Cognitive basis of translation
The process of translation, its main stages. Measuring success in translation, its principles. Importance of adequacy in translation, cognitive basis and linguistics. Aspects of cognition. Historical article and metaphors, especially their transfer.
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Cognitive basis of translation
The study of proper principle of translation is termed as translation theory. This theory, based on a solid foundation on understanding of how languages work, translation theory recognizes that different languages encode meaning in differing forms, yet guides translators to find appropriate ways of preserving meaning, while using the most appropriate forms of each language. Translation theory includes principles for translating figurative language, dealing with lexical mismatches, rhetorical questions, inclusion of cohesion markers, and many other topics crucial to good translation.
Basically there are two competing theories of translation. In one, the predominant purpose is to express as exactly as possible the full force and meaning of every word and turn of phrase in the original, and in the other the predominant purpose is to produce a result that does not read like a translation at all, but rather moves in its new dress with the same ease as in its native rendering. In the hands of a good translator neither of these two approaches can ever be entirely ignored.
Conventionally, it is suggested that in order to perform their job successfully, translators should meet three important requirements; they should be familiar with:
the source language
the target language
the subject matter
Based on this premise, the translator discovers the meaning behind the forms in the source language and does his best to produce the same meaning in the target language - using the forms and structures of the target language. Consequently, what is supposed to change is the form and the code and what should remain unchanged is the meaning and the message.
Besides improving translation skills through translation exercises, students majored in English and translation are required to get acquaintance with basic issues and concepts of the field of translation studies.
This paper would recourse to the paradigm of cognition study to expound some basic issues in Translation Studies. These issues are among the biggest concerns of students in translation classes. It does not mean that students are required to master the difficult models of cognitive linguistics, but they should find it convenient to use these models. Cognitive linguistics is characterized by adherence to three central positions. First, it denies that there is an autonomous linguistic faculty in the mind; second, it understands grammar in terms of conceptualization; and third, it claims that knowledge of language arises out of language use.
Cognitive linguists deny that the mind has any module for language-acquisition that is unique and autonomous. This stands in contrast to the position adopted in the field of generative grammar. Although cognitive linguists do not necessarily deny that part of the human linguistic ability is innate, they deny that it is separate from the rest of cognition. They thus reject a body of opinion in cognitive science suggesting that there is evidence for the modularity of language. They argue that knowledge of linguistic phenomena -- i.e., phonemes, morphemes, and syntax -- is essentially conceptual in nature. The translator should understand perfectly the content and intention of the author whom he is translating. The principal way to reach it is reading all the sentences or the text completely so that you can give the idea that you want to say in the target language because the most important characteristic of this technique is translating the message as clearly and natural as possible. If the translation is for different countries, the translator should use the cultural words of that country. In this case it is really important the cultural words because if the translator does not use them correctly the translation will be misunderstood.
The translator should have a perfect knowledge of the language from which he is translating and an equally excellent knowledge of the language into which he is translating. At this point the translator must have a wide knowledge in both languages for getting the equivalence in the target language, because the deficiency of the knowledge of both languages will result in a translation without logic and sense.
The translator should avoid the tendency to translate word by word, because doing so is to destroy the meaning of the original and to ruin the beauty of the expression. This point is very important and one of which if it is translated literally it can transmit another meaning or understanding in the translation.
The aim of the coursework is to understand what is the concept of the cognitive basis of translation, to determine its role in the process of translation and to show the importance of it in the end.
The object of this coursework is cognitive linguistics and all other phenomena like: definition of the term "cognitive linguistics ", its types, the role of the cognitive linguistics, and importance of understanding it during the translation.
The structure of the coursework. This coursework consists of introduction, two chapters: theoretical and practical, conclusion, and bibliography. Beside this, theoretical and practical chapters are subdivided into several sub themes.
The urgency of the problem. Linguistics of the text is a new branch in the modern language study that has been developing rapidly during the last few years. This new Linguistic discipline, the subject of the study of which is a coherent text (logically finished sequence of utterances connected with a common meaning ties between each other) had put a mission to find the essence of these ties and ways of their using, to find the system of grammatical categories of the text with its formal units, describe the essence of human communication according to the material of the text.
So, exactly the text is the object of the analysis at the first steps of the translation. Besides, the text is the subject of synthesis at the final steps of the translation process. The form of the text is an expression of communicative side of Sender with the help of language. During the process of analyzing of the Original Text translator usually thinks about what the Sender wants to say and which language units he/she use? Here, is quite important to look not only what have written but also to the semantic side of the text, that is what is meant by these words.
The objectives of the coursework. There will be 3 main missions of the research, that have marked:
to understand what the cognition is;
to get acquaintance with the types of the cognitive translation;
to understand the importance of the cognition in the process of translation.
1. Theoretical part
1.1 Translation. Translation problems
"Translation" is the main concept of the theory of translation. So, firstly, before writing about the context it is needed to understand what is the translation.
Translation is a transformation of concept content and stylistic pecularities of the utterance of a one language with the helps of means of another. (I.R.Galperin)
Traditionally, translation has always been a human activity, although attempts have been made to automate and computerize the translation of natural language texts--machine translation--or to use computers as an aid to translation--computer-assisted translation.
The goal of translation is to establish a relationship of equivalence between the source and the target texts (that is to say, that both texts communicate the same message), while taking into account a number of constraints. These constraints include context, the rules of grammar of the source language, its writing conventions, its idioms and the like.
Translation is inherently a difficult activity. Translators can face problems which make the process even more difficult, such as:
* Problems with the text:
о The source text not being the final text, and being redrafted during the translation process о Illegible text о Misspelt text о Incomplete text о Poorly written text
о Missing references in the text (e.g. the translator is to translate captions to missing photos)
* Language problems:
о Dialect terms and neologisms
о Unexplained acronyms and abbreviations
о Unreasonably obscure jargon
о Highly specific cultural references
The question of whether particular words are untranslatable is often debated, with lists being produced from time to time. For example, it is hard to find a noun corresponding to the Russian почемучка (pochemuchka) or the Yiddish ^Tu^lP (shlimazl), but the adjectives "inquisitive" and "jinxed" correspond just fine.
The words that present the most problems for translation are often the small, common words. For example, the verb "to get" in all its various uses covers nearly seven columns of the most recent version of the Robert-Collins French-English dictionary. The same is true for most apparently simple, common words, such as "go" (seven columns), "come" (four and a half columns), and so forth.
Cultural aspects can render translation problematic. Consider the example of a word like "bread". At first glance, it is a very simple word, referring in everyday use to just one thing, with obvious translations into other languages. But ask people from England, France and China to describe or draw "bread", du pain and Q (band you,(oa Does it?Is it sweet?How crunchy?How long is it.will achieve quite different results They will be envisioning completely different?Where do you get it?come sliced.things
The problem often lies in failure to distinguish between translation and equivalent (word-usually one)give a short:Glossing is what a glossary does.glossing is decoding meaning and intent at the,as explained above translation.for each term encoding them in a -and then re (not the word level or even sentence level) text level ^irbm Words like saudade and.target language are hard to gloss into a single other word, but given two or more words they can be perfectly adequately translated. "Bread" has a better claim to being untranslatable, since even if we resort to saying "French bread", "Chinese bread", "Algerian bread", etc. we are relying on our audience knowing what these are like.
Differing levels of precision also play a role. What does "there" mean? Even discounting idiomatic uses such as "there, there, don't cry", we can be confronted by several possibilities. If something is "there" but not very far away, a Spaniard will say аЬн; if it is further away he or she will say а11н, unless there are connotations of "near there", "over yonder" or "on that side", in which case the word is likely to be alia. Conversely, in colloquial French, all three "there" concepts plus the concept of "here" all tend to be expressed with the word la. So where is the thing?
Linguists are naturally enthusiastic about obscure words with local flavour, and are wont to declare them "untranslatable", but in reality these incredibly culture-laden terms are the easiest of all to translate, even more so than universal concepts such as "mother". This is because it is standard practice to translate these words by the same word in the other language, borrowing it for the first time if necessary.
The more obscure and specific to a culture the term is, the simpler it is to translate. For example, the name of an insignificant settlement such as Europe in Australia is automatically just "Europe" in every language in the world that uses the Roman alphabet, whilst it takes some knowledge to be aware that Saragossa is Zaragoza, Saragosse, etc. or that China is Cina, Chine, and so forth.
Expressions may also exist in one language which refer to concepts that don't exist in another language. For example, the French "tutoyer"' and "vouvoyer" would both be translated into English as "to address as 'you'", since the singular informal second person pronoun is archaic in English. (On the other hand, depending on the context, the meaning of the French word "tutoyer", or Spanish "tutear", could be translated as "to be on first name terms with".)
Indeed, one of the main rules in translation is to "keep the context", but isn't the language of the document itself the heart of the context that should be kept?
Another serious problem of translation is that translating can be described as writing what you have read in another language. And yet how can one expect that the translator perfectly understands the original author? While this is the translator's job, it is the author who is praised for the work; but can a translation of Asimov be considered as Asimov's work? Could translation even be seen as "legal plagiarism"? Translations can be quite different from the original: for instance, one of the characters in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams is called Zaphod Beeblebrox while Adams' French translator Jean Bonnefoiy thought it best to call him Zapi Bibici. While this is not a huge difference, it is there. Adams may not have been completely happy with this change, and is by a series of such small changes that a translation becomes an adaptation.
1.2 Process of translation
The translation process, whether it be for translation or interpreting, can be stated simply as:
Decoding the meaning of the source text, and
Re-encoding this meaning in the target language.
To decode the meaning of a text the translator must first identify its component "translation units", that is to say the segments of the text (which may be a word, a phrase or one or more sentences), to be treated as a cognitive unit.
Behind this seemingly simple procedure lies a complex cognitive operation. To decode the complete meaning of the source text, the translator must consciously and methodically interpret and analyse all its features. This process requires thorough knowledge of the grammar, semantics, syntax, idioms and the like of the source language, as well as the culture of its speakers.
The translator needs the same in-depth knowledge to re-encode the meaning in the target language. In fact, often translators' knowledge of the target language is more important, and needs to be deeper, than their knowledge of the source language. For this reason, most translators translate into a language of which they are native speakers.
In addition, knowledge of the subject matter being discussed is essential. In recent years studies in cognitive linguistics have been able to provide valuable insights into the cognitive process of translation.
There are also some particular problems in the translation process: problems of ambiguity, problems that originate from structural and lexical differences between languages and multiword units like idioms and collocations. Another problem would be the grammar because there are several constructions of grammar poorly understood, in the sense that it isn't clear how they should be represented, or what rules should be used to describe them. The words that are really hard to translate are frequently the small, common words, whose precise meaning depends heavily on context. Besides, some words are untranslatable when one wishes to remain in the same grammatical category. The question of whether particular words are untranslatable is frequently debated.
1.3 Principles of translation. Measuring success in translation
Some of the best advice you can get when you start translating to and from English or Russian is to translate for meaning rather to translate words. Sometimes what you want to translate will be straightforward enough that there won't be much difference between the two approaches. But more often than not, paying attention to what someone is saying -- not just the words the person is using -- will pay off in doing a better job of conveying the idea that someone is trying to get across.
In general, it can be said that there are two extreme approaches in the way one can translate from one language to another. The first is seeking a literal translation, sometimes known as formal equivalence, in which an attempt is made to translate using the words that correspond as exactly as possible in the two languages, allowing, of course, for the grammatical differences but without paying a great deal of attention to context. A second extreme is paraphrasing, sometimes called making a free or loose translation.
One problem with the first approach is that literal translations can be awkward. For example, it might be more "exact" to translate the Russian "получать" as "to obtain," but most of the time "to get" will do just as well and sounds less stuffy. An obvious problem with paraphrasing is that the translator may not accurately convey the intent of the speaker, especially where precision of language is required. So many of the best translations take a middle ground, sometimes known as dynamic equivalence -- trying to convey the thoughts and intent behind the original as close as possible, veering from the literal where needed to do so.
A different translator very well might have used a different word, and there very well could be words that would work better. But translation is often more art than science, and that can involve judgment and creativity at least as much as it does knowing the "right" words.
Measuring success in translation
As the goal of translation is to establish a relationship of equivalence between the source and the target texts--that is to say, both texts communicate the same message--while taking into account the various constraints placed on the translator, a successful translation can be judged by two criteria:
1. Faithfulness, also called fidelity, that is the extent to which the translation accurately renders the meaning of the source text, without adding to it or subtracting from it, and without intensifying or weakening any part of the meaning; and
2. Transparency, that is the extent to which the translation appears to a native
speaker of the target language to have originally been written in that language, and conforms to the language's grammatical, syntactic and idiomatic conventions.
A translation meeting the first criterion is said to be a "faithful translation"; a translation meeting the second criterion is said to be an "idiomatic translation".
The criteria used to judge the faithfulness of a translation vary according to the subject, the precision of the original contents, the type, function and use of the text, its literary qualities, its social or historical context, for example.
The criteria for judging the transparency of a translation would appear more straightforward: an unidiomatic translation "sounds" wrong, and in the extreme case of word-for-word translations generated by many machine translation systems, often result in patent nonsense.
Nevertheless, in certain contexts a translator may knowingly strive to produce a literal translation. For example, literary translators and translators of religious works often adhere to the source text as much as possible. To do this they deliberately "stretch" the boundaries of the target language to produce an unidiomatic text. Likewise, a literary translator may wish to adopt words or expressions from the source language to provide "local colour" in the translation.
The concepts of fidelity and transparency are looked at differently in recent translation theories. The idea that acceptable translations should be as creative and original as their source text is gaining momentum in some quarters.
The concepts of fidelity and transparency remain strong in Western tradtions. They are not necessarily as prevalent in in non-western traditions. For example, the Indian epic Ramayana has numerous versions in many Indian languages and the stories in each are different from one another. If one looks into the words used for translation in Indian (either Aryan or Dravidian) languages, the freedom given to the translators is evident.
1.4 Importance of adequacy in translation
There are both linguistic and extralinguistic aspects that hinder to reach adequacy in fiction translation. Semantic information of the text differs essentially from the expressive-emotional information of the text but they have one common trait: both can bear and render extralinguistic information. Extralinguistic information often becomes a stone to stumble over by a translator, as it is a lingvoethnic barrier for a fiction translator. Misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the extralinguistic information means to misrepresent:
either what was actually communicated in the SL text, what means the pragmatic core of the SL text may be lost and therefore in the TL text ambivalence may arise for the recipient reader.
or there may be misrepresented the author's communicative intention, the social context of the scene/situation as well as disposition or relationships of the communication act participants.
Both semantic and pragmatic inadequacies are flaws which can pose a recipient reader to the problem or cultural misunderstanding and adequate comprehension of the TL text.
A good example could be brought from C. P. Snow's novel "Time of Hope" (p. 28) "Gaping at some dirty tea leaves, reading the cards and looking at each other's silly hands and..." - let the sentence have been translated word-to-word into my native Georgian or in any other language - the language community of which is totally unaware that in Britain clarvoyance experience admits fortunetelling on tea leaves, - it would have lost sense.
In this case the translator successfully copes with the cultural realie, which is changed for the associative realie: coffee - a trivial method of fortunetelling in Georgia.
There are also word-realies that are not translatable and as V. S. Vinogradov points out, many of them turn into borrowings. Such a word-realie may be an exotism, which in general, is transcribed in translation.
Vlakhov S. and Florin S. argue that actual realies which bear national colouring are transcribed as well - therefore it basically means, that the rule is applicable with foreignisms in the SL text.
Let's see now what is the result of blind-guidence with the rule:
"Good day, Iskander-effendi! Do you remember me? "
The man regarded him closely.
'7 think you work as druggist in Otten's pharmacy... Yes, yes, at Otten's on Sololaki street...Am I mistaken? I've met you somewhere, but I can't recall for sure what it is you do... "
Zarandia handed him his calling card.
"This does not say that I am also chief of the secret service."
The conception of extralinguistic information preconditions and presupposes correct observance of its pragmatic meaning for adequate representation to TL reader. Misrepresentation and ambivalency in the TL text arise due to the selection of semantically inadequate lexical unit for the pragmatic meaning of the SL lexical unit.
The overtone of irony in the SL speech act may serve as a wrong indicator to the translator to misinterpret and misrepresent the social context of the scene/situation as well as dispositions or relationships of the communication act participants.
Therefore, a non-vernacular translator of the SL text may wrongly assume that alternated markers of distance and solidarity in the same speech act can allow selection only of the marker of solidarity in the TL translation, thus leading the recepient reader to even wronger assumptions about the scene-situation.
Realies, which are markers of solidarity and bear national colouring should be transcribed or transliterated, but supplied with comments in the footnotes.
Realies which are markers of either solidarity or distance in the language community other than of the SL text native reader and are represented in the SL text as foreignisms, should be transcribed or transliterated, but be also supplied with comments in the footnotes to the TL reader;
A non-vernacular translator of the SL text may not thoroughly understand the extralinguistic information contained in the SL text, misinterpret the pragmatic meaning of a lexical unit or wrongly deduct on the choice of the adequate correspondence of a SL lexical unit in the TL text.
1.5 Cognitive basis of translation. Cognitive linguistics
The study of science behind the human languages is called linguistics. It involves the analysis of where the language originated from, what was the need, how it evolved with time, recent developments and future possibilities. The creation of a perfectly defined language by which we can communicate to one another is one of the most relevant reasons to separate us from rest of the members in the animal kingdom. The importance of language is not hidden from anybody and hence linguistics is a very important field of study.
Cognitive sciences, on the other hand, deal basically with studying any process or event from mental perspective i.e. it believes all the activities or happenings around us is the result of some phenomena going on in the brain and the analysis of that detail and other details is what we study in cognitive sciences. Now where does linguistics come under the scanner of cognitive science?
Linguistics has been taken up as a field of research in cognitive science, as the evolution of language and its continuous development is because of some processes taking place in mind. For example thinking to speak or communicate, taking initiative to talk, finding some tools or objects to communicate, etc., all are related to cognition i.e. related to mind and its various processes. Linguistics and cognitive sciences is an important branch of science and it has led to various discoveries regarding the language development. How is the accent of any language or the body of its words are generated and what it takes for any mind to adapt to it.
The study of languages is not easy, and even more complex is the process of language learning. A new born baby starts to learn basic words few weeks after birth and masters basic form of it in few years without any training just by listening. Generally all of us are able to adopt and use a language proficiently under normal circumstances. Have you ever wondered why it is simple to learn the first language as a baby than to learn a new language when we become adult or what is the limit to which any language can be learned and understood by us? All such questions can be answered by cognitive studies of the languages.
Actually linguistics is a scientific study of any language dealing with phonetics, pronunciation, listening, and other similar scientific aspects whereas cognitive linguistics is the study of what process is going in the mind when someone is speaking, listening or just using any language. We can say that linguistics differs from language to language but cognitive science can be the same for different languages. Linguistics is a generative and module based study of any language e.g. it is concerned only about correct usage, rules, grammar etc. but on the other hand, cognitive science of language deals with the concept lying behind any language.
Cognitive linguistics tries to figure out how a human brain is able to listen, learn, memorize and reproduce any language. It does not believe that there is a part in the brain which handles all the language related functions. The main reason behind this approach is that during using a language we can listen, speak, write and all these functions are governed by different parts of the brain so how can we say that language is dealt by one specific section.
One more important aspect of cognitive linguistics is that it also examines the genetic factors which affect the acquisition and usage of a language. Sometimes you may observe that some child is unable to speak properly or unable to adopt the language but his parents don't have any such problem, what could be the possible factor behind this failure. The question is something which cannot be answered by linguistics alone, or it can just state that there might be some problem in that area of brain which handles language related activities but the cognitive science tries to find out that actual reason by analyzing the genetic codes and observing that if something is missing from the child.
1.6 Importance of cognitive translation
Translation and Cognition assesses the state of the art in cognitive translation and interpreting studies by examining three important trends: methodological innovation, the evolution of research design, and the continuing integration of translation process research results with the core findings of the cognitive sciences. In order to understand and explain translation comprehensively, we have to activate different levels from immediate to maximal domain. Basically, translation deals with language, so linguistic level can be seen as the immediate domain, and that is the case with traditional translation studies in which criteria were constantly laid down. But without activating more levels, some translation phenomena could hardly be understood properly. Deviations from the conventional rules or violations are found in real-life translation and surprisingly function well in given situations. So Translation Studies has to go far beyond linguistic domain. Accordingly cultural level (in narrow sense), literary level, political level and ideological level are surely taken into consideration. In the last half of 20th century, scholars initiated “culture turn”, referring “culture” in the broadest sense to comprise all the levels in translation cognition domain. So we can tentatively equal culture here to maximal domain in translation cognition (Both scholars and translation studies benefit from the infinite capability of culture in “culture turn”.) Students very often feel confused
that they can understand the words but find them difficult to translate. This happens when they encounter culturally-bedded terms and expressions, or terminologies from special fields. For instance, the term “spiritual guide” contains two simple words, but the meaning is quite obscure here for students. They can choose literal translation but leave the translation making no sense, or they have to activate or supplement their extra-linguistic cognition level to get the real understanding. Students often are not aware that bicultural competence is as important as bilingual competence. Nida even claimed that bicultural competence is even more important than bilingual competence (Nida). Most probably they simply relegate those unfaithful translations (but successful) as bad translations. Or in the opposite they are impressed that translation has no limitation or rules to abide by.
Anyway, immediate level, that is, linguistic level is the basic and most direct way to perceive translation phenomena, and influence of all the levels in cognition domain will ultimately realized and manifested at the linguistic level, because no one can deny that translation is a matter of language. Students should be guided to strike the balance among different levels of their cognition domain in order to improve their translation competence as well as make proper assessment of translated versions.
Cognitive linguistics refers to the school of linguistics that understands language creation, learning and usage as the best explained by reference to human cognition in general.
It is characterized by adherence to three central positions:
1st, it denies that there is an autonomous linguistic faculty in the mind i.e. they deny that the mind has any module for language acquisition that is unique and autonomous. Although cognitive linguists do not necessarily deny that part of the human linguistic ability is innate, they deny that it is separate from the rest of cognition. Thus, they argue that knowledge of linguistic phenomena i.e. phonemes, morphemes and syntax… is essentially conceptual in nature.
2nd, cognitive linguists view meaning in terms of conceptualization. Instead of viewing meaning in terms of models of the world, they view it in terms of mental spaces.
3rd, it claims that knowledge of language arises out of language use i.e. language and cognition mutually influence one another, and are both embodied in the experiences and environments of its users. This means that the language affects our thinking but when we produce it, it affects the environment as well.
The Cognitives believed that we have an innate capacity (stimulus within us) and it needs to be triggered as the external stimulus which is the linguistic input. They also talked about the states of consciousness i.e. we first learn the language as a whole, then it becomes more conscious by us because we start to categorize.
Rationalism is found in the cognitive approach i.e. we rationalize in our brain to relate the word to the meaning. They believe that there's something intuitive which says yes or no to a sentence when it is heard.
They also talked about competence i.e. we know more that we can act, we understand many words but we don't use them all in our writing.
A language is way to see and understand the world. However since human being is essentially a social animal we perpetually interact with our environment. This interaction with environment is a factor of time and space. That's why cognitive translation is closely connected with the context. For example 'March' is an act as well as month. The meaning depends on when, where and how.
Translation is understood as an act of carrying the meaning of a text from one language to another. This process involves interpretation of meaning of the source text and producing the same meaning in another language. Text however cannot exist out of context. By context what is meant is the entire environment in which the word or sentence is expressed or stated. So a translator has to go into the background of the text to understand the text. Thus translator first de-contextualizes the original text and re-contextualizes it for the target text. This forms a good contextualized translation.
While seeking the context of a text there may be two categories of factors that may influence the meaning of the text- linguistic context or the situational context.
Linguistic context cites the linguistic factors influencing the meaning of the text. Any word in the text is not present in isolation but interacts with other words in the text and with the whole text at large. This interaction among words determines their meaning rather than its isolated meaning. For example see the use of word 'press' in these sentences:
press my shirt.
I work in a press.
press the button.
Linguistic context too can either be immediate or remote. Immediate context refers to the words or sentences that make the context evident then and there through the whole text. Remote context pertains to existence of word or sentence somewhere else. It may refer to author using the word somewhere else or there may be special reasons to use that word or phrase.
Situational context refers to the factors of situation and circumstances influencing the meaning of a text. These factors are little harder to be recognized than linguistic ones. The situational factors may pertain to the facial expressions, gestures and stances at micro level and the social, political and economical milieu and the culture at large. Conventions and the whole value system differ from one culture and society to another. What is 'right' and what is 'wrong' differs. Ideologies may also be a factor to refer to the context.
Language therefore should be considered a part of culture and understood in its context. Translator must be giving over the top stress to understand the context so as to produce a good contextualized translation.
1.7 Aspects of cognition
Cognitive linguistics is divided into three main areas of study:
ь Cognitive semantics, dealing mainly with lexical semantics, separating semantics (meaning) into meaning-construction and knowledge representation.
ь Cognitive approaches to grammar, dealing mainly with syntax, morphology and other traditionally more grammar-oriented areas.
ь Cognitive phonology, dealing with classification of various correspondences between morphemes and phonetic sequences.
Aspects of cognition that are of interest to cognitive linguists include:
Construction grammar and cognitive grammar.
Conceptual metaphor and conceptual blending.
Image schemas and force dynamics.
Conceptual organization: Categorization, Metonymy, Frame semantics, and Iconicity.
Construal and Subjectivity.
Gesture and sign language.
Related work that interfaces with many of the above themes:
Computational models of metaphor and language acquisition.
Dynamical models of language acquisition
Conceptual semantics, pursued by generative linguist Ray Jackendoff is related because of its active psychological realism and the incorporation of prototype structure and images.
Cognitive linguistics, more than generative linguistics, seeks to mesh together these findings into a coherent whole. A further complication arises because the terminology of cognitive linguistics is not entirely stable, both because it is a relatively new field and because it interfaces with a number of other disciplines.
Insights and developments from cognitive linguistics are becoming accepted ways of analysing literary texts, too. Cognitive Poetics, as it has become known, has become an important part of modern stylistics.
While research on texts as units larger than sentences has a rich tradition in translation studies, the notion of context, its relation to text, and the role it plays in translation has received much less attention.
Translation is a multidimensional and multifaceted process determined by the System and norm of the two languages, the two cultures, the two communicative situations (the primary and the secondary), the referential situation, the functional parameters of the source text and the translation norm, the conflict between the determinants is mirrored in the "paradoxes of translation". The interdisciplinary status of translation studies, their close links with contrastive and text linguistics, socio-and psycholinguistics and semiotics arise from the very nature of translation as not only a speech act but also an act of cross-cultural communication.
Linguistic and extra linguistic determinants of translation form a series of filters underlying the strategy of decision making. A major role is played by presuppositions and implicates based on background knowledge. A semiotic typology of equivalence levels within the primacy of the pragmatic level of equivalence over the semantic -componential and referential - sublevels could be supplemented by a functional typology based on the functional dominants of a text. As distinguished from equivalence based on the reproduction of the communicative effects adequacy stresses adaptation to factors arising from the secondary situation. While equivalence regards translation as a result, adequacy tends to view it as a process.
Translatability is treated as a relative concept. Essential translatability recognizes the possibility of partial losses not affecting the major elements of a text. Distinctions is Drawn between the translatability of text elements and that of whole texts. In the course о translation linguistic meanings are variables. It is the sense determined by the context and the situation that remains invariant. The context and the situation make it possible to neutralize the difference between no identical meanings and use the latter to convey the same sense.
Correspondences' description does not mean automatic substitution of correspondence instead of translating unit of the original text within the limits of the theory of translation. The concept of the correspondence is closely connected with the concept of linguistic and situative context which determines the choice of this or that correspondences during the translation, or rejection of using well-known correspondences and finding new ways of translation. Under the linguistic context is meant linguistic surrounding in which this or that language unit is used in the text. The context of the word is a complex of words, grammatical forms and constructions in the encirclement of which the word is used. There we can distinguish narrow context (micro context) and wider context (macro context). By the narrow context is meant the context of combination of words or sentences, that is linguistic units composing surrounding of this unit within the bounds of the sentence.
By the wider context is meant linguistic encirclement of this unit going out of the sentence - context of the text, which is combination of linguistic units within neighboring sentences. It is very difficult to indicate the exact bounds of context: on one hand it can be the context of the group of sentences, paragraphs on the other hand - chapter or even the whole book, e.g. story or novel. Narrow context can be divide into syntactical and lexical context. Syntactical context is that syntactical construction within which given word, combination of words or subordinate clause is used. Lexical context is the combination of lexical units, words and clichfis within the encirclement of which we can use this unit.
Situative (extra linguistic) context includes situation, time and place to hitch the utterance is concerned to, besides, any facts of reality knowing of which help the translator to interpret the meaning of linguistic units within the utterance correctly.
Using of translating correspondences always suggests taking into account the context where translating units of the original text are used. Correspondences are those units of the Source language which in their meaning are close to the units of Target language. In this case, first of all it is quite important to understand what meaning this particular unit brings in the original text. Most part of such linguistic units is polysemantic but in the context they are used only in one of the possible meanings. Comparison of conceptual meanings of joint used linguistic units help to find the meaning in which each of them is used in the utterance. Usually it becomes possible within the bounds of narrow context.
E.g. "The striking unions have won concessions despite bitter opposition of the employers"/
Out of the context all words of this sentence have more than one meaning. The verb "to strike" means "бить, ударять, найти, натолкнуться, поражать, сражать, пускать корни, бастовать". The noun "union" means "союз, объединение, соединение, профсоюз, работный дом, брачный союз". The verb "to win" is known as "выиграть, победить, добиться, поучить, добывать, убедить". The noun "concession" has the Russian equivalent "уступка концессия". The adjective "bitter" means "горький, мучительный, резкий, ожесточенный". The noun "opposition" is known as "контраст, противоположность, сопротивление, оппозиция". And finally, the noun " employer" means "предприниматель, работодатель, наниматель".
Analyzing all these meanings together at the context of the utterance, it becomes clear that they are compatible in the case if the first words means "бастовать", the second "профсоюз", the third "добиться", the forth "уступка", the fifth "ожесточенный", and the last "сопротивление". There, the word "employer" that means "предприниматель" at once determines the sphere of live about which the talk is going in the sentence. Because of that it becomes easier to understand the meaning of other words in the utterance, such as: striking unions, win concessions, bitter opposition.
At other cases for the determining the meaning of the word in the context it is quite important to pay attention to the wider context. At the following sentence from the Foster's article about the crisis of 1929, the narrow context does not take off the polysemy of the word "apparent":
E.g. The period of apparent prosperity may be said to have ended in 1928". This adjective may have one or two quite opposite meanings:
Neither the combination of word "apparent prosperity", nor the meaning of other words in the utterance does not exclude an opportunity of using any of given meanings. But the content of the whole article and knowing the critical attitude of the Chairman of Communist Party to the notorious "prosperity" at the time of president Kulidzh allow to approve with the confidence that the word "apparent" is used at the second of given meanings.
Understanding of the meaning of the word in the context gives us an opportunity to find a constant correspondence or a row of variant correspondences at the Target text according to which we should make a choice during the process of translation. And for this choice it is quite important to pay attention to the situative and linguistic context. Here are several examples of the well-known noun "attitude".
1.1 don't like your attitude to your work.
There is no sign of any change in the attitudes of the two sides.
He stood there in a threatening attitude.
He is known for Ms reactionary attitude
At given examples, the knowing of narrow context is not enough for choosing Russian equivalent "отношение (к работе)" at the first case, "позиции (обеих сторон)" - at the second case, "позу (угрожающую) - at the third, and "взгляды (реакционные) " at the last sentence.
Sometimes, for the choosing one of the possible correspondences we should pay attention to the wider context.
E.g. For the English word "chair" there are several Russian correspondences like "стул" and "кресло". And when we read the story of G. Salinger "Above the precipice at rye" translator can find the sentence:
"Then I got this book was reading and sat down in my chair..."
This sentence does not have any words or signs that are quite enough for
choosing one of these correspondences. But further, at this paragraph, the same object of the furniture is mentioned:
"The arms were in sad shape, because everybody was sitting on them ".
Paying attention to the word "arms" allows with the confidence to choose the variant "кресло"
Sometimes, during the choosing of variant of translation we have to pay attention to the knowing of reality. E.g. If anybody in the sentence is named "abolitionist" than the choice of correspondence will depend on time, that is when the event described in the utterance. If it is the period of liberation of American Negroes, than this person on Russian will be "аболиционист", that is the supporter of abolition of slavery in the USA. If it is speaking about the period of "DRY LAW" in the USA, than it is the supporter of repeal of a law, and at 1970s, especially in England, this person will be called the supporter of abolition of death penalty. For choosing the right variant of translation besides the political situation of the country the translator should also know the Russian equivalent "аболиционист" have only one meaning connected with the abolition of slavery.
The translation with the help of choosing of one of the several partial correspondences is a widespread way of the translation. Craftsmanship of the translation in most cases consists in ability to find a row of correspondences for the unit of the Source Text and from of all of this the variant which will be the most suitable according to the context. However, existence of one of several translating correspondences at the unit of the Source Text does not mean using of them it any translation, if such unit is used in the Original Text. In some cases conditions of using linguistic units in the context force the translator to refuse from the using the constant correspondence, and find the variant of translation that will give the exact meaning of the Source Text unit at a given translation. Exceptional way of translating of the unit of the Original Text, suitable only for a given context is called contextual replacement.
Conditions of the context may induce translator to refuse even from the using of unitary correspondence. Thus, geographical names have constant correspondences that are translated with the help of sound imitation in the translation of sounding of foreign name. As an example we can take the name of American town "New Heaven" situated at the Connecticut state. The name of this state is regularly translated to the Russian language as "Нью-Хэйвен". But, at the process of translation of Phidzherald's "The great Gatsby" the translator refused from the using of constant correspondence and translated the following sentence:
E.g. "I graduated from New Haven in 1915", as "Я окончил Иельский университет в 1915 году"
The context clearly shows that the name of the city is used in the Original text in figurative meaning, which is as the name of university situated at this city. And knowing and analyzing of reality help the translator to understand that well-known Yell University is situated in New Haven, USA. As far as Russian person may not know this fact, at this case using of constant correspondence will not provide communicative equality of translation.
Nowadays, it is quite natural that because of the context the translator has to refuse from the using of one of the variant correspondences, and find the new way of translation. At all such cases the aim of translator is to find suitable contextual replacement. Let's have a look on several examples:
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