"The Brothers Grimm" in the Ukrainian translation

The characteristics of audiovisual translation, of intertextuality and related notions of intertextuality, vertical context. Functions of allusions. The use of dubbing. The reproduction of allusions in the translation of the film "The brothers Grimm".

Рубрика Иностранные языки и языкознание
Вид курсовая работа
Язык английский
Дата добавления 06.12.2015
Размер файла 46,0 K

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According to the film, a little girl is suddenly awaked by a strange voice that calls her by name in the middle of the night. Therefore, she comes to a stable and meets a horse that is actually calling her. She likes the horse and says ““Such big eyes you have. And big ears you have. And such a pretty, pretty mouth.” Similarly to the original variants of the fairy tale, at this point the horse suddenly attacks the girl and swallows her.

The story about the girl and the Big Bad Wolf is famous all over world. Therefore, the allusion can be considered to be universal [9, p. 3-5], and literary, since it is based on the fairy tale's plot [15]. According to R. Leppihalme's classification, it can be identified as a key-phrase allusion [KP], as far as it is illustrated by several phrases [27].

The allusion performs a predictable function, introduced in Ye.M. Dronova's classification [11]. A receiver, that is familiar with the plot of “Little Red Riding Hood”, can easily predict what will happen after the phrase “And such a pretty, pretty mouth”.

The Ukrainian translation contains minimum changes. Thus, the translator applied the technique of semantic calque [27]. The allusion was reproduced by the translator by means of preserving its structure, type and function, since the Ukrainian viewer can easily recognize a reference to the conversation between the “red hooded” girl and the Big Bad Wolf.

Example 7

“Once upon a time there was an imp whose name we had to guess. We had to go right down to the flaming belly of hell to find out. But we did it. We did it!” [00:14:18 --> 00:14:28]

“Якось давно був собі біс. Хто-знає як його звали. Аби дізнатися, треба на дно пекла спускатися. Та ми це зробили!” [00:14:19 --> 00:14:29]

In this example Jacob refers to a German fairy tale “Rumpelstiltskin” that was published by the brothers Grimm in 1812 and revised in later versions. According to the plot, a king shuts a girl in the tower room filled with straw and demands that she spin the straw into gold by morning. Otherwise, he willcut off her head. Suddenly appears an imp-like creature that helps the girl and turns the straw into gold. Each times he creates gold in return for a reward. The third time he makes the girl promise that her firstborn child will be given to him. Later the girl becomes a queen and the creature promises to give up his claim to the child if the queen guesses his name within three days. Eventually, the girl goes to the woods searching for the creatures and finds him singing “tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow, I'll go to the king's house, nobody knows my name, I'm called Rumpelstiltskin”. Thus, the queen reveals his name are rescues her child [43].

In the film the allusion was used by Jacob during the celebration of brothers' “victory over the witch”. According to the film, he is not fond of their dishonest way of earning money. Therefore, under alcohol influence he starts speaking about their job in a sarcastic manner. After the apparently fantastic story about “an imp whose name they had to guess”, he says “This business is quite a lucrative one. Know what I mean?”

The story about the creature whose name should be guessed can be found in many cultures all over the world. The references to “Rumpelstiltskin” can be easily recognized in plenty modern films and TV shows. Thus, this fairy tale allusion is apparently universal [9, p. 3-5], and literary [15]. Since it is expressed by a phrase, it can be considered to be a key-phrase allusion [KP] [27].

According Ye. A. Vasilieva's classification of functions, the allusion forms the text by characterizing the character, forms the genre by creating a comic effect, since it shows Jacob saying something indiscreet under alcohol influence [7]. Also it characterizes personal relationship between the characters and portrays the feelings of the character, as far as by this speech Jacob is willing to focus Will's attention on his dissatisfaction with their job [1]. In addition, it performs the valuating function, as it allows us to judge Jacobs action during the celebration [11].

Apparently, the translator used the technique of semantic calque [27]. Nevertheless, he failed to reproduce the semantics of the allusion. The idea that the name of the imp should have been guessed by the brothers was omitted. Thus, it became much more complicated for the receiver to recognize the allusion, even though he was very much familiar with the fairy tale. As a result, all the functions and the type of the original allusion were not preserved. A more proper translation, to our point of view, can be the following: “Якось давно був собі біс. Аби вгадати його ім'я, нам довелося на дно пекла спускатися. Та ми це зробили!”

Example 8

“Look at me, Jacob. Am I still the fairest of them all?” [01:17:10 --> 01:17:17]

“Подивися на мене, Джейкоб. Чи ж я не найгарніша?” [01:17:11 --> 01:17:18]

This example refers to a famous German fairy tale “Snow White” that is famous all over the world due to lots of film and cartoon adaptations. It was first published by the Brothers Grimm in 1812 in the first edition of their collection“Grimms' Fairy Tales”. The fairy tale tells a story about an unutterably wicked and vain queen that possesses a magical mirror, which she asks every morning, “Magic mirror in my hand, who is the fairest in the land?" The mirror always replies, "My queen, you are the fairest in the land.” But when the daughter of the previous queen reaches the age of seven, the mirror responds, “My queen, you are the fairest here so true. But Snow White is a thousand times more beautiful than you.” Thus, envy and pride, the queen orders ahuntsmanto take Snow White into the deepest woods to be killed [43].

In the film a very old vain sorceress is responsible for the disappearance of the village girls. Jacob comes across a mirror in her tower and sees the sorceress young and beautiful again. She asks “Am I still the fairest of them all?” and tries to cast a spell on Jacob to make him subservient. It turns out that she needs the girls to steal their beauty and restore her own. Nevertheless, William manages to save his brother and continues their fight against the sorceress.

The allusion can be considered to be universal, since the story about the vain queen and her conversation with the magical mirror are famous all over the world [9, p. 3-5]. Although there's a lot of famous cartoon and film adaptation of this story, the original source if a fairy tale. Thus, this is a literary allusion [15]. In addition, the allusion is illustrated by a phrase; therefore it is a key-phrase allusion [KP] [27].

Due to this allusion are able to predict the further events of the plot: the girls are saved first by the defeat of the sorceress and second byTrue Love's Kiss that also take place in the original fairy tale's plot. Thus, the allusion performs the predictable function, introduced by Ye. M. Dronova [11].

Since there is no generally accepted variant of the Ukrainian adaptation of the famous expression “Who is the fairest of them?”, the translator reproduces the allusion by means of semantic calque [27]. The type and the functions are successfully preserved. Thus, a Ukrainian receiver is also definitely able to recognize the worldwide famous expression and predict the further events of the plot.


The present research paper focuses on the peculiarities of reproduction of intertextuality in the Ukrainian dubbing of the movie “The Brothers Grimm,” with the focus on the issues of audiovisual translation problems.

The first theoretical part has provided a disclosure of the notion of Audiovisual Translation and its mains types. Since the research is dedicated to the translation of films, most attention has been drawn to such types of Audiovisual Translation as subtitling and dubbing and their peculiarities. The advantages and disadvantages of the two modalities, alongside with their common and differentiating features, have been also pointed out.

The second theoretical part starts with a general description of the notion of intertextuality. Its basic principles and significant contribution to the development of world's art and literature have been defined by providing and contrasting different approaches and theories. The notion of vertical context and the ways of bringing it to a literary text have been also considered.

Most attention has been drawn to the notion of allusion. While researching different approaches to the issue of establishing a proper classification of allusion's types, we have concluded that they are mostly based on the following peculiarities of the allusion:

· its source;

· its recognizability for different cultures and language groups;

· its structure;

· its semantics.

Although the way to classify and coin the functions of allusions remains to be a significantly controversial issue, the provided classifications are mostly based on allusion's contribution to forming the plot and maintaining the informational unity of the text. In addition, the most useful skills and techniques that can be applied during an allusion translation have been provided.

The practical part of the research paper has been based on the examples taken from the movie “The Brothers Grimm”. Most of the indicated allusions refer to the real brothers Grimm's fairy tales. Considering that the movie is also a black comedy, it has been very interesting to analyze and define the functions that the fabulous allusions perform in the film. Unfortunately, the translator has not managed to provide a proper translation of all the allusions. The desired effect of these allusions has not been preserved in the Ukrainian adaptation. Thus, a Ukrainian receiver does not have an opportunity to fully enjoy the effect of the used fabulous allusions. Nevertheless, more proper variants of the Ukrainian translations have been also provided.

Thus, the results of this course paper show that the film adaptation in Ukraine has not reached a proper level of professional competence yet, although this issue is very important for the development of the young Ukrainian country, since the major part of its population prefers Russian adaptations. Hopefully, this paper may create an impulse for further researches in this sphere.

The list of references

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