Friday, 27 September, 13:00–13:30 (Jakobi 2, Room 105)
Language of presentation: English
Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences, PhD student
rita.bakaniene [ät] leu.lt
Translating Lithuanian Cultural Realia to English: Translation Strategies, Factors Determining their Choice
The presentation analyzes the problem of rendering the cultural realia of a demographically small country in the English language that represents the world-dominating Anglo-American culture. The focus of the analysis is to determine which global strategy of translation – foreignization or domestication – dominates in these translations as it is presupposed that in translations to English the cultural realia of the source language are typically domesticated, or adapted, to be transparent and fluently understandable to the target language culture. But consequently the cultural and linguistic aspects of the original might be marginalized or even effaced. The paper aims to present the results of a comparative descriptive analysis of the cultural realia that are found in Kazys Boruta’s novels “Wooden Miracles” and “Whitehorn’s Windmill” and the translation strategies – both local and global – that are used to translate them from Lithuanian to English. The results of the investigation show that there are various kinds of cultural realia in the two novels, but the geographical, ethnographic, religious ones and proper names are the most numerous which make the two literary works extensive descriptions of the countryside Lithuania in the first half of the 20th century. The analysis of the translations shows that the translators employed various local translation strategies to render the Lithuanian cultural realia in English: transcription, literal translation, explicitation, cultural adaptation, paraphrase, etc. As far as the global strategies are concerned, the study revealed that the translators’ approaches are not systematic as both kinds – foreignization and domestication – are employed. As a result, parts of the translated novels appear to portray a mixture of Lithuanian and Anglo-American cultural realia which does not help to fully impart the cultural distinction of the original. Moreover, in most cases the choice between them seems to be unmotivated and undetermined by any norms as in the target novels the cultural elements are significant and give the texts a strong national colouring.
Key words: cultural realia, global and local translation strategies, translation methods, foreignization, domestication