Contemporary Translation Theories ETI 301 Neslihan Kansu-Yetkiner
Ideological Aspects of Translation: Since 1980s, more and more attention has been paid to cultural- and target-oriented translation, with an aim to explore and expose the political, socio-economical and cultural influence behind translation. “Translation is, of course, a rewriting of an original text. All rewritings, whatever their intention, reflect a certain ideology and a poetics and as such manipulate literature to function in a given society in a given way” (André Lefevere, 2004).
The ideological manipulation in translation could refer to “any interference with the text, be it cultural, religious, political or otherwise, imposing modifications that are not textual constraints, for the purpose of indoctrination” (Nitsa Ben-Ari, 2000). “Translating can never be simply communication between equals because it is fundamentally ethnocentric.” (Venuti 1996: 93 )
Lefevere (1992a) points out that ideology functions as a tremendous constraint in the act of translation. Ideology is not limited to the political sphere, it is "the grillwork of form, convention and belief which orders our actions" (Jameson in Lefevere, 1992a: 16). In the following sections, three categories of ideology which seem to construct the TT will be explained while referring to selected examples: a) the translator's ideology; b) ideological constraint by power or patronage; and c) ideological constraint initiated by the target audience.
Translator’s ideology in text selection and translation process Ideology exerts its influences on translation in various aspects, however, the first and foremost impact the ideology exerts on translation practice is the translator’s choice of the text for translation. “All translations are ideological since the choice of a source text and the use to which the subsequent target text is put are determined by the interests, aims, and objectives of social agents” (Schaffner, 2003). “Translation is, in essence, a process transplanting an ideology in the source language society into the target language society” (WANG Dong-feng, 2003).
The imported ideology is, as a matter of fact, a kind of cultural permeation which may subvert the pre- existing national ideology. In this sense, the transference of a text written in a given language into another is actually a trial of strength between the imported and the national ideology. Generally speaking, there is little chance for a foreign work whose subject doesn’t conform to the dominant ideological, moral, and aesthetic values to be chosen for translation
Influence of (translator’s) social ideology on the strategies of translation A translation strategy is adopted by the translator to deal with the two basic problems in translation: cultural difference and linguistic incompatibility. There are two basic translation strategies, which are i)“domestication” and ii) “foreignization”.
Foreignizing translation is the type of translation in which a target-text is produced which deliberately breaks target conventions by retaining something of the foreignness of the original (Shuttleworth Mark & Moira Cowie, 1997). ” Foreignizing translation is also called foreignization. Domesticating translation, or domestication, is “the translation strategy in which a transparent, fluent style is adopted in order to minimize the strangeness of the foreign text for target-language readers”(Shuttleworth Mark & Moira Cowie, 1997).
The two translation strategies are two cultural attitudes. Whether to use domestication or foreignization is a case of manipulation. The translator’s ideology (whether he willingly embraces it, or it is imposed on him as a constraint by some form of patronage) and the poetics dominant in the target culture dictate the basic strategy the translator is going to use. These two factors basically manipulate or determine the image of a literary work as projected by translation. Actually translator could do little under the constraints of these factors, although the subjectivity of translator has certain effect on translation.
Influence of patronage’s ideology on translation According to Lefevere (1992), translation is produced on the basis of an original text with the intention of adapting the original to a certain ideology of a different audience, and it is an activity performed under constraints of patronage, poetics and ideology initiated by the target systems, as such it is an act of rewriting of an original text to conform to certain purposes instituted by the receiving system. (Lefevere, 1992: 9).
Translators have to conform to the patronage by accepting the right ideology, and not go too far away from the patronage’s ideology. TURKEY AND PATRONAGE Turkish Republic in its early years, involves a broad cultural spectrum and a climate in which the entire nation, state, and its people enthusiastically and in perfect harmony encouraged the state initiatives of creating a spirit of humanism for a western- oriented modern society. The Turkish Ministry of National Education had established a Translation Bureau to select the list of western works of art to be translated in 1940. There is also an economic element in this case, where the state paid a certain amount of money to the intellectuals and men of letters who were appointed to work for the Translation Bureau and granted them a certain amount of authority to revise, check, and edit the translations produced as well as to decide which publishing houses were to be supported financially by the state.
Influence of readers’ ideology on translation Translating does not seek equivalence with the source text, but replaces it with a target text that fulfills the client’s needs. Translation is affected and restricted by the dialogue between translator and target- language readers. In the process of translation, the target- language reader’s ideology exerts its influence
Generally speaking, ideological interference with literary translation process mainly manifests itself in the omission, deletion, addition and various translation shifts in the translated works.
Ideological manipulation Example1: Context-The conversation takes place between Pollyanna and Mrs. Snow (the sick old woman to whom Mrs. Polly regularly sends food). Before leaving Mrs. Snow’s house, Pollyanna cheerfully says to her that she has had a good time and says goodbye. The Original: “Good-bye. I’ve had a lovely time! Good-bye”(P.76) Turkish Version: “Allah’a ısmarladık! Saçlarınızı taramama izin verdiğiniz için teşekkür ederim” (Timaş Publishing House, P.50)
Overlexicalization Context-The conversation takes place between Nancy (Miss Polly’s maid) and Timothy (The son of old gardener Tom) in the chapter “The coming of Pollyanna.” They are commenting on Pollyanna and trying to guess what she is like. Original Text: Timothy: “I hope for her sake she’s quiet and sensible, and don’t drop knives nor bang doors” (15) Turkish Version: Timothy: “İnşallah küçük sakar bir çocuk değildir.” (Nehir, p.12)
Table 1: Distribution of some of the Arabic/Persian loan words in texts.
Underlexicalization Context-The conversation takes place between Nancy and Pollyanna in the chapter “The Little Attic Room.” Nancy takes Pollyanna to her attic room from which she marvels at the view of the trees, houses, the church spire and the river. Original Text: Pollyanna: Look-way off there, with those trees and the houses and that lovely church spire, and the river shining just like silver” (p.31) Turkish Version: Pollyanna: “Aman Allah’ım! Şu manzaraya bakın! Nasıl oldu da bunu daha önce göremedim? Şu ağaçlar, evler…Ya şu güzel çan kulesi ve gümüş gibi parlayan nehir.” (Timaş, p. 24).
Image Desecularization Context: The saddest woman in the town, the little widow Benton who was always in black, had changed her style and wore different cloths. Original Text: “Mrs. Benton wore a knot of pale blue at the throat[…] “Will you tell her please that-that I put on this” she said, just touching the blue bow at her throat.(257) Turkish Text “O gün mavi bir elbise giymiş, beyaz bir eşarp takmıştı”[...] Lütfen ona mavi elbisemi giydiğimi ve beyaz eşarbımı taktığımı söyler misiniz? (Timaş 121)
Gender and translation In recent years, a considerable volume of academic literature and researches in the field of translation are being focused on the concept of gender in translation (e.g. von Flotow 2001, Simon 1996, and Chamberlain 1998). According to Chamberlain (1998: 96), “the issues relating to gender in the practice of translation are myriad, varying widely according to the type of text being translated, the language involved, cultural practices and countless other factors”.academic
Von Flotow (2001) offers a comprehensive overview of research areas in which the issue of “gender and translation” could be investigated: - Historical studies (who translated what when and how, and how did gender play into this?)studies - Theoretical considerations (how do different gender affiliations, definitions, constructions play themselves out in translation and translation research?) - Issues of identity (how does gendered identity or a lack of it affect translation, translation research?) - Post-colonial questions (does our largely Anglo-American "gender" apply in other cultures and their texts? Does it translate into other languages? And what does it mean if it doesn’t?)
Whereas most of researches done regarding gender in translation have dealt specifically with the issue of the translators’ gender identity and its effect on their translations
Importance of gender-based approach Gender-based approach makes us question the social institutions given discursively in the text and to see that prevailing ideas are not self-evident and obvious, but are constructed, biased and contestable in its translated versions. In this sense, gender -based approach tools help us show how ruling ideas reproduce dominant social interests serving to naturalize, idealize and legitimate the existing society and its institutions and values in relation to discursive gender construction and gender roles.
Devaluation of women Original Text: “it’s just a lot of ladies that meet and sew and give suppers and raise Money and-and talk” (P:109) Turkish Version: “Dikiş dikmek,yemek pişirmek,yardım toplamak ve biraz da dedikodu yapmak için bir araya gelmiş bir sürü kadına Kadınlar Derneği denir” (Timaş 65-66)
Family Roles Context: Tom had refused to fill his mother’s woodbox and his father made a speech on this issue. Original Text: “Tom, I’m sure you’ll be glad to go and bring in some wood for your mother. And without a word Tom went. Why? Just because his father showed so plainly that he expected him to do the right thing. Suppose he had said, Tom, I overheard what you said to your mother this morning, and I’m ashamed of you. Go at once and fill that woodbox. I’ll warrant that woodbox, would be empty yet, so far as Tom was concerned” (P:210) “ Babası oğlu Tom’a: Sana söylüyorum! Diye bağırdı, bu odun yığınını bir saat içinde kömürlüğe taşımadığını görürsem, artık başına gelecekleri sen düşün! Adam, bu tehdidi savurduktan sonra, Evin dış kapısının önünde dikilmekte olan anne, kocasının söylediklerini duymuştu. İçini çekerek oğluna doğru yürüdü…Bak güzel oğlum, dedi.biz bir aileyiz. Biliyorsun ki, bu ailenin en büyük yükü babanın omuzlarında.eğer, onun yükünü paylaşmak için, elimizden gelen yardımı yapmayacak olursak, zavallı adamcağız çalışmaktan yatağa düşecek. Çok şükür, büyüdün ve güçlü bir delikanlı oldun.Babanın sana ihtiyacı var…Hayır anneciğim…senin evde yapacak başka işlerin vardır…Eğer annesi bu konuşmayı yapmasaydı…” (Timaş 105)
Politics and gender in translation practices According to Chilton and Schaffner (1997) pargmatic, syntactic and linguistic levels should be linked to the strategical political functions of -Coercion Resistance, Opposition and Protest, Dissimulation Legitimisation or delegitimization
Dissimulation Metnin sadık çevirisi (yazarın versiyonu) Melanie (25) “Bir erkek prezervatif kullanmayı önerdiğinde bu mutlaka garip istekleri olacak anlamına gelmez. Bunu, beni ciddiye aldığına dair bir işaret olarak görüyorum. Bir erkek olarak sorumluluğunu yerine getiriyor ve bu durumda ben de ona daha çok güveniyorum. Cinsel birliktelikte prezervatif kullanınca daha iyi havaya giriyorsun. Aklının bir köşesinde hamile kalma ya da aids veya diğer bulaşıcı hastalıklara yakalanma korkusu olmadan cinsel birliktelik yaşıyorsun. Eğer karşımdaki erkek prezervatif kullanmayı teklif etmezse, o zaman ben kendim öneriyorum. Bazen hap kulandığım için prezervatife gerek olmadığını söylüyorlar ama ben her zaman hapın aidsi değil, hamileliği engellediğini düşünüyorum”.
Türkçe Metindeki Çeviri-Tahrifat Yasemin, 48 yaşındadır: “Her ne kadar açıkça konuşmadıysak da, kocamın bazen başka bayanlarla yatışını biliyordum. Ona aids’in bulaşacağından ve bana da geçeceğinden endişe duydum. Ailemden kendimi çok sorumlu hissediyorum ve çocuklarımın aidsli bir anneleri olmasını istemiyorum. Bir gün konuyu kocama açtım. Hiv testini yaptırmasını ve bundan böyle başka bayanlarla yattığında prezervatif kullanmasını istedim. Zor bir görüşme olmasına rağmen, söylediklerimi kabul etti. Ailemizi aidsten korumak için başka yol yoktu”.