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Translation theories

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In terms of contemporary theories of translation, it is generally found that there are six mainstreams:

Practical / communicative approach

Interpretive mainstream: theory of the meaning of TISS, based primarily on the practice of conference interpreting. In their book Interpreting for translation, D. Seleskovitch snd M. Lederer consider that you need to translate the meaning and not the language. This is simply a carrier of the message. The language can be a barrier to understanding. This is why you should always avoid transcoding and proceed to deverbalisation in any translation process.

Approaches of literary theories

It considers that the translation is not a linguistic operation but rather a literary operation (Edmond Cary). In other words, to translate poetry, it must be a poet (Ezra Pound, Walter Benjamin, Henri Meschonnic, Antoine Berman).

The concept of energy in language: Words are, somehow, a crystallization of the historical experience of a culture, which gives them strength and it is this energy that must be translated.

Sociolinguistic mainstream

It is the social mold that determines what is translatable or not, what is acceptable or not (selection, filtering, censorship …). The translator is the product of a society and is translated according to its own socio-cultural background (School of Tel Aviv: Annie Brisset, Even Zohar, Gideon Toury).

The concepts of dynamic equivalence and formal equivalence in Nida and Taber: The most important for anz translational act is to ensure that the effect left on the reader by the translation is identical or similar to that left by the text source. To do this, we must adapt, acclimatize and get equivalences (Jean Claude Margot, Translating without betraying).

Approaches based on linguistic theories

Structuralism, linguistics, pragmatics, language text. It is a mainstream that consider the word, phrase and sentence as translation units. (Georges Mounin, Vinay and Darbelnet, J.I Austin).

Approaches based on philosophical and hermeneutic concepts

The leader of this movement is George Steiner. The real translator must be able to put themselves in the shoes of a writer to capture and understand the intention (the “mean”) of the author of the original text. He sees the translation process as a movement in four steps: Trust (trust / belief), aggression, incorporation and restitution.

Semiotic approaches

Semiotics is the study of signs and systems of meaning. For Peirce: The process of meaning (or semiosis) is the result of cooperation of three parts: a sign, an object, and its interpretant. As well. a semiotic point of view, any translation is considered as a form of interpretation that focuses on texts with different encyclopedic content and a particular sociocultural context.

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