Female fishermen?
Thread poster: xxxrogadora
xxxrogadora
Hungary
Jan 27, 2015

I have just encountered this sentence. Is it correct? "Intake of eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid have been correlated with lower incidence of breast cancer in Eskimos and Japanese fishermen." The text must have meant woman fishermen, in connection with breast cancer incidence. How could this be put right?

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Kalyanasundar subramaniam
India
Local time: 21:31
Tamil to English
+ ...
Female fishermen Jan 27, 2015

Fisher woman would be the proper usage

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Katalin Szilárd  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 17:01
Member (2006)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Male and female fishermen (fisherwomen) both can have breast cancer Jan 27, 2015

Hi,

The word 'fishermen' does not necessarily mean: men who work as fishermen but they also meant female fisher(wo)men in this context as well. Probably more men are working as fishermen than women.
But what is more important from medical point of view:
Men can have breast cancer as well.

Hope this helps you to translate the sentence.

Best regards,
Katalin'

P.S.: Just like policemen, we can say: policewoman or female policeman.
But actually when we generally say 'all policemen', then we both mean men and women together.

[Edited at 2015-01-27 16:47 GMT]


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Katalin Szilárd  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 17:01
Member (2006)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Male breast cancer is rare but may occur in men as well Jan 27, 2015

See the link:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/malebreast/Patient/page1

I see you are translating to Hungarian. Just as is in Hungarian we do not say fisherwomen, simply we say "halászok". This word is non gender specific.


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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:01
Spanish to English
+ ...
Allo 'allo 'allo, what's all this then... Jan 27, 2015

Katalin Szilárd wrote:


P.S.: Just like policemen, we can say: policewoman or female policeman.
But actually when we generally say 'all policemen', then we both mean men and women together.

[Edited at 2015-01-27 16:47 GMT]


Nowadays, AFAIK the official term in the UK is "police officer" for both sexes...

PS: And Eskimo is no longer used either, I think "Inuit" is one term used instead.

[Edited at 2015-01-27 19:18 GMT]


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:01
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Men also suffer breast cancer Jan 27, 2015

As a colleague has already pointed out. The sentence can perfectly refer to men. Does not look like a mistake to me.

This is a good example of how we translators must always doubt of our own knowledge.


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:01
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
A potentially important question Jan 27, 2015

Katalin Szilárd wrote:
I see you are translating to Hungarian. Just as is in Hungarian we do not say fisherwomen, simply we say "halászok". This word is non gender specific.

Now, I cannot help wonder whether using the non gender-specific form would comply with Grice's maxim of quantity in terms of pragmatics of translation. The translator must examine whether the study refers specifically to men, and not people who work in fishing in general.

Only further contents of the document or information from the customer can confirm this particular, but if the study only refers to men, using the non gender-specific form alone would sound like a mistranslation to me.

[Edited at 2015-01-27 19:54 GMT]


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Balasubramaniam L.  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 21:31
Member (2006)
English to Hindi
+ ...
Stick to the original Jan 28, 2015

As this appears to be medical text, I will advise you to stick to the original. As others have pointed out, breast cancer can also occur in men. So it is quite possible that this text is about the increased risk of breast cancer in fisherMEN.

So unless the original author of the document can clarify, don't assume that fishermen is wrong usage.

[Edited at 2015-01-28 01:42 GMT]


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Michael Wetzel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 17:01
German to English
if it is a translation, I would use "fishers" Jan 28, 2015

Collins (= British) and Merriam-Webster's (= American) both include "one that fishes"/"a person who fishes; fisherman" as the first definition under "fisher".

In this case, I would not consider "fishermen" to be gender neutral and would see it as referring specifically to males (if I were paying sufficient attention). Unless that is clearly the intended meaning, then I would assume that this is an example of a fairly common translation problem and I would correct the misleading translation. ("Sticking to the original" is often impossible in these cases, because different languages have different gender-specific terms and also different conventions about using them.)

Even if "fishers" sounds a little strange to me, it is better than using the potentially misleading "fishermen", which implies that it is a discussion about the occurrence of breast cancer among males. ("Fisherwomen" is even more unnatural and is equally misleading because gender-specific.)

"Police officer", "fire fighter", etc.: Where possible, it is standard in English to prefer a gender-neutral form.


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