Publication details [#3692]

Publication type
Article in Special issue
Publication language
Person as a subject


This article examines attempts by certain Chinese scholars to apply transformational grammar to the explanation of translation practice. Specific attention is given to the use of ‘deep structure’ in such attempts. It is argued that, although most of these scholars claimed that they were applying Chomsky’s transformational grammar to Translation Studies, none of them used the notion ‘deep structure’ in the Chomskian sense. It is further pointed out that transformational grammar is a sentence grammar aimed at describing language competence while translation falls into the category of language performance. Therefore, there are limitations in the applicability of transformational grammar to the description of translation practice. It is also argued that it is far from plausible at the present stage of transformational grammar development to design even a transformational grammar model of language transference since there is no adequate transformational grammar model of the English language, let alone of Chinese.
Source : Based on abstract in journal