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Humor in Translation

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Kristina Lazarevic

on 17 December 2013

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Transcript of Humor in Translation

Translating Humour
HUMOUR = CHALLENGE
Humour = Challenge
Linguistic untranslatability of humour:
“lectal” varieties of language (dialects, sociolects, idiolects etc.)
metalinguistic or metalingual communication (“wordplay,” “puns”)

HUMOUR = CHALLENGE
humor, as an intended effect
the comprehension and appreciation of humor and humor production
The appreciation of humor varies individually
the rhetorical effect of humor on translators

HUMOUR = CHALLENGE
case of “untranslatability”: “When it comes to translating humour, the operation proves to be as desperate as that of translating poetry” (Diot 1989: 84)
“rules,” “expectations,” “solutions,” and agreements on “social play” that are often group- or culture-specific

TRANSLATING HUMOUR
Kristina Lazarević
Aleksandar Radonjić

PRESENTATION OUTLINE
What is humour?
Humour = Challenge
Strategies for translating humour
Conclusion
WHAT IS HUMOUR?
Tendency of particular cognitive experiences to provoke laughter and provide amusement
depends on geographical location, culture, maturity, level of education, intelligence and context etc.
implicit cultural schemes
when translating humour we need to know where humour stands as a priority and what restrictions stand in the way of fulfilling the intended goals

background knowledge of the two SL and TL audiences ;
moral and cultural values (taboo), habits and traditions;
traditional joke-themes (politics, professions, relationships) and types (T-shirts, graffiti, comic strips, music-hall, slapstick)

STRATEGIES FOR TRANSLATING HUMOUR
‘assimilationist’ approach
an adherence to source norms by retaining source-culture specific elements
combined approach
STRATEGIES FOR TRANSLATING HUMOUR
translating the source text wordplay with wordplay in the target text
translating it in a way that loses some aspect of the wordplay
replacing it with some other device aimed at creating similar effect (e.g. rhyme, irony);
source text pun copied as target text pun, without being translated;
or omission

STRATEGIES FOR TRANSLATING HUMOUR
‘‘mapping’’- locating and analyzing textual items according to relevant classifications

‘‘prioritizing’’ - establishing what is important for each case and how important each item and aspect is

Conclusion
Humour is not untranslatable
Find your own approach
Follow our tips

REFERENCES
Intro to Humour - WIKIPEDIA
Humour and translation—an interdiscipline Patrick Zabalbeascoa
Translating Humour across Cultures: Verbal Humour in Animated Films Laura- Karolina Gáll; Partium Christian University, Oradea
Humour in translation, Jeroen Vandaele, University of Oslo

THANK YOU FOR YOUR ATTENTION!!!
“Did you hear about the guy whose whole left side was cut off? He’s all right now.”

I couldn’t for the life of me remember how you throw a boomerang, but then it came back to me.

JOKES
Full transcript