Publication details [#59842]

Naranjo Sánchez, Beatriz. 2015. Translating blackness in Spanish dubbing. Revista Española de Lingüística Aplicada 28 (2) : 416–441.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Language as a subject
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


One of the most frequent English social dialects that we can hear in American cinema is the so-called Black English or Ebonics, whose users are typically (although not exclusively any more) African American characters. This study attempted an approach to the linguistic portrayal of black characters on screen and the translation of these ‘black-speech’ traits into Spanish by closely examining both the original and dubbed versions of a total sample of 19 films belonging to the genre of Afro-American cinema. It was hypothesized that, even when the general tendency would most likely be neutralization, the resulting target text might still be characterized by ethnically marked discourse, having a distinctive and recognizable identity. It is believed that the data obtained needs to be complemented with further research in order to accurately prove the hypothesis; however, it has been concluded that the target version contains some specific elements that may provide the audience with the necessary clues that would lead them to associate this ethnically marked dubbed discourse with black ethnicity.