1.1. Background of the Study
The knowledge and culture of each country is exchanged through translation works. Translation means a process of transferring or rendering a message from a source language into a target one.
In translating a text (novel, poem, story, short story, play etc.), a translator transfers not only the language, but also the messages. Some translators use word for word (literal) translation method to be precise and clear while others utilize relevant translation procedures in order to be more natural and coherent.
In this term paper, the most common procedures found in Ma Thanegi’s translation, “Close Proximity” which is the short story named “????????????” by Journal Kyaw Ma Ma Lay, will be discussed.
1.2. Scope and Limitations of the Study
The scope of this paper is literal and word-for-word translation methods, and the limitation of the study is translation procedures. Instead of using all the procedures, this paper emphasises on one scholar, Peter Newmark’s procedures centered on Culture-specific Concepts (CSCs) to compare and contrast the words, ideas and context in the short story.
1.3. Aims and Objectives
a) To study the literal and word for word translation by means of translation procedures
b) To classify the target language used by certain procedures
c) To explore the common mistakes done by non-native English translator
d) To explore findings and make comments on the choice of words in the target language
2. Literature Review
2.1. Translation Theories
“Translationese is related to translation universals since the characteristics mentioned above may be due to common translation phenomena such as interference, explicitation and domestication.” (Munday, 2004, p. 12)
According to the theory, lexical and syntactic meanings of the translation should be clear and relevant; however, there may be grammatical or ungrammatical structures. In some cases, the language can be awkward or unnatural for a native speaker, and this is defined as translationese.
2.1.2. Universals of Translation
“Specific characteristics that, it is hypothesized are typical of translated language as distinct from non-translated language. This would be the same whatever the language pair involved and might include greater cohesion and explicitation (with reduced ambiguity) and the fact that a TT is normally longer than a ST.” (Munday, 2004, p.7)
Based on this theory, it is either to be conducted by means of literal or free translation.
2.1.2. Literal (word-for-word) Translation
Peter Newmark (1988) stated, “Literal translation is correct and must not be avoided, if it secures referential and pragmatic equivalence to the original,” and, “literal translation ranges from one word to one word, through group to group, collocation to collocation, clause to clause, to sentence to sentence.” (Newmark, 1988, p. 69)
2.2. Translation Procedures
This paper focuses on Newmark’s translation procedures. There are (15) procedures according to Peter Newmark (1988).
The followings are the most commonly found in the translated short story.
Newmark’s procedure of transference is transferring a Source Language(SL) word to a Target Language(TL) text. The alternation of the alphabets, such as the names of the living and non-living things, are included in this procedure and after that these words become loan words as there is no enough words in the TL. (Newmark, 1988, p. 81)
Naturalization goes beyond transference. When SL words are difficult to be translated due to the absence of identical or relevant words in both languages, this procedure changes the SL words as TL. (Newmark, 1988, p. 82)
2.2.3. Cultural Equivalent
This procedure is explicit in transferring the information into TL because the SL cultural words are substituted into TL ones. (Newmark, 1988, p. 82)
2.2.4. Descriptive Equivalent
The descriptive equivalent is used in describing the precise details of cultural words, such as the manners or the shape of artefacts that can only be seen in one culture. (Newmark, 1988, p. 83)
It is translating the SL words into the nearest TL without considering the precise equivalent. Here the quality of word is not important and there is no clear one-to-one equivalent. This procedure is used where the literal translation is not carried out. (Newmark, 1988, p. 84)
2.2.6. Shifts or Transpositions
The act of using different grammatical structures while generating from source language to target language is called shifts or transpositions. (Newmark, 1988, p. 85)
When the translator uses the expressions that are completely different from SL but the meanings remain unchanged, this procedure is called modulation and used especially in the case of no identical words in TL. (Newmark, 1988, p. 88)
Compensation is rendering SL to TL, in which the translator compensates the loss of meaning to make more sense. (Newmark, 1988, p. 90)
2.2.9. Componential Analysis
In componential analysis, a SL word is compared with a TL word “which has a similar meaning but is not an obvious one-to-one equivalent,” by showing the common one first, then their varying sense components. (Newmark, 1988, p. 114)
This kind of procedure is not accurate in transferring the information into TL because the translator reduces some words in SL to get better information in TL. It can be found mostly in poor written texts. (Newmark, 1988, p. 90)
This is also imprecise procedure mostly found in poor written texts. The translator adds some words to get better sense for the TL readers. (Newmark, 1988, p. 90)
2.2.11. Notes, Addition, Glosses
Notes are used to give further explanations and information of the meaning of words and, or contexts. (Newmark, 1988, p. 91)
When the words in Source Text are cultural, the translator gives additional information about it within Target Text different from notes and glosses. (Newmark, 1988, p. 91)
2.3. Biographies of the authors
2.3.1. Biography of Journal Kyaw Ma Ma Lay
Journal Kyaw Ma Ma Lay was born in Bogalay Township, Ayeyarwaddy Region in 1917. Her real name was Ma Tin Hlaing. She began her career in 1936, publishing her article in the Myanma Alin newspaper. In 1939, together with her husband, she published the Journal Kyaw newspaper and therefore, “Journal Kyaw Ma Ma Lay” became her pen name. She got the audience’s hearts as a novelist, publisher and journalist. The young writers recognized her as one of the most admired writers. Among her works, Thu Lo Lu (A Man like Him) and Mone Ywa Mahu (Not out of Hate) has been translated into English and other languages. She got two Burmese Literary Prizes with the novel “Not out of Hate” and “A Slow Stream of Thoughts and Burmese Medicine Tales”. (Selected Myanmar Short Stories, 2009, p. 238)
2.3.2. Biography of Ma Thanegi
Ma Thanegi was born in Yangon in 1946. She works as a freelance translator who translates Burmese Literary works into English, French and German. Besides, she is an editor of Enchanting Myanmar. In 1997, she published “The Burmese Fairy Tale”, describing the change of the Burmese regime. Although she is not a professional translator, she has translated the biography “A man like him” by Journal Kyaw Ma Ma Lay into English. (Selected Myanmar Short Stories, 2009, p. 244)
3. Research Methodology
3.1. Research Method
Analysing the chosen short story with translation procedures was carried out qualitatively.
3.2. Research Procedure
First of all, short stories that are available in both Myanmar and English versions were searched thoroughly through various sources such as libraries, bookstores, the Internet, etc. After choosing the story, translation theories were studied and collected data from a range of various sources like curriculum (A Textbook of Translation, Peter Newmark, 1988), other reliable websites and different works of scholars. The translated story was analysed by translation procedures of Newmark using dictionaries and websites.
3.3. Research Questions
• How did the translator manage to translate according to the procedures?
• What kind of usage did the translator use when translating the novel?
• What are the translationese in grammar and usage that can be found in translating into English?
• How the translation procedures are important in translating?