Exploring the differences between Jin Di’s translation theory and Eugene A. Nida’s translation theory
Some translation scholars hold that Jin Di’s theory of equivalent effect and Nida’s theory of dynamic equivalence are essentially same because Jin has basically adopted the definition of Nida’s dynamic equivalence in formulating his own translation theory. However, this paper reveals that there are some fundamental differences between the two theories in three aspects:(1) Nida’s theory is reader-oriented while Jin’s is text-oriented; (2) Nida’s theory is flexible while Jin’s tends to be inflexible; and (3) Jin’s theory is an ideal one in the sense that it cannot be realized in translation practice whereas Nida’s theory is a realistic one. Examples from Jin’s Chinese version of James Joyce’s Ulysses and Bible translations are given to illustrate these differences between Nida’s theory and Jin’s theory.This paper further explores the two major reasons that lead to such discrepancies: (1) the deficiency of Nida’s theory in dealing with transference of aesthetic elements for literary translation; (2) the influence of traditional Chinese translation theories upon Jin’s translation principle. Although Nida’s theory is not restricted to Bible translation, it has some limitations in guiding literary translation because it fails to address the transference of aesthetic elements for literary translation. When Jin translated Joyce’s Ulysses, he had to face the problem of aesthetic transference of literary works. This is the reason why Jin eventually turns to traditional Chinese translation theory and classic literary criticism to seek for support for his translation theory of equivalent effect.
Published online: 07 December 2007
Cited by 2 other publications
Ma, Lin & Jaap van Brakel
Valdeón, Roberto A. & Youbin Zhao
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