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Lessons on translating

I could use some general help on translating. There are nuances. There is a big difference between Anglicized and American English. I was translating an article about motorcycles and someone before me translated a phrase that the gear was engaged, (which I think is British) where as I would say that the transmission was in drive. (I can't remember the exact phrase, but either ranslation would have worked.) Maybe I am overthinking it, but guidance on how to translate, not just knowing the vocabulary would be very helpful.

July 14, 2013



In terms of American vs British English, I would err on the side of American, since Duo is a .com and not a .co.uk, and because AmE seems to be preferred over BrE in the lessons. How to translate... there are entire college courses about that! There are different schools of thought (domesticating vs foreignizing) and different translating techniques (borrowing, calques, equivalence...).

Personally, I think a good translation is one that 1) makes sense in the target language, 2) conveys the meaning of the source text (not necessarily a literal, word-for-word translation, but one which gets the idea across in a way that is understandable in the target language) and 3) respects the cultural elements of the source text (i.e. if a finance article is talking about pesos, the translation should also talk about pesos, and not change it to dollars; if a culinary article is talking about mate [an Argentinian drink], the translation should keep the word "mate" and not change it to "tea")


ceaer, thank you. That makes a lot of sense and give me a better starting place. Thanks again. (Now I am off to find out what calques are :)

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