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Imagery in Translation. Катерина:С Борисом Григорьичем

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  1. B) Suggest the methods of translation into Ukrainian of the names of English and foreign companies in the sentences below.
  2. By Ways of Word-for-Word or Loan Translation
  4. Find sentences with Passive Voice and propose the best translation.
  7. III. Match words from column A to their translation in column B.
  8. Imagery in Translation
  9. Imagery in Translation
  10. Imagery in Translation
  11. Imagery in Translation
  12. Imagery in Translation

Катерина:С Борисом Григорьичем.

Удар грома.

Ах! (Падает без чувств на руки мужа.)

Кабанова:Что, сынок! Куда воля-то ведет! Говорила я, так ты слушать не хотел. Вот и дождался!


• Is there any other way of translation of the word «Гроза»
rather than Thunder? Consider the variants and their possible ex­
pressive connotations.

• Analyse conceptual and stylistic features of the source
text and choose a stylistic key to them in English.

• Note some special lexical and grammatical problems for
translation in this text.

• Note some intercultural problems which might require a
translator's commentary to the text.

• Consider different ways for the translation of emphatic
structures to reproduce the emotional tension of the source text in

• Read the translated text aloud to feel into its theatrical

• Discuss the result in comparison with other translations
of the text.


Imagery in Translation



A folklore text is a contradictory phenomenon: it is a writ­ten version of an oral story, whose status is consequently changed. What was meant to be reproduced in audible form has acquired the form of a graphic document, while its grammar, style and imagery are based on the oral principles and its mnemonic nature comes into conflict with itself. As soon as a folk story is regis­tered, it becomes something new, yet retains some of its oral fea­tures. These Sfeatures are very important when we come to the translation of such texts. They may be called the folklore mne­monic formulasand include:

• time and space markers

• names of mythical or magic fairy personages

• symbols of the sacred

• formulas of folklore logic

• verses in a folklore tale.

These features make a folklore text recognisable as such and it is necessary to reproduce them in translation. But to be adequately reproduced in another language, each of them requires special translation techniques. Thus, folklore formulas, like Once upon a time or Долго ли, коротко ли, differ from tradition to tradition, and should be translated according to their mnemonic temporal or spatial functions by drawing bn the target folklore heritage, while at the same time saving some of their original form. Folklore names more often than not are dealt with by imita­tive techniques (Baba-Yaga, гоблин, Кухулин). In general, though, they deserve to be considered more carefully.


Time andspace markers. Folklore is a form of collective memory based on the frequent repetition of the same text. Under such a principle, the text should include features convenient for reproduction. They must be simple, steady, informative and func­tional to be easily recalled and reproduced. Such features, recog­nisable to both tellers and listeners, hardened into mnemonic for­mulas that prompted how to begin a story, how to develop it, how to stir the audience, to maintain the idea of sacred knowledge, to refer to some other story, to complete the tale, and so on. Each national folk culture has developed formulas of its own. An En­glish (Celtic) folk talc would start with a special "fairy tale time formula": once; once upon a time; long, long ago; in the far-off times; in the days gone by, when the world was young, etc. In such formulas the main temporal feature is the uncertainty of time and space and their belonging to some other scale of dimensions. To express this, in such formulas once usually occurs with the spatial marker there (there once lived, once there was, there once stood, etc.). There may be replaced by a particular place, e. g. a mountain, a village, or a lake. Here is a typical mnemonic pat­tern, in a Welsh tale about fairies:

Once upon a time, in the days gone by, there were green rings in which Tylwith Teg, the fairies, used to meet to sing and dance all night.

To translate it into Russian, we need to recall similar for­mulas that fulfil the same functions but may differ in their form; sometimes it is necessary to invent a formula because it may in­troduce a mythical feature unknown to the target folklore:

Некогда, в давпие-предавпие времена, волшебни­цы Тилвит Тег собирались вместе, водили хороводы и пели. На таких местах трава зеленела особенно ярко и образовывала круглые площадки, ведьмины кольца. The source text uses the spatial formula "green rings," which is not widely known in Russian folklore in association with



Практикум по художественному переводу

Names of mythical or magic fairy personages. Another folklore feature that goes from text to text within a national tradi­tion is names. Fairy-tale personages are usually named according to either old mythical tradition or to a current habit of naming. The major problem for translation is the first principle, mythical tradi­tion. Appearing in many tales and situations, an imaginative being acquires a body, a character, a string of deeds and relations. Conse­quently its name becomes a real word that has a referential ingenu­ity. When re-named Baba-Yaga, the Russian Баба-Яга loses her material background, most of linguistic and cultural connections, and in fact becomes a fiction, just a name without flesh and blood. Some translators have sensed this and tried to transform the name into some other substitute, more or less familiar to the target cul­ture. Usually, this was a witch. But then the personage changed accordingly into something different; it took on the flesh and blood of an English witch, who is dressed in a black cloak, with a pointed hat and a switch in her hand. Such details as the flying mortar or the honey leg will not accord with this transformation, nor will any other special features and functions of Баба-Яга .

At the first sight, the Russian name Леший is easier to deal with in translation, for it has some semantic background connect­ing it with such words as «лес», «лесной», and «лесовик». But there is no true English counterpart to the image: an Elf is more subtle and fair, a boggard more solid; neither includes the com­ponent of "forest" in the name. Therefore, we may prefer some­thing like Forest Sspirit, Forest-being, yet both names are more of a description, not as natural as a mythical name must be. If we use the technique of coining a new word, it could become a Wood-ster {Wood + Monster), or a Woodle (Wood + Boggle), which may seem a bit unusual, but in its very strangeness there is a mark of the source mythical lore.

Some names are quite a challenge to a translator; such as the Hedley Kow, a tricky spirit in the North-East of England that may become a cow head, a pot, a stone or whatever, Hedley is the name of a mythic place, a spatial formula. There is a real Hedley


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