Publication details [#4513]

Publication type
Article in jnl/bk
Publication language
Source language


One of the alleged universals of translation is the hypothesis that translations tend to over-represent linguistic features typical of the target language. Nevertheless, this hypothesis seems to lack substantial empirical support. Among typical features are the linguistic phenomena which the author calls unique, i.e. linguistic items or elements lacking linguistic counterparts in the source language in question. The hypothesis of over-representation would predict that at least those unique items that are relatively frequent in a language should appear with a higher frequency in translated than originally produced language. The hypothesis was tested by comparing the frequencies of two kinds of unique items in the Corpus of Translated Finnish, namely the verbs of sufficiency, such as ehtii, mahtuu, jaksaa, malttaa, and the clitic pragmatic particles -kin and -hAn. The comparison shows that these uniquely Finnish items are less frequent in translated than in original Finnish. It is suggested that the explanation for their under-representation in translated language is sought in the translation process itself.
Source : Based on abstract in book