Translation theory today. Trends and prospectives

Translation theory today. Trends and prospectives

There exist many important works throughout the translation theory, each giving a critical account of what has already been accomplished in their particular field. Also pointing towards potential future areas of research development translation plays a major role in shaping literary systems.

Translation is involved in negotiations mediating between cultures. The task facing the translator of ancient text is to produce translations that seek to articulate in some way, the cultural framework within which the text is embedded. Moreover it is the very act of translations that enables contemporary readers to construct lost civilizations.

Translation is the portal through which the past can be seen as part of a cultural turn that was taking place in the late 1980s and early 1990s and he has altered the shape of many traditional subjects.

A further example in the cultural turn of translation studies has been the expansion of research into norms governing translation strategies and techniques.

Gedeon Toury, Andrew Chesterman and Theo Hermans in particular have thought to explore translational norms in terms not only of textual conventions but also in terms of cultural expectations.

Translation activity should be regarded as having cultural significance, consequently translatorship amounts first and foremost to being able to play a social role, it is to fulfill the function allotted by a community.

Translation offers an ideal situation for the study of cultural interaction, since a comparison of the original and the translated text will not only show the strategies, employed by the translators but will also reveal the different status of the two texts in their literary systems.

More broadly it will expose the relationship between the two cultural systems in which those two texts are embedded.

Cultural capital may be defined as that which is necessary for an individual to be seen to belong to the right circle of society. The importance of the textual grid in the study and production of translations is significant in formulating the notions of textual grids, we point out that some cultures (Germ, Eng., Fr.) share a common textual grid that derives from the Christian and Greek – Roman traditions.

Other cultures such as Chinese and Japanese share less with the other but text grids seem to exist in all cultures. These grids are constructs, they reflect patterns of expectations that have been interiorized by members of a given culture. Translators should pay more attention to them that they have in the past, whether they want to learn a technology of translating or whether they want to analyze translations and the part they play in the evolutions of cultures.
Translation studies as a client discipline is drawing on psychological discourses and on many other disciplines as well.

The discourses of philosophy might be related by translation studies in three ways:

– philosophers of various kinds have used translation as a case study or metaphor for issues of more general implication.
– translation theorists and practioners have referred to philosophical discourses for support of their ideas.
– philosophers, scholars and translators have commented on the translation of philosophical discourses.

Wilhelm von Humbolt viewed all languages as being worked in the same way; this was a result of a sudden widening of a conceptual world.

Humbold was looking at languages beyond the established translation networks and at cultures such as German that were suddenly in the process of historical development.
The result was not only a reevaluation of cultural difference but also an awareness of how translation could be used to standardize developing target languages.

This historical contradiction largely held from the view of logical possibility if languages have different worldviews, translation in any ideal sense might be seen as a problem solving activity in which a source element can be rendered by one or more elements in the target language.

If translators have only one available option there is no more to be said – no philosophy is needed. When they have 2 or 3 options translation is worth talking about. Ideally between translators, who thus start theorizing, when there are many options available.
To develop words appropriate to those alternatives might be the role of philosophy – to adapt and propose them might be one of the roles of translation studies.

Early views on the link between translation and linguistics are found in the works of Roman Jacobson.

He points out three kinds of translation:

– interlingual
– intralingual
– intersemiotic

Due attention was paid to the notion of translation equivalents. Vinay Darbelnet proposed a set of procedures for the translator to use in order to account for the need for indirect translation involving instances, when equivalents in the target language can’t be established.

Translation history is something presented as the history of translation theory, ideally it combines the history of translation within the study of literary and social trends in which translation has played a direct part.

It pay attention to the observations made by those who were involved in translation process. Translation history can describe changes in literary trends, account for the regeneration of the culture, those changes in politics explain the expansion and transfer of though and knowledge in a particular era.

Literary translation represents a distinctive kind of translating because it is concerned with the distinctive kind of text. The theory of text types classifies texts according to their functions and features and places literary texts in a class of their own. The set of norms relevant to translation at a certain time amounts to a translation poetics having studied a literal version. The translator established the poem’s meaning, adjusts the form of the text to a particular idiom and to a poem’s mood. And its sound pattern before checking the draft with the native speakers and preparing the final version.

Transcultural and translingual development in women’s movement have implicated translation in every aspect of text production.

Women representation have underlain the entire period since the early 1980s. More recently the ideas of gender instability have added new discussions to the categories men and women in two paradigms. The 1st paradigm reflects the conventional assumption that there are groups of people in each society that can be identified as men and women and who, because of these identifications are perceived and treated differently. With the group called women usually located in a subordinate position.

Work in translation studies carried out under this 1st paradigm tends to decide the ideas derived from feminist theories and thus focuses on women as a special minority group. The 2nd paradigm derives from the relatively new idea that the diversity of sexual orientation and gender, class distraction, ethnicity, race and other social-political factors is so great that it is impossible to indentify anyone as primarily male or female since so many other factors come into play.

Up until the 1980s theater was a neglected field of translation studies, the early contributions on translation studies, the early contributions on translation stage point out that at time this was an area previously ignored by translation theory.

The 1st major step was to describe the specific characteristics of the dramatic text and what makes it so different from other kinds of literary text.


There are two categories of translators here:
1) Those, whose only connection with the stage is the translation work; the text sets the parameters of the work and both the translator and the actor must stick to the text.
2) Translators, who work within the theatre as translations they are closer to being creators. They can make adjustments according to the need.