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TRANSLATION UNIVERSALS: AN OVERVIEW
TRANSLATION UNIVERSALS: AN OVERVIEW

Author(s): Mona Arhire
Subject(s): Language and Literature Studies
Published by: Universitatea »1 Decembrie 1918« Alba Iulia
Keywords: translation universals; explicitation; simplification; normalization; neutralization;interference; unique item hypothesis

Summary/Abstract: This paper sets out to discuss the status of the translational language as a language per se andpinpoints various considerations thereof, as well as some denominations that label it. Then, an insight is provided into the features of the language of translation that have been considered by some scholars universal. Some definitions of the so-called universals of translation are offered in the attempt to present the evolutionary trends in the perception of the notion. An array of scholarly opinions is presented in terms of the legitimacy of qualifying certain features of translated text as universal. The question is raised whether recurrent features of target language texts can be deemed universal since not all the variables of such texts have been (and can be) taken into account. One of the interests in this paper is to account for the differences in the considerations before and after the translational research started to be conducted based on text corpora. A glance is shed into the shift in perceiving the features of the translational language as universals in the context of different methodological approaches displayed by Translation Studies. For specific features of the translational language were announced decades ago, within the era of Descriptive Translation Studies. In more recent years, after the emergence of Corpus-based Translation Studies, the issue relative to the universality of some features of translation has been taken over to be confirmed, disconfirmed or nuanced. This has been possible due to the research that has been undertaken on the basis of large electronic text collections with the help of modern technology and electronic tools. The potential of the methodology soon proved invaluable in generating large-scale results from sizable machine-held corpora. Several universals are presented herein and the most important ones – explicitation, simplification and normalization – are highlighted together with some examples of research projects that attempted at validating them. Other characteristics of the translational language are indicated as they have been posited in some scholarly work.

  • Issue Year: 15/2014
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 403-419
  • Page Count: 17
  • Language: English