Poll: Do you use coined words you have come up with?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 19:56
SITE STAFF
Sep 10, 2011

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you use coined words you have come up with?".

This poll was originally submitted by Takako Shibuya. View the poll results »



Direct link Reply with quote
 

patriciacharnet  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:56
English to French
+ ...
yes sometimes Sep 10, 2011

yes sometimes I created some words for a new concept

[Edited at 2011-09-10 08:40 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 03:56
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
No Sep 10, 2011

Neologisms are the bane of any translator (even worse are neologisms from neologisms!!!). In my opinion, a translator should try to reproduce them (if the text contains author-specific neologisms), but not (should I say never?) create them per se.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:56
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
No Sep 10, 2011

First: I wouldn't promote a coinage until it becomes fairly common. I'm in the business of communication, and I want my readership/audience to fully understand the words I use and not be distracted or confused by something they're not familiar with. My grandmother's motto applies here: "Be not the first by whom the new are tried, nor yet the last to lay the old aside."

For this same reason (effective communication), I'm not a big fan of coining words deliberately. I think language usually has the power to express just about anything if the writer/speaker is clever enough. I would rather turn a phrase than coin a word.

The coinages that are important and need to be adopted are those that evolve spontaneously because they fill a need that didn't exist before and have meanings that are instantly recognizable - for example, the verbs 'tweet' and 'google'.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:56
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Retrotranslating Sep 10, 2011

I don't coin words. But in translation school (I work with European pairs), I did learn a trick about how to handle some related problems. Before resorting to a new coinage, you go back up to Greco-Latin etymology and work it out from there, as did the Enlightenment scientists. The result is something that doesn't jar sensibilities as much as if you'd drawn a cognate or similar directly based on source.

Watching Discovery Channel, I found this could spell out the difference between translated terms in Spanish coming from America and Spain.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Angus Stewart  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:56
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
Not in my translations Sep 10, 2011

I can't conceive of a situation in which I would use a new word that I have coined in my translations. As Muriel said we are in the business of translation, and our priority is to ensure that readers understand us. Therefore using our own neologisms would not be very professional. I think that it is by far preferable to use old words in new ways and creating a new translation pairing may be appropriate if it accurately conveys the meaning. Failing which if one is confronted by a what appears to be neologism in the source text, the option of simply transposing it is always an possibility as Teresa suggests, although a certain degree of explicitation may be called for in order to assist the reader.

My private life is a different matter. In that context I occasionally coin new words, which I use when talking with family or close friends.

[Edited at 2011-09-10 09:49 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 04:56
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Not in my translations Sep 10, 2011

However, in the "extra"-translations" world, I often do - which comes natural being a writer.

Surprisingly enough, some even made it into the vocabularies of quite a few people, though that of translators. And these two different "worlds" are strictly separated.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:56
English to German
+ ...
Rarely, but it happens Sep 10, 2011

Sometimes you have to paint pictures with words, which means that at times you might need a new color.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Dave Bindon  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 05:56
Member (2010)
Greek to English
It depends on the language Sep 10, 2011

In English, coining new words (unless needed to describe a new concept, like the previously mentioned examples such as 'to google') is frowned upon. People quite often create words using suffixes like '-icity' and '-ness' with perfectly comprehensible results, but they often apologetically accompany the neologism with "if that's a word". A quote from the 'interweb' (as a friend used to call it): "It's with guilty apologeticness (apologocity?) that I have to confess I won't be able to make it this week."

In Greek, however, people are far less reluctant to string together a series of prefixes, root words and suffixes to create something new. And they do so without 'apologeticness'. It's such a common feature in Greek that even I - a foreigner - can get away with inventing words without native speakers thinking "he just doesn't know the real word for it".


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Rocio Barrientos  Identity Verified
Bolivia
Local time: 22:56
Member
English to Spanish
+ ...
In marketing, creative writing, etc.... Sep 10, 2011

I believe many of us have to "coin" words.

In my opinion language is a living organism, the same as culture, and adding, evolving, creating, mixing, adopting etc. terms it is something we have to embrace with happiness and an open mind.

For example "blog" "blogging" did not exist in the English language 15 or 20 years ago, someone must have coined the term....

Happy translating everyone and happy coining


Direct link Reply with quote
 
bookwormkt
Local time: 03:56
French to English
+ ...
As a family we have coined a few words, but I wouldn't use them in a translation! Sep 10, 2011

Unless it was a translation for a family member, or course!

Otherwise, the English in the translation needs to be the correct English for the type of translation I am doing.

An interesting question, though.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Gennady Lapardin  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 05:56
Italian to Russian
+ ...
This is the rule of thumb Sep 11, 2011

This question should always be answered before posting Kudoz answers.
This is in the context of language translation. We as translators (not writers) deal with the word equivalents, not with the original "pure" concepts.

[Edited at 2011-09-11 07:29 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

Moderator(s) of this forum
Jared Tabor[Call to this topic]

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Poll: Do you use coined words you have come up with?

Advanced search






Anycount & Translation Office 3000
Translation Office 3000

Translation Office 3000 is an advanced accounting tool for freelance translators and small agencies. TO3000 easily and seamlessly integrates with the business life of professional freelance translators.

More info »
PDF Translation - the Easy Way
TransPDF converts your PDFs to XLIFF ready for professional translation.

TransPDF converts your PDFs to XLIFF ready for professional translation. It also puts your translations back into the PDF to make new PDFs. Quicker and more accurate than hand-editing PDF. Includes free use of Infix PDF Editor with your translated PDFs.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search