Publication details [#9933]

Valdeón, Roberto A. 2005. Asymmetric representations of languages in contact: uses and translations of French and Spanish in Frasier. In Delabastita, Dirk and Rainier Grutman, eds. Fictionalising translation and multilingualism. Special issue of Linguistica Antverpiensia: New Series 4: 279–294.
Publication type
Article in Special issue
Publication language
Source language
Target language


In recent years, several authors have underlined the need for a critical approach to Translation Studies in order to explore power struggles in both source and target languages and cultures. Norman Fairclough’s model of discourse analysis offers textual and interpretative procedures for the analysis of linguistic features of texts and their societal implications that can be successfully applied for this purpose. In this article the author studies the representations of languages and cultures in contact in the American situation comedy Frasier, one of the world’s greatest television successes of the 1990s. The author covers two distinct uses of languages in contact. First the author examines the use of other languages in the primary English discourse of the protagonists, notably French and Spanish, and their different representational and ideational implications, before proceeding to analyse the Spanish and French target versions to ascertain whether the ideological components are maintained or transformed. In the second section, the author analyses the scenes where two or more languages are involved and the transformative acts performed by the characters.
Source : Based on abstract in journal