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Vacancies in this network: Translators, Revisers, Editors, etc.
Is the Maltese population losing its command of English? Are standards of English in Malta in decline? Is it true that there was a time when Malta’s population had a faultless command of English?
Some emerging facts and figures might suggest a different, and altogether mor
Les listes de diffusion, nouvelle fonctionnalité induite par l’usage d’Internet, permettent aujourd’hui aux traducteurs de se regrouper en réseaux de façon à partager avec leurs collègues les difficultés rencontrées dans l’exercice de la profession. Ces listes s’inscrivent donc en complément des stratégies classiques de résolution de problème et se substituent parfois même à certaines étapes du processus de traduction. La dimension cognitive, jusqu’à présent abordée à l’échelle individuelle, acquiert de ce fait une dimension collective, non sans incidence sur la représentation du processus de traduction.
Korean dramas have rarely been the subject of serious academic research, much less studied alongside the great Korean literary classics.
But Dr. Barbara Wall does just that.
Currently a research assistant in Korean Studies at University of Hamburg’s Asia Africa Institute, Wall’s primary interest is how a classic from the past has “lived” through the ages, getting adapted and recreated.
One of her academic papers compared “My Love from the Star,” a highly popular romantic comedy drama series that aired on SBS between 2013 and 2014 with “The Dream of the Nine Clouds (Kuunmong),” a 17th-century novel written by Kim Man-jung (1637-92), a Confucian scholar of Korea’s Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910).
The paper was released at the 4th Conference on Korean Screen Culture in Copenhagen, Denmark in May 2015.
The drama is about a man from another planet, Do Min-jun, played by Kim Soo-hyun, falling in love with an actress, whereas the novel is about a monk living in a Buddhist paradise sent to the human world.
In the drama, there is a scene where Do says that the book of his life is “The Dream of the Nine Clouds.”
But Wall’s paper does not examine these explicit references but more specifically the similarities and differences in male protagonists and what they mean, as well as the dream structure of the plot that can be found in both works and shared message that dreams and reality belong together.
Wall recently visited Korea to speak at a workshop hosted by the Literature Translation Institute of Korea.
“My Love from the Star” could be a parody of “The Dream of the Nine Clouds” of the 17th century, Barbara Wall says. [JOONGANG ILBO]
As the workshop was designed to discuss Korea’s classic literature and its standing in today’s global era, she revised her paper on “My Love from the Star” and “The Dream of the Nine Clouds” slightly to argue that the drama is an example that classic Korean literature has a role in contemporary popular culture and that more works must be translated.
“’My Love’ does not simply allude to or borrow from ‘The Dream,’ but it is semantically and structurally based on the novel and can thus be deemed as a covert parody of it,” she said at the workshop held in Seoul on Oct. 13.
“This shows that classic Korean literature is not irrelevant for the reception of contemporary popular culture outside of Korea. We do not only need translations of classic Korean literature for discussions in the ivory tower of Korean studies outside of Korea, but also for the understanding of popular Korean culture.”
The Korea JoongAng Daily met with Wall separately to further discuss Korean literature as well as popular culture.
The focus of her studies is the circulation, translation and adaptation of literary works in East Asia as well as construction of Korean history in popular culture. But she is also a professional translator. She has translated literary works of scholars from Joseon as well as the royal documents also from the Joseon era.
Born in Neumunster, about 65 kilometres (40 miles) north of Hamburg, Wall is fluent in Korean, Chinese, Japanese, English and German. Her interest in East Asia and its literature, in fact, began with mere curiosity as a young girl.
Barbara Wall has translated into German books about uigwe, or the documents that detail protocols for royal ceremonies of the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910), including a book by Han Yeong-wu about uigwe on the royal procession in 1795 to Hwaseong. [JOONGANG ILBO]
Q. How did you get interested in East Asian literature and how did you come to study it?
A. Since I was young I was extremely interested in Chinese characters. I used to [even] have a watch that had three Chinese letters on it.
When I was sixteen, I went to Japan as an exchange student where I learned the Japanese language. And I studied Japanese literature and Chinese classic literature at Heidelberg University. At college, I also learned Korean, which is how I came to study Confucian studies at Sungkyunkwan University between 2003 and 2007.
I thought if I wanted to understand the writings of the scholars of the Joseon Dynasty, I should understand the basis of their thoughts. That’s why I chose to study Confucianism - not as a religion but to understand literature of the period.
Many of your publications are about “Journey to the West” (a 16th century Chinese novel). What have you found in your studies?
“Journey to the West” is not fixed. It is believed that Wu Cheng’en wrote it in the 16th century. But the story existed from before. In fact, no one knows who wrote the original and when it was written even though it’s considered one of China’s four top classics. However, it is not important. The important thing is that it’s being recreated and as a result its form is changing.
Just like scenes from “My Love from the Star” have references to “The Dream of the Nine Clouds,” a 14th-century poem by Yi Saek (1328-96), a Korean scholar, contains references to “Journey to the West.” Also, Choi In-hun wrote the Korean version of “Journey to the West” in 1961, which is an amazing work but not translated into other languages. In these cases, “Journey to the West” is no longer “Chinese” but part of Korean literary pieces.
You’ve translated uigwe [the royal documents that detail protocols for ceremonies, rituals and other events held at Joseon courts] as well as works of Yi Ok (1760-1815). But the translation of Korean classics is mostly for scholars and not the general public. Do you agree?
Uigwe details every procedure in preparing and holding royal events, as well as the people involved and money spent. So it’s not just about history, but there is music, dance, costumes and food. For instance, there is a friend of mine who is involved in Korean studies in Vienna, Austria, who’s highly interested in music. She asked me for a copy of the translation because she’s interested in musical instruments.
Also, I was surprised to find how people were interested in works of Yi Ok. Yi was a remarkable writer: His pieces can be enjoyed as they are. But when examined further, there are political implications. I think that’s why even those who are not into Korean history can enjoy his works. A friend of mine in Germany for instance liked the piece Yi wrote about a haunted house so much that she would read it to her children.
It seems the focus of your research is how a literary piece from the past manages to survive through the ages and for that reason the nationality of the piece isn’t really important.
Yes. “What Is World Literature?” by David Damrosch examines what it takes for a literary piece to be a classic, and it says that a classic has to be fluid and resilient. It’s the same for me. For me, who wrote a literary piece and when it was written aren’t that important. I view literary pieces as something that’s alive and rather than the text itself I am interested in how people of different time periods viewed them and recreated them to make them relevant to their society, and how through this process the original piece gets changed and reborn.
It’s the same with “The Tale of Genji” [a classic work of Japanese literature]. No one saw its’ original version. In that sense, I consider the country a literary piece is born in not that important.
BY KIM HYUNG-EUN [firstname.lastname@example.org]
PAPEETE, le 21 octobre 2016. Microsoft a annoncé jeudi que son application de traduction comprenait désormais le tahitien. Six nouvelles langues austronésiennes sont disponibles dans l’interfac
C’est le lundi 17 octobre que la ministre Judy M. Foote a fait connaître sa réponse aux diverses recommandations du comité permanent des langues officielles au
Groupes de recherche
La Faculté de traduction et d'interprétation dispose de plusieurs équipes et groupes de recherche spécialisés tels que:
Centre d'études en traduction juridique et institutionnelle (Transius)
Observatoire économie langues formation (élf)
Département de traitement informatique multilingue (TIM)
Ces groupes de recherche mènent des projets comme les suivants :
Centre d'études en traduction juridique et institutionnelle (Transius)
LETRINT: Legal Translation in International Institutional Settings: Scope, Strategies and Quality Markers
HTLF : Histoire des traductions en langue française
Legal Translation in Context
Observatoire économie langues formation (élf)
MIME : Mobilité et inclusion dans une Europe multilingue
ch-x : Suisse ― Société multiculturelle
Département de traitement informatique multilingue (TIM)
ACCEPT : Automated Community Content Editing PorTal
CALL-SLT : Computer-Assisted Language Learning
CRISTAL : Contextes RIches en ConnaissanceS pour la TrAduction terminoLogique
IM2 : Interactive Multimodal Information Management
Trainslate : Traduction automatique de la parole vers la langue des signes
LaborInt : Laboratory for research in interpreting and complex language processing tasks
Chaque année, à Francfort, les membres des associations européennes de traducteurs se donnent rendez-vous pour évoquer les grands sujets relatifs au métier. La réunion annuelle de cette édition 2016 fut toutefois un peu particulière, avec la création du réseau ENLIT, pour European Network for Literary Translation, destiné à donner plus de visibilité aux traducteurs littéraires.
Ce réseau européen aura pour objectif de soutenir le développement des programmes de subvention, mais aussi de coordonner des actions pour améliorer la visibilité de la traduction auprès du public, à la fois dans les différents pays européens et à l'international. Étant donné le nombre de langues parlées au sein de l'Union européenne, la mutualisation des forces coule de source.
« Nous joignons nos forces car nous pourrons atteindre nos objectifs plus rapidement ensemble », a souligné Bärbel Becker, directrice des projets internationaux pour la Foire de Francfort. « Les institutions qui ont rejoint le réseau ENLIT se sont engagées à partager des informations, à mettre en place des projets communs, à investir dans la recherche, à mener des sondages et à en partager les résultats, ainsi qu'à s'investir dans la production et la distribution de traductions littéraires. »
Les organisations européennes de traducteurs se retrouvent régulièrement : depuis 2013, chaque année à Francfort, donc, mais aussi à Londres, Amsterdam, Dublin, Bruxelles et Budapest, sur les cinq dernières années.
Pour le moment, le réseau européen de traducteurs rassemble 22 organisations de 19 pays ou communautés, dont la Belgique, la Catalogne, la Finlande, la France, l'Allemagne, la Hongrie, l'Espagne, la Suisse ou encore la Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles.
La Foire du Livre de Francfort 2016 était définitivement placée sous le signe de la mutualisation des efforts : outre le réseau des Foires du Livre européennes Aldus, qui s'est un peu plus précisé au cours de l'événement, un réseau de défense de la liberté d'expression, international cette fois, a également été créé entre les murs de la Foire : la Free Words Alliance.
Find out more on Europeana
La firme américaine Microsoft a annoncé jeudi l’introduction de six nouvelles langues dans son application de traduction instantanée, Microsoft Translator : le fidgien, le filipino, le malgache, le samoan, le tongien et le tahitien. Bonne nouvelle, ces langues seront également disponibles sur la messagerie instantanée de Skype.
Cette application utilisée aujourd’hui par plus de 119 millions de personnes dans le monde, permet de traduire rapidement des textes courts ou des paroles, via la fonction microphone. Autre particularité de cette application : les utilisateurs peuvent télécharger la ou les langues qui les intéressent pour les utiliser hors ligne, ce qui se révèle très intéressant en voyage par exemple.
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Poullaouen. Elle traduit des jeux vidéo et des best-sellers
Modifié le 21/10/2016 à 10:16 | Publié le 21/10/2016 à 10:15
Alexandra Davies est la traductrice attitrée d’Alice Quinn, auteure de comédies policières à succès. | Ouest-France
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Les livres, les jeux vidéo, les guides touristiques, les formulaires techniques… Tout se traduit. C’est le quotidien d’Alexandra Davies, une Britannique installée à Poullaouen.
« Mon boulot, c’est de me cacher. Je ne dois absolument pas donner l’impression qu’il y a eu une traduction. » Installée depuis quatre ans à Poullaouen, où elle est notamment connue pour tenir la boutique associative Les Puces, la Britannique Alexandra Davies aime les mots. Au point d’en faire son métier.
inRead invented by Teads
Après une expérience comme prof de français dans son pays – « ce n’était pas pour moi » – elle débarque à Paris. Pendant une dizaine d’années, elle y donnera des cours d’anglais pour adultes. En marge, s’essaie à la traduction. Le milieu est hyperconcurrentiel. Les premiers pas s’avèrent compliqués, avec par-ci, par-là, quelques documents techniques aéronautiques, des catalogues de chaînes de prêt-à-porter… Rien de très littéraire. « Il faut chercher, bosser dur, faire ses preuves. »
« Ça faisait un peu peur »
Et puis, la rampe de lancement. Alexandra Davies doit traduire… un jeu vidéo. Le développeur français, Lexis Numérique, s’apprête à sortir In memoriam, qui connaîtra au début des années 2000 un joli succès. Une niche dans laquelle elle s’engouffre.
D’autres titres suivent, comme Game of Thrones, tiré de la série à succès de l’Américain George R. R. Martin. « Pour m’imprégner de son univers, de son vocabulaire, j’ai dû lire ses livres. Il a ensuite relu directement mes textes, donc ça faisait un peu peur. »
Il ne faut pas croire, traduire ce type de production ne se fait pas avec une manette de jeu dans les mains. D’ailleurs, hormis quelques vidéos de présentation, Alexandra Davies n’a qu’une vague idée du rendu final. Les textes lui parviennent comme pour un livre. « Les jeux dont je me suis occupée représentent en moyenne 200 pages. »Forcément, quand on est une traductrice passionnée de littérature, l’envie de s’attaquer à un roman devient pressante. L’opportunité finit par se présenter à la Poullaouennaise, avec le premier tome de la saga Rosie Maldonne, d’Alice Quinn. Meilleure vente numérique 2013, cette comédie policière grand public – entre-temps éditée chez Michel Lafon – intéresse aussi Amazon pour le marché américain.
Alexandra Davies découvre une autre facette de son métier. « C’est beaucoup plus compliqué. » Finies les marges de manœuvre du monde vidéoludique, où elle pouvait se permettre quelques traits d’humour. Elle doit coller au plus près de « l’esprit de l’auteur ».
Amazon et droits d’auteur
Le travail démarre par une séance de lecture à voix haute avec Alice Quinn. « On a l’a relu trois fois, pour être certaines que j’avais bien compris le livre », se souvient la Britannique. Les chausse-trappes linguistiques ne manquent pas. « L’histoire se déroule dans le sud de la France. Quand un personnage s’écrie "basta !", il faut bien trouver un équivalent. »
Ou encore quand la bande FM diffuse Tout, tout pour ma chérie de Michel Polnareff. Pas très parlant pour un lecteur américain. Là encore, il s’agit de trouver un titre qui colle à la trame. Finalement, ce sera At My Window, des Beach Boys. « Mais ce n’est pas si simple, car il faut encore qu’Amazon valide par rapport à des histoires de droits d’auteur », renseigne Alexandra Davies.
Après le succès de la saga, qui lui a notamment permis d’être invitée au salon du livre de Londres, la traductrice ne rêve plus qu’à une chose : monter sa propre maison d’édition avec laquelle elle publierait de vieux romans tombés dans le domaine public. Mais elle se montre réaliste : « Pour ça, il faut du temps. »
Site web du département de linguistique et de traduction de la Faculté des arts et des sciences de l'Université de Montréal
Aurélie Biondi est l'une des cinq interprètes en langue des signes de Bourgogne. «Il en manque, on refuse du travail» assure-t-elle. Portrait d'un métier dans lequel la routine n'existe pas.
Attention, question piège : où peut-on croiser un interprète en langue des signes en pleine activité ?
A la télévision, durant les émissions politiques ? Bonne réponse.
Dans les tribunaux, quand un sourd-muet est jugé ou appelé à témoigner ? Bonne réponse.
Chez les médecins, quand un malentendant vient se faire soigner ? Bonne réponse aussi !
En fait, il n'y a pas de mauvaise réponse. Les interprètes en langue des signes sont appelés à exercer dans tous les secteurs de la vie, dès qu'une personne sourde a besoin de comprendre et de se faire comprendre dans une situation ou dans une autre.
Mobilité et diversité
«On n'est jamais au même endroit, jamais avec les mêmes personnes… Ce coté mobile et diversifié, c'est vraiment quelque chose qui me plaît dans ce métier» raconte Aurélie Biondi, une Dijonnaise qui en a fait son métier. «On est appelés pour traduire des gardes-à-vue, des perquisitions, des procès, des signatures chez le notaire, des transactions à la banque, des visites chez le médecin, des consultations chez des spécialistes, des réunions politiques publiques, des cours dans des écoles, des programmes télévisés, des mariages, des baptêmes, des enterrements, des visites de musées, des examens du code de la route, des formations afpa, etc.»
Affinités et neutralité
Aurélie avait appris sur le tard, «pour voir», durant des cours du soir. Et puis en 2010, à trente ans, elle se lance dans une reconversion professionnelle : elle va en faire son métier et c'est une bonne idée car ici, en Bourgogne, il y a du boulot ! «Nous ne sommes que cinq en Bourgogne, alors on est obligé de refuser du travail. A titre de comparaison, ils sont 250 à Paris…»
Cinq interprètes sur une région, c'est trop peu et ça peut même ajouter des difficultés inattendues : «c'est vrai que l'on travaille souvent avec les mêmes personnes sourdes, et cela crée des affinités. Mais lorsqu'on traduit, on doit être transparents, comme des machines».
Un code de déontologie
Le code de déontologie du métier comporte trois points fondamentaux : le respect du secret professionnel, la fidélité de la traduction (y compris pour les termes peu recommandables) et la neutralité.
«Le secret, c'est une évidence : on accompagne les gens à la banque ou chez le gynéco. On connait réellement tout d'eux et de leur intimité». Pour ce qui est de la neutralité, «c'est important, même si des affinités se créent forcément, de garder des rapports uniquement professionnels. On est appelés à traduire des moments chargés en émotion, comme des enterrements, ou des auditions où des gens racontent leur viol, et il faut vraiment faire abstraction des sentiments pour bien faire le travail…»
Tout traduire, sans exception
Enfin, la fidélité aux propos tenus est, dans certains cas, difficile à respecter. «On doit tout traduire, et donc tout comprendre… On indique les intonations avec notre visage mais on doit aussi traduire le claquement de porte qui perturbe la scène, ou le bruit d'un objet qui tombe.» Et vous devez vous cultiver en permanence… «Le plus difficile, ce sont les blagues et les jeux de mots» poursuit Aurélie. «Il faut être capable de les comprendre et de les faire comprendre». Les jeux de mots, ça se traduit rarement avec fidélité… «Et quand il y a des termes trop techniques, c'est très compliqué pour nous…»
Ce jour-là, Aurélie passe la journée à traduire la session du Conseil Régional, relayée non-stop par deux confrères. «Tout à l'heure, il y avait un mot que je ne connaissais pas. Mais on est en temps réel, on n'a pas le temps de chercher dans un dictionnaire… Alors j'ai dit que l'interprète ne connaissait pas le mot utilisé…»
How to translate a warm welcome into Hindi
Is translation an act of surrender or a non-violent Darwinian struggle?
Written by Pratik Kanjilal | Published:October 23, 2016 12:09 am
Deciding to translate is a refusal to surrender.
These are exciting times for editors of literary publications. While the uproar over the outing of bestselling Neapolitan author Elena Ferrante in the pages of Robert Silvers’ New York Review of Books is yet to die down, the byline of prime suspect Anita Raja has appeared in the fall issue of Lee Yew Leong’s Asymptote, a journal of world literature published from Singapore. A note from Leong clarifies that Raja’s essay, ‘Translation as a Practice of Acceptance’, was in the bag before Italian journalist Claudio Gatti’s article on Ferrante’s secret identity appeared in the NYRB. The man has the luck of the devil himself.
Interpreting vocabulary and idiom forces the translator to confront cultural questions embedded in language, which are often invisible — or negligible — to the monolingual author. Raja illustrates these, drawing on issues raised in translating Christa Wolf, Ingeborg Bachmann and Georg Büchner. Curiously, the essay does not refer at all to Raja’s compatriot, fellow translator and semiotician Umberto Eco, though it will strongly remind readers of his 2003 book Mouse or Rat, where he defined literary translation as a process of negotiation in which author and translator, the original tongue and the idiom of the target language, are locked in a never-ending struggle to be heard.
This is not plagiarism, of course, since intelligent translators generally come to the same inescapable conclusions about their craft, and agree to disagree only on instrumentalities. Besides, Raja frames the matter differently. While Eco painted the relationship between writer and translator like a non-violent Darwinian struggle, Raja sees it as an act of accession, when translating “a great writer with a great linguistic capacity”. This is not frictionless capitulation, though, for she also writes, “The text of the other jostles the language of the translator.”
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But capitulation follows as “the translator submits to the authority and wonder of the original text, and offers her own language with love, with passion, with admiration, and even with devotion. If these conditions are fulfilled, then to translate is to position oneself to accept a tightly structured text, to surrender, word after word and sentence after sentence, to the text’s needs, to compel one’s own more modest linguistic capacity to grow and rise to the level of the original.” If this is indeed Elena Ferrante, she is able to keep her personas of translator and author apart with schizophrenic efficiency.
She continues: “Accepting this inequality is not an act of surrender. On the contrary, deciding to translate is a refusal to surrender. The translator knows her own limits and yet, out of devotion, out of love, she is prepared to challenge them — or at least she chooses to try.”
Raja’s article would be of particular interest to South Asian translators, since it raises signalling issues which we grapple with when translating into English. In the British Isles, warm is nice and cold quite miserable. That is why welcomes are described as ‘warm’ and deteriorating relations as ‘frosty’ in English. In the sensibility of most of India, which can be beastly hot for almost the whole year, ‘warm’ sounds minatory, almost as bad as the death sentence, and people travel vast distances in summer to holiday in the Alps. Translating idioms referring to the temperature is therefore problematic. Such issues used to engage bilingual Indian writers who had adopted English, like Kamala Das, too.
Raja also refers to the gender politics embedded in language. For instance, the German das Elternhaus — the parental home, etymologically, ‘elders’ home’ — becomes la casa paterna in Italian. Stepping over the borders of language, the father figure enters the picture. India offers an interesting variation on the theme. It has been noted that states whose mother tongue does not feature grammatical gender tend to have lower rates of discrimination and crime against women. Convincing data to establish the truth value of this premise is awaited, but translators cannot help but note that the articulation of gender politics is slightly different in these languages.
But since we are only human, while reading Raja’s essay, you can’t help searching obsessively for the signature of Elena Ferrante. And then you encounter passages like this: “By translating Christa Wolf I discovered that the work of translation can challenge the very limits of language. It was therefore particularly exhilarating work because it acted upon my poorer, more common labour of finding words, leading me along paths that I never would have dared to take on my own.” If this is the public identity of Elena Ferrante, Raja deserves an Oscar for dissimulation.
Swapna Dutta has been a writer for several decades now, mostly of children’s books, with more than 50 titles to her name, including several translations.
Swapna Dutta has been a writer for several decades now, mostly of children’s books, with more than 50 titles to her name, including several translations. She speaks to Guardian 20 about her latest project, Second Encounter, which is an English translation of the Bengali classic novella, Je Jekhane Danriye, which was turned into a popular film in 1974 and was broadcast as a radio play by All India Radio. Dutta talks to us about what it takes to translate a classic of modern Bengali literature.
Q. When we talk about translating a story from its original language into another, how much do you think is lost in translation?
A. It depends on three factors — a) the language of the original and the language into which it is being translated; b) the competence of the translator; and c) his/her ability to identify with the book being translated. If the original book is in a foreign language some of its finer nuances could be lost in translation because of the cultural difference between the two. But if a book is translated from one Indian language into another, very little is lost in translation. For instance, a book translated from Bengali to Hindi would hardly lose anything at all because the vocabulary of these two languages have so much in common.
Q. How is modern Bengali literature fairing these days?
A. I am happy to say that the scene looks quite bright with many of our favourite classics as well as contemporary writings — both prose and poetry — being translated by really competent translators. But it is a vast field and there ought to be many more.
Q. How does one make an average Indian reader understand the nuances of Bengali culture?
A. If the reader is an Indian, there is hardly any difficulty about understanding the nuances of Bengali culture because it is a culture shared by all Indians. There could be local customs, traditions and practices which are different. But a competent translator would weave the explanation into the text in such a way that there would be no difficulty in following it. If the original mentions a practice or tradition which is very unusual, a footnote might be required. But it is seldom necessary. Again, it largely depends on the expertise of the translator.
Q. Is the job of a translator to only translate the words or does it require intensive research as well?
A. If a translator merely translates the words it would not be worth reading! The translator needs to identify with the author as far as possible and if anything in the original seems unfamiliar, he/she would certainly need to research the subject until it becomes clear as to why the author expressed himself/herself in a particular way. If the original covers a period the translator is unfamiliar with, he/she would certainly need to find out the basics. Otherwise the translation would sound lifeless.
Q. Where and how did you start, was it the first chapter onwards or did you take a different approach?
A. As this happens to be one of my favourite books I started translating it right from the author’s introduction of the book and then went on to the first chapter until the end. It was quite a continuous process.
Those tasked with translating Harry Potter to sixty-plus languages met with challenges from basic slang to Rowling’s many invented words and phrases.
Translation is always a tricky game. Not only do you have to adapt the story, but also the spirit of the books in question. That means assuming a lot of authorial intention, and conveying it properly. Even then, you might not get it quite right. Generally speaking, translators don’t get a one-on-one with the author to double-check that–to paraphrase Inigo Montoya–that word really means what they think it means. The phrase “lost in translation” doesn’t exist for nothing.
Language and cultural barriers alike contribute to these struggles. It’s easy enough to swap another culture’s slang with your own, as evidenced by the first Harry Potter book. Sorcerer’s Stone replaced the UK’s original Philosopher’s Stone for US audiences. American children were more likely to associate magic with “sorcerer.” Therefore, they had a proper grasp of the Potter plot. While you can’t always judge a book by its cover, its title has to give you a little something to work with. Personally, I don’t know that ten-year-old me would have taken to a book with the word “philosopher” in the title. I wouldn’t have understood the correlation between that and anything to do with magic.
Vox took a deeper look into the woes of translating Harry Potter from UK English to scores of other languages. Check out the details:
While a phrase such as “Expecto Patronum” has a direct translation to “I await a guardian,” other Potterverse vernacular wasn’t so easy. For instance, “Quidditch” is an entirely made-up word. Unlike many of the spells, it boasts no Latin roots, or any whatsoever. Rather, J.K. Rowling created it by combining the names of the balls used in the game: Quaffle, Bludger, and Snitch. This offered no help to translators, though. Those words are all Rowling’s own inventions, too.
Rowling’s chosen character names are perhaps even more notable than “Quidditch.” Even if they don’t carry a heavy symbolic meaning, like Voldemort (“flight of death”), they tend to lean towards the whimsical and downright silly. Even Voldemort’s given name, Tom Marvolo Riddle, posed an obstacle to translators as they attempted to make the anagram work.
Meanwhile, Snape’s surname has been translated to Piton (python) and Rogue (arrogance), respectively. While both convey key character traits, they lose Rowling’s famous alliteration. It may be a small price to pay for the sake of clarity. Still, it demonstrates what can be lost stylistically.
Another prime example of the aforementioned is Diagon and Knockturn Alleys. They are both plays-on-words: “diagonally” and “nocturnally,” which characterize the nature of these places. Not every language can accomplish such a feat. At least, not in the same way. Wordplay simply doesn’t work the same across the board. Acronyms like “O.W.L.s” (Ordinary Wizarding Levels) and “N.E.W.T.s” (Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Tests) were often sacrificed as well.
On the whole, Harry Potter posed quite the problem area when it comes to translation. It seems that every obstacle that could crop up, did. It was a veritable Triwizard Tournament maze of issues. But in the end, we’re all reading the same story. Pottermania swept the globe for a reason. In fact, Harry Potter is a fine example of how one story can universally resonate. Harry’s journey transcends language barriers to create a bond among fans, regardless of cultural differences.
NEXT: Which New Fantastic Beasts Appear In the Final Trailer?
Harry Potter goes to show that no matter how modified, the written word can make a difference. It’s lasted this long because it made an impact. Fans clamor to revisit that as often as we can. So however you reread Harry’s saga, Hogwarts, Poudlard, and Roxfort alike will always be there to welcome you home.
A new interpretation service is available for city employees to improve communications with the public.
Schuyler City Council approved the use of Language Line, an interpretation service available by phone, at its Oct. 18 meeting. Language Line, which has a contract with the state, was recommended by interim Police Chief Drew Behn for translation in languages other than English or Spanish.
City Clerk Mary Peschel said the city has a full-time Spanish interpreter and many Spanish speakers are bilingual and can offer impromptu translation. But a number of immigrants in Schuyler speak French, African tribal or Central American indigenous languages.
For generic interpretation, the service costs 65 cents a minute. For medical or legal interpretation, the cost is $1.05 a minute.
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Peschel also announced the city is accepting bids from contractors for construction of the Higgins Trail project on the south side of town.
The council also approved:
• Pay increases for city employees averaging 3 percent.
• Insurance plans for city employees through United Healthcare, effective Dec. 1.
Med Forum 2016 focuses on intercultural dialogue to combat extremism
Source: Xinhua 2016-10-22 19:21:53
VALLETTA, Oct. 22 (Xinhua) -- The role of intercultural dialogue in facing crucial current global issues is the main theme to be discussed at the 2016 Mediterranean Forum to be held here from Oct. 23 to 25.
Around 1,000 civil society leaders, policy-makers, parliamentarians and high officials from the United Nations, the European Union, the Arab League and the 42 members of the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) will be participating in the Forum.
Co-organised by the Anna Lindh Foundation and Malta's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, MED FORUM 2016 will conclude an eight-month process of meetings held in UfM countries discussing different aspects of intercultural dialogue.
Established in 2005 and co-financed by the 42 countries of the Union for the Mediterranean and the European Commission, the Anna Lindh Foundation is dedicated to the promotion of mutual respect between cultures and to support civil society, through its network of more than 4,500 member associations, in working for a common future for the Mediterranean region.
Throughout the ages, the Mediterranean has been a sea that divides and a sea that unites.
MED FORUM 2016 acquires greater significance in view of the joint effort required to counter those forces in the region that are fuelling polarisation and extremism.
Other common challenges faced by Mediterranean states include the current refugee crisis, youth unemployment and climate change. These and other issues have been discussed in the preparatory meetings with the aim of identifying a cultural roadmap that leads towards the creation of a common space of peace, stability and economic prosperity in the Mediterranean that is beneficial towards all the peoples in the region.
The 2016 Forum is being held in Valletta both in view of the fact that the Maltese Islands are seen by many as a symbolic bridge between Europe and the Southern Mediterranean region and because Malta will be assuming the EU Presidency, during the first semester of 2017. During its presidency, Malta intends to put Mediterranean dialogue as one of the main items of the European Union's political agenda.
MED FORUM 2016 will focus on revitalising intercultural dialogue as a key factor in the European Union's Neighbourhood Policy, considering such dialogue as essential also in tackling terrorism and preventing radicalisation.
Research conducted by the Anna Lindh Foundation in the region brings to the fore a number of common values shared by the silent majority of citizens to the north and south of the Mediterranean and the desire to challenge radicalisation since the majority of youth who are not attracted to violence.
The forum participants will also discuss unprecedented human movements in the region as well as the impact of the current refugee crisis has on the region's societies. This necessarily involves the identification of the root causes of such crises and their resolution through the peaceful resolution of conflicts and investment to promote social and economic development.
Dr Dianna Moodley
Dr Dianna Moodley reveals perceptions and preferences of African and non-African language speakers concerning African language usage in Higher Education
Amid the current turmoil about student dissatisfaction with the Higher Education system in South Africa, the question of language choice for instruction continues to swelter. The need to construct a national multilingual identity has never been more critical than at present, where there appears to be increasing tensions about implementing multilingual language policies.
Language usagemay beheading towards a cul-de-sac if institutions do not address language attitudes and preferences of students and staff in a meaningfully engaged way, says the writer. Credit: EPA
These tensions revolve around potential conflict between the resuscitation of previously disadvantaged languages on one hand, and maintaining the already established “high status” languages on the other. Further, there are challenges from affirmative action for African languages.
Almost two decades into democracy, after being riddled by a system of government, fittingly referred to as “virtual heresies”, South Africans should be readily embracing language rights that were previously denied to them.
However, African language usage seems to be facing hindrances from within institutions and could thus be potentially dangerous. Policy will not thrive in an inconducive environment that does not have the co-operation and understanding of its constituents at heart.
Efforts to advance African languages may be heading towards a cul-de-sac if institutions do not address language attitudes and preferences of students and staff in a meaningfully engaged way.
The hegemony of English as a medium of instruction cannot simply be overturned because, successful implementation of language shift is dependent on and entwined with attitudes towards language use. Garland (2006) puts it aptly when he states that:
It is clear from several modern examples that a dying or dead language can turn around and become vibrant again, depending on people’s determination and the government policies that are put in place.
While institutions can be commended for the revamping of their language policies in line with national legislation and imperatives, they are merely paying lip-service if they do not remove the encumbrances to African language usage in education the provision of an African “facelift” to institutions is mere tokenism.
Simply changing signage, posters, websites and engaging in pockets of pilot projects incentivised by substantial funding is not enough. In fact, these small initiatives only thrive because they are supported by handsome funding.
Otherwise, they would ultimately lose fervour and fizzle out if funding is removed or depleted, resulting in a futile waste of valuable time and resources.
Funding should be used more prudently to motivate students and academics rather than invested in isolated projects that seem to glorify the use of African languages, albeit merely a facade for what is really happening on the ground.
On a superficial level, African languages seem to be advancing, but persuading university communities to actually use an African language in a predominantly English-speaking environment is the real challenge. And while mandating the acquisition and use of African languages creates the impression of “imposing” a language on unwilling users, it comes across as overly prescriptive and merely reverts South Africa to precisely what apartheid was trying to achieve – ethnic institutions.
How successful are revised language policies in education? The answer lies in the measure of its users’ attitudes towards it and their acceptance of it. With purposeful interrogation, getting beneath the skin of resident attitudes about language could ultimately drive the move towards multilingualism forward.
Rather than regarding the university population as inflexible racists or cultural conservatives, it would better serve the scholarship to investigate user-inclinations about the policy and constantly test modifications of the language status quo, testing whether the linguistic environment is being appeased over time. Isolated university endeavours must be more closely scrutinised to determine whether they are yielding actual policy usage on the ground.
The bottom line is that there is very little progress in the use or acquisition of African languages in South African higher education. Bi/mulitilingualism policy is still at odds with popular demand for the language of power (English). Suffice to say, a covert policy of de facto mono/unilingualism is here to stay unless universities incentivise their students to use or acquire the language and channels funding in a more appropriate direction, yielding more favourable outcomes of actual African language advancement.
Although the logistical obstacles appear to be rather severe, the facts cannot stand in the way of good policy. The zeal of policy makers is appreciable; nonetheless there is very little hope that revamping language policies will result in practical fruition in the near future.
It will involve perseverance and a long term collective commitment from all its stake-holders. Only then can we begin to move faster towards creating and consolidating a multilingual environment in our higher education institutions, providing a quality, decolonised education that meets the needs of our students and academics.
Dianna Moodley is a sociolinguist who presented her paper, “African languages going nowhere slowly in South African Higher Education”, at a conference held by Yale University, in the US
When people speak a language it keeps it from going extinct. That is the motivation behind the new interactive animated language site My Grandmother’s Lingo. The animation, created by the Australian public media network Special Broadcasting Service (SBS), introduces viewers to the Marra language. Marra is an endangered aboriginal language that currently has only three …
en it comes to engaging in meaningful conversations or establishing effective communication with people from various cultures, some things might get lost in translation, but a lot more is lost to mistaken assumptions and stereotypical perceptions. In a cultural melting pot like Qatar, where everybody inadvertently works in a diverse multicultural environment, how does one navigate their way?
A specialised answer to that conundrum lies in ‘Intercultural Fluency’. The ability to successfully operate and communicate within different contexts, Intercultural Fluency is increasingly becoming the definitive global skill in today’s interconnected world, says the British Council.
Having sensed immense potential in equipping professionals with what appears to be a new brand of IQ, the Intercultural Quotient, the British Council has rolled out a comprehensive Intercultural Fluency programme which teaches them “the understanding and techniques they need to work, communicate and collaborate more effectively with people from different cultures”.
Dr Frank Fitzpatrick, British Council Country Director, explained to Community why British Council decided to roll out this course, “The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. Our Intercultural Fluency programme is a natural extension to the existing work we do within cultural relations. It draws on our 80 years of expertise in this field and uses the local knowledge and experience we have within our global network of over 100 centres. Based on current academic thinking but with a practical focus, the training enables participants to operate successfully in different and changing cultural contexts.”
The British Council’s practically focused, face-to-face courses are said to be designed to deepen the intercultural awareness, increase the confidence, and strengthen the interpersonal skills of professionals at all levels, leading to a range of individual and business benefits. Fitzpatrick said, “The Gulf is a rich mix of people from diverse cultural backgrounds living and working together and this brings many benefits, but can also present some challenges. Being able to appreciate cultural differences and communicate successfully is crucial to successful business and day-to-day survival.”
Interestingly, the British Council is offering it across their entire global network. “To date we have delivered courses in the Gulf, South East Asia (Singapore, China, India), Sub-Saharan Africa (Kenya, Ghana) UK and Europe. The feedback has been incredibly positive. Our customers value the practical focus of the training and trust the experience the British Council brings to both the content and the delivery of the courses,” he said.
A welcome break from the theoretical monotony, Intercultural Fluency classes are interactive and free-flowing, packing in everything from self-evaluation, mindful introspection, a deepened sense of respect for others’ cultures and values, and a close dialogue with fellow classmates that serves as a springboard for one’s ideas and opinions on matters of propriety, poise, and sensitivity, while dealing with the most basic of conversations to the most complex of discussions. Through a variety of interactive activities, participants gain a range of strategies they can immediately apply in the workplace “to become more effective in the ways they collaborate, communicate and build relationships with people from different cultural backgrounds”.
Delivered by locally based, expert trainers, the course is even tailored to the needs of a range of diverse audiences. Amelia Moreno, Intercultural Fluency MENA Lead, who has taught the course to dozens of students thus far, explained to Community about her impressions of the change in the mindsets and attitudes of those who take up this course. “It’s fascinating to watch the participants during the course because we are challenging their beliefs and asking them to share their experiences of culture,” Moreno said.
“The most common mindset shift is understanding the value of behavioural adaptation: why it is important and how it can be implemented. It’s not about changing who you are; it’s about realising the complexities of any given multicultural situation and being able to be flexible enough to ensure your communication and ultimately your objectives are successful.”
The primer, ‘Introduction to Intercultural Fluency’, for instance, is a two-day course that covers two modules from the programme — ‘Building Good Foundations and Rapport Across Cultures’ and ‘Communicating Across Cultures’ — delivered using the British Council’s signature training methodology within an interactive discussion-based environment, using a variety of activities designed to encourage self-reflection and practical use of the course’s key strategies and tools.
While Day 1 explores how culture can affect what happens in multicultural situations, and recommends a range of strategies that helps participants build rapport in culturally diverse environments and workplaces, Day 2 recommends ways of enhancing participants’ communication skills to make them more effective in multicultural and multilingual situations.
The first day, for instance, gets the participants to face their own influences, their own cultural identity make-up, and even prejudices that affect their perceptions. An individual’s cultural identity is examined straightaway in an initial lesson as being made of community, group and family values, beliefs and practices that are important to them, influence their behaviours and preferences, and contribute to their sense of identity and belonging.
“Culture is a group phenomenon which influences each of us. Culture is fluid — it moves and changes. Culture is interactive — we are shaped and reshaped by our interactions with each other,” a note says, adding that cultures are complex and changing.
The course is targeted as much at corporates as it is at forward-thinking individuals keen on making a more solid or deeper connection with the people around. The British Council says that the training will help businesses to improve the performance of multicultural teams, support local and overseas staff to integrate and adapt to culturally diverse working environments, and compete better in diverse markets and expand into new territories overseas, among other things, and will help professionals to improve their employability and support their career development, develop a greater awareness of cultural similarities and differences, and build rapport in new intercultural situations, and effectively integrate into new culturally diverse environments.
When asked about the challenges and high points of teaching this course to a diverse and varied set of students, Moreno said, “The area of culture is fascinating as we each have our own take on it, our own experiences when things haven’t gone well and also when cultural diversity has added value to our situation. Being able to discuss this, share personal experiences and work together in practising how to manage cultural diversity in the workplace is why I love facilitating this programme. Even when a participant challenges or resists elements of the training, those discussions for me can be the most fruitful and insightful. Working in a region such as the Gulf means that everyone who attends our courses has first-hand experience of the joys and challenges a multicultural workplace can bring.”
Pause for a moment and imagine yourself traveling upcountry to your family’s home. As you get into the area, picture yourself keeping your eyes shut.
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What aspects of your surroundings would signal that you have reached your home? Maybe physical attributes of the surrounding geography would remind you. However, keep focused on the cultural cues. What is it about your culture makes your home area unique?
Culture comprises who we are as a people. We surely retain a unique Kenyan culture.
Even deeper, each village and street holds its own cultural aspects as well. Kenya’s different cultures keep different values, beliefs, and opinions about the world. The cultural values then impact what might be expected behaviour of members of that culture.
As an example, Saudi Arabia citizens might be more tolerant of polygamy than citizens of Denmark. The expected behavioural norms impact actual behaviour.
Behaviour affects not just personal interactions but also business actions and business decisions. How should entrepreneurs assess cultural values in new regions so as to expand their businesses?
The best known researcher in the field of cultural thinking and values involves Dutch intellectual Dr Geert Hofstede.
In 1973, he concluded a landmark study investigating national culture differences based on four dimensions. Later researchers added two additional dimensions.
First, a culture may view life and others individualistically or collectively. Global commentators often lump all of Africa into the collectivist category without fully appreciating our diversity and how our more collectivist tendencies differ from East Asian collectivism.
But in East Africa, how Pokots prefer collectivism differs from Meru collectivism which certainly differs from Yoruba collectivism in Nigeria.
A society that prefers to take care of themselves primarily and their immediate family only and live within loosely-knit social frameworks refers to individualistic societies.
On the flip side of the coin, collectivism societies desire closely intertwined group thinking and group care for each other with unflinching loyalty to each other. So in Kenya, we prefer collectivist thinking nationally, but more individualistic in Nairobi.
While interesting for intellectual stimulation, how does such knowledge impact your business? If you want to expand manufacturing operations into a new country, then how would individualism versus collectivism affect your business-decisions?
If an executive desired to move her manufacturing operations to Cameroon, then she would likely tailor his compensation schemes around collectivist principles for group-based reward incentives rather than individualistic as if the operations took place in Europe.
Further, Cameroonians might prefer expanded health care insurance to cover extended family members rather than higher bonuses as a tradeoff because of their collectivist nature.
Oxford University Press on Thursday announced the launch of online Hindi dictionary as part of the Oxford Global Languages (OGL) programme.
Hindi is the ninth language to become a part of the OGL programme, which has led to the development of a
New Delhi, Oct 20 : Oxford University Press on Thursday announced the launch of online Hindi dictionary as part of the Oxford Global Languages (OGL) programme.
Hindi is the ninth language to become part of the Oxford Global Languages (OGL) programme.