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Discovering the process of translation with triangulation model Dr Binghan ZHENG Lecturer in Chinese & Translation Studies School of Modern Languages &

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Presentation on theme: "Discovering the process of translation with triangulation model Dr Binghan ZHENG Lecturer in Chinese & Translation Studies School of Modern Languages &"— Presentation transcript:

1 Discovering the process of translation with triangulation model Dr Binghan ZHENG Lecturer in Chinese & Translation Studies School of Modern Languages & Cultures Durham University A discussion based on English-Chinese Translation Doing research multilingually: An exploratory seminar School of Education, Durham University 7th – 8th July, 2010

2 Outline 1. Introduction & background 2. Previous research & findings 3. Methodology & research design 4. Analysis & discussion 5. Limitations & future research 6. Appendix 2 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

3 1. Introduction and background Concept of ‘translation problems’ which manifests itself empirically has hardly been paid any attention by translation theorists. The reason for this may be the fact that translation theory has had a strong theoretical, speculative, and thus non- empirical orientation.(Lörscher 1991:92) Since the1980s, with the emergence and development of a process-oriented approach into TS, the concept of ‘translation problems’ and ‘translation strategies’ has gained crucial importance. 3 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010 The studies on “translation problems”(TPs)

4 1. Introduction and background Krings (1986a: ) distinguishes between three types of problems occurring in translating:  Translation problems  L2-competence problems  Translation-competence problems Lörscher (1991:94) defines TPs as all those (linguistic) problems which a subject is faced with when producing a translation. 4 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

5 1. Introduction and background How to identifying problems ?(Mondahl & Jensen 1996:102)  Primary indicator:  A translator’s identification of the problem, i.e. points out the problem directly/indirectly & verbalizes about it.  Secondary indicators:  The translator senses that something is problematic, e.g. competes suggestions for translation of same ST element, underlines elements of ST, dissatisfies with the translation chosen, makes corrections, or pauses. 5 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

6 1. Introduction and background Identifying TPs from TAPs in present research:  1) the translator points out the problem directly/indirectly & verbalizes about it;  2) the translator makes competing suggestions for the translation of the same ST element;  3) the translator indicates his/her pondering on some problem followed by long time pause. 6 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

7 2. Previous research and findings 2.1 The number of TPs  According to Ericsson & Simon (1984:90), with increasing experience of a task, a cognitively controlled process may change into an automatic process, so that what is available for verbalization to the novice may be unavailable to the expert.  Krings (1986) compared the TAPs of 1 professional translator and 8 English students and found out that the professional reported more TPs. 7 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

8 2. Previous research and findings 2.1 The number of TPs  Jääskeläinen & Tirkkonen-Condit (1991) further divided translation into routine & non-routine tasks.  “in non-routine tasks the total amount of verbalizations produced may not necessarily be considerably smaller, because while some processes become automated, other processes are evoked into consciousness, i.e., the translator becomes sensitized to new kinds of potential problems”. 8 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

9 2. Previous research and findings 2.2 The Hierarchy of TPs  The hierarchy of translation problem ↔ The hierarchy of translation strategy  “a translation strategy is a potentially conscious procedure for the solution of a problem which an individual is faced with when translating a text segment from one language into another” (Lörscher 1991a:76)  Jääskeläinen (1993): 9 Translation strategies Global strategies Local strategies Translation Problems Global problems Local problems BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

10 2. Previous research and findings 2.2 The Hierarchy of TPs  Séguinot (1991):  text level problems ↔ lexical level problems  Other arguments: non-professionals pay more attention to micro level translation problems (lexical choice, grammar reconstruction, etc.), professionals work more on macro level translation problems (style & function, cultural references, etc.) ( Gerloff 1988; Fraser 1993 ) 10 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

11 2. Previous research and findings 2.2 The Hierarchy of TPs Deficiencies in previous research:  1. Short of precise and systematic classification of hierarchy of TPs  2. Insufficient in comparative studies on hierarchy of TPs  3. Small sample size and number of subjects 11 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

12 2. Previous research and findings 2.2 The Hierarchy of TPs Hierarchy of TPs in present study: based on A Glossary of English Grammar (Leech 2006) and Problems in Analyzing Chinese Grammar ( Lü Shuxiang 1979:28) 12 The Hierarchy of TPs Hierarchy of Static Unit (syntax knowledge is rarely applied) Word levelPhrase level Hierarchy of Dynamic Unit (syntax knowledge is frequently applied) Clause level Sentence and above level BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

13 3. Methodology and research design The Triangulation Model(cf. Alves 2003) :  Several data collection methods for cross-examination of the results  Up-to-date ideal research model in process-oriented TS The Triangulation Model in present study: 13 TAPs Interviews (retrospective TAPs) Translation evaluations Questionnaires BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

14 3. Methodology and research design The subjects:  20 volunteer subjects  Chinese L1, English L2  Three categories: professional, semi-professional, novice  36 samples collected from 18 subjects after screening 14 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

15 Basic information on subjects (S1-S18) TypeSubjectAge RangeTranslation Experience NoviceS1-S Less than 2 years part-time translation experience; less than 30,000 Chinese words in E – C translation; have never published translation work. Semi- professional S7-S More than 3 years part-time translation experience; have never had full-time professional translation experience; 100, ,000 Chinese words in E – C translation; have never published translation work. ProfessionalS13-S More than 3 years full-time professional translation experience; more than 500,000 Chinese words in E – C translation; have had some translation works published. 3. Methodology and research design 15 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

16 The source texts Text Ⅰ: a popular science essay. Text Ⅱ: a political speech text. Concerns: To include different writing styles To balance the difficulties for translation 3. Methodology and research design 16 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

17 Experiment procedure a. TA training  3 GRE logic questions, verbalizing anything that went through minds.  Introspective remarks or explanations to be strictly avoided.  Feedback given with suggestions for improvement.  Help for familiarization with the experimental environment in a usability lab. 3. Methodology and research design 17 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

18 Experiment procedure b. Data collection 3. Methodology and research design 18 A follow-up interview after translation tasks Translate two STs with a briefing and perform concurrent thinking aloud translations. Monitoring and taking notes through a glass partition reminder with a remote apparatus when a subject becomes too engrossed in the task and forgets to verbalize for over 5 seconds. Start with a warm-up exercise BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

19 Experiment procedure c. Transcription and evaluation  Transcription conventions were based on Englund Dimotrova (2005) with some additional unique symbols.  Two professors who are experienced in marking E-C translation tests to assess the target texts (TTs) produced by all subjects. 3. Methodology and research design 19 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

20 4.1. The number of TPs A. Data analysis:  In general, the number of TPs decreases with the improvement in translation proficiency. 4. Analysis and discussion 20 Type Number & percentage (total) Number & percentage (routine) Number & percentage (non-routine) Novices208; 38.45%109; 43.78%99; 33.90% Semi- professionals175; 32.35%76; 30.52%99; 33.90% Professionals158; 29.20%64; 25.70%94; 32.20% BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

21 4.1. The number of TPs A. Data analysis:  In line with the automaticity hypothesis: cognitive processes tend to become more automatic through repeated practice, hence professionals, with more practice and experience in translation, tend to have fewer translation problems. 4. Analysis and discussion 21 Type Number & percentage (total) Number & percentage (routine) Number & percentage (non-routine) Novices208; 38.45%109; 43.78%99; 33.90% Semi- professionals175; 32.35%76; 30.52%99; 33.90% Professionals158; 29.20%64; 25.70%94; 32.20% BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

22 4.1. The number of TPs A. Data analysis:  Compare:  A. Professional translator in Seguinot (1989) verbalised little and in general worked quickly and efficiently.  --Carried out routine tasks  B. Krings (1988a), Gerloff (1988), and Jääskeläinen (1990b) reported the exact opposite happening: professional translators spent more time and more effort on the task than non-professionals.  --Carried out non-routine tasks 4. Analysis and discussion 22 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

23 4.1. The number of TPs B. Further study on routine and non-routine tasks: 4. Analysis and discussion 23 Type Number & percentage (total) Number & percentage (routine) Number & percentage (non- routine) Novices208; 38.45%109; 43.78%99; 33.90% Semi- professionals175; 32.35%76; 30.52%99; 33.90% Professionals158; 29.20%64; 25.70%94; 32.20% BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010  a) In routine tasks, the number decreases significantly at the higher levels of translation proficiency; while in non-routine tasks, there are almost no differences between three types of subjects in number of TPs.

24 4.1. The number of TPs B. Further study on routine and non-routine tasks: 4. Analysis and discussion 24 Type Number & percentage (total) Number & percentage (routine) Number & percentage (non- routine) Novices208; 38.45%109; 43.78%99; 33.90% Semi- professionals175; 32.35%76; 30.52%99; 33.90% Professionals158; 29.20%64; 25.70%94; 32.20% BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010  b) Novices have minimum difference between routine and non-routine tasks in number of TPs (109 vs 99), while professionals have maximum difference (64 vs 94).

25 4.1. The number of TPs B. Further study on routine and non-routine tasks: 4. Analysis and discussion 25 Type Number & percentage (total) Number & percentage (routine) Number & percentage (non- routine) Novices208; 38.45%109; 43.78%99; 33.90% Semi- professionals175; 32.35%76; 30.52%99; 33.90% Professionals158; 29.20%64; 25.70%94; 32.20% BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010  c) 14 out of 18 subjects (77.8%) have fewer TPs in carrying out routine tasks, which means routine tasks are performed quickly and effortlessly with fewer TPs to be solved; however, this rule does not apply to novices as only 50% of them have fewer TPs in doing routine tasks.

26 4.1. The number of TPs C. Conclusion:  The number of TPs can by no means serve as an indicator for translation proficiency in a general way.  It reduces with increased automaticity in translating, but increases with growing awareness of potential problems.  This is the same for translators in non-routine situations.  The number of TPs can to some extent serve as an indicator for translation proficiency in translating routine tasks. 4. Analysis and discussion 26 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

27 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs A. General distribution of TPs in different hierarchies 4. Analysis and discussion 27 TypeWord level Phrase levelClause level Sentence and above level Novices Semi-professionals Professionals Average percentage BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010  Static Unit(word, phrase level) accounts for 71.22%; Dynamic Unit(clause, sentence and above sentence level) accounts for 28.79%.

28 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs A. General distribution of TPs in different hierarchies 4. Analysis and discussion 28 TypeWord level Phrase levelClause level Sentence and above level Novices Semi-professionals Professionals Average percentage BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010  Compare: Krings (1987:169) argued that 90% of TPs are at word level, which is much higher percentage than that in our statistic result.

29 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs A. General distribution of TPs in different hierarchies  Justifications: a) Krings’ subjects are 8 English MA students, classified as non- professionals in our research, have comparatively higher percentages in lower level TPs. b) Krings’ translation tasks--English-German translations (between family languages) The present tasks--English-Chinese translations (between distant languages). Due to larger difference in syntax structures & cultural factors, E-C translation is comparatively more complicated, produces more macro TPs to be considered. 4. Analysis and discussion 29 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

30 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs A. General distribution of TPs in different hierarchies  Features in Chinese language: parataxis, covert cohesion, preponderance of verbs, (verb) serialization, etc.  Features in English language: hypotaxis, overt cohesion, preponderance of nouns, subordination, etc.  E-C translating, to faithfully render English into expressive and idiomatic Chinese expressions, avoiding Europeanized translation, a translator has to deal with many translation problems at clause, sentence and above sentence level. 4. Analysis and discussion 30 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

31 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs B. Comparative study of TPs among different translators:  Percentages in hierarchy of Static Unit: Professionals < Semi-professionals < Novices  Percentages in hierarchy of Dynamic Unit: Novices < Semi-professionals < Professionals 4. Analysis and discussion 31 TypeWord level Phrase levelClause level Sentence & above level Novices Semi-professionals Professionals Average percentage BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

32 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs B. Comparative study of TPs among different translators:  In line with Jääskeläinen(1993) & Lörscher(1993): with improvement in translation proficiency, a translator tends to have more macro level TPs. 4. Analysis and discussion 32 TypeWord level Phrase levelClause level Sentence & above level Novices Semi-professionals Professionals Average percentage BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

33 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs B. Comparative study of TPs between different translators:  Justifications:  a) More potential micro level problems (lexical choice, collocation, idiom equivalence) can be solved within automatic translation processes.  b) Translators become more sensitive to macro level problems, more flexible in sentence transference and consider more translation problems inherent in language structures.  In E-C translation, dividing English long sentences into Chinese short sentence expressions, changing English passive voice into Chinese active voice, are all favored strategies leading to better translation. 4. Analysis and discussion 33 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

34 4.2. The hierarchy of TPs B. Comparative study of TPs between different translators:  Justifications:  c) Different modes of translation process:  Professionals: ‘top-down’ approach  Focus: A global view and overall understanding of the text  Novices: ‘bottom-up’ approach  Focus: The expression of separate words or phrases 4. Analysis and discussion 34 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

35 Limitations:  Experimental techniques & corpus scale Future research:  Chinese into English translation  Triangulation model consisting of TAPs, Translog or Camtasia, post-experiment interviews and so on. 5. Limitations and future research 35 BINGHAN ZHENG(DR) Doing research multilingually_Durham_2010

36 CPExplanations TAPs examples CM The participant is facing an unfamiliar word or phrase and consulting it with translation instruments. ( S2/novice/V1 ) ( TAPs ):◇( symphony )〖金山词霸〗查一下什么意思, s-y-m- p-h-o-n-y 交响乐,交响曲,交响乐, symphony ,◆/ symphony… 交 响曲吧。 ( English for TAPs ):◇( symphony )〖 Kingsoft Powerword 〗 Check the meaning , s-y-m-p-h-o-n-y Jiaoxiangyue, Jiaoxiangqu, Jiaoxiangyue , symphony ,◆/ symphony…ok, use jiaoxiangqu. VM The participant is not sure about the meaning of a word or phrase and verifying it with translation instruments. ( S7/semi-professional/V2 ) ( TAPs ): terror 就把它翻译成恐怖势力吧?查一下。〖金山词霸〗 ◇ t-e-r-r-o-r [ 14s ]◆嗯,△我们共同反对恐怖行~/恐怖行动 ▲ / ( English for TAPs ): terror, how about Kongbu Shili ? Have a check. 〖 Kingsoft Powerword 〗◇ t-e-r-r-o-r [ 14s ]◆ eh, △ Women Gongtong Fandui Kongbu Xing ~/ Kongbu Xingdong ▲ / Explanations and examples on consulting purposes (CP) 6. Appendix : examples of TAPs transcription and protocol presenting

37 CPExplanations TAPs examples OE The participant acknowledges the general meaning of a word or phrase and search for its extra optimized expressions to fit for the particular context. ( S14/professional/V1 ) ( TAPs ): judgment 翻译成评判?/论断?/嗯-先查一下词典看一下 judgment 还有没有别的 翻译 ? ◇〖金山词霸〗 judgment , judgment…… 呃 —— 意见,看法,◆那么就可以翻译成 —— /这 里竟然用到 conceive↓ , conceive 一般都是说一个很重要的理论,不能仅仅只说,道德(的一个 看法)/道德 —— 评判?判断? judgment 这里只能翻译成判断喽。 ( English for TAPs ): judgment, say, Pingpan?/Lunduan? / eh - look it up first, judgment, see if any other translations ◇〖 Kingsoft Powerword 〗 judgment , judgment……er——Yijian, Kanfa, ◆ ok then I can translate it as —— / Here’s “conceive”↓. Conceive generally refers to a very important theory. Cannot only say Daode ( de Yige Kanfa )/ Daode——Pingpan ? Panduan ? So judgment here can only be translated as Panduan. SC The participant acknowledges the meaning of a word or phrase and search for its proper collocation from translation instruments ( S13/professional/V1 ) ( TAPs ): brilliant ,伟大的, brilliant /( brilliant )换一个词,换一个词,因为前面已经有 “ 伟 大 ” 和 “ 杰出 ” 了,换一个近义词, brilliant ,查一下金山词霸/◇〖金山词霸〗~ l-i-a-n-t , brilliant , 有才气的 ……[2s] ◆/才气,才气形容人不能形容理论 ……[2s] 思考一个怎样的理论?/科学理 论/思考一个/◇ brilliant ,辉煌的,壮丽的,超群的,超群的,卓越的,看(一下)卓越的或 者超群的科学理论。 ( English for TAPs ): brilliant , Weida de , brilliant /( brilliant ) change a word, change a word, ‘coz there are Weida and Jiechu already, should use a synonym , brilliant , have a check in the Powerword /◇〖 Kingsoft Powerword 〗~ l-i-a-n-t , brilliant , You Caiqi de……[2s] ◆/ Caiqi , Caiqi modifies a person, not a theory……[2s]think about a what theory ?/ scientific theory / think about a /◇ brilliant , Huihuang de , Zhuangli de , Chaoqun de , Chaoqun de , Zuoyue de, say, Zuoyue de or Chaoqun de scientific theory.

38 Thank you very much! Questions & comments… 38 Contact Information: Binghan ZHENG (Dr) Lecturer in Chinese & Translation Studies School of Modern Languages & Cultures Durham University Doing research multilingually: An exploratory seminar School of Education, Durham University 7th – 8th July, 2010


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