40 - Perception, production, tools, reception
We have arrived at the last unit of the first part of this translation course, which was first published on the site http://www.logos.it and subsequently in the traditional form of a paper volume. Now it is time to summarize and explain how we are going to carry out the following stages of the course.
Those who followed the on-line course had the chance to see its general index, which contains - in outline - the structure of all its five parts. It is a course on general translation, that is to say it does not address specific linguistic combinations, but aims at providing any translator or student of translation with some basic knowledge.
The first part served as an introduction: we tried to lay the theoretical basis of the fundamental concepts, without expounding on the single stages of the translation process.
The next part of the course - which will be on-line in the year 2001 - is dedicated to the first of the four stages into which we tried to divide the translation process: perception. The translator is in a peculiar position within the communication system: she is the reader of the original prototext and the author of the translated metatext. We decided, therefore, to pinpoint the first stage of the translation process in the reader's and, more specifically, in the translator's perception of the text - as we touched upon in units 6 and 7 of this first part.
The second part of the course - divided into 40 units - will deal with the issue of the perception and interpretation of the text, the issue of the hermeneutic circle of the translated text, the problems that concern the translation-oriented analysis of the text, the problems of the dominant and the translation strategies.
The third part - dedicated to production - deals with that stage of the translation process in which the text is projected as the translator perceives it into the receiving language and culture. The problem of the chronotope and of the chronotopic distance between the original and the translation becomes, at this point, of crucial importance. A new element comes into play upon the stage of the translator's perception of the original: the addressee, the Model Reader around whom the translation strategies are created.
Furthermore, the part dedicated to production represents an excellent chance to deal with some clichés found in translation studies: the concepts of adaptation, accuracy, equivalence, and freedom. Eventually, it will be possible to examine the various kinds of translation, with their individual peculiarities. We will analyze the technical-scientific translation, along with the issues concerning the various jargons, the translation for cinema and television, the poetic translation, and some other subtypes of translation.
Moreover, in order to produce a text it is important to know some rules concerning the wording of texts in general. At the beginning of this first part we examined the ISO rule dedicated to translation, while in the third part of the course we will examine some of the ISO rules concerning indexes, summaries, bibliography, editorial rules, use of inverted commas and of punctuation marks and so on.
The fourth part of the course, called "tools", is a sort of appendix to the previous one. While in "Production" we will analyze that stage of the translation process in which the translated text is created, here we will examine the tools with which it is physically possible to produce the text. In this category, we can find the technological tools, paper, computer, and Internet resources, translation memories, terminological databases, and the tools for the lexical and style analysis.
The fifth part, dedicated to Reception, concerns the way in which the metatext, the translated text, enters the receiving culture and is accepted. At first glance, it might seem that this stage no longer concerns the translator, but rather the publisher, or the marketing agent or the expert in culturology and relationships among cultures. In reality, we are positive that it is fundamental to know the final destination of a translated text, in order to comprehend the working of the translation process that produced it and to understand how to plan a translation strategy as well as how to imagine a Model Reader.
Those who followed the course, either in its Internet or in its paper version, will have the chance to take an exam and receive certification for each exam passed. An exam will be offered for each of the parts into which the course is divided. Three annual sessions will be organized, in February, June, and October. Those who pass the exams will receive a certificate that will attest both the attendance and the accomplishment of the candidate.
The exercises, which can be found in the Appendix, will serve as a valuable tool to check one's level of accomplishment, also in view of the exam.