR & TE): 1. TRANSLATOR'S job (TLR/SLsender vs TLR/TL receiver) 2. LOSSES in communicating the message 3. RELATIVITY OF communication (and translation):

15 1. TRANSLATOR'S job (TLR/SLsender vs TLR/TL receiver) TLR's job: essentially not different from the job of other SL receiver of the message (in the normal process of comm.) TLR's job in encoding the received message into Tl is not unlike the task performed by the original sender only the communication situation is different (TLR/orig.sender) - TLR = a different linguistic person TLR codes the message for different receivers than the original sender

16 2. LOSSES in communicating the message Messages are not communicated absolutely (MODIFICATIONS): a) modification of SLM in the process of coding: DEPENDS on: structure, potential of SL sender's command of SL the intended audience b) modification of SLM in the process of transmission ('noise in the channel') c) modification in the process of decoding: receiver's command of TL (his SL) his ability to grasp the sender's message

17 MODIFICATIONS: when TLR receives the original message when TLR codes the message when the message passes through the communicative channel/transmission when the ULTIMATE RECEIVER decodes the message

18 3. RELATIVITY OF communication (and translation): Ivir 1985: 'equivalence holds between messages (Sender - TLR - Receiver) which changes as little and as much as necessary to ensure communication' Steiner 1975:47: 'An act of translation takes place each time that a text is produced as a coded expression of a particular configuration of extralinguistic features and is decoded to enable the receiver to receive the message' EQ is matter of relational dynamics in a comm. act EQ is realized only in an act of communication, not outside it EQ only exists in communication, not separately

19 Cf.: e.g. phonemes (abstract unit of a linguistic system): only exist (physically) within the speech act in which they are realized each new realization is a product of different speech act (comm. situation) e.g. a person's signature: no 'ideal signature' - yet it is recognized as 'same' as long as the characteristic features are presented - to ensure equivalence with anyother realizations

20 FORMAL CORRESPONDENCE AND TRANSLATION ? Why FC: if TE is achieved at the level of messages rather than linguistic units? There is a sense in which FC holds together the SLT and TLT!

21 FC – definitions Catford 1965: Identity of functions of correspondent items in two linguistic systems A formal correspondent is ‘any TL category which may be said to occupy, as nearly as possible, the same place in the economy of the TL as the given SL category occupies in the SL (1965:37)

22 Marton (1968), Krzeszowski (1971, 1972): concept of congruence/equivalence: presence in any two languages of the same number of equivalent formatives arranged in the same order (at highly abstract levels)

23 Krzeszowski 1972: Equivalence exists only between ‘sentences possessing identical deep structures’ (i.e. semantic representations of meaning) rather than those which were translations of each other Equivalent sentences at the level of deep structure are also congruent, which later disappears in the derivational stages towards the surface structure

24 FC and congruence/equivalence = attempt at bringing linguistic units: of the SL and TL into some kind of relationship for the purpose of contrasting tertium comparationis provided by: identity of FUNCTION identity of MEANING

25 TR vs CA: CA also deals with elements of two languages which stand in a translational relationship = tertium comparationis based upon a common feature (form/function or meaning)

26 FC vs TC FC: impossible without TC – But: What can serve as TC?

27 TERTIUM COMPARATIONIS 1. independently described (unique) semantic system: categories held constant linguistic expressions (in pairs of languages) contrasted BUT: NO such system has yet been proposed (lexical sematics?) 2. common metalanguage in describing both SL and TL 3. The concept of TE – necessary to arrive at FC for contrastive purposes

28 2. Common metalanguage (?): provides categories to hatch the appropriate parts of the two systems if descriptions are matchable – Contrasting: mapping one description upon the other to establish the degree of fit BUT: ling. descriptions of NO two languages meet this requirement

29 Catford: no such FC exists even betwwen closely related pairs of languages no/hardly any category in SL that performs the same FUNCTION in TL the probability of substitutability decreases with typological and genetic distance

30 Krezsowski: deep structure – a notion from metalanguage - is far from clear e.g. ‘transformations’ and their meaning preserving nature – not clear

31 3. The concept of TE The concept of TE – necessary to arrive at FC for contrastive purposes: CA begins with sentences which are obviously translation pairs BUT: TE rests upon and holds between messages and not linguistic units !!! To find the necessary TC we must go beyond equivalence FC – a good candidate for tertium comparationis

32 TWO APPROACHES TO FC: language-basedtext-based - system-based - one-to-one relationship between correspondents - equivalence-based - one-to-many correspondence- dependent on each particular communicative situation - never hatched in totality - match: only in those of their meanings with which they participate in the particular SLT and TLT

33 FC – TE – TC (examples) e.g. 1 HR – instrumental case:ENGL. 1. prep.: with by on through acros along in 2. subject position o the N in question 3. plural of the N in question 4. adv. –ly 5. etc.

34 NB: different correspondents stand for different meanings of the CRO instrumental case: with /instrument/rezati nožem (cut with the knife) /company/doći s nekim (come with someone) by/means of transp./ doći vlakom (come by train) on/time/muzej zatvoren utorkom (on Tuesday) plural N /time/ (Tuesdays) in/place/šetati parkom (walk in the park) through /place)prolaziti šumom (walk through the forest) across / place/prelaziti poljemwalk across the field) along/place/ići cestom(walk along the road) subject N /place/pijev ptica odzvanja šumom (the forest resounded with the chirping of birds) Ø caseovim kjučem mogu se otvoriti sva vrata (this key will open all the doors) adv. –ly /manner/s indignacijom (indignantly)

35 Notes: 1. FC for (instrumental in CRO) – in all translationally equivalent texts 2. FC establishes a list of formal ling. elements each of which corresponds not to CRO instrumental as acategory but to some particular aspect of menaing 3. Pedagogical implications – (for the learner) 4. One-to-many relationship – not only in contrasting BUT also in one and the same language (/time/, /on Monday/Mondays)

36 CONTRASTIVE LINGUISTICS & ANALYSIS TRANSLATION EQUIVALENCE vs FORMAL CORRESPONDENCE TR: replacing something in SL for something in TL that is equivalent to SL. What is replaced? linguistic forms ? texts ? messages in communication ? Indisputable: replacing must ensure equivalence!

37 EQUIVALENCE: key-issue in TR replaceability of linguistic forms / texts ? replaceability depends on factors of a particular communicative situation (e.g. M1 vs L1; M2 vs L2, extralinguistic information, S vs L1, R vs L2; S vs TLR vs R, non-linguistic factors)

38 THEREFORE: TE should be looked upon NEITHER as a relationship between linguistic units of two linguistic systems or their parts, NOR as a simplified transformation of SLT into TLT under some unidirectional rules.

39 (Ivir 1976:89) such relationships (ling. forms and texts) are accounted for by formal correspondence (FC), not translation equivalence (TE)

40 FC vs TE ? FC is established on the level of linguistic systems TE is established on the level of communicative situations

41 FC: the relationship between a linguistic unit in L1 and its corresponding unit in L2, i.e. the one that in the TL system occupies the same place as the L1 unit does within the SL system (Catford 1965)

42 FC of units which are given the same name (category) in the (meta)language – language used to describe the two linguistic systems; e.g.: FC between English and Croatian tenses or a single tense, aspect (CRO – Rus, Engl. Poss. Adj. And Cro Poss. Adj. …) = tertium comparationis

43 TC: tertium comparationis – the category/term that holds together the units of the two linguistic systems; a pre-requisite for CA: Pairing of those elements or categories of two language systems which possess some common formal or semantic property; to be comparable, there must be a third means against which the two are compared - tertium comparationis

44 Tertium Comparationis may be: any formal or semantic feature (e.g. eventual – eventualan; kandidat – candidate/applicant); any grammatical feature: locative in Cro vs. corresponding categories in English (e.g. prep. Phrase and nominative subject: U kovčegu …/ In the suitcase / This suitcase will …); progressive tense = aspect in Cro; possessive = dative in Cro; definite article = Cro word order same semantic content used as TC (possessive adjective = possessive adjective / reflexive / personal pronoun / ø correspondent / :

45 e.g.: I took his advice – Primio sam njegov savjet He took his books – Uzeo je svoje knjige You’ve endangered his life – Ugrozili ste mu život He shrugged his shoulders – Slegnuo je ramenima.

46 Contrastive analysis A thorough CA should specify all the conditions under which one particular linguistic element or grammatical category is selected – sometimes a very complex procedure CA – examines the extent to which L1 and L2 differ or agree according to form, syntactic function/behaviour and meaning

47 APPLICATION OF CA: CA – useful in explaining TR process between any pair of languages and therefore useful for the theory and practice of TR CA – useful in producing bilingual dictionaries CA – useful to produce bilingual lists/manuals of contrastive grammatical structures between any two languages, also specifying the conditions for selecting a particular structure or item CA studies the categories of one language against the corresponding categories of the other language

48 The relationship between CA and TR is reciprocal: CA TR & TR CA However, CA ≠ TR and TR ≠ CA: CA studies the elements in two languages undergoing a reciprocal TR relationship. These elements are the elements of comparison (TC) CA, though using TR and serving TR, is not the same as TR, and TR is to the same as CA.

49 Back-translation as a test on FC RULE 1: any Formal Correspondent is necessarily a potential Translational Equivalent RULE 2: Any Translational Equivalent is not necessarily a Formal Correspondent

50 Ivir 1993 “Since TE takes place on the level of message, within the communicative act, and FC occurs on the level of linguistic units in the text, it can be inferred that TR (i.e. realisation of TE) is not a one-directional process of transforming units of one language into FC units of another”;

51 TRANSLATION PROCESS: TR involves a complex a multi-directional relationship between: the message and its encoded form, TLR’s decoding and acceptance of the message, its re-encoding into TL, and finally decoding by the ultimate receiver.

52 THEREFORE, in a communicative situation / act, equivalence is often realised into linguistic units which are NOT formal correspondents to the un its in SL.

53 FC is tested by back-TR, i.e. FCs are only those units of a translated text which can be back-translated into the units that existed in SL text. Back-TR translation must be literal, not free, i.e. the semantic content of the linguistic units must be preserved: They lived on the same block Živjeli su u istoj ulici. (TE) – equivalency on the message level (US urban feature, close & intimate neighbourhood) Živjeli su u istom bloku (FC) – cultural element is lost: (back-translation): They lived on the same street

54 TOTAL vs PARTIAL CORRESPONDENCE: ‘one-to-one correspondence’ (total: between formal units via TC) ‘one-to-many correspondence’ (partial: established through text, i.e. textual correspondents correspond to each other only in those meanings/senses which they contribute to the particular text)

55 Role of FC in TR FC established by CA of linguistic units in the texts of two languages represents the linguistic component in the communicative theory of translation

56 Levels of contrastive analysis phonological morphological syntactic lexical / semantic pragmatic cognitive textual

57 II

58 TRANSLATION EQUIVALENCE TR: - a procedure involved in conveying / transfer of EXT.LING. information between participants not sharing a common ling. code ASSUMPTION: one and the same EXT.LING. content can be coded in a number of ling. expressions equivalence can be achieved between different expressions (within the same lang. and among different languages) of the same EXT.LING. content

59 The concept of EQUIVALENCE -in the focus of any communic. theory of TR goal and objective of any translation Assumption: - L1 TEXT (SLT) equivalent to L2 TEXT (TLT) a fact admitted by all theories also intuitively felt & known by common people

60 TE & THEORIES OF TR - dichotomy (throughout history): linguistic theories - based on the EQ relations between linguistic units in SL and TL communicative theories based on the EQ of information / messages in SL and TL - search for ling. means in TL to express the ext. ling. content in SL TLR - acts as the Sender and chooses in TL the most adequate ling. expression to convey the ext.ling. content and intent

61 The dichotomy - present in theory and practice of TR: i.e. in dilemmas such as: LINGUISTIC COMMUNICATIVE literal vs. free exact (SL-oriented) vs. natural (TL- oriented) semantic (opaque)vs.communicative (transparent) faithful vs. elaborated, neat (poetry, art)

62 REALISTIC APPROACH: combination of I and II (renouncing on extremes) 'some of the best translations: between literal TR and paraphrase' (Vinay - Darbelnet Stylistique comparée du français et de l'anglais)

63 EQUIVALENCE vs (UN)TRANSLATABILITY linguistically: TR is impossible: (no equivalence among formal linguistic units of two different languages because of different ling. organisation (different systems in SL and TL) except in the sense of formal correspondence (Catford) FORMAL CORRESPONDENCE: formal correspondent' any TL category which may be said to occupy, as nearly as possible, the same place in the economy of TL as the given SL category occupies in the SL' (Catford 1965:32-34) BUT: Do such categories function in the same way (within each system) both in SL and TL? formal correspondence vs translation equivalence: FC - established at the level of language systems TE - established at the level of the extralinguistic content

64 communicatively: EQ is possible only indirectly: NOT through the linguistic units (words, sentence, text/Catford) BUT through the extralinguistic situation

65 TRANSLATION, i.e. ensuring equivalence, therefore is: NOT a simple transformation of SL TEXT into a translated TEXT according to unidirectional rules of formal-semantic correspondence BUT a process involving multidirectional relationships between: the INFORMATION (extralinguistic content) and its linguistic form (in SL), translator's decoding (receipt) of the message translator's re-coding of the SL message in the TL, and final decoding of the TRANSLATOR's message by the ultimate receiver in theTL (cf. Ivir 1992) impact of the communication channel(s)

66 TR: a dynamic process of constant reverting to the ext.ling. content within the influence of all the factors of elastic tension of the requirements on equivalence in the communication process EQ: a dynamic relationship in a communicative act (EQ only exists in a comm. act) cf. phoneme vs their realization in speech (allophones) cf. a person's signature

67 CONDITIONS OF EQUIVALENCE Leipzig school of the theory of TR: linguistic appr. to EQ Nida 1964, 1969, 'dynamic equivalence' - established by finding the 'closest natural equivalent' in the TL for the message contained in the SL ensuring the 'equivalence in difference' (Jakobson 1959)

68 Dynamic equivalence established at the level of ext. ling. content in a communicative act, NOT - at the level of ling. units BUT: - linguistic units of SL and TL also enter some kind of a relationship: i.e. the relationship of - formal correspondence

69 The relationship of formal correspondence: a) Catford: identity of linguistic forms/units between two languages Tert. Comp. : functional identity of formal categories in two ling. systems WHY IMPOSSIBLE ??? (an, independently described, semantic system whose categories are constant - T. comparat. - whereas their ling. expressions in pairs of language would be contrastes) BUT: no such system has yet been proposed!

70 b) common metalanguage: by which both SL and TL would be described to the same degree of exhaustiveness - this metalanguage should supply CATEGORIES in terms of which the appropriate parts of the two systems would be contrasted - matchable descriptions = contrasting would consist simply in mapping one description upon thenother to establish the degree of fit. WHY IMPOSSIBLE ??? - the description of no two languages meet this requirement FC- as described by Catford hardly exist (only simple / exemplary sent. - on deep structure level) - BUT: status of DS and meaning-preserving nature of transformations are far from clear; it is hard to find categories that would perform the 'same' function in two ling. systems - such probability decreases with typological and genetic distance

71 c) return to TE for the search of a suitable TERTIUM COMPARATIONIS for contrastive purposes Nida/Ivir: identity of function / meaning in two texts (SLT and TLT) - we must go beyondequivalence to findthe necessary TC : FC is a good candidate, but a FC defined NOT as referring to linguistic systems BUT with reference to TRANSLATIONALLY EQUIVALENT TEXTS:, I.E.: all those isolable elements of linguistic form which occupy identical positions (i.e serve as formal carriers of identical units of meaning) in their respective (translationally equivalent) texts. TE: is text-based (performance-parole)

72 formal correspondents stand in ONE-TO-ONE relationship of correspondence formal correspondents stand in ONE-TO-MANY relationships i.e. one formal element in TL (=carrier of a specific meaning) may have one or more different formal elements (carriers of the SAME meaning) in TL Only such formal correspondents are relevant for the translator in the re-coding of the Message into the TR process = matching formal elements (=carriers of meaning) in SL with all the formal elements (=carriers of meaning) in TL BUT: only those textual formal correspondents which are carriers of adequate meanings are taken in the translation in TLT. in the process of this matching: - parts of the meaning of SL formal element may be /are lost connotations of the chosen element cannot be excluded alltogether

73 Therefore: a set of formal correspondents does NOT yield equivalence BUT - an inventory of semantic content of the original text The TRANSLATOR chooses from the above set and combines those formal elements which will produce in the TL 'the closest natural equivalent' for the original message. NATURAL (?) - in order to be equivalent (i.e. be a natural expression of the communication situation in TL - because it so functioned in the SL comm. sit.) CLOSEST (?) - because relativity of any comm. act excludes absolute equivalence

74 When deciding on transfer into a TL the TLR must: accept the untranlatability of a SL phrase in TL on the linguistic level accept the lack of a similar cultural convention in TL for the one in SL consider the range of TL phrases available and make a choice: class / status / age / sex of a speaker / speaker’s relationship to the listeners / context of their meeting in Tl, etc. consider the meaning of a particular content replace / substitute in the TL the ‘invariant core’ of the SL phrase (concerning system of text & system of culture (functional view) (‘invariant core’ – stable, basic, constant semantic element in the text)

75 SUBSTITUTION: NOT on the basis of linguistic elements of the phrase NOT on the basis of coresponding or similar image in the phrase BUT on the FUNCTION (semantic / cultural / sicioling.) of the idiom ON CONDITION - that the subsitutes serve the SAME PURPOSE

76 TYPES OF EQUIVALENCE (Popovič 1970): 1. linguistic - correspondence on the linguistic level (word-for-word TR) 2. paradigmatic – EQ on the paradigmatic axis (elem. of grammar) 3. stylistic - functional EQ. of SL & TL text – aiming at an expressive identity (with an invariant of identical meaning) 4. textual / syntagmatic EQ. – of form and shape in the syntagm. structuring of the text

77 TRANSLATION, therefore, involves the REPLACEMENT of: lexical elements between two languages grammatical elements, and also BEYOND 1. & 2.: the expressive identity between SLT and TLT may even involve moving away from 1 & 2 (e.g.: idioms, metaphor)

78 FORMAL EQUIVALENCE: focuses on the message itself in bot a) for & b) content, i.e. on correspondences such as (SL-bound TE): sentence to sentence concept to concept poem to poem (text to text)

79 DYNAMIC EQUIVALENCE: based on the principle of EQUIVALENT EFFECT = the inter-relationship between the Sender, the TLR, and the Receiver of the Message the relationship between the R and TRL should aim to be the same as that between the orig Receivers and the SL message

80 overall equivalence: = relationship betwee signs and what they stand for and those who use them e.g. swearing: ‘porca Madonna’ (blashemous – untranslatable) ‘fucking hell’ (pragmatic TR: to produce the same SHOCKING effect) e.g. letter writing: (woman to a friend): ‘with love’ (in 1812 vs. 1998)

81 Concl. 1: ‘To ask for the SAMENESS is ‘perverse’, i.e. - asking too much’ (Snell-Hoenby 1988)

82 Concl 2: EQUIVALENCE IN TR should NOT be approached as a search for the sameness: i.e. linguistic, paradigmatic, stylistic, & textual) – a goal impossible to articulate even within the same language, BUT(b) as adialiectic between the signs and the structures within and surronding SLT and TLT Neubert: One should look upon TR as (i) a process and (ii) as a product – therefore there is a need for a theory of equivalence relations

83 ABSENCE OR LACK OF TR EQUIVALENCE: in puns, word-plays, idioms, metaphor (i.e culture-bound concepts)

84 e.g. beat about the bush: - is to be translated by idioms in TL: IT: ‘Giovanni sta menando il can per l’aia’ E: ‘John is leading his dog around the threshing floor’ - literal TR (meaningless) E: ‘John is beating about the bush’ (dog) - communic. TR HR ‘Ivan se ponaša kao mačak oko vruće kaše’

85 e.g. bathroom E: Where is the bathroom? (US restaurant) HR: Gdje je kupaonica?- literal TR (underTR) HR: Gdje je WC? e.g. HR: Dobar tek. E: 0-TR IT: Buon apetito. e.g. (greeting on arrival and departure) HR: Dobra večer. … …Hvala. Doviđenja E: Good evening. … … Thanks. (Good-bye) IT: Buona sera. … … Grazie. Buona sera. e.g. (greeting at 11.10) E: Good morning HR: Dobar dan (‘Dobro jutro!’ sarcastic, comic effect)

86 European Translation Studies, une science qui dérange, and Why Equivalence Needn’t Be a Dirty Word © Anthony Pym 2000 First version published in TTR 8/1 (1995),

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