Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

GlobEng Verona 14th -16th February 2008 Dubbing into English – an alternative translation strategy Chris Taylor University of Trieste.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "GlobEng Verona 14th -16th February 2008 Dubbing into English – an alternative translation strategy Chris Taylor University of Trieste."— Presentation transcript:

1 GlobEng Verona 14th -16th February 2008 Dubbing into English – an alternative translation strategy Chris Taylor University of Trieste

2 Spoken Language The primacy of speech and an awareness of the properties of spoken discourse was long ignored, even by linguists (see Halliday, 1987). Scriptwriters of films and TV series were (and are) presumably even less aware of the properties of spoken discourse; hence the existence of what is variously called the language of film, filmese, etc. And translators of film language are then presented with a false text.

3 Film Language The language (and grammar) of film is a scripted construct created by writers, altered by directors and actors, in the creation of an artificially produced situation (APS)

4 Experiments Past experiments in Trieste have investigated the comparative use of discourse markers, hedges, tag questions, vague language, parataxis, etc. More recent work has turned to other features such as lexical density.

5 Robin Hood 1938 Friar Tuck: Robber and thief! Give me back my mutton joint!... Im a girdled friar and vowed to poverty. Robin Hood:If this is poverty, Ill be glad to share it with you. Friar Tuck:Give me back my mutton joint!... Robin Hood:Not so close, my thunderous one!

6 Lexical density Lexical words19 Lexical words19 Total words43 Total words43 Ratio1:2.2 Ratio1:2.2 These figures show similarity with written texts.

7 Dawsons Creek Screw pity. I love you. I love you Jack. I love that youre the bravest person I know… the kindest. I love that no matter what you do, your life is gonna stand out. I want to stand out with you… and your daughter.

8 Lexical Density Lexical words19 Lexical words19 Total words45 Total words45 Ratio1:3c Ratio1:3c Cf. Robin Hood

9 Film texts There is in fact a co-existence of written language features (complete sentences, high lexical density, lower grammatical intricacy, etc. written language features (complete sentences, high lexical density, lower grammatical intricacy, etc. spoken discourse (self-correction, hesitation, repetition, frequent use of linkage items such as discourse markers, overlapping speech, etc. spoken discourse (self-correction, hesitation, repetition, frequent use of linkage items such as discourse markers, overlapping speech, etc.

10 Translation In translation, all this becomes ever more apparent.

11 Translation of Dawsons Creek. Given the originals admittedly stated intention of not aiming at authentic dialogue, the dubbed version on Italian television, follows suit … only more so. Given the originals admittedly stated intention of not aiming at authentic dialogue, the dubbed version on Italian television, follows suit … only more so.

12 Translation of previous passage Al diavolo la compassione! Io ti amo. Ti amo, Jack. Ti amo perché sei la persona più corraggiosa che conosca… la più gentile. Ti amo perché qualunque cosa tu faccia, la tua vita sarà speciale, e io voglio esserlo con te.. e tua figlia. Al diavolo la compassione! Io ti amo. Ti amo, Jack. Ti amo perché sei la persona più corraggiosa che conosca… la più gentile. Ti amo perché qualunque cosa tu faccia, la tua vita sarà speciale, e io voglio esserlo con te.. e tua figlia. (very theatrical, too high a register – eg. use of subjunctive - and pays no heed to semi-vulgar language and substandard gonna, etc.) (very theatrical, too high a register – eg. use of subjunctive - and pays no heed to semi-vulgar language and substandard gonna, etc.)

13 Dawsons Creek in Italian According to Zandegù: According to Zandegù: The language can be given the label ZERO ORALITY referring to the reduction in variation at a stylistic, sociocultural and dialectal level.

14 So… film language is different from spontaneous spoken language … though it often attempts to recreate it with varying degrees of success … film language is different from spontaneous spoken language … though it often attempts to recreate it with varying degrees of success … … and the language of translation has been shown to have its own specificities (normalisation, explicitation, simplification, etc.) and to accentuate a number of the features associated with film language. … and the language of translation has been shown to have its own specificities (normalisation, explicitation, simplification, etc.) and to accentuate a number of the features associated with film language.

15 Furthermore Brunetta (1977) explains that original (Italian) film texts already use a simplified, normalised and levelled language. Brunetta (1977) explains that original (Italian) film texts already use a simplified, normalised and levelled language. For example when based on a book, story, etc. word order is usually normalised eg. sempre li guardavo/li guardavo sempre; si chiama essa/essa si chiama For example when based on a book, story, etc. word order is usually normalised eg. sempre li guardavo/li guardavo sempre; si chiama essa/essa si chiama Cf. Antonioni, Visconti Cf. Antonioni, Visconti

16 So where does this leave us with regard to translating films into English? Well, very few films and television programmes are translated into English, due to the predominance of English language products in the media. Well, very few films and television programmes are translated into English, due to the predominance of English language products in the media.

17 Subtitling But those few films that are translated are generally SUBTITLED. But those few films that are translated are generally SUBTITLED. This is regarded as a good thing by language students, language enthusiasts, film buffs, the deaf and indeed by the general public, who are not used to any other form of film translation. This is regarded as a good thing by language students, language enthusiasts, film buffs, the deaf and indeed by the general public, who are not used to any other form of film translation.

18 So … Dubbing into English? England is not a dubbing country cf. Germany, Italy, Spain, France? BUT

19 Ladri di biciclette 1948 The dubbed version contains: factual errors false characterisation total normalisation stereotyping

20 Errors tanto me to faccio accompagnà da lui a Porta Portese, noi rimaniamo qui damo una guardata ancora Anto, go with him to Porta Portese, might have better luck

21 False characterisation … Alfredo the thiefs mother is aggressive and will stop at nothing to protect her criminal offspring. In the dubbed version she is the classic mamma italiana.

22 … and stereotyping Mamma:ma che vo sto gran farabutto? Alfre vie su!! Mamma:Oh mio Dio! Whats he doing, Alfredo, whats he doing?

23 New project (Trieste/Forlì/Leeds/Durham) Survey to test British (and American) attitudes to dubbing. Survey to test British (and American) attitudes to dubbing. It has always been assumed that British audiences would not take to dubbing. It has always been assumed that British audiences would not take to dubbing. But it has never been investigated, let alone proved. But it has never been investigated, let alone proved.

24 Trieste dubbing project Students had to produce subtitled and dubbed versions of Il Commissario Montalbano and Prime Suspect Students had to produce subtitled and dubbed versions of Il Commissario Montalbano and Prime Suspect In the case of Montalbano, no dubbed version had yet been attempted. In the case of Montalbano, no dubbed version had yet been attempted.

25 Montalbano Culture-bound problems – Sicilian variety Culture-bound problems – Sicilian variety Stephen Sartirelli, author of the English translations of the Camilleri novels, explained that he just made it as colloquial as possible. But he had more room for manoeuvre – explanations, footnotes, etc.

26 Student versions In the students dubbed versions we find syntactic and lexical intervention. Syntax - simple, elided, repeated and use of phatic devices. Syntax - simple, elided, repeated and use of phatic devices. Lexis - colourful, colloquial, idiomatic, metaphorical, slang, taboo. Lexis - colourful, colloquial, idiomatic, metaphorical, slang, taboo.

27 However … … the skill lies in calibrating these features to the individual characters. For example, the lawyer uses a high, formal register but also grammatically incorrect sentences apparently typical of the South

28 Non-linguistic constraints Commissario = Superintendent (cf. translation into Italian of Detective Superintendent Tennison in Prime Suspect as Commissario Tennison. Commissario = Superintendent (cf. translation into Italian of Detective Superintendent Tennison in Prime Suspect as Commissario Tennison. BUT in the books the term had always been translated as Inspector and so he had to remain Inspector Montalbano (cf. Inspector Morse, etc.) BUT in the books the term had always been translated as Inspector and so he had to remain Inspector Montalbano (cf. Inspector Morse, etc.)

29 Intonation Anna: Ma mi sembrava importante. Anna: But maybe its important, isnt it? Two reasons Two reasons the frequency and naturalness of question tags in English (cf. use in similar series through parallel texts): the frequency and naturalness of question tags in English (cf. use in similar series through parallel texts): from the intonation of the speaker it is clear that she aimed to involve Montalbano. from the intonation of the speaker it is clear that she aimed to involve Montalbano.

30 Character quirks Lawyer Palillo says: Lawyer Palillo says: Peccato che questa persona senza occhiali non riesca a distinguere una gemma da una patata. (he wants to say he cant see very well). Pity, isnt it?..this person without glasses cant separate the wheat from the chaff.

31 To leave and not leave Nicolò: Mi sono imparato a fare la scaccia coi broccoli. Nicolò: Ive learnt a new recipe: scaccia coi broccoli. (Sicilian food is an important character in the Montalbano series, so leave it, adding a new recipe) The incorrect mi sono imparato is normalised as the person speaking is an educated journalist. Regionalisms are more frequent across all classes in Italy.

32 Comparative grammar … va a passeggiare il cane … va a passeggiare il cane … when walking his dog … when walking his dog The verb passeggiare is intransitive in Italian, but ironically the literal translation is correct in English. There is no point in forcing the issue.

33 Lip synch and timing Giacomo: Io, non ho ucciso mio fratello! Giacomo: Me, I didnt kill my brother (length of enunciation and lip synchronisation) Montalbano: Perchè? Montalbano: What happened? (translating with Why? has only one lip movement. What happened? respects the alternation open/half closed – open/half closed. (translating with Why? has only one lip movement. What happened? respects the alternation open/half closed – open/half closed.

34 Lip synchronisation Mi sembra davvero improbabile. Thats very unlikely. fra cinque minuti five minutes

35 Line length and delivery speed Non voleva essere di peso alla famiglia Non voleva essere di peso alla famiglia He didnt want to be a burden. He didnt want to be a burden. Lho accompagnato adesso in prigione a Vigata. Lho accompagnato adesso in prigione a Vigata. I have just taken him to prison. I have just taken him to prison.

36 Coordination with visual Il signor La Russa questa notte si è spogliato nudo, si è applicato ai polsi e alle caviglie questi, la fascia grande se lè legata al petto, ha indossato la cuffia, si è coperto il corpo, con la maschera il viso. Sembra tutta roba che si è fabbricato lui cu santa pacienza. Il signor La Russa questa notte si è spogliato nudo, si è applicato ai polsi e alle caviglie questi, la fascia grande se lè legata al petto, ha indossato la cuffia, si è coperto il corpo, con la maschera il viso. Sembra tutta roba che si è fabbricato lui cu santa pacienza. Mister La Russa, last night, stripped himself naked, applied these things on his wrists and ankles, tied the large strap to his chest, put on the cap, covered his body, and his face with the mask. It seemed like he made all the stuff himself with saintly patience. Mister La Russa, last night, stripped himself naked, applied these things on his wrists and ankles, tied the large strap to his chest, put on the cap, covered his body, and his face with the mask. It seemed like he made all the stuff himself with saintly patience.

37 General considerations 1. Lip synch helps anchor stess patterns, etc. but imposes modifications; 2. Greater timing synch gives impression that actors are speaking English, Italian or whatever, but there is enforced loss of some details; 3. Coordination with the visual can impose strained syntax.

38 So if dubbing into English takes off… we are going to be dealing with a use of language that is different from any hitherto studied in terms of information structure, cohesion, transitivity patterns, lexical choice, register, etc. we are going to be dealing with a use of language that is different from any hitherto studied in terms of information structure, cohesion, transitivity patterns, lexical choice, register, etc. So be it. So be it.


Download ppt "GlobEng Verona 14th -16th February 2008 Dubbing into English – an alternative translation strategy Chris Taylor University of Trieste."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google