Why books have different potentials for translation?
Thread poster: Habib Shariati

Habib Shariati  Identity Verified
Iran
Local time: 01:44
English to Persian (Farsi)
+ ...
Aug 4, 2009

If we take this into consideration that translation belong to a new language, new system of culture, society, background and identity maybe we would be able to find out why for example, two classical novels of the same status in the source language would face a different acceptance by the target language audience, even when they are translated by the same translator. What is the reason behind old these gaps?

[Edited at 2009-08-04 11:22 GMT]


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Habib Shariati  Identity Verified
Iran
Local time: 01:44
English to Persian (Farsi)
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TOPIC STARTER
Influence of other Aug 4, 2009

Don't you think that there are factors and criteria other than author, genius or artistic creation belonging to the target language which are decisive here?

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Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 00:14
English to Croatian
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An answer Aug 6, 2009

Hello,

You have raised some interesting questions.

You must understand that novelists were more often than not régime writers. In the classical novel, more than in any other genre, you will find political and social aspects of the source culture as central elements. This is why most novels will feel much closer to and get by easier among their source audience than target translation audience ( never mind how fantastic a translation might be). Also, the marketing aspect: Novels have always been advertised and local novelists popularized through politics, journals, literary curriculum and circles, etc. ( I won't even mention aggressive marketing machines in contemporary literature, just remember Harry Potter or The Da Vinci Code for example).

Whether you are producing machines/devices or novels, it comes down to the same process in regard to sales and popularization. Novels are however much more sensitive field because it is about intellectual property about which people are much more touchy than material things. This is also because literature and generally intellectual property can often be great power tools ( ideal for political use).

Just because one author is " more popular" or heard of than others, that doesn't necessarily mean he or she produces better work.

To conclude, novels are better accepted by the local/ source readership because the culture feels closer to them, and because these authors were more talked about than the foreign authors, for patriotic and national reasons ( in academic or social circles).


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Habib Shariati  Identity Verified
Iran
Local time: 01:44
English to Persian (Farsi)
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Source belonging an imortant factor Aug 6, 2009

Hello Linqua

Welcome to this forum and thank you for your nice comments

This is for certain that books in general and classical one in particular have sort of orientation and tendency toward their source language, which these will affect their future potential for translation, in another word, we can say as long as the content of those books are universal the potential to be translated into target language is much higher. I also do agree with your comments regarding the touchy issues of the translation in general and the peculiarity of books in that regard. You also mentioned the point which I would like to call that social cultural conformity as a criteria inherent in the book to have conformance with the target language for its translation to be accepted by the target audience, what what other criteria do you think are important in this regard?


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Habib Shariati  Identity Verified
Iran
Local time: 01:44
English to Persian (Farsi)
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Target language role Sep 26, 2009

Hi, Everyone

Don't you think the role of the target language is crucial and actually it is the target language that offers potentials for future translation projects? Because as you know the transition belongs to the target readers...

What do you think?

[Edited at 2009-09-26 21:25 GMT]


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