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Metaglossia: The Translation World
News about translation, interpreting, intercultural communication, terminology and lexicography - as it happens
Curated by Charles Tiayon
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Bunch Translate: Foreignization, Exoticism, and Calque

Bunch Translate: Foreignization, Exoticism, and Calque | Metaglossia: The Translation World | Scoop.it

I have been reading the English translation of Stieg Larsson's "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo". This past weekend was rainy and cold, and I thought it would be a good chance to dive into a Scandinavian blockbuster novel about crime.

I have blogged about the translation of this novel already, here: http://www.bunch-translate.com/2012/01/when-translations-are-better-than.html.

One of the things I notice - as a writer and translator - about the translation of this novel, is the use of exoticism and calques, in the English translation. It is not just retaining the Swedish place names, but it also has to do with phrases such as "cat shit", and "behind the beyond", which to my native ears sound foreign, and sound like they were more or less "literally" translated from Swedish, basically word-for-word, without an attempt to find the English "natural equivalent" (natural equivalents would be: horse crap, and "out in the sticks").

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Lawrence Venuti | Notes on the Mosquito

If you are a “China Watcher”–and if you’re reading this blog, you might be–you’re no doubt familiar with the recent trial against Gu Kailai 谷开来, accused murderer and wife of deposed Chongqing party secretary Bo Xilai 薄熙来.

I try to steer clear of politics on this blog, but at some point everything is potentially political, especially translation, which I noticed when reading the New York Times‘s coverage of Gu’s trial. As part of their focus, they highlighted a selection of quotations from her book Winning a Lawsuit in the U.S. 胜诉在美国, reveling in the irony of someone who had lambasted American due process in favor of China’s swift justice coming up against the swiftness of a trial lasting less than seven hours: “In a bitter twist of fate,” the NYT reports, “Ms. Gu, herself a lawyer, once expressed an unshakable faith in her nation’s legal system.”

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