Maintaining Cultural Identity in Translated Literary Texts: Strategies of Translating Culture-Specific Items in Two Arabic Plays

AWEJ for Translation & Literary Studies, Volume 2, Number 2, May 2018

16 Pages Posted: 18 Jun 2018

Date Written: May 29, 2018

Abstract

This article focusses on the translator’s task as a cultural mediator who has to transfer the nuances of the literary text faithfully. The translation of culture-specific items, such as proverbs, figurative language, reference to religion, mythology or literature, and stylistics, are at the core of the discussion. This paper discusses generally recommended strategies used in translating culture specific items (CSIs), and further analyses and evaluates such strategies as used in two translated Arabic plays; Sa’dallah Wannous’s The Glass Café (1978/2004) and Mamdouh ‘Udwan’s Reflections of a Garbage Collector (1987/2006). The translation strategies used in these two plays are recognized and rationalized in terms of giving a domesticated or a foreignized effect. Besides transferring meaning, the cultural identity of the text is highlighted as a mainstay of the translation process.

Keywords: translation of culture specific items, translating religious language, translation strategies, translating stylistics

Suggested Citation

Zahrawi, Samar, Maintaining Cultural Identity in Translated Literary Texts: Strategies of Translating Culture-Specific Items in Two Arabic Plays (May 29, 2018). AWEJ for Translation & Literary Studies, Volume 2, Number 2, May 2018 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3186960 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3186960

Samar Zahrawi (Contact Author)

Sam Houston State University ( email )

1803 Ave I
Huntsville, TX 77341
United States

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