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SOUND AND TRANSLATION:

A MULTI-MEDIA APPROACH TO INCREASE ACCURACY, EFFICIENCY, AND QUALITY


Madeline Newman Ros 2001

Whats Sound Got To Do With It?

Whats Sound Got to Do With It?  Language is based on sound.  The sound of a language affects the mind, even when it is not spoken.

Whats Sound Got to Do With It?

 The sound of a language affects the brain psychologically:


(Phonetic stress on a word places psychological stress on a concept).

Whats Sound Got to Do With It?

 As a result, the phonetic elements of a language affect sentence structures.

Sound-based Methodologies  Trigger contrastive structural awareness  Test fidelity  Bolster instinct

EXAMPLE ONE
WHATS WRONG WITH THIS PHRASE?

TO BOLDLY GO WHERE NO MAN HAS GONE BEFORE

Is it wrong to use a split infinitive?

TO BOLDLY GO TO GO BOLDLY WHERE NO MAN WHERE NO MAN HAS GONE BEFORE HAS GONE BEFORE

Factors of Cadence and Stress


Star Trek Version
To
[UPBEAT]

BOLD-ly GO where

NO man has GONE be- fore

Grammar Teachers Version


To go
[UPBEAT]

BOLD-ly where

NO man has

GONE be-

fore

What sounds good is good


(A debatable half-truth, sometimes what sounds good isnt)

Theoretical Contribution of Sound-based Methodologies:

Sound-based methodologies contribute to our identification of NATURAL STRUCTURES

Natural structures that are grammatically wrong are easy to COME UP WITH: The judges grammar is terrible. I speak better English than HIM.

Natural Structures for which there is no rule:

Ive read Cinderella

many times.

Building Contrastive Structural Awareness PLACEMENT OF DIRECT OBJECT

I have read CINDERELLA many times.


Verb-DIRECT OBJECT + Adverb Phrase

Vs.
I have read many times CINDERELLA.
Verb Adverb Phrase DIRECT OBJECT

(EXCEPTION TO THE PATTERN)

The agency shall have the right to request that the TRUSTEE deduct from the equity of the Trust any damages resulting from any Claim sustained against the TRUSTEE.

EXAMPLE 2: Sound and Translation


English Original:

This method achieves a significant reduction in emissions.


My Spanish Translation:

Con este mtodo se reducen en gran medida las emisiones.


Literal Back-Translation

With this method, they are reduced in great measure - the emissions.

EXAMPLE 2: Sound and Translation

This method achieves a significant REDUCTION in emissions. [Subject Verb DIRECT OBJECT] Con este mtodo se REDUCEN en gran medida las emisiones. With this method, they are REDUCED in great measure - the emissions. [Prepositional phrase VERB Subject]

EXAMPLE 2: Sound and Translation


English Original:

This method achieves a significant REDUCTION in emissions.


Non-Literal Translation:

Con este mtodo se REDUCEN en gran medida las emisiones.


Literal Translation:

Este mtodo LOGRA una reduccin significativa en las emisiones.

EXAMPLE 3: Sound and Translation


Spanish Original:

El sistema no dejar de funcionar a causa de una falla que se ha presentado en un solo lugar.
Literal Translation:

The system will not cease to function on account of a failure that has developed at a single point.
Non-Literal Translation:

No single point of failure will cause the system to break down.

EXAMPLE 3: Sound and Translation


Spanish Original:

El sistema no DEJAR DE FUNCIONAR a causa de una falla que se ha presentado en un solo lugar.
Literal Translation:

The SYSTEM will not cease to function on account of a failure that has developed at a single point.
Non-Literal Translation:

No single point of FAILURE will cause the system to break down.

WHATS SOUND GOT TO DO WITH IT?

PSYCHOL PHONE OGICAL TIC FOCUS STRES S

What listening to a translation can and cant do for us:


 Extremely useful for confirming FIDELITY of structural transformations  Doesnt necessarily help us figure out how to make those structural transformations

TRANSLATION TECHNIQUE:

The ability to routinely apply translation principles derived from an analytical awareness of comparative language structures.

TRANSLATION SKILL
FLUENCY TECHNIQUE TERMINOLOGY
BUILDING TECHNIQUE
(CONSCIOUS APPLICATION OF NATURAL STRUCTURES)
EXPOSURE TO AND ANALYSIS OF WRITTEN LANGUAGE INDEPENDENT READING INSTRUCTION IN TRANSLATION THEORY

RESEARCH

CINDERELLA: GENERATING ANALYSIS DATA FOR TECHNIQUE BUILDING

I have read Cinderella many times. Vs. I have read many times Cinderella.
[THE NATURAL PATTERN IS FOR THE DIRECT OBJECT TO CLOSELY FOLLOW THE VERB]

APPLICATION AS A TECHNIQUE
Original: Los actores en lo sucesivo tendrn respecto

de la persona y bienes del adoptado los mismos derechos y obligaciones que tienen los padres respecto de la persona y bienes de los hijos.

Literally: The petitioners hereafter shall

have with respect to the person and assets of the adoptee the same rights and obligations that parents have with respect to the person and assets of the children.

APPLICATION AS A TECHNIQUE
Literal translation: The petitioners hereafter shall have with respect to the person and assets of the adoptee the same rights and obligations that parents have with respect to the person and assets of the children. Suggested translation: The petitioners shall hereafter have the same rights and obligations over the person and property of the adoptee that parents have over the person and property of their children.

TYPICAL INTEGRATED APPLICATION

Original Spanish: El Presidente pregunt a los presentes si tenan algn otro punto que tratar. No habindolo, se dio por terminada la Sesin.

Literal Translation: The Chairman asked those present if they had any other item to discuss. Not having it, the Session was closed.

TYPICAL INTEGRATED APPLICATION

Literal Translation: The Chairman asked those present if they had any other item to discuss. Not having it, the Session was closed. Suggested Translation: The Chairman asked those present if they had any other item to discuss. Inasmuch as they had none, the Session was closed.

THE EFFECT OF LENGTHY VERBS ON A TRANSLATION INTO ENGLISH:

Original: La comercializacin de este producto no constituye el negocio principal de la Compaa . Literal: The marketing of this product does not constitute the Companys primary business. Suggested: The marketing of this product is not the Companys primary business.

STUTTERS: (on tape transcription translations)


Spanish Original: Le... le le... le quera asustar, no ms. Literal Translation: I just wanted to scare him him him him. Suggested Translation: I I I I just wanted to scare him.

Use of Sound to Facilitate Instinctive Approaches

WHY WE NEED TO BOLSTER INSTINCTIVE APPROACHES


In a number of instances the subjects interrupted the translation process by going to the kitchen to get a bar of chocolate or a drink, by going to the toilet, by putting a new cassette into the tape-recorder, etc., and when they returned to their task they suddenly produced a bright idea.
Kussmaul, Paul, Training the Translator, p. 43.

Limitations of Instinct / Brainstorming:


 Inconsistent  Slow  Prone to creating impoverished translators and/or unsatisfied clients  Creates solitaire-aholics INSTINCT CANT BE TAUGHT

AUDIO INPUT METHODS


TAPE RECORD THE SOURCE TEXT HAVE "MOM" TAPE RECORD THE SOURCE TEXT FOR YOU READ THE TARGET TEXT OUT LOUD TO YOURSELF HAVE A LIVE BODY READ TO YOU OUT LOUD TEXT-TO-SPEECH PROGRAMS

Yes, this is seriously an example of how reading it out loud can help you translate better:

No hemos recibido la comisin de vida. (Huh?)

ADVANTAGES SHARED BY ALL AUDIO-INPUT METHODS:


Dual input (visual/audio) to the brain Your eyes can stay focused on the page Relieve fatigue / boredom Work at the speed of sound Helps to eliminate omissions and careless meaning errors  Bolster instinct (enhance instinctive intelligence)  Actually saves you a lot of time     

The optimal audio-input method depends in on your personal language abilities and the characteristics of the text:
 Oral fluency  Your eyesight  Hard copy only (especially illegible fax) vs. electronic copy  Conceptual difficulty of text (for you)  Structural complexity of the language

TAPE RECORDING THE SOURCE TEXT


ADVANTAGES: Dual input (visual / audio) Helps translator process text semiconsciously Provides perspective and terminology exposure Lets you predict repeated phrases Playing recording during first draft mitigates fatigue and improves concentration

    

TAPE RECORDING THE SOURCE TEXT


ADVANTAGES (cont.:)  Keeps your eyes on target text during source/target comparison  Increases accuracy: helps catch omissions and meaning errors  Repeatable (Can be played more than once, even at 3 a.m.)  Economical

TAPE RECORDING THE SOURCE TEXT


DISADVANTAGES/LIMITATIONS  Youre not listening to the target text (so it doesnt help much for polishing syntax).  Cumbersome for extremely long translations (i.e. hundred of pages)  Limited portability (This method works best
with a tape transcription machine).

GET MOM TO TAPE RECORD THE SOURCE TEXT FOR YOU


 Similar to tape-recorder technique, but you loose the orientation, perspective and subconscious mental processing.  Great for illegible faxes and handwritten documents.  Another person is not likely to misread the same things you misread. Moms inflection may also provide insights to the text.

READING THE TARGET TEXT OUTLOUD TO YOUSELF


 Lets you hear your translation, BUT:  Fatiguing to the voice and brain.  Advantageous only if you need to review one or two sentences.  Doesnt help with source/target comparisons.  You may end up misreading your own typos.

HAVE A LIVE BODY READ THE SOURCE OR TARGET TEXT TO YOU

 Lets you hear your translation and receive insights from a 2nd person, BUT:  Expensive and time consuming (other person waits while you input changes)  In practical terms, it is not repeatable.  Your support person may not be there for you at 3 a.m.

TEXT-TO-SPEECH PROGRAMS
 Great for electronic files, where tendency towards omissions is less likely than stilted syntax due to over-zealous shortcuts.  You can visually read the source text while you listen to the target text to help control accuracy. (But watch out for punctuation problems and homonyms that may not be detected.)  You can hear your target text and visually read it at the same time, which helps you FINE TUNE your syntax and word choices.

TEXT-TO-SPEECH PROGRAMS (cont.)*

 The program wont inadvertently correct your mistakes.  Voice pattern is not that bad.  Technology is easy to learn.  Available! - Repeatable! - Economical!
* Such as Dragon Naturally Speaking, Preferred Edition

Theres more to translation than meets the eye!

To contact the speaker: Madeline Newman Ros 492 Georgia Court Claremont, CA 91711 Phone: (909) 621-9600 Fax: (909) 621-1560 Beeper: (800) 713-9519 Email: Riospanish@aol.com
Ms. Ros is an ATA accredited, active member (Spanish to English) and is certified as a Spanish/English court interpreter by the State of California and the U.S. District Courts.