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Mental operation of translator during translation
Thread poster: laaya

laaya
Persian (Farsi) to English
Sep 6, 2011

what is going on in the mind of translator during translation?how it can be illustrated?

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GerSi  Identity Verified
Slovenia
Local time: 03:30
Member (2010)
German to Slovenian
+ ...
Think aloud protocols Sep 6, 2011

Hi Iaaya,

Since there is no short answer to your question I suggest you type "think aloud protocol in translation studies" in one of the search engines. You can also start with Wikipedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Think_aloud_protocol

Think aloud protocol (TAP) is a research method which is used to explain the processes you are interested in.


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Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 03:30
English to Croatian
+ ...
Some major points Sep 6, 2011

Understanding of language is a lower mental function than production of speech/language. This is why you will find many translators not being able to express themselves in their source language, yet ( or we believe so) they have a full understanding of it.

Also, this is a basis of the fact that even when a translator fully understands source text they may produce inaccurate or bad translation.

Bridging up understanding and production of language may take years of effort and professional advancement.

This is just one point, and it streams from very exact laws of mental functioning.


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laaya
Persian (Farsi) to English
TOPIC STARTER
TAP works just with concious points of mind Sep 6, 2011

[quote]GerSi wrote:

Hi Iaaya,

Since there is no short answer to your question I suggest you type "think aloud protocol in translation studies" in one of the search engines. You can also start with Wikipedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Think_aloud_protocol

Think aloud protocol (TAP) is a research method which is used to explain the processes you are inter


to

Hi, and thanx for your reply
I know TAP, but it has some limitation, I want to work on this topic for my thises and i'm looking for another realistic way.


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GerSi  Identity Verified
Slovenia
Local time: 03:30
Member (2010)
German to Slovenian
+ ...
screen recording? Sep 6, 2011

I know TAP, but it has some limitation, I want to work on this topic for my thises and i'm looking for another realistic way.


I see ..., there have been some researches via live recording of the movement of the mouse, there are a lot of "screen-recording-programs" available, I think this method has a great potential ... if you can find volunteers that is ...

Another way would be by measuring the functioning of the parts of the brain via EEG or something like CAT-scan.

I think you could find some reference points in the field of Psycholinguistics: speech development and language acquisition. They love diagrams and the like.


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laaya
Persian (Farsi) to English
TOPIC STARTER
what are EEG or CAT-scan Sep 6, 2011

[quote]GerSi wrote:

I know TAP, but it has some limitation, I want to work on this topic for my thises and i'm looking for another realistic way.


I see ..., there have been some researches via live recording of the movement of the mouse, there are a lot of "screen-recording-programs" available, I think this method has a great potential ... if you can find volunteers that is ...

Another way would be by measuring the functioning of the parts of the brain via EEG or something like CAT-scan.

I think you could find some reference points in the field of Psycholinguistics: speech development and language acquisition. They love diagrams and the like.


can you introduce a done research thorough TAP?PLZ


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laaya
Persian (Farsi) to English
TOPIC STARTER
EEG and CAT-scan Sep 6, 2011

GerSi wrote:

I know TAP, but it has some limitation, I want to work on this topic for my thises and i'm looking for another realistic way.


I see ..., there have been some researches via live recording of the movement of the mouse, there are a lot of "screen-recording-programs" available, I think this method has a great potential ... if you can find volunteers that is ...

Another way would be by measuring the functioning of the parts of the brain via EEG or something like CAT-scan.

I think you could find some reference points in the field of Psycholinguistics: speech development and language acquisition. They love diagrams and the like.



These methods for knowing the Black Box of translator are somehow unavailable for a researcher and on the other hand if there were accessible it was so hard to find some one who is ready for doihng that, so I think the TAP is the best and easiest one.:)


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GerSi  Identity Verified
Slovenia
Local time: 03:30
Member (2010)
German to Slovenian
+ ...
TAP Sep 6, 2011

Yes, TAP is the easiest one indeed, however, as you mentioned, many scholars doubt its credibility.

But as I mentioned earlier, if you can find somebody who is willing to let you record their procedure while translating, in my opinion this would make the best result. I would do it like this and then conduct a thorough interview so they could explain what they were doing. But you would need an extremely cooperative subject for that.

The problem is, people usually don't want to reveal how they think since they have their own strategies to make them different from everybody else (competition). I imagine this would be the same as asking a company to reveal their strategy and company policy in the name of science. Unless they see big profit, that ain't gonna happen.

I only have my notes and material from the lectures I took during my first year of PhD-studies.

But you can find some things online to get the bigger picture if you type "TAP think aloud protocol" into Google scholar for example.

I think these things are not available for free, one has to buy books, order studies online or go to the library.


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 03:30
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
No idea! Sep 6, 2011

laaya wrote:
what is going on in the mind of translator during translation?how it can be illustrated?

I don't have the time to think about it. I must keep translating!

Now, seriously: this is a very interesting topic. Thanks for asking.


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opolt  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:30
English to German
+ ...
Internal speech Sep 6, 2011

Personally I have no idea either, and I think that we're still very, very far from properly understanding language/speech, let alone translation -- the complete failure of machine translation so far (considering the massive, decade-long investment in the technology) is only one tell-tale sign of the difficulties involved.

However, I've always found the ideas of the Soviet psychologist Lev Vygotsky very inspiring in that regard. Vygosty introduced the idea of "internal speech", which according to him gradually develops during childhood and in its final (adult) stage has a purely predicative character; a normal adult is able to automatically process internal speech so that it becomes external speech.

I would say that this is one very interesting lead, at least as a working theory; according to my own (sporadic) self-observation, the translator develops a special intermediary "organ" and mental process to turn the external source into internal speech and then back into external speech in the given target language. Developing or possessing such an "organ" also means that the very process turning internal into external speech becomes the object of reflexion, or in other words, the translator is a person who is able to detach himself from the process, and the process thus becomes deautomated to some degree. This IMHO also distinguishes the translator from a person who is "merely" bilingual.

Metaphorically speaking, it's a bit like melting the source, then drawing chunks from these magmatic fluids which are finally moulded into more or less solid shapes.

As you can see, it's not easy to talk about this, especially if you're involved in the process yourself. I would even go as far as saying that if you ask a translator about this, you're asking the wrong person :-], because a practician turned theorist is not a good source of information about the practice itself. Which only proves that all the above can be safely ignored by anyone interested in the topic :-]


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laaya
Persian (Farsi) to English
TOPIC STARTER
good for u Sep 7, 2011

Tomás Cano Binder, CT wrote:

laaya wrote:
what is going on in the mind of translator during translation?how it can be illustrated?

I don't have the time to think about it. I must keep translating!

Now, seriously: this is a very interesting topic. Thanks for asking.




thank you for reading the topic, ok keep translating and never think of any thing,be successful.:)


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laaya
Persian (Farsi) to English
TOPIC STARTER
I'm greateful of your good explanation Sep 7, 2011

opolt wrote:

Personally I have no idea either, and I think that we're still very, very far from properly understanding language/speech, let alone translation -- the complete failure of machine translation so far (considering the massive, decade-long investment in the technology) is only one tell-tale sign of the difficulties involved.

However, I've always found the ideas of the Soviet psychologist Lev Vygotsky very inspiring in that regard. Vygosty introduced the idea of "internal speech", which according to him gradually develops during childhood and in its final (adult) stage has a purely predicative character; a normal adult is able to automatically process internal speech so that it becomes external speech.

I would say that this is one very interesting lead, at least as a working theory; according to my own (sporadic) self-observation, the translator develops a special intermediary "organ" and mental process to turn the external source into internal speech and then back into external speech in the given target language. Developing or possessing such an "organ" also means that the very process turning internal into external speech becomes the object of reflexion, or in other words, the translator is a person who is able to detach himself from the process, and the process thus becomes deautomated to some degree. This IMHO also distinguishes the translator from a person who is "merely" bilingual.

Metaphorically speaking, it's a bit like melting the source, then drawing chunks from these magmatic fluids which are finally moulded into more or less solid shapes.

As you can see, it's not easy to talk about this, especially if you're involved in the process yourself. I would even go as far as saying that if you ask a translator about this, you're asking the wrong person :-], because a practician turned theorist is not a good source of information about the practice itself. Which only proves that all the above can be safely ignored by anyone interested in the topic :-]




Your comment is so helpful and I realy appreciate,
now Im at the begining of this strange but interestingwork and Im not sure of being involved in all aspects of what you said.but the basis of my work are the psycolinguistic model and practical model of translation by Nord.definitly you Know that in these models the researcher is going to know how and why the tranalator desided to write such a translation.acording to what reason he/she has used such a specific strategy? for eg. explicitation, shifts and.... or other sterategies introduced by vinay & Darblant. for this reason I should use some ways to open the Black Box of his mind and as far as I know the most popular one is TAP.and You said dont use of practitioners of the translation for this, but what shoud I do instead? TAP sould be done in students of translation or translators.

[Edited at 2011-09-07 06:05 GMT]


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laaya
Persian (Farsi) to English
TOPIC STARTER
thank you dear Sep 7, 2011

GerSi wrote:

Yes, TAP is the easiest one indeed, however, as you mentioned, many scholars doubt its credibility.

But as I mentioned earlier, if you can find somebody who is willing to let you record their procedure while translating, in my opinion this would make the best result. I would do it like this and then conduct a thorough interview so they could explain what they were doing. But you would need an extremely cooperative subject for that.

The problem is, people usually don't want to reveal how they think since they have their own strategies to make them different from everybody else (competition). I imagine this would be the same as asking a company to reveal their strategy and company policy in the name of science. Unless they see big profit, that ain't gonna happen.

I only have my notes and material from the lectures I took during my first year of PhD-studies.

But you can find some things online to get the bigger picture if you type "TAP think aloud protocol" into Google scholar for example.

I think these things are not available for free, one has to buy books, order studies online or go to the library.




about the competition manner as you said actualy Im not going to use professional translators in my country scince they might not let me to do that because of some reasons.but I think students of translation in the 3rd year of BA are good for this research as their knowledge is approximately enough for doing that and there is not any competition. now my question is what kind of text would be better for translation? how about the number of its paragraphs?how much time should be dedicated for translation?and the most important point: how should I measure their translation?


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 18:30
English to German
+ ...
Think of yourself as an actor Sep 7, 2011

laaya wrote:

what is going on in the mind of translator during translation?how it can be illustrated?


You have to convey not only the wording but the entire personality of the author/speaker. Translation starts where dictionaries stop.


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feet01
Local time: 03:30
Creativity Sep 14, 2011

Nicely said, Nicole!

What happens in translator's mind?
As for literary translations - it is a search for better expression.
If you have line:
The waiter was nice
and you have to translate it with rhyming, you could do it like this:
The bar-tender
Was very tender...

(Of course, this isn't the only option, hundred people would translate it in hundred
different ways... and in better way...)

Conclusion: Waiter doesn't always have to be a waiter. It can be a bartender, too.



[Edited at 2011-09-14 08:22 GMT]


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