Book reviewTranslating Regionalised Voices in Audiovisuals Roma: Aracne, 2009. 305 pp. ISBN 978-88-548-2885-8 €19.00 (PB)
Reviewed by Sabien Hanoulle
The title of this volume, Translating Regionalised Voices in Audiovisuals, will no doubt attract the attention of any audiovisual translator. How dialects, idiolects and ethnolects can best be transferred into the target text when it comes to audiovisual products, is indeed an ongoing debate (see, for instance, Chiaro, Heiss and Bucaria 2008; Gambier and Gottlieb 2001; Pym 2000; the 2009 and 2012 special issues of InTRAlinea). Most authors appear to be in agreement that the translation of linguistic variation constitutes one of the major difficulties in film translation and yet, as the editor of the present volume, Federico Federici, points out in his introduction, “it is undeniable that to bridge the existing gap between theories and practice … much more needs to be done” (p. 19). His book offers a variety of articles exploring one aspect or another of translating regionalised voices (including special problems posed by minority languages and censorship) from different perspectives. However, the downside of such a varied collection is that its organisation comes across as somewhat haphazard. The chapters are arranged into four thematically uneven sections and unfortunately the quality of the articles turns out to be equally uneven. Five out of fourteen contributions deal with translation from Italian, which makes the volume somewhat less than truly international. In view of the multilingual nature of the volume, it is a pity that the articles are not preceded by an English abstract. It is also regrettable that the book does not have an index.