You are on page 1of 50



The three main areas of translation are: (a) science and technology, (b)
social, economic and/or political topics and institutions, and (c) literary
and philosophical works.

Knowing a foreign language and your subject is not as important as
being sensitive to language and being competent to write your own
language dexterously, clearly, and economically. We need to apply
common sense and show sensitivity to language.

A translator has to have a ‘sixth sense’ which tells him when to translate
literally, instinctively or when to break all the ‘rules’ of translation.

Translation is to render the meaning of a text into another language, in
the way that the author intended the text.

A text may be pulled in ten different directions:

1. The individual style of the author, when should it be preserved?
2. The conventional grammatical and lexical usage for this type of text,
depending on the topic and the situation.
3. Content items referring to the SL or third language culture.
4. The typical format of a text as influenced by tradition at the time.
5. The expectations of the putative readership.
6. 2, 3 and 4 respectively, but related to the TL.
7. What is being described or reported, ascertained or verified, where
possible independently of the SL text and the expectations of the
8. The views and prejudices of the translator.

There are many other tensions in translation, for example between sound
and sense.


Everything without exception is translatable.

Translation is an instrument of education, because it has to reach
readers whose cultural and educational level is different from that of the
readers of the original.

A satisfactory translation is always possible, but a good translator is
never satisfied with it. It can usually be improved. There is no such thing
as a perfect, ideal or ‘correct’ translation.

Translation is, first, a science, secondly a skill, thirdly an art, and lastly, a
matter of taste.

The translation theory is the body of knowledge that we have about
translating. What a translation theory does is, first, to identify and define
a translation problem; second, to indicate all the factors that have to be
taken into account in solving the problem; third, to list all the possible
procedures; finally, to recommend the most suitable procedure.

There are new elements in translation:

1. The emphasis on naturalness, ease of understanding and an appropriate
2. Expansion of topics beyond the religious, the literary and the scientific to
virtually every topic of writing.
3. Increase in variety of formats (articles, papers, laws, etc.).



The Analysis of a Text

You begin the job by reading the original: first, to understand what it is
about; second, to analyse it from a ‘translator’s’ point of view.
Understanding the text requires both general and close reading. General
reading (you may have to read encyclopaedias, textbooks) to understand
the concepts. Close reading is required, in any challenging text, of the
words both out of and in context, to find their TL equivalents.

In reading, you search for the intention of the text, which represents the
SL writer’s attitude to the subject matter.

Usually, the translator’s intention is identical with that of the author of the
SL text.

Sometimes, he may be translating for a less educated readership.
Therefore, the explanation in his translation may be much larger than the

We distinguish four types of text:

1) Narrative: a dynamic sequence of events.
2) Description: it is static.
3) Discussion: a treatment of ideas.
4) Dialogue: with emphasis on colloquialisms.

The average text for translation tends to be for an educated, middle-class
readership in an informal, not colloquial style.

The use of colloquial words, excessively familiar phrasal verbs, formal or
official register show signs of translationese.


In passages making evaluations and recommendations, you have to
assess the standards of the writer.

The three typical reader types are perhaps the expert, the educated
layman, and the uninformed. You then have to consider whether you are
translating for the same or a different type of TL readership.

The quality of the writing and the authority of the text are two critical
factors in the choice of translation method.

The quality of the writing has to be judged in relation to the author’s
intention: the manner is as important as the matter and the syntax will
reflect the writer’s

The greater the quality of a language’s resources (e.g. polysemy, wordplay, etc.) expended on a text, the more difficult it is likely to be to

You should note the cultural aspect of the SL text.

Untranslatable words are the ones that have no ready one-to-one
equivalent in the TL.

Underline only the items where you see a translation problem, study
such an item first in context, then in isolation, and finally in context again.



The Process of Translating

Translating procedure is operational. We translate with four levels more
or less consciously in mind: (1) the SL text level, the level of language;
(2) the referential level; (3) the cohesive level, which traces the feeling
tone (positive or negative); and (4) the level of naturalness. Finally, there
is the revision procedure.

‘Naturalness’ is both grammatical and lexical.

Translation is for discussion. Everything is more or less. There are no

There are two approaches to translating:

(1) You start translating sentence by sentence, for say the first paragraph or
chapter, and then you deliberately sit back, review the position, and read
the rest of the SL text.
(2) You read the whole text two or three times, and find the intention,
register, and start translating only when you have taken your bearings.
The second method is usually preferable. You may prefer the first approach
for a relatively easy text, the second for a harder one.

Your base level when you translate is the text. This is the level of the
literal translation.

You should not read a sentence without seeing it on the referential level.

For each sentence, when it is not clear, when there is an ambiguity, you
have to ask yourself: for what purpose? Can you see it in your mind? If
you cannot, you have to ‘supplement’ the linguistic level, the text level


(3) Cognate words: many sound natural when you transfer them. by reading your own translation as though no original existed. that is why you cannot translate properly if the TL is not your language of habitual usage. (2) Common structures can be made unnatural by silly one-to-one translation. 6 . punctuation marks. and (b) that it reads naturally.) follows the train of thought.  There is a third level linking the first and the second level: the cohesive level.  You are working continuously on two levels. you reconsider the lengths of paragraphs and sentences. etc.  The referential goes hand in hand with the textual level. At this level.  The structure through the connective words (conjunctions. life and language. the real and the linguistic. definite article.  The level of naturalness of natural usage is grammatical as well as lexical.  You have to pay special attention to: (1) Word order: their placing often indicates the degree of emphasis. the formulation of the title. infinitives and verb-nouns. (4) The appropriateness of gerunds. etc. you have to ensure: (a) that your translation makes sense. enumerations. the factual level with the necessary additional information from this level of reality.  For the vast majority of texts.  This cohesive level secures coherence.  Naturalness is essential.with the referential level. and may still have the wrong meaning.

 If long sentences and complicated structures are an essential part of the text. (6) The use of the articles. (b) figurative. referential. 7 . cohesive and natural) may be in conflict with each other.  You abandon the SL text. collocations and fixed phrases and idioms. (c) technical.  Difficulties with words are of two kinds: (a) you do not understand them. and are characteristic of the author.(5) The usage of words and idioms possibly originating in bilingual dictionaries.  Since the sentence is the basic unit of thought.  Many common nouns have four types of meaning: (a) physical or material. i.  The chief difficulties in translating are lexical.  The first and last level is the text. collocations. literal translation only when its use makes the translation inaccurate. words.e. you should reproduce a corresponding deviation from the target language norms in your own version. when it is unnatural.  The four levels (textual. (b) you find them hard to translate. progressive tenses. (d) colloquial. etc.  The first sign of a translation problem is where the automatic procedures from language to language are not adequate. the sentence is your unit of translation. not grammatical.

 You have to look up all proper names you do not know.  Spend on revising 50-70% of the time you took on translating.  Consider giving classifiers to any town. may be used ironically or they may be misprinted. If you have the time. mountain or river likely to be unknown to the readership.  It is difficult to resist making continual ‘improvements’ in the taste area.  A great translation is also a work of art in its own right.  The words may have an archaic or a regional sense. verbs or adjectives can be used figuratively and therefore can have figurative meanings. do a second revision a day or so later.  Check the spelling of all proper names.  Be accurate: you have no license to change words that have plain oneto-one translations just because you think they sound better than the original. 8 . and this is harmless provided you make sure that each revised detail does not impair the sentence or the cohesion of the text. Most noun.

and it is usually the translator’s job to ‘correct’ their facts and their style. thesis.  The format of an informative text is often standard: a textbook.  Few texts are purely expressive.  A high proportion of these texts are poorly written and sometimes inaccurate. Thus. However. These are the main purposes of using language. etc. with an emphasis on one of the three. the characteristic ‘expressive’ text-types are: (1) Serious imaginative literature (poetry. personal correspondence. not connotative. (2) Authoritative statements: such texts have the personal ‘stamp’ of their authors. Text-categories and Text-types  The three main functions of language are the expressive. plays).CHAPTER 4 Language Functions. ‘calling upon’ the readership to act. the informative and the vocative. informative or vocative: most include all three functions. He uses the utterance to express his feelings. the majority of translations nowadays are better than their originals.  The core of the vocative function of language is the readership. think or feels. essays. report.  For the purposes of translation. (3) Autobiography.  The core of the informative function of language is the facts of a topic. novels. article. although they are denotative. strictly. scientific paper. 9 .  The core of the expressive function is the mind of the speaker.). etc. (political speeches. short stories.

 Metaphor is the link between the expressive and the aesthetic function. intonation. etc.  Some phaticisms are ‘universal’.the expressive function has no place in a vocative or informative text: it is there only unconsciously.  The aesthetic function is language designed to please the senses through its sound and through its metaphors. phaticisms attempt to win the confidence and the credulity of the reader: ‘of course’. which are not literal translations.  The metalingual function of language indicates a language’s ability to explain. 10 .  The sound-effects consist of onomatopoeia.  The phatic function of language is used for maintaining friendly contact with the addressee. and criticize its own features. name. and they should be rendered by equivalents. it is not possible to ‘translate’ sound-effects. rhyme. often flattering the reader: ‘it is well known that’.  Jakobson’s other functions of language: the aesthetic (called by Jakobson the ‘poetic’). others cultural. ‘naturally’. the phatic and the metalingual.  In many cases. but compensation of some kind is usually possible.  In written language.

The themes.CHAPTER 5 Translation Methods  The central problem of translating has always been whether to translate literally of freely. Cultural words are translated literally.  Semantic translation: It differs from ‘faithful translation’ only in as far as it must take more account of the aesthetic value of the SL text.  Idiomatic translation: It reproduces the ‘message’ of the original but tends to distort the meaning by preferring colloquialisms and idioms where these do not exist in the original. compromising on ‘meaning’ where appropriate.  Communicative translation: It attempts to render the exact contextual meaning of the original. used for plays and poetry.  Literal translation: The SL grammatical constructions are converted to their nearest TL equivalents.  Free translation: It reproduces the content without the form of the original.  Word-for-word translation: The SL word-order is preserved.  Faithful translation: It attempts to reproduce the precise contextual meaning of the original within the TL grammatical structures. plots are preserved but the text is rewritten. 11 .  Adaptation: This is the ‘freest’ form of translation. characters.

a communicative translation to explain.  A semantic translation is written at the author’s linguistic level.  In the translation of vocative texts.  A semantic translation has to interpret. a communicative at the readership’s. accuracy. which is the prose translation of poems. which are first. the reader can appreciate the sense of the work without experiencing equivalent effect. There are plenty of words which for good reasons you may decide not to translate. 12 . equivalent effect is essential. and then make sure you have accounted for each word in the SL text.  Equivalent effect is to produce the same effect on the readership of the translation as was obtained on the readership of the original.  There are other definitions of translation methods. No sound-effects are reproduced. Equivalent effect is the desirable result. such as: plain prose translation. economy. Only semantic and communicative translation fulfill the two main aims of translation.  Translate as literally or as closely as you can. and second.

which may vary according to languages. allusive. the attempt to find linguistic regularities in discourse. affords the translator. ● Sentences cohere through the use of referential synonyms. and is brief. rarely the paragraph. ● The more cohesive. as a unit. ● Punctuation can be potent. since it gives a semantic indication of the relationship between sentences and clauses. but is so easily overlooked. ● Sound effects. pronominal or general. since they may have meanings contradicting each other. ● If the SL text title adequately describes the content. the more formalized a text. Make a separate comparative punctuation check on their version and the original. ● The translator has to bear in mind the main differences between speech and dialogue: speech has virtually no punctuation. The title should sound attractive. ● Connectives are tricky when they are polysemous. he should not be afraid of repetition. then leave it.CHAPTER 6 The Unit of Translation and Discourse Analysis ● Discourse analysis can be defined as the analysis of texts beyond and “above” the sentence. 13 . suggestive. even if it is a proper name. ● Enumerations also act as connectors between sentences. The largest quantity of translation in a text is done at the level of the word and the sentences. Whilst the translator must reproduce the new information. All three types of referential synonym are used to avoid repetition rather than to supply new information. never the text. and should bear some relation to the original. Its main concepts are cohesion and coherence. the more information it. should be taken into account. Punctuation is an essential aspect of discourse analysis. which may be lexical. even at the level beyond the sentence.

● If we include chapter or section under “text”. determining its function within the paragraph and the text. Elements that belong neither to theme nor rheme are transitional. If it is unusually short. ● Other types of contrast are normally signalled by comparatives and superlatives. the next lower unit is the paragraph. ● Unless a sentence is too long. Typical paragraph schemes: (a) start with a generealisation and then produce two or three examples. (B) introduce and relate an event and give the result: (C) introduce and describe an object or brief scene. particularly in a reinforcing sentence. Less frequently. are anaphoric or cataphoric. it is likely to be for a special effect. which are more common in many other languages than in English. The new piece of information is the rheme. sentence and emphasis. is more flexible. situational and cultural context. What is known is to be regarded as the theme of a sentence. and should frequently be translated into statements. Rhetorical questions. ● Functional sentence perspective links the study of discourse. it is unusual to divide it. leaving the larger units to “work” automatically. ● Grammar always has more alternative forms. 14 . FSP examines the arrangement of the elements of a sentence in the light of its linguistic. Contrasts or oppositions are one of the most powerful cohesive factors in discourse. since they are often used to summarise an argument or to introduce a fresh subject (as well as a to emphasise a statement).● Linguistic synonyms are also used as a cohesive device to avoid repetition. Normally. ● Climax or focus can also be marked by a negative-positive sequence. where the negative is likely to introduce an opposite or a heightened meaning. which is Nietzsche’s unit of thought. one proceeds from the known to the unknown. ● Most translation is done at the level of the smaller units (word and clause). than lexis. until a difficulty occurs and until revision starts. It is intimately related to translation problems. the contrast is from positive to negative.

Grammar is expressed only in words. They are a temptation for any translator. but their primary (isolated) meanings may differ. ● The validity of literal translation can sometimes be established by the back-translation test. Literal translation is correct and must not be avoided. and where literal translation is usually condemned. The longer the unit the rarer the extended one-to-one. each SL word has a corresponding TL word. ● We do not translate isolated words. Word-for-word translation transfers SL grammar and word order. Where there is any kind of translation problem. collocational. cultural and individual idiolectal contexts. if the secures referential and pragmatic equivalence to the original. ● It may be useful to distinguish literal from word-for-word and one-to-one translation. into the translation. 15 . we translate words bound by their syntactic. literal translation is normally out of question. ● Elegant variations on literal or one-to-one translation are common and sometimes satisfy the translator’s understandable wish to write in a style or phrase that is entirely natural to him. There are often enormous difficulties. ● We must not be afraid of literal translation or in particular of using a TL word which looks the same or nearly the same as the SL word. situational. ● The translation of poetry is the field where most emphasis is normally put on the creation of a new independent poem. it can never be too literal. The back-translation test is not valid in the case of SL or TL lexical gaps. They are not justified in semantic or even communicative translation. and it is normally effective only for brief simple neutral sentences.CHAPTER 7 Literal Translation ● The only unit of translation is the text. A translation can be inaccurate. In one-to-one translation. Everything is translatable up to a point.

● The difficulties of literal translation are often highlighted not so much by the linguistic or referential context as by the context of a cultural tradition.● Some transparent institutional terms are translated literally in at least Western European languages even though the TL cultural equivalents have widely different functions. If it shows SL interference. The terms are normally so important in their relation to the TL culture that a literal translation rather than transference is indicated. To an intelligent reader. ● The SL word may: (a) be used more frequently. and a good translator abandons a literal version only when it is plainly inexact or. (b) have a wider semantic range than the corresponding TL word. ● Another reason may be the pursuit of the sub-text. badly written. the true meaning behind the meaning is clear. Context is omnipresent. but it is relative. ● Literal translation is the first step in translation. in the case of a vocative or informative text. The translator should not go beyond the words of the original by promoting the sub-text to the status of the text. ● The translator indeed has to be aware of all the varieties of context. 16 . that must be by the translator’s conscious decision. Re-creative translation is the heart or the central issue of translation. The concept sub-text is a useful variant term for the function or the intention of a text which the translator has to pursue throughout his work. A good translation must be effective in its own right.

sometimes with a new specific term. etc. ● The following are normally transferred: names of all living and most dead people.CHAPTER 8 The Other Translation Procedures ● While translation methods relate to whole texts. where a precise equivalent may or may not exist. ● Functional equivalent. Their translation uses are limited. newspapers. description sometimes has to be weighed against function. geographical and topographical names. This procedure. should be added. This procedure is used for a SL word where there is no clear one-to-one 17 . ● Cultural equivalent is an approximate translation where a SL cultural word is translated by a TL cultural word. names of public or nationalized institutions. names of private companies and institutions. Description and function are essential elements in explanation and therefore in translation. translation procedures are used for sentences and the smaller units of language. In translation. This procedure succeeds transference and adapts the SL word first to the normal pronunciation then to the normal morphology (word-forms) of the TL. it therefore neutralizes or generalizes the SL word. Literal translation is the most important of the procedures. Where appropriate. The argument in favour of transference is that it shows respect for the SL country’s culture. ● Transference is the process of transferring a SL word to a TL text as a translation procedure. a culturally-neutral TL third term. ● Descriptive Equivalent. since they are not accurate. ● The word synonym in the sense of a near TL equivalent to an SL word in a context. a functional equivalent. The word then becomes a “loan word”. The argument against it is that it is the translator’s job to translate. is the most accurate way of translating. to explain. ● Naturalisation. This common procedure applied to cultural words. requires the use of a culture-free word.e. addresses. i. street names.

● Paraphrase is an amplification or explanation of the meaning of a segment of the text. A variation through a change of viewpoint. often one-to-two-three or four translations. and most translators make transpositions intuitively. A second type of shift is required when an SL grammatical structure does not exist in the TL. ● A “shift” is a translation procedure involving a change in the grammar from SL to TL. 18 . ● The literal translation of common collocations. ● Translation label is a provisional translation. ● Use the official or the generally accepted translation of any institutional term.equivalent. in particular for adjectives or adverbs of quality. ● Reduction and Expansion are rather imprecise translation procedures. ● Compensation is said to occur when loss of meaning. ● Componential is the splitting up of a lexical unit into its sense components. Free modulations are used by translators when the TL rejects literal translation. ● Modulation. names of organizations. which should be made in inverted commas. metaphor or pragmatic effect in one part of a sentence is compensated in another part. sound-effect. The fourth type of transposition is the replacement of a virtual of a virtual lexical gap by a grammatical structure. Transposition is the only translation is the only translation procedure concerned with grammar. the change from singular to plural. The third type of shift is the one where literal translation is grammatically possible but may not accord with natural usage in the TL. of perspective and very often of category of thought. the components of compounds and perhaps phrases. or in a contiguous sentence. usually of a new institutional term. Normally through-translations should be used only when they are already recognized terms. One type. It is used in an anonymous text when it is poorly written. or has important implications and omissions. is known as “through-translation”. and the word is not important in the text.

2) Adaptation ● Couplets. triplets. three or four of the abovementioned procedures respectively for dealing with a single problem. 19 .● Other Procedures: 1) Equivalence. quadruplets combine two. ● The additional information is dependent on the requirement of the translator’s readership. if transference is combined with a functional or a cultural equivalent. They are common for cultural words.

CHAPTER 9 Translation Culture ● Culture is the way of life and its manifestations that are peculiar to a community that uses a particular language as its means of expression. provided they are appropriately descriptive. unless they have generally accepted translations. reports and academic papers. the proselytizing activities of Christianity are reflected in manifold translation. ● The first principle is no to translate historical terms. the grater the requirement for transference. ● Geographical features can be normally distinguished from other cultural terms in that they are usually value-free. politically and commercially. ● A few general considerations govern the translation of all cultural words: recognition of the cultural achievements referred to in the SL text. whether the translation makes sense or not. the more serious and expert the readership. Name of ministries are usually literally translated. In general. particularly of textbooks. Most “cultural” words are easy to detect. since they are associated with a particular language and cannot be literally translated. The translation of artistic terms referring 20 . and respect for all foreign countries and their cultures. ● In religious language. ● International terms usually have recognized translations which are in fact through-translations. has to bear in mind both the motivation and the cultural specialist and linguistic level of the readership. ● Food is for many the most sensitive and important expression of national culture. ● In considering social culture one has to distinguish between denotative and connotative problems of translation. ● The political and social life of a country is reflected in its institutional terms. and are now generally known by their acronyms. food terms are subject to the widest variety of translation procedures. The translator of a cultural word.

process and organizations generally depends on the putative knowledge of the readership. 21 . ● For gestures and habits there is a distinction between description and function which can be made where necessary ambiguous movements.

often used to conceal an intention. usually this consists of more than one sense component. an idiom..  Sense: the literal meaning of the metaphor. Metonym includes synecdoche. an allegory). that is. cultural or individual.  Image: the picture conjured up by the metaphor. which may be universal. the second aesthetic. The first purpose is cognitive. a sentence. or whole for part.  Its referential purpose is to describe more comprehensively than is possible in literal or physical language.CHAPTER 10 The Translation of Metaphors  The most important particular problem is the translation of metaphor.e. 22 . its pragmatic purpose is appeal to the senses.  Metonym: a one-word image which replaces the “object” (“crown” as monarchy).  Symbol: a type of cultural metonym where a material object represents a concept. Usually the more original the metaphor. i.  Metaphors may be “single” (one-word) or “extended” (a colocation. the richer it is in sense components.  Object: what is described or qualified by the metaphor. any figurative expression. part for whole. a proverb.  Metaphor: the figurative word used.thus “grapes” as fertility.  A metaphor is a kind of deception.

The first and most satisfying procedure for translating a stock metaphor is to reproduce the same image in the TL.  Recent metaphors: A metaphorical neologism. Stock cultural metaphors can sometimes be translated by retaining the metaphor (or converting it to simile). Reducing a stock metaphor to sense may clarify. you have to test its apparently nonsensical element for a possible metaphorical meaning. rise). but at the cost of economy. Usually cultural metaphors are harder to translate.  Dead metaphors: Metaphors where one is hardly conscious of the image (field. A translator should get rid of clichés of any kind. It has a certain emotional warmth. fall. often “anonymously” coined. If in doubt. always reduce a cliché metaphor of simile to sense or at least to dead metaphor.  Adapted metaphors: An adapted stock metaphor should be translated by an equivalent adapted metaphor. Everything is possible. even the reproduction of the sound-effects. You should not use a stock metaphor that does not come naturally to you. covering a physical and/or mental situation both referentially and pragmatically. 23 . and adding sense.  Cliché metaphors: They are used as a substitute for clear thought.  Whenever you meet a sentence that does not appear to make sense. which has spread rapidly in the SL.  Stock or standard metaphors: This is an established metaphor. and it is sometimes tricky to translate. A more common procedure for translating stock metaphors is to replace the SL image with another established TL image.

 Original metaphors: Created or quoted by the SL writer.  The translation of any metaphor always offers choices in the direction either of sense or of an image. 24 . or a combination of both. or a modification of one. In authoritative and expressive texts. these should be translated literally.

etc. on the other in its cultural context and connotations. both linguistic and cultural. he will normally make do with a target language synonym. and the translator has to add one or two target language sense components in order to produce a closer approximation of meaning. social class. It will tend to sacrifice economy. the various single senses (sememes) of a word have to be analysed separately.  Componential analysis in translation is a method of bridging the numerous lexical gaps. onomatopoeia. e.g. 25 . Normally the source language word has a more specific meaning than the target language word. In its fight against uder-translation (use of synonymy) it will tend to over-translate. degree of formality. emotional tone. but is not an obvious one-to-one equivalent.  A source language word may be distinguished from a target language word on the one hand in shape. If the word is not important.CHAPTER 11 The Use of Componential Analysis in Translation  Componential analysis: comparing a source language word with a target language word which has a similar meaning.  A translator carries out a componential analysis only on a word of some significance in the target language text which cannot adequately be translated one to one. generality or technicality and pragmatic effect. function of its referent. In componential analysis. inevitably at the expense of economy.  The only purpose of componential analysis in translation is to achieve the greatest possible accuracy. It will never do it perfectly.  Sense components have been called semes.

 The second use of componential analysis is in translating cultural (and institutional) words that the readership is unlikely to understand.  If a concept-word is central to a professional non-literary text.  Componential analysis is used for the words that have become symbols of untranslatability and cultural consciousness (the American ‘baseball’. 26 .  An ordered account of the cultural difference between two words with the same referent but different pragmatic components is offered by componential analysis. the Italian pasta). Componential analysis is accompanied by an accepted translation.  Componential analysis is useful in translating neologisms. or actions and qualities. so they have to be translated.  Words that are not cultural express universal characteristics. cultural equivalent and so on. not transferred.  Normally you should include at least one descriptive and one functional component. transference.  Universal or cultural series or hierarchies are all amenable to componential analysis. functional equivalent. The first and most obvious use of componential analysis is in handling words that denote combinations of qualities. it may be useful to analyse the concept componentially in a footnote.  Degrees of formality can be noted as pragmatic components when they have no target language equivalents.

questions. nouns. requests. (2) implied. clause. adjectives and adverbs. but odd word-order is used for emphasis or stress. actions and qualities. or. etc. time. this word may be an adjective. feeling. but given its importance the translator must supply it. an adverb. 27 .  There are four main categories of case-gaps: (1) mandatory. purpose. roughly. doubt. place. (3) optional. the translator has to intervene ‘semantically’. Lexis describes objects. and (4) supplementary. condition.  It is not difficult to ‘derive’ missing verbs from statements since the number of basic verbs is limited. verbs. or a verbless compound in a manner that demonstrates the central position of the verb or the word that has verbal force within the word sequence. certainty.  A more common aspect of case grammar applies to case-gaps in the SL text. a noun.  When a verb is omitted it is inevitably semantically underdetermined.CHAPTER 12 The Application of Case Grammar to Translation  Grammar gives you the general and main facts about a text: statements.  Natural word-order is an aspect of grammar. reason.  Case grammar: a method of analysing a sentence.  When the stylistic effect of verb omission cannot be reproduced in the target language. The number of nouns is infinite.

A medical or geographical text.  Faced with an incomplete verb or verbal noun or adjective. partly a decision dictated by reasons of exhaustiveness or style.  Trivalent verbs are regarded as ‘dangerous’ as they are constructed differently in different languages. SL words such as ‘growth’ have strong implications of economy. it consists of additional information. The translator is at liberty to supply them or not as he wishes.  The most important category: a semantic category. 28 . etc. This is partly a pragmatic decision.  The translator would normally fill in gaps for trivalent verbs only if the SL text required clarification. however. for what reason.. may have to be clarified. the translator may have to consider: for what purpose does who do what to whom with what instrument. not given in the text. but it may be unnecessary to fill them in.  Optional case-partners are semantic and stylistic. The translator automatically fills in the case-gap.  One could suggest particular case-frames for particular types of verbs. wealth. The most common missing case-partner is the direct object. because the syntax of the TL requires it or because a sentence in the SL text is ambiguous. etc. but which the translator chooses to supply from his knowledge of the situation and the cultural context.  Supplementary information (‘free indicators’) is ‘referential’.

 Thirdly. often used with equative or copula verbs. Translators frequently prefer to supply the missing partner. the verb is the central element in a clause. therefore functioning as connectives.  There are a large number of adjectives formed from verbs that imply case-partners. there is a type of adjective whose meaning is clarified only in context.  Secondly.  In case grammar.  Case-relations extend beyond implied nouns or pronouns to clauses within or outside the sentence. adjectives. 29 . infinitives and gerunds are more likely to require filling out than verbs in their tense forms. They usually refer to the previous sentence. there is a group of ‘equative’ adjectives. The main use of case grammar in translation: nouns.

 If the referent exists in the TL. or are phonaesthetic.  New coinages: There is no such thing as a new word. 30 . usually with suffixes such as -ismo. or the proper name may be replaced by a functional or generic term. -ismos.  New coinages must be re-created systematically and ingenuously  Derived words: The great majority of neologisms are words derived from Greek or Latin. an economical equivalent has to be given. the main new coinages are brand or trade names.  Nowadays. if the trade name has no cultural or identifying significance. These are usually transferred unless the product is marketed in the TL culture under another name.  They are usually translated either by a word that already exists in the TL or by a brief functional or descriptive term.  Old words with new senses tend to be non-cultural and non-technical.  There is also the possibility of devising a new collocation in inverted commas. Words derive from various morphemes. naturalised in the appropriate language. there is usually a recognised translation or through translation.CHAPTER 13 The Translation of Neologisms  Neologisms can be defined as newly coined lexical units or existing lexical units that acquire a new sense. If not. This word-forming procedure is used for scientific and technological terms.

and thirdly how important it is. He should put it into inverted commas. and an acceptable term emerges only when the referent becomes so important that a more or less lengthy functional term will no longer do. and then add a functional –descriptive term.  The computer terms are given their recognised translation –if they do not exist. For this reason.  Languages which cannot convert verbs to nouns. they are written out in the TL. 31 . whether the referent exists in the target-language culture. First.  Abbreviations have always been a common type of pseudo-neologism. They are generally trough-translated. this does not mean that the translator can apply the process automatically.  New collocations are particularly common in the social science and in computer language. and those which do not at present warrant the formation of a TL neologism.  Eponyms are any word derived from a proper name (including toponyms).you have not the authority to devise your own neologism. nor supress prepositions. he has to assure himself that the neologism is not in competition with another. and therefore whether it is worth “transplanting” it at all. However. secondly. cannot imitate the English procedure. you have to transfer them (if they appear important). the English collocations are difficult to translate concisely. Unless they coincide.  In all derived words you have to distinguish between terms which have a slid referential basis and fulfil the conditions of internationalisms. He has to consult the appropriate ISO glossary in order to find out whether there is already a recognised translation.

if it does not yet exist. eponyms are usually brand names. they are common to several languages. and are translated by their semantic equivalent. When acronyms are as important in the source language as in the target language. When derived from people´s names (e. Most commonly. tend to rise and fold depending on the popularity or vogue of their referent and easy of composition. so they are the words whose meanings are less dependent on the context. Keynesian). there is either a standard equivalent term or. they originate from the products of the relevant area. 32 . nylon). they are translated without difficulty.  New eponyms deriving from geographical names appear to be rare. and can be transferred only when they are equally well known and accepted in the target language (e.g. Bic ballpoint). They are likely to be “media” or “product” neologisms and.  When derived from objects. They are often more economical and informal than their translation. In translation.  They are generally transferred together with a generic term and the level of detail that the readership requires.g. the generic term is added until the product is well enough known. a descriptive term. they may be different in both languages.  Acronyms: In translation.  Acronyms for institutions and names of companies are usually transferred.g.  New phrasal words are restricted o English’s facility in converting verbs into nouns. given the power of the media.  Newly transferred words keep only one sense of their foreign nationality. Brand name eponyms usually have to be translated by denotative terms (e. When they refer directly to the person.

adding a footnote if necessary: “The source-language original word not found”.  Thirdly. he has to assure himself that no other translation already exists. in literary texts it is his duty to re-create any neologism he meets on the basis of the SL neologism. The more formal the language. and that both referent and the neologism are likely to interest the SL readership.  Firstly. and therefore he has to guess the word’s meaning from the context and the word composition. If he recreates an SL neologism using the same Graeco-Latin morphemes. The translator has to beware of pseudo-neologisms where a generic word stands in for a specific word.  In non-literary texts.  Secondly. it appears to follow the sense of its SL “counterpart” and is pragmatically effective. when translating a popular advertisement. He can transfer an SL cultural word. he can create a neologism usually with a strong phonaesthetic effect.  He should acknowledge at least with inverted commas any neologism he creates. you should not normally create neologisms. You can create one only: (a) if you have authority and (b) if you compose it out of readily understood Graeco-Latin morphemes. 33 . the more conservative he should be in respect of neologisms.  A translator’s job is to account for every source-language word. if he thinks it important.

the more likely the relationship is to hold. The original SL writer may use a descriptive term for a technical object for three reasons: (1) The object is new. ● The central difficulty in technical translation is usually the new terminology. (3) The descriptive term is being used to make a contrast with another one. if it is well written. ● A Further problem is the distinction between technical and descriptive terms. the translator should translate technical and descriptive terms by their counterparts and. The translator’s job is precisely to eliminate these features. and has not yet got a name. As soon as the “currency” of the referent increases (owing to more frequent use. Technical translation is distinguished from other forms of translation by terminology. institutional translation is cultural. the benefits of technology are not confined to one speech community. to avoid repetition.CHAPTER 14 Technical Translation ● Technical translation is one part of specialised translation. which may include familiar alternative terms. resist the temptation of translating a descriptive by a technical term for the purpose of showing his knowledge. Technical translation is potentially non-cultural.) its name is likely to acquire figurative senses. ● It is usually free from emotive language. The terms should be translated. ● (1) Academic: this includes transferred Latin and Greek words associated with academic papers. connotations. thereby sacrificing the linguistic force of the SL descriptive term. Normally. greater importance. sound-effects and original metaphor. institutional translation is the other. in particular. These are general categories to which it is often arbitrary to assign one or another term. (2) The descriptive term is being used as a familiar alternative. etc. therefore “universal”. (3) Popular: Layman vocabulary. The best approach to an opaquely technical text is to underline what appear to be its key terms when we first read it and then look them up. The less important the referent. (2) Professional: formal terms used by experts. The purpose of any new standardization is always to establish a single one-to-one relationship between a referent and its name. 34 .

● Professional technical translators have a tendency to reject any descriptive term where a TL technical term exists. much of the translation departs from it: (a) owing to its different natural usage. (2) Figurative symbols. its degree of formality. you should give your translation the framework of a recognized house-style. who is not. systems in some of which entropy is involved. etc. particularly axioms. Lexically. transporting clauses. ● Bear in mind that we are more interested in understanding the description. and underline all words and structures that appear to contain problems. When you approach a technical text you read it first to understand it. theories. the possible cultural and professional differences between your readership and the original one. converting verbs to nouns. ● Normally. bearing in mind that the descriptive term in the SL text may serve other communicative purposes. its intention. theorems. ● Read the article through. (b) if it has to be referentially more explicit than the original. In a sense. a technical term (standardized language) is always more precise narrower in semantic range) than a descriptive term (non-standardized language). provided the original is defective. it is mistaken to invariably prefer it. (4) “Pun Words”. ● Both text and translation are thing-bound.) as in any other type of informative or vocative text. As technical translator you vary your format in relations to your customer. These may include: (1) Unfamiliar apparently transparent words in Latin or Greek morphemes. 35 . Where an SL technical term has no known TL equivalent. we are learning the language rather than the content of the subject. The translator has to check the present validity in the register and dialect of the terms he uses. Al titles are either descriptive or allusive. (3) Verbs that do not require a recasting of TL sentence. the function and the effect of a concept such as entropy rather in learning laws. You should produce a better text than the writer of the original. a descriptive term should be used. Whilst the technical term may be a translator’s find and will help to acclimate the professional reader. you are entitled to change the title of your text. Next. ● In a technical translation you can be as bond and free in recasting grammar (cutting up sentences. These have to be checked for TL equivalence. the main characteristic of technical language is its actual richness and its potential infinity. The SL text is also the basis of the translation. and then to assess its nature. as a translator.

● A technical translation is so varied in topic and often diverse in register. where you have to be most up to date. on the frontier of knowledge. This is the field. 36 . and so badly written. that it is not easy to make helpful generalizations about it.

and the effort to make word. Secondly. The differences: authoritative statements are more openly addressed to a readership than literature. the concrete images of the poem. he will reproduce the figurative meaning.  Poetry is the most personal of the forms: no phatic language. they are figurative only in exceptional passages.CHAPTER 15 The Translation of Serious Literature and Authoritative Statements  The translation of serious literature and authoritative statements is the most testing type of translation. legal). The translator has to reproduce it scrupulously. A successfully translated poem is always another poem.  There are two text-categories: serious imaginative literature and authoritative statements (scientific. and selfexpression is only incidental. because the word is as important as the sentence. Lastly the setting. sentence and text cohere requires continuous compromise and readjustment. the various techniques of sound-effect.  However good as a translation.  The translator first chooses a target-language poetic form as close as possible to that of the source-language.  The original metaphor is the controlling element in all creative language. 37 . its meaning will differ in many ways from the original. the word has greater importance than in any other type of text. even if they are likely to cause cultural shock. philosophical. The lexical units and the lines have to be preserved within a context of corresponding punctuation and accurate translation of metaphor. evoking through a visual image the four senses.

the translator cannot explain puns or cultural references. Some fusion between the expression and the aesthetic function of language is required.  Serious novels: the obvious problem is the importance of the sourcelanguage culture and the author’s moral purpose to the reader. and he has to decide which lexical units are central. Unlikely the translator of fiction.  The short story is the second most difficult of the literary forms.  Drama: The main purpose of translating a play is normally to have it performed successfully.  In any modern version. the shorter the better.  The translator has to be careful to preserve certain cohesive effects. even if in the TL culture the image is strange and the sense it conveys may only be guessed.  Original metaphors have to be translated accurately. The translator’s version is likely to be longer than the original though. The translator has to decide whether the expressive or the aesthetic function of language in a poem is more important.  There should be no difference between the acting and the reading version. 38 . the language must be kept modern and formal. always.

such as: neologisms. He must be prepared to engage in the lateral thinking. etc (in novels they may be real or invented).  A brand name is normally transferred in translation. and they must be followed up with careful checks in SL and TL monolingual dictionaries.  As regards resources. because you often find you have missed an essential component of their core meaning. taboo words. etc. 39 .CHAPTER 16 Reference Books and their Uses. He can take no word for granted.  Secondly. but they normally require checking in at a monolingual dictionary. you need firstly a good English dictionary.  If the ‘unfindable’ word is a misprint. ‘kalli’). Tracing the ‘Unfindable’ Word  The translator has to know where and how to find information. slang. ‘rival’ alternative names (‘Malvinas’). etc. brand names. the translator has to consider the possibility of a misprint (e.  There may be at least 18 types of ‘unfindable’ word. bilingual general and specialized dictionaries may be consulted first. but there may be a case for adding or replacing it with its TL equivalent if it exists. the correct word is translated. misprints. ‘calli’. and a thesaurus is essential for bringing up words from your memory and extending your vocabulary. archaisms. Bilingual dictionaries are indispensable. misspelling.  The most elusive ‘unfindable’ words are one-syllable slang words. colloquialisms. names of small villages and streets. misspellings.  It is useful to look up in dictionaries words that you have known by their contexts for years.g.  As regards the search procedure for words. dialect.

 If the word is verified as a neologism. 40 . If the ‘unfindable’ word is found as a little-known proper name. new coinage. must never assume that it can be ignored. it is normally transferred with the addition of generic information. cultural equivalent.  The translator’s job requires common sense and imagination.  The translator can never ‘abandon’ an ‘unfindable’ word. literal translation. the translator has the choice of: transference. He must make some compromise between the most likely contextual meaning of the word and the meaning suggested by the morphology.

depending on the preferred method of the translator. as it has become a profession.  There is a new element in translation now.  A translation may be evaluated by various authorities: the reviser employed by the translation company. you have to establish whether the translator has attempted to counteract by over-translating. If there is so much to correct.CHAPTER 17 Translation Criticism  A text may be different translated. The introduction of a ‘scientific’ method in this activity tends to reduce the range of choices a translator has. you can consider why the translator has apparently changed the mood so drastically. 41 . the professional critic. it is important to analyze it from the point of view of this translator.  Criticism of a translation has to cover five topics: (1) a brief analysis of the SL text. The point here is not how good is the translation or why it was not more closely translated. the head of the company. You may decide that the translator has misinterpreted the author.  The translator has to assess the quality of the language to determine the translator’s degree of license. or transferred to the TL culture. (4) an evaluation of the translation. and even the principles he is reacting against.  The challenge in translation criticism is to state your own principles categorically. and the readership. (3) comparison of the translation with the original. (2) the translator’s interpretation of the SL text. to what extent the text has been deculturalised.  Translation criticism improves your competence as a translator and expands your knowledge.  Before criticizing the translation. but at the same time to elucidate the translator’s principles. the client. (5) an assessment of the likely place of the translation in the TL culture.

Third. Creative translation is a happy or elegant solution. The fourth area of translation is that of taste. a science.  The analytical approach is detailed. you evaluate it by your own standards. This area is related to preferences between lexical synonyms. You distinguish between incompetence and a translation method which may be too idiomatic or too academic for your tastes but which appears consistent. and a matter of taste:  Firstly. They reveal the ignorance of the translator or the writer. skill. Referential mistakes are about the real world. The translator has to go beyond the text (what the writer means rather than what he says). It is skilled usage that ensures successful transmission. Many believe that style takes a second place where facts are concerned. etc.  There are two approaches when assessing a translated text:  The functional approach is the attempt to assess whether the translator has achieved what he attempted to do.  Fourthly. you assess the referential and pragmatic accuracy of the translation by the translator’s standards.  The third section of your critique should consist of a discussion of translation problems.  After considering whether the translation is successful in its own terms. they exist in fiction only when it incorrectly depicts the real world.    Secondly. Linguistic mistakes show the translator’s ignorance of the foreign language. translation is skill. translation is an art. 42 . The skill element is the ability to follow or deviate from the appropriate natural usage. but it is the style that ensures that the facts are effectively presented. art. All translations are science.

A common mistake in translation is to ignore context.CHAPTER 18 Shorter Items  Translators translate words. prose.  Computers are useful for translation.  All words are more or less context-bound in their meaning. and they have to account for each of them somewhere in the TL text. This does not mean that translators translate isolated words. there is the individual context. texts with a large proportion of word-play or cultural content and dialect. the fact that we all use words and collocations in a way peculiar to ourselves. which deals with words related to ways of thinking and behaving within a particular language community. in particular for LSPs (languages for special or specific purposes). the idiolect of the writer. referential. They translate words that are more or less linguistically. This does not mean that they are unsuitable for translation. Often only the topic will determine the meaning of the word. culturally and subjectively influenced in their meaning. there is the cultural context. Clearly. then they are usually over-translated. sometimes by deliberately not translating them.  A translation into dialect runs the risk of being antiquated. but normalize it to the target language. therefore. 43 . its output needs some kind of editing. cultural and personal context. because if words are translated cold.  Then. or by compensating for them. that is to say. words conditioned by a certain linguistic. However. the more restricted the language and the greater the proportion of standard or technical terms. the more likelihood there is of MT being acceptable. It is important to point out that words may be cultural or universal denoting a specific material cultural object.  It is normally accepted that the literary genres which in translation suffer varying degrees of loss of meaning are poetry.  The referential context relates to the topic of the text. referentially.  Lastly. the translator should not reproduce it.

Description refines function with detail. the main difficulty is that they may have an alternative name. and it is tempting for the translator to substitute it for substance. Normally function is simpler. objects and places. gloss. he should do it only as a last resource. Translators should transfer them. Therefore. Sometimes the description includes significant cultural facts and the TL reader should not be deprived of them. a translation. The main disadvantage of “machine translation” is that it promotes jargon and unthinkable language provoked by a quickly responsive machine. in translation.  Function lends itself particularly to communicative translation. However. the authenticity of the discoverer may be implicitly disputed or it is replaced by a technical term.    Geographical terms are used as eponyms when they have obvious connotations.  Eponyms denoting objects usually derive from their inventors or discoverers. then internationally. should have both elements. more concise than substance. there is a tendency to translate the eponyms under this category to by descriptive terms. it is more important to know what “something does” that what is consist of. Usually. and this emphasis is likely to be reflected in translation. rather than by the mind. function precedes descriptionfor the majority of people. particularly in translation. Whereas a compromise is necessary in the interests of economy. An acronym is defined as the initial letters of words that form a group of words used for denoting an object. and when necessary. Nevertheless a purely functional theory of translation is misguided. institution or procedure. They can be divided into three categories : those derived from persons. description usually has to give. which in translation require additional descriptive terms only if the brand name is not known to the readership. 44 . if it is accurate.  In many cases. and characterizes semantic translation. Eponyms denoting objects are mainly brand names which tend to ‘monopolize’ their referent first in the country of their origin.  An ‘eponym’ is any word that is identical with or derived from a proper name which gives it a related sense.

misprints. It is important to point out that if the ambiguity is deliberated.  Objects. 6. a translator makes more concessions to the readership when translating nonliterary texts. This is due to the fact that the reader may not be so familiar with the translated referent. Redundancy and clichés  Translators are allowed to eliminate redundancies of the SL version in translation 7. The translator can improve the original text when: 1. In ‘anonymous’ texts the translator must be loyal to the truth or the facts of the matter. if the TL has no corresponding familiar alternative. making slight concessions for the different stylistics norms of the target language. Normally. errors. the translator has to avoid any possible misunderstandings. then it should be retained in the translation.  Translators have no right to improve an authoritative text. The original text presents an illogical sequence 2. miscopying 45 . The original presents syntactically weak sentences 3. The main criterion for the improvement is the translator’s conviction that he is helping the SL writer to get his message or information across without distorting it. It is essential for the translator to distinguish between politically loaded and familiar alternative references. They have to be translated by neutral terms. individuals and actions are often designated by alternative terms. but assuming on the whole that the personality of the author is more important that any forms of language.  Translators may have to be considering carefully the reasons for the use of a familiar alternative term before they translate it. As regards unintentional ambiguity. Slips. he has to pursue the same style. When the text is ambiguous. 5. translators should not recreate acronyms. for phatic reasons or to show off that the SL writer belongs to specific groups. Possibly. Idiolect (which should be normalized by the translator in the translation) 4. It may be used in order to avoid repetition. however clichéd and unnatural its language may be.

a linguistic slip (whether grammatical or lexical). reduce. he normally corrects the slip  If there is a SL text misprint or words out of place. 8. Where the translator is certain that the SL writer has made a referential slip. They are normally transferred. thus preserving their nationality. and assuming that their names have no connotations in the text. He has to respect a country’s wish to determine its own choice of names for its own geographical 46 . collocation is considerable narrower. Geographical terms:  As regards the names of geographical areas. Jargon  The translator is entitled to delete. names are translated. he corrects the error.  In literature. For the translator. the translator will adopt the author’s register.  A collocation is the habitual co-occurrence of individual lexical items. often coupled with a classifier if the name is not likely to be known to the TL readership. people’s first and surnames are transferred. a translator must be updated in his rendering. monarchs and popes are translated. for whom the collocation is the most important contextual factor. There are some exceptions: the names of saints. nationality is important. The most common collocation-types are:  Adjective plus noun  Noun plus noun  Verb plus object People’s names:  Normally. unless. Names of Objects:  Names of objects as proper names consist of trademarks and brands. and he can and must justify modifications to the text only on the basis of its inadequacy. or slim down jargon (redundant words that are semantically too broad for the features they are describing)  In all cases.

47 . Grammatical Ambiguity: a sentence is syntactically ambiguous within its context when it is bad written. Sometimes a word has two senses which are both equally effective (pragmatically and referentially) in the relevant stretch of language. or is. 1. A translator is never supposed to invent new geographical terms. A good advice for the translator would be to establish the sense of that misused word and translate accordingly. A translator may translate the word with both senses in mind.features. vague or obscure. 4. 5. and sometimes also to concentrate meaning. 3. as they refer to particular features of a single culture.  One makes a pun by using a word. and the senses may be close to or remote from each other. it can sometimes be compensated by another pun o a word with a different but associated meaning. sometimes it is inappropriately used. Cultural ambiguity: In principle. Grammatical or functional words are themselves a common source of ambiguity.  A word or a syntactic structure is ambiguous when it apparently has more than one meaning. Pragmatic ambiguity: It arises when the tone or the emphasis in a SL sentence is not clear.  Generally. 2. ambiguity mar arise if the function or the substance of a cultural feature change at a point of time and the term remains whilst the period background is not clear in the SL text. Idiolectal ambiguity: people use some words in a sense that is peculiar to themselves. usually for the purpose of arousing laughter or amusement. Lexical ambiguity: words may have more than one sense. cultural terms should not be ambiguous. However. or two words with the same sound or a group of word with the same sound in their two possible. in spite of its context.

 The meaning of sentences must cohere with those of the previous and the following sentences. then the paragraph. unless you know the text is purposely irrational. do the whole translation in 2 hours and 10 minutes and leave 35 minutes for revision.  Make your translations referentially and pragmatically accurate.  It is essential to read your version without looking at the original. you should be allowed to use reference books. to check that you have not missed anything.  Try to make sense in everything you translate.  Do not replace the dictionary with the encyclopedia.  If you cannot find a word in the dictionary . then they should develop a technique which allows him or her to do the do a translational analysis of the SL text in 15 minutes. then the text. This allows the students to have space for correction.  Compare your version closely with the original.  Remember that you make use alternative grammar structures in order to make your translation more natural.  Write double space and leave gaps between paragraphs. then translate provisionally according to their derivational and/ or analogical sense.  Always consider the use of couplets for translating institutional and cultural terms.  If students have three hours for a text. Withdraw from literal translation when this is no longer possible.CHAPTER 19 Revision Hints for Exams and Deadlines  In translation exams for professional purposes. the more it is likely to be used in its primary meaning.  Take into account that the more context-free word. Do not translate a technical term by a descriptive term. and do not translate a descriptive term by a technical term. 48 . These should include at least a bilingual dictionary and the best SL monolingual dictionary possible.

49 .  Fill in all gaps. guided by your contextual understanding of the piece.  Write a translator’s note only when it is exceptionally necessary.  Be careful with pragmatic mistakes of usages. unless the SL text is ‘sacred’. Write well and naturally.

 As a conclusion. thinking that it could possibly be improved. translation is enjoyable as a process. The release that comes after finding the right word is unbelievable. Understanding between people may depend on it. Often translators write on behalf of an author you do not know to readers you never meet.  Secondly. mistakes they all humiliate him.  There are sometimes in which we are translating an authoritative text. however. 3AM Equipo 6:     Carina Brizuela Bárbara Cáseres Constanza Pérez Ortiz Carina Terracina 50 . it can always be improved.  It is a never-ending activity. it is a continual chase after words and facts. we are explaining something. slips.CHAPTER 20 By Way of Conclusion  Why is translation an activity so difficult to perform?  Originals can be very monotonous  Because of the feeling of vulnerability. a good translator should know that it is possible to learn from his/ her mistakes. Why is translating so gratifying?  Firstly. we know that we are not allowed to change it. not as a state.  It is a challenge. However. Ghastly knowledge gaps.