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Henry G. Schogt. Linguistics, Literary Analysis, and Literary Translation.
Toronto-Buffalo-London: University of Toronto Press, 1988. XI + 178 pp. ISBN 0-8020-2649-4

Reviewed by Lieven D’hulst

Table of contents

    In 18 short chapters, the author intends to give an account of the major connections between linguistics, literary analysis and literary translation. Intended as a general initiation for "students who do not consider themselves experts in any of those fields" (p. IX), it starts from a commonplace still considered as the only eligible guideline for translators and translation scholars, namely that translation theory "deals with the problem of how to arrive at the equivalence of two texts" (p. 5). Consequently, the author is mainly interested in ways of overcoming the postulated low translatability of literary texts via the different means offered by or derived from linguistics and literary analysis. The unequal scientific status of the disciplines and the object (translation) thus arrived at also infers the strong dependence of the latter, but also of its theoretical counterpart: "Because literary translation and translation theory seem to be about half-way between linguistics and literary analysis it may be useful to investigate whether the study of translation can shed any light on the questions noted above" (p. 6).

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