A corpus-based study on imagery and symbolism in Goldblatt’s translation of Red Sorghum
Research on Goldblatt’s translation of Red Sorghum has attracted more attention in recent years after its author Mo Yan won the Nobel Prize for this work. This translation study has addressed the imagery and symbolism in this classic Chinese work, an area that has yet to be investigated with the use of empirical data. The study employed the corpus-based approach, and analysed the translation of images and symbols based on a parallel translation corpus of Chapters 1 and 2 found in the text of Red Sorghum. Most important images and symbols are represented by 30 distinct nouns in the novel as successfully translated into English as a result of the translator’s adoption of a literal translation strategy. A more focused examination of a translation of the most prominent key word, sorghum, finds that the translator has faithfully adopted the imagery and symbolism techniques in the source text whenever conveying the images and symbols of sorghum across cultures. Based on the findings, this study argues that images and symbols in the source text may present themselves in the translation of novels if translators adopt a source-oriented translation strategy. Our analyses of the translation of figures of speech, namely similes, personifications and repetitions further highlight the importance of taking concert and literal translation strategies into the realm of literary translation.
Keywords: cross-culture, imagery, symbolism, Goldblatt, Red Sorghum , figures of speech
Keywords: interculturalité, imagerie, symbolisme, Goldblatt, Red Sorghum , figures de rhétorique
Published online: 05 August 2019
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