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Does the narrator get translated into Chinese? The literary-critical approach to the evaluation of translated fiction
  • Tak Hung, Leo CHAN, Department of Translation, Lingnan College
Document Type
Journal article
Publication Date
John Benjamins Publishing Co.

An attempt is made to define the literary-critical approach to evaluating translated fiction, first by showing its reverse, the language-oriented approach, & then closely analyzing three instances where it is deployed. Then attention is focused on one problem area & it is seen that shifts on a micro-structural level can create an effect on macro-structural elements, producing changes significant enough to give rise to alternative interpretations of the text. Examples from variant Chinese translations of E. M. Forster's A Passage to India, William Golding's Lord of the Flies, John Fowles's The Collector, & J. D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye, illustrate how the failure to "translate the narrator" belies in fact a failure to tune in to the literary qualities of a fictional text. To translate a novel adequately, not just contextual meaning must be considered, but also "co-textual" or "inter-textual" meaning, the literary significance generated within the text itself. 1 Appendix. Adapted from the source document

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Copyright © 1998 John Benjamins.

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Citation Information
Chan, L. T. (1998). Does the narrator get translated into Chinese? the literary-critical approach to the evaluation of translated fiction. Babel, 44(1), 46-64. doi: 10.1075/babel.44.1.04cha