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Reordering Reordering concerns the field of comparative syntax.

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Presentation on theme: "Reordering Reordering concerns the field of comparative syntax."— Presentation transcript:

1 Reordering Reordering concerns the field of comparative syntax.

2 inversion At its simplest level reordering involves the need for the translator to operate inversion procedures. The most common of these are: a (a) adjective (attributive) noun sequences e.g. white horse/ cavallo bianco (b) verb object positioning e.g. io ti amo/ I love you However, it is important to know when and where not to operate such inversions. Taylor (p.61) gives the example of ‘high pressure’ translated by either alta pressione or pressione alta. Inversion would be appropriate only in the case of the medical condition, while inversion would be avoid for the meteorological meaning.

3 Varieties of set binominal pairings 1.Vita e morte/ life and death (perfect match) 2.Sano e salvo /fit and well (partial match/ same semantic field) 3.Bianco e nero/ black and white (perfect match but inverted order) 4.Il diavolo e l’acqua santa/ the devil and the deep blue sea (maintains half pairing) 5.Spick and span/ (no equivalent binominal form).

4 Reordering at sentence level Fronting intransitive verbs to introduce a new subject into Italian: e.g. è successa una disgrazia. Inversion would be the norm in translation into English. Further examples (Taylor p.62): Non è ancora giunto il tempo Passavono i plotoni Spuntò una donna alla svolta

5 ‘Disclocazione a sinistra’ In Italian this typically involves shifting the topic leftwards and placing its corresponding pronoun before the verb, to signal that it is the constituent about which the writer or speaker wants to talk. Taylor (p. 62) provides the following examples: Certi lavori li faceva lui. (certain jobs were done by him/ he was the one who took care certain jobs/ it was he who did certain jobs) Anche la storia della luna i falò la sapevo (io) (I also knew all about the story about the moon and the bonfires.) As a rule, translators should attempt to render such structures into more congruent English syntax. In the following ways: changing aspect, tense, or voice, fronting verbs or objects for emphasis, using cleft or pseudo cleft sentences The general rule in cases like these is to re-order the syntactic units into the most familiar patters of the target language.

6 The passive voice and reordering The passive voice is often used when translating impersonal constructions into English. Because English has a relatively rigid thematic structure, the use of the passive voice normally requires that the object of a clause be thematised, so moved into subject position. The main patterns of reordering are the following: 1. No reordering (though this passive form is less common in Italian): È amato da tutti/He is loved by everyone. 2. Impersonal ‘si’ construction. Tigers are found in India/ Le tigre si trovano in India. 3. An active form using verbs with impersonal agents I’ve been told that (to)/ Mi hanno detto che (di)

7 Reordering and aspect Reordering is obligatory with translating the continuous aspect of the passive voice in English. Continuous verb forms in the passive voice are translated in a number of ways: e.g. He is being interrogated: 1.lo si interroga 2.lo stanno interrogando 3. Viene interrogato

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