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Translation of News Report and the Skopos Theory

更新时间:2008-11-15:  来源:毕业论文

Translation of News Report and the Skopos Theory
【Abstract】With the rapid spread of news in the world, the news translation inevitably plays an important role in human life. This paper aims at discussing the Skopos theory widely used in the news translation, which widens people’s traditional eye scope on translation methods and brings the debate on translation standards to a high level.

【Key Words】Skopos theory;translation of news;Neologisms;journalistic

With the rapid development of modern science and technology, news which serves  as one of the most important mass communications, is getting more and more  closely related to human life. Every day we watch TV and we can see all kinds of news on it. So the news translation inevitably plays an important role in information communications.

1. Introduction to the Skopos Theory

The Skopos theory is an approach to translation which was put forward by Hans Vemeer and developed in Germany in the late 1970s and which oriented a more functionally and socioculturally concept of translation. Translation is considered not as a process of translation, but as a specific form of human action. In our mind, translation has a purpose, and the word “Skopos” was from Greek. It’s used as the technical term for the purpose of the translation.

In the frame work of this theory, one of the most important factors determining the purpose of a translation is the address, who is the intended receiver or audience of the target text with their world language. Every translation is directed at an intended audience. The theory focuses above all on the purpose of the translation, which determines the translation methods and strategies that are to be employed in order to produce a functionally adequate result. Vermeer regards it as an “offer of  information” that is partly or wholly turned into an “offer of information” for the target audience. From this view, the status of the source is clearly much lower in Skopos theory than the equivalence theory.

2. A Study on the Skopos Theory in the News Translation

2.1 Purposeful Translation of Neologisms

Neologisms are newly coined words or words that are given new meaning to fit new situation because of social scientific and technical changes in human society. The Neologisms translation about the news content should be new. The translation of neologisms can clear peoples’minds or understanding in reading news.

2.1.1 The Neological Formation

The translation of journalists neologisms mainly contain the following ways.

(1) Compounding

Two or more words are combined into a compound that functions as a single word with a new sense. Words created are known as compounds. For example: :the March 1986 High-tech Program  863计划 Talk show 脱口秀;Smokeout 戒烟运动 Open to all公开的,Checkbook participation支票战役。

(2) Old Words with New Senses

Making use of the existing vocabulary is a common way to create new lexical members in English. A new word made in this way seems familiar to us, but its original meaning has actually been shifted in the context, sometimes this course also includes the conversion of the part of the speech.

For example: The seesaw period in China’s economic development may now being coming to an end. 中国经济不稳定的发展时期可能要结束了。The word “seesaw” is originally a children game, but here it is used as an adjective with the extended meaning  of “unsteady”

(3) Derivation

Derivation is a morphological process whereby grammatical and lexical information is added to the root by means of prefixation. It is also means to put a prefix on front of the root, suffixation: to add a suffix after the root. Some phonemes from one word with some phonemes from another.

For example: e-cruiting 网络招聘 e-game网络游戏 e-guerrilla黑客 and so on.

2.1.2 Translating English Neologism into Chinese

Journalistic neologisms introduce the newly emerging things, phenomena and experience in a vivid way. And their Chinese counterparts are hoped to perform the same function effectively. So the translation of English journalistic neologies must follow the principles of faithfulness and acceptability. Basing on the two principles, there are many methods to neological translation.

(1)Translation in a literal way. With the progress of the news, the elements in English and Chinese translation have much in common. When coping with these similarities between two language systems.

(2)Free translation: If there is not a complete equivalent in Chinese for an English neology. The translator shoulder adhere to the sense while looking for some other suitable form. This may be referred as free translation.

(3)Transliteration: This method is very powerful when there is not counterpart in Chinese for the neologism, especially for people names and terms in various fields. For example, the word ‘Chechen 车臣; koala 考拉; Clone克隆;euthanasia安乐死; cellular phone移动电话; hula hoop呼拉圈; beeper BB机”. The words about news were fron their sounds. When the mere translation sounds is not sufficient for the recipients to understand, it is necessary to add a generic word to the transliterated part to make the Chinese rendition more accurate in meaning.

(4)Transference

Transference is to adopt or copy something completely from the source language to the target language without alterations. In the background of the frequent exchanges between the eastern and western cultures nowadays, the English new words have influenced the Chinese lexis substantially. Chinese speakers have come to use the English new words. In line with Skopos theory, the information is selected from the source text, they all depends on the translator’s interpretation and presentation. Vermeer suggests that one possible kind of intertextual coherence could be a maximally faithfully imitation of a source text. Vermeer illustrates this in Skopos and commission in translational action. For instance, the Skopos theory might be an exact imitation of the source text syntax, perhaps to provide target culture readers with information about this syntax, an exact imitation of the source text structure. They might serve to create a literary in the target culture. The original information does not exist in the target culture and they could be viewed as to creat something new. This is a convincing argument for the application of translation. As I see, the foreigners studying Chinese have to read more Chinese newspapers and magazines, listeninf to radio and watching TV. We should try our best to get in touch with English newspaper and radio. Not at all exaggerated, the rapid development of society has brought about a great advance in the modern English field. Without English newspaper and journalistic media, we can not find any way to make a detailed record of the newly emerging things and changeable English world. We can feel the methods from the examples as follows.

1) He works enthusiastically as ever even though he has retired from the leading post. (尽管已退居二线,他的工作热情却丝毫不减).

(2) Journalists should firmly object to the payoffs-aimed journalism which deviates from press ethics. (新闻记者应坚决反对有偿新闻,因为它违背了新闻记者的职业道德).

2.2 Purposeful Translation of Journalistic Sentences     

As we all know that news was formed by sentences and sentences were formed by words. So the sentences were the main part of all the structure of news. The translation of English sentences about news was always show the skill of a translator or an journalist. To translate an expanded simple English sentence into appropriate Chinese. We should first and foremost divide the English sentence into several sense groups, which could be a word, a phrase, a clause, or even a combination of any of them. Then transform the sense groups into Chinese counterparts and simultaneously recorder them according to Chinese norms of the sequence of time or the logic. If any of a sentence lost its logic, the sentence could not be made in any case. Consequently at least two steps can be distilled for the conversion from English to Chinese sentences. The important things include division and transformation plus reordering.

2.2.1 Division

Division is to reduce the English hypotactic structure into a certain number of meaningful groups. Look at the following examples.

Remarks by US Presidents Bush at Qing Hua University (February22,2002, Beijing )

I’m so grateful for the hospitality, and honored for the reception at one of China’s and the world’s great universities.

I know how important this place to your Vice President. He not only received his degree here but more importantly, he met his gracious wife here.

I want to thank the students for giving me the chance to meet with you, the chance to talk a little bit about me country and answer some of your questions.

The students and reputation of this university are known around the world, and I know what an achievement it is to be here. So, congratulations. I don’t know if you know this or not, but my wife and I have daughters who are in college, just like you. One goes to the university of Texas. One goes to Yale. They are twins. And we are proud of our daughters, just like your parents are proud of you, I am sure.

This paragraph can be divided into the following sense groups:

Thank you for your hospitality. I’m glad to be here.

The president Hu was a student in this university.

I am proud of my twins daughters just like your parents because the Qinghua university

is a world famous university and is one of the best in China.

If you make a division in this way, a long paragraph will be easy to understand and read.

Transformation plus Reordering

After decomposing the original sentence into several meaningful groups, the transformation and reconstruction can be carried out in the meantime. Because the components of a Chinese sentence are more often interconnected through internal logical relationship instead of by marked linguistic denotations, the sequence of the components that indicates the internal Logic deserves the translator’s cautious consideration. Basing on the given purpose, supple ways and means of journalistic translation are admitted by Skopos theory at lexical levels.

All in all, the Skopos theory, put forward by a German, is widely used in the process of translation and widens people’s traditional eye scope on translation methods and brings the debate on translation standards to a high level.

To research on translations of news report with the skopos theory primarily aims at providing more details about the great theory in order that everybody could  use the theory in their translation practice. This thesis is the very one to provide new perspective to the application of skopos theories to the translations of News report.  It aims to make the best use of this theory in the common practice on the genre.

 

【References】

[1] Nord, C Mstiane. Translation as a Purposeful Activity: Functionalist Approaches Explained[M]. Shanghai: Shanghai Foreign Language Education Press. 2001

[2] Munday Jeremy. Introducing Translation Studies [M]. New York: Shanghai Foreign Language Education Press. 2001.

[3] Venneer Hans J. Skopos and commission in translational action  [M]. 世界图书出版公司. 1989.

[4] 陈小慰.翻译功能理论的启示:对某些翻译方法的新思考[J].中国翻译,2000, (6): 对外翻译公司.

[5] 刘洪潮.怎样做国际新闻编辑 [M].北京:中国传媒大学出版社. 2005.

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