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Text analysis in translation

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1. “ Extratextual Factors in Translation Text Analysis ”;


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Most authors on interlingual rendition theory agree that before shiping upon any interlingual rendition the transcriber should analyse the text comprehensively, since this appears to be the lone manner of guaranting that the beginning text ( ST ) has been entirely and right understood. Assorted proposals have been put frontward as to how such an analysis should be carried out and how peculiar interlingual rendition jobs might best be dealt with. These tend, nevertheless, to be based on theoretical accounts of text analysis which have been developed in other Fieldss of survey, such as that of literary surveies, of text or discourse linguistics, or even in the field of divinity.

But what is right for the literary bookman, the text linguist is non needfully right for the transcriber: different intents require different attacks. Translation-oriented text analysis should non merely guarantee full comprehension and right reading of the text or explicate its lingual and textual constructions and their relationship with the system and norms of the beginning linguistic communication ( SL ) .

It should besides supply a dependable foundation for each and every determination which the transcriber has to do in a peculiar interlingual rendition procedure. For this intent, it must be integrated into an overall construct of interlingual rendition that will function as a lasting frame of mention for the transcriber.

The factors of the communicative state of affairs in which the beginning text is used are of decisive importance for text analysis because they determine its communicative map. I call these factors “ extrajtextual ” or “ external ” factors ( as opposed to the “ intratextual ” or “ internal ” factors associating to the text itself, including its non-verbal elements ) . Extratextual factors may, of class, be mentioned, i.e. “ expressed ” , in the text, and in this instance we speak of “ metacommunicative vocalizations ” . The interplay between extratextual and intratextual factors can be handily expressed in the undermentioned set of “ WH-ques-tions ” . Depending on their relationship to either the communicative state of affairs or the text itself, these inquiries can be assigned to the extratextual or intratextual factors of analysis.

Whotransmits On what capable affair

to whomdoes s/he state

what for what

by which medium ( what non )

where in what order

when utilizing which non-verbal elements

why in which words

a text in what sort of sentences

with what map? in which tone

to what consequence?

Extratextual factors are analysed by asking about the writer or transmitter of the text ( who? ) , the transmitter ‘s purpose ( what for? ) , the audience the text is directed at ( to whom? ) , the medium or impart the text is communicated by ( by which medium? ) , the topographic point ( where? ) and clip ( when? ) of text production and text response, and the motivation ( why? ) for communicating. The sum sum of information obtained about these seven extratextual factors may supply an reply to the last inquiry, which concerns the map the text can accomplish ( with what map? ) .

Intratextual factors are analysed by asking about the capable affair the text trades with ( on what capable affair? ) , the information or content presented in the text ( what? ) , the cognition presuppositions made by the writer ( what non? ) , the composing or building of the text ( in what order? ) , the non-linguistic or paralinguistic elements attach toing the text ( utilizing which non-verbal elements? ) , the lexical features ( in which words? ) and syntactic constructions ( in what sort of sentences? ) found in the text, and the suprasegmental characteristics of modulation and inflection ( in which tone? ) .

The extratextual factors are analysed before reading the text, merely by detecting the state of affairs in which the text is used. In this manner, the receiving systems build up a certain outlook as to the intratextual features of the text, but it is merely when, through reading, they compare this outlook with the existent characteristics of the text that they experience the peculiar consequence the text has on them. The last inquiry ( to what consequence? ) therefore refers to a planetary or holistic construct, which comprises the mutuality or interplay of extratextual and intratextual factors.

Since the state of affairs usually precedes textual communicating and determines the usage of intratextual processs, it seems natural to get down with the analysis of the external factors although, in position of recursiveness and disk shape, the order of the analytical stairss is non a component of the theoretical account. In written communicating, the state of affairs is frequently documented in the “ text environment ” ( i.e. rubric and/or bibliographical mentions, such as name of writer, topographic point and twelvemonth of publication, figure of transcripts, etc. ) . This is what is normally called a “ top down ” analysis. If no information on the external factors can be inferred from the text environment ( for illustration, in the instance of old texts whose original state of affairs of production and/or response is unsure or unknown ) , the analysis of internal characteristics, once more in a recursive process, can give information from which the transcriber is able to do reasonably dependable speculations about the state of affairs the text was used in.14The latter process is referred to as a “ bottom-up ” analysis.

The application of the theoretical account will demo that usually both processs have to be combined, showing one time more the recursive character of the theoretical account.

Extratextual factors

External versus internal state of affairs

In sorting the situational factors as “ extratextual factors ” we have to do the undermentioned cardinal making. When mentioning to “ state of affairs ” we mean the existent state of affairs in which the text is used as a agency of communicating, and non any fanciful scene of a narrative in a fictional text ) . The features of a individual who speaks in a fictional text do non belong to the dimension of transmitter, but have to be regarded as an intratextual factor which is analysed in connexion with the internal dimension of “ content ” . It is the writer of the text who has to be regarded as “ manufacturer ” of the fabricated vocalization, whereas the fabricated talker is a “ secondary transmitter ” ( S ‘ ) .

This making besides applies to the alleged complex text types, where a text of a certain genre is embedded into a frame text belonging to another genre. Complex text types occur non merely in fiction, but besides in non-fiction. For illustration, in newspaper studies writers frequently cite comments made by 3rd individuals in actual citations in order to demo that they do non portion the talker ‘s sentiment. In this instance, the transmitter of the quoted vocalization is non indistinguishable with the transmitter of the frame text.


After King Juan Carlos of Spain had received an honorary doctor’s degree from New York University, the journalist who commented on the event in a Spanish newspaper quoted direct parts of the King ‘s address of thanks. For the interlingual rendition of the citation, the King has to be regarded as transmitter, whereas for the interlingual rendition of the framing newspaper study, the journalist is the transmitter ( and writer ) . The preparation of the two texts has to conform to the different state of affairss and places of the two transmitters.

For both fictional and non-fictional complex texts it is advisable to analyze the component texts individually harmonizing to the rule of recursiveness. The necessary information on the situational factors of the embedded text is normally given within the frame text.

Systematic Framework for External Analysis

If we want to embrace the whole state of affairs of a text by agencies of a theoretical account that will function for the analysis of any text with any possible interlingual rendition skopos, we must inquire the undermentioned cardinal inquiry:

What information on the assorted factors may be relevant to translation?

Neubert ( [ 1968 ] 1981: 60 ) respects “ age, beginning, societal environment, instruction etc. ” as relevant information about the linguistic communication user. Vermeer ( [ 1974b ] 1983: 23 ) in a matrix relates attitude, position, function, scheme, behavior and activity of the participants of communicating to the corresponding characteristics of the type of state of affairs in order to supply grounds of the conformist or aberrant behavior of the participants. Schmidt ( californium. 1976: 104 ) lists the undermentioned informations: ( a ) socio-economic conditions ( function, position, economic state of affairs ) , ( B ) socio-cultural and cognitive-intellectual conditions ( text and universe cognition, instruction, experience, theoretical accounts of world ) , and ( degree Celsius ) biographical-psychical conditions ( single competencies and temperaments, present biographical state of affairs, plans, purposes ) . Gulich & A ; Raible ( 1977: 28 ) even see “ gruffness, sunniness, sadness ” and the image that talker and listener have of each other as factors which may act upon the communicative act.

This list is in no manner complete, but it clearly shows that the state of affairs or universe of a text can non be analysed by a mere digest of informational inside informations. We have to happen the classs by which we conceive the universe, which will use every bit to the universe of a text, i.e. to its historical state of affairs.

This applies to the state of affairs of a text every bit good.

( a ) The basic classs of any historical state of affairs are clip and infinite. The class of clip besides comprises the historic construct a universe has of itself. The first cardinal facet of analysis will hence be the temporal and spacial dimension of the state of affairs.

( B ) The state of affairs of a text is ever a portion of human civilization. The 2nd cardinal facet of analysis therefore has to mention to the culture-specific characteristics of the state of affairs.

( degree Celsius ) In its universe, the text has a map which establishes its textuality. The 3rd cardinal facet therefore comprises the relationship between state of affairs and communicative map of the text

The communicative map of a text has to be considered within the model of the transcultural, perchance cosmopolitan, communicative maps of linguistic communication in general.

We find four basic maps of communicating: ( a ) the referential ( besides denotative or cognitive ) map, focussed on the referent or context referred to by the text, ( B ) the expressive or affectional map, focussed on the transmitter, the transmitter ‘s emotions or attitude towards the referent, ( degree Celsius ) the secret agent ( besides appellative, conative, persuasive or vocative ) map, focussed on the orientation of the text towards the receiving system, and ( vitamin D ) the phatic map, functioning chiefly “ to set up, to protract, or to stop communicating between transmitter and receiving system, to look into whether the channel works, to pull the attending of the middleman or to corroborate his continued attending. The phatic map is besides responsible for the development of the societal relationship between transmitter and receiving system.

Apart from infinite, clip, and civilization, it is the influence of these basic maps that constitutes the “ universe ” of a text. They will therefore organize the systematic model for the scope of possible inquiries which can be asked sing the situational factors of our analytical theoretical account ( see the criterion or theoretical account inquiries in the “ checklist ” at the terminal of each chapter ) . In order to exemplify the mutuality of factors and dimensions, the last inquiry will ever mention to the outlooks raised by the analysis of the factor in inquiry.


Sender vs. text manufacturer

Although in many instances these two functions are combined in one character ( e.g. in the instance of literary plants, text editions, or newspaper commentaries, which are usually signed by an writer ‘s name ) , the differentiation seems to be extremely relevant to a translation-oriented text analysis.

Many texts do non bear any writer ‘s name at all. These are normally non-literary texts for practical usage, such as advertizements, Torahs or legislative acts, or runing instructions. However, there has to be a transmitter who, even if non named explicitly, can be identified implicitly. For illustration, the transmitter of an advertizement is normally the company selling the merchandise, and the transmitter of legislative acts is usually the legislative organic structure of a province. The fact that no text manufacturer is named in these instances leads to the decision that either they are non relevant as a individual or – as is the instance with certain genres – they do non wish to be known.

If a text bears the name of both transmitter and text manufacturer, the latter normally plays a secondary function because s/he is non expected to present any communicative purpose of her or his ain into the text.

The transmitter of a text is the individual ( or establishment, etc. ) who uses the text in order to convey a certain message to person else and/or to bring forth a certain consequence, whereas the text manufacturer writes the text harmonizing to the instructions of the transmitter, and complies with the regulations and norms of text production valid in the several linguistic communication and civilization. The formal design of the text, such as the layout, may be assigned to another expert, and in some instances, the text is presented to the populace by yet another individual ( e.g. a intelligence reader or an histrion ) .


The imprint on the dorsum of a tourer information booklet of the metropolis of Munich reads as follows: “ Edited by the Tourist Information Office of Munich ( … ) . Text: Helmut Gerstner. ” The Tourist Information Office, which intends to inform the visitants and to advance the beauties of the town, is the transmitter of the text. Mr Gerstner is the text manufacturer, and he is the individual responsible for the stylistic characteristics of the text, but non for the transmitter ‘s purpose. The imprints on the English, French, and Spanish versions of the booklet contain the same information, which in this instance is evidently incorrect. Although the Tourist Information Office is the transmitter of these texts, excessively, it is the several transcribers who have to be regarded as text manufacturers. Their names ought to be mentioned in add-on to, or alternatively of, that of Helmut Gerstner.

As is shown by the illustration, it is normally the text environment ( imprint, mention, bibliography, etc. ) that yields information as to whether or non the transmitter and the text manufacturer are different individuals. If the writer ‘s name is the lone one given, she can usually be assumed to be the text manufacturer. However, this can non be regarded as a difficult and fast regulation, as is illustrated by the undermentioned illustration.


In her book Estudio sobre EL cuento espahol contempordneo( Madrid 1973 ) , Erna Brandenberger has included the short narrative “ Pecado de omision ” by the Spanish writer Ana Maria Matute to give an illustration of a certain type of secret plan which she calls a “ fast traveling narrative ” . For the German version of the book, Brandenberger ( as transmitter and transcriber in one individual ) has translated the narrative into German with the purpose of demoing the typical characteristics of a fast traveling narrative. If the same narrative is published in a aggregation of modern Spanish short narratives, nevertheless, it is the writer herself who acts as transmitter, and in interlingual rendition it would be her purpose that determines interlingual rendition schemes.

The state of affairs of a transcriber can be compared with that of the text manufacturer. Although they have to follow the instructions of the transmitter or instigator and have to follow with the norms and regulations of the mark linguistic communication and civilization, they are normally allowed a certain range in which to give free rein to their ain stylistic creativeness and penchants, if they so wish. On the other manus, they may make up one’s mind to lodge to stylistic characteristics of the beginning text every bit long as their imitation does non conflict the text norms and conventions of the mark civilization.

Another facet of transmitter pragmatics is the inquiry as to whether a text has one or more than one transmitter ( monologue vs. duologue, question/answer, treatment, exchange of functions between transmitter and receiving system, etc. ) . If there is more than one transmitter, the matching informations have to be analysed for each of them.

What to happen out about the transmitter

Within the model established by clip, infinite, civilization and the basic maps of communicating, what we regard as being relevant to interlingual rendition is all informations which may throw visible radiation on the transmitter ‘s purpose, on the addressed audience with their cultural background, on the topographic point and clip of, and the motivation for, text production, every bit good as any information on the predictable intratextual characteristics ( such as foibles, regional and societal idiom, temporal characteristics, cognition presuppositions, etc. ) .


a ) If a text is written in Spanish, it may be critical for comprehension to cognize whether the writer is from Spain or Latin America, since a big figure of words are used with different significances in European and American Spanish. Even if a Peruvian like Mario Vargas Llosa writes in a Spanish newspaper for Spanish readers, he can be expected to utilize Americanisms. B ) In a Spanish edition of Cuban short narratives ( Narrativa cubana de la revolution,Madrid 1971 ) , certain cubanisms are explained to the Spanish readers in footers, e.g. , duro:“ moneda de un peso cubano ” ( which was so a five peseta coin in Spain ) , or neques:“ sorpresas, golpes imprevistos ” . For the transcriber, these footers may be of import non merely in the comprehension stage, but besides – if the TT skopos requires the saving of the consequence the book has on the European Spanish-speaking reader – in the transportation stage, degree Celsius ) The Portuguese bucolic Crisfalcan be ascribed either to Cristovao Falcaos or to Bernadim Ribeiro. In the first instance, the text has to be interpreted literally as a realistic verse form, while in the 2nd instance, it must be regarded as an fable. As Kayser points out, “ the words may hold a wholly different impact if they come from an writer who truly was put into prison for his love, who truly was separated from his lady, and whose lady truly was forced to remain in the religious residence of Lorvao ” ( Kayser 1962: 36, my interlingual rendition ) .

How to obtain information about the transmitter

How can the translation-relevant information about the transmitter ( or the text manufacturer ) be obtained? The first hints are provided by the text environment ( imprints, endorsements, foreword or epilogue, footers, etc. ) . The writer ‘s name may already transport farther information which either belongs to the receiving system ‘s or transcriber ‘s general background cognition or can, if necessary, be obtained. The name of a author normally evokes some cognition of their literary categorization, artistic purposes, favorite capable affairs, usual addressees, position, etc. ; likewise, the name of a politician evokes his or her political point of view, map or place, public image, etc. Since this is culture-specific cognition, which belongs to the “ backwoods ” of the text, it can non be presumed that it is shared by the mark receiving system. Therefore, the transcriber has to see whether the TT receiving system might miss information. Whenever such a deficiency interferes with text comprehension, it should be compensated for by some extra piece of information given in the mark text or in the TT environment.


If ex-Prime Minister Edward Heath writes an column in a British newspaper, British readers will instantly cognize what political party the writer belongs to. If the text is translated and published in the German hebdomadal paper DIE ZEIT, many German readers may non be able to “ sort ” the writer as easy. If, nevertheless, the categorization is relevant for the comprehension and/ or reading of the article, the information has to be supplied in a few introductory lines or even in the text itself, if possible.

Further information about the transmitter may be provided by other factors of the communicative state of affairs ( either separately or as a combination of several factors ) . There may be clear and unambiguous information, which I call “ informations ” , or there may be intimations which may let the necessary information to be inferred. If the analyst knows, for case, by which medium, at what clip, and for which map a text has been published ( local newspaper of the twenty-four hours X, decease proclamation ) , s/he is able to state who the transmitter may be ( relations, employer, or friends of the dead individual ) . The topographic point of publication points to the beginning of the transmitter or possible beginning, if the linguistic communication is spoken in assorted states ( Great Britain – United States – Australia – India ; Portugal – Brazil ; Spain – Latin America -Bolivia ) , and the medium can throw visible radiation on the possible position of the transmitter ( specialised diary – expert ; newspaper -journalist ) , etc.

Sometimes it may even be possible to inquire the transmitter in individual, or a individual related to him or her.

Another beginning of information is the text itself. If the text environment does non supply the necessary inside informations, the analyst has to look for internal intimations about the features of the transmitter. The usage of a certain regional or category idiom may uncover the ( geographical or societal ) beginning of the text manufacturer ( although non needfully that of the transmitter, if they are non the same individual ) , and the usage of disused signifiers may state the analyst that the text manufacturer likely lived in another age. These inquiries, nevertheless, can merely be answered after finishing the intratextual analysis.


The undermentioned inquiries may assist to happen out the relevant information

about the transmitter:

1.Who is the transmitter of the text?

2.Is the transmitter indistinguishable with the text manufacturer? If non, who is the text manufacturer and what is his/her place with respect to the transmitter? Is s/he topic to the transmitter ‘s instructions? Is s/he an expert in text production or an expert on the topic?

3.What information about the transmitter ( e.g. age, geographical and societal beginning, instruction, position, relationship to the capable affair, etc. ) can be obtained from the text environment? Is at that place any other information that is presupposed to be portion of the receiving system ‘s general background cognition? Can the transmitter or any individual related to him or her be asked for more inside informations?

4.What hints as to the features of the transmitter can be inferred from other situational factors ( medium, topographic point, clip, motor, map ) ?

5.What decisions can be drawn from the informations and hints obtained about the transmitter with respect to

( a ) other extratextual dimensions ( purpose, receiving system, medium, topographic point, clip, juncture, map ) and

( B ) the intratextual characteristics?

The difference between purpose, map, and consequence

In order to determine the dimension of purpose we have to inquire what map the transmitter intends the text to carry through, and what consequence on the receiving system s/he wants to accomplish by conveying the text. It may look hard to separate the construct of purpose from that of map and consequence. Biihler ( 1984 ) , for illustration, equates “ writer ‘s purpose ” with “ purpose and consequence ” . The three constructs are three different point of views of one and the same facet of communicating. The purpose is defined from the point of view of the transmitter, who wants to accomplish a certain intent with the text. But the best of purposes does non vouch that the consequence conforms to the intended intent. It is the receiving system who “ completes ” the communicative action by having ( i.e. utilizing ) the text in a certain map, which is the consequence of the constellation or configuration of all the situational factors ( including the purpose of the transmitter and the receiving system ‘s ain outlooks based on his/her cognition of the state of affairs ) . The inquiry “ What is S taking at with the text? ” can therefore non be assigned to the factor of text map, but belongs to the dimension of purpose.

Text map is defined “ externally ” , before the receiving system has really read the text, whereas the consequence the text has on the receiving system can merely be judged after response. It is, so to talk, the consequence of the response and encompasses both external and internal factors.

It is true that certain genres are conventionally associated with certain purposes, but these need non needfully be realized in the communicative state of affairs. Some ancient genres, for illustration, such as charming enchantments or heroic poem verse forms, are received today in a map which differs well from that intended by the original transmitter.

Ideally, the three factors of purpose, map and consequence are congruent, which means that the map intended by the transmitter ( = purpose ) is besides assigned to the text by the receiving system, who experiences precisely the consequence conventionally associated with this map. Methodologically, the three factors have to be distinguished because their separate analysis allows for a different intervention ( saving, alteration, version ) in the interlingual rendition procedure. If the purpose has to be preserved in interlingual rendition, we must frequently be prepared for a alteration in map and/or consequence.

The purpose of ( he sender is of peculiar importance to the transcriber because it determines the structuring of the text with respect to content ( capable affair, pick of enlightening inside informations ) and signifier ( e.g. composing, stylistic-rhetorical features, citations, usage of non-verbal elements etc. ) . At the same clip, the specific organisation of a text marks the text type and is a pre-signal which tells the receiving systems in which map they are expected to utilize the text.


A set of operating instructions is meant to inform the user about a certain piece of equipment, e.g. a hairdryer, and to explicate its correct usage. Therefore, the text manufacturer chooses the conventional signifiers of text organisation ( composing, sentence constructions, lexical platitudes, etc. ) . Taking the text out of the box with the hairdryer, the receiving system recognizes the peculiar signifiers of text organisation and instantly knows that the transmitter wants to inform about the hairdryer and the manner it has to be used. Therefore receiving systems will usually use the text in this peculiar map. In this instance, the text type is linked with a peculiar purpose on the portion of the transmitter, which leads to the corresponding text map on the portion of the receiving system. The consequence will be that of “ conventionality ” .

The transmitter ‘s purpose is besides of import in connexion with the rule of trueness. Even if the text map is changed in interlingual rendition, the transcriber must non move contrary to the transmitter ‘s purpose ( if it can be elicited ) .

The information on the dimension of purpose can throw some visible radiation on other external factors ( e.g. , what consequence on the receiving system might be intended, which medium may be most appropriate or conventionally used to recognize the purpose in inquiry, or whether there is a nexus between purpose and genre ) , and, to a big extent, on the intratextual characteristics ( e.g. composing, usage of rhetorical devices or non-verbal elements, tone, etc. ) .

What to happen out about the transmitter ‘s purpose

What different types of purpose can be associated with a text? There may be signifiers of “ communicating ” , where the transmitter is his or her ain addressee: person may compose something down either to ease the load of their memory or to screen out their thoughts and ideas, or they may merely scrabble something on a piece of paper while doing a phone call ( “ zero-intention ” ) . These signifiers would non look to be relevant to interlingual rendition. In normal communicating with two or more participants, the possible purposes correspond with the four basic maps of communicating described above in connexion with the systematic model. We may inquire, for illustration, whether the transmitter wants to inform the receiving system about a certain issue ( referential purpose ) or intends to show her/his feelings or attitude towards things ( expressive purpose ) , whether s/he programs to carry the receiving system to follow a peculiar sentiment or execute a certain activity ( appellative purpose ) , or whether s/he merely wants to set up or keep contact with the receiving system ( phatic purpose ) .

Of class, a transmitter may good hold more than merely the one purpose. Several purposes can be combined in a sort of hierarchy of relevancy. For matter-of-fact grounds, this hierarchy may hold to be changed in interlingual rendition.

How to obtain information about the transmitter ‘s purpose

Normally, the receiving system is non informed explicitly about the transmitter ‘s purpose, but receives the text as the consequence of the transmitter ‘s communicative intents. One means of obtaining explicit or inexplicit information about the purpose ( s ) of the transmitter or text manufacturer, hence, is the analysis of intratextual characteristics.

However, if we stay with the extratextual factors ( transmitter, receiving system, medium, topographic point, clip, motivation, and map ) , these can throw some visible radiation on the purpose the transmitter may hold had in conveying the text. Paralinguistic phenomena, such as manifestations of the transmitter ‘s exhilaration or outrage, may hold to be taken into history every bit good.

In finding the transmitter ‘s purpose we have to see the function the transmitter adopts towards the receiving system in or through the text, a function which is rather separate from the “ existent ” , status-based relationship between the two. A transmitter who is superior to the receiving system because of greater cognition about the topic in inquiry may however seek to play down this cognition in order to derive the receiving system ‘s assurance. If the analyst knows the transmitter ‘s function ( in relation to position ) , s/he may be able to pull some decisions as to the transmitter ‘s purpose.

The transmitter ‘s purpose is of peculiar importance when analyzing literary texts or texts marked as a personal sentiment ( e.g. political commentaries, columns ) because there is no conventional nexus between genre and purpose. In these instances, the transcriber may hold to take history of the writer ‘s life and background, events that have influenced his or her Hagiographas or any literary categorization ( such as “ romantic ” or “ politically/socially committed literature ” ) . There is no uncertainty that for a translation-relevant text analysis transcribers must work all beginnings at their disposal. The transcriber should endeavor to accomplish the information degree which is presupposed in the receiving system addressed by the writer. For a literary text this will non be the degree of a literary bookman, but surely that of a “ critical receiving system ” .


a ) Bertolt Brecht is a representative of German politically committed literature. If the receiving systems know that his narrative “ Measures against Violence ” was foremost published in 1930, they may take this as a hint that the writer intended to warn his readers about Nazi inclinations, B ) If a text is published in a newspaper on the pages specially devoted to political commentaries ( which in quality documents is frequently separate from intelligence and studies ) , this medium of publication can be taken as a clear intimation that the transmitter ‘s purpose was that of “ noticing ” on recent political events or inclinations, degree Celsius ) In a text marked as a “ formula ” the reader can be rather certain that the transmitter ‘s purpose was to give waies for the readying of a peculiar dish and to give a list of the necessary ingredients. However, if the same formula is embedded into a larger unit, e.g. a novel, the transmitter ‘s purpose may hold been rather different.

Sometimes transmitters themselves give a metacommunicative account as to their purposes, as is shown in the undermentioned illustration.


In the foreword of his narrative Los cachorros( Barcelona 1980 ) , the Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa writes: “ I wanted Los cachorrosto sound like a narrative that is sung instead than state, and hence the standard for the pick of each syllable was non merely a narrative but besides a musical one. I somehow had the feeling that the genuineness of the narrative depended on whether the reader truly felt that he was listening to the narrative and non reading it. I wanted him to comprehend the narrative with his ears. ” ( My interlingual rendition )

Such a statement by the writer is no warrant that the beginning text ( really, or even in the writer ‘s sentiment ) conforms to this purpose.


The undermentioned inquiries may assist to happen out the relevant information about the transmitter ‘s purpose:

1.Are there any extratextual or intratextual statements by the transmitter as to his or her purpose ( s ) refering the text?

2.What purpose ( s ) are by convention associated with the genre to which the analysed text can be assigned?

3.What hints as to the transmitter ‘s purpose can be inferred from other situational factors ( sender – particularly his or her communicative function – , receiving system, medium, topographic point, clip, and motivation ) ?

4.What decisions can be drawn from the informations and hints obtained about the transmitter ‘s purpose with respect to

( a ) other extratextual dimensions ( receiving system, medium, and map ) and

( B ) the intratextual characteristics?

Lecture 2. Audience, Medium and Place of Communication

Source-text audience vs. target-text audience

During the procedure of text analysis the transcriber elicits those textual elements or characteristics which can be considered to be determined by the peculiar audience-orientation of the beginning text. Since each mark text is ever addressed to receivers-in-situation different from those to whom the beginning text is or was addressed, the version of exactly these elements is of peculiar importance.


If the beginning text is a study on a recent event published in an American newspaper, it is addressed to a big, non-specific audience in the United States. In order to capture the attending of the readers the writer chooses a scandalmongering rubric plus an extra, enlightening caption and uses little text sections and citations as sub-headings for the paragraphs. The text is accompanied by two exposures. All these characteristics are intended as “ reading-incentives ” for the receiving system. If this text is translated for a journalist who has herself initiated the interlingual rendition because she is interested in the information provided by the text, the reading-incentives are otiose, and the paragraph headers may even hold a confusing consequence.

Every TT receiving system will be different from the ST receiving system in at least one regard: they are members of another cultural and lingual community. Therefore, a interlingual rendition can ne’er be addressed to “ the same ” receiving system as the original.

Addressee vs. opportunity receiving system

First of wholly, we have to separate between the addressee of a certain text ( i.e. the individual or individuals addressed by the transmitter ) and any opportunity receiving systems who happen to read or hear the text, even though they are non addressed straight, such as people listening to a panel treatment or watching a televised parliamentary argument. In some instances, the “ opportunity receiving system ” is really a secondary addressee ; for illustration, when a politician pretends to be replying a inquiry asked by an interviewer but is, in world, turn toing his/her words to possible electors.

This facet is relevant non merely in instances where the opportunity receiving system ‘s comprehension of the message differs from that of the existent addressee ( which may hold effects for the participants ) , but peculiarly where interlingual rendition or interpretation is concerned. The transportation determinations of the transcriber will hold to depend on which of the two audiences is supposed to be addressed by the mark text.

The instance may even originate where the transcriber has a “ opportunity receiving system ” . If the SL participant in an interpretation session has a inactive bid of the mark linguistic communication or if a interlingual rendition is published page-to-page with the original in a parallel text edition, the afore-mentioned SL participant or the reader with some SL cognition, who compares the interlingual rendition with the original, might be regarded as being a sort of “ secondary receiving system ” every bit good. They are interested non merely in the message of the text but besides in the manner this message is transmitted to the TL reader. In position of such secondary receiving systems it may be advisable for the transcriber to notice on certain interlingual rendition schemes in a foreword or post-script.

What to happen out about the audience

After all the available information about the intended TT receiving system has been extracted harmonizing to the normal round class of the interlingual rendition procedure, so the transcriber can look into this against the features of the ST receiving system: age, sex, instruction, societal background, geographic beginning, societal position, function with regard to the transmitter, etc.


A study on drugs published in a magazine for immature people is written with teenage readers in head. In order to appeal to the receiving systems and warn them of the hazards of drug dependence, the writer uses words and phrases from juvenile slang and drug slang. A interlingual rendition of the text which is besides addressed to immature people may utilize the corresponding TL slang, whereas if the ” same interlingual rendition text ( utilizing slang words and slang ) were to look in a subdivision of a intelligence magazine, whose readership is a chiefly grownup one, it would either non be understood or would non be taken earnestly.

The communicative background of the addressees, i.e. all their general background cognition and their cognition of particular countries and capable affairs, is of peculiar importance for translation-oriented text analysis. Harmonizing to the appraisal of the audience ‘s communicative background22, a text manufacturer non merely selects the peculiar elements of the codification that will be used in the text but besides cuts or omits wholly any inside informations which can be “ presupposed ” to be known to the receiving system, whilst emphasizing others ( or even showing them with excess information ) in order non to anticipate excessively much ( nor excessively small ) of the addressed readership.

How much cognition can be presupposed in a reader depends non merely on their instruction or acquaintance with the topic but besides on factors associating to the topic affair itself, e.g. its topicality. In this regard, the state of affairs frequently varies widely for ST and TT receiving systems, as there is normally ( at least in written communicating ) a considerable clip slowdowns between ST and TT response.


For a Spanish receiving system, the heading “ Nuestra integrating en Europa ” above a commentary published in the Spanish paper El Paisin February 1984 is non a thematic rubric which informs about the content of the text, but refers to the so current treatment on particular agricultural jobs connected with the dialogues on the Spanish entry into the European Community. For German ‘ ‘ ” or Gallic newspaper readers the issue was non of topical involvement at that clip ; under the heading “ Spain ‘s entry into the EC ” ( or “ Our integrating into Europe ” , for that affair ) they would hold expected an article on the issue of Spanish ( or German/French! ? ) integrating into the European Community.

Like the writer, who has a specific purpose in conveying the text, the receiving system, excessively, has a specific purpose when reading the text. The receiving systems ‘ purpose must non be confused either with their outlooks towards the text, which is portion of their communicative background, or with their reaction or response to the text, which takes topographic point after text response and is therefore portion of the text consequence.

The information obtained about the addressee may throw some visible radiation on the transmitter ‘s purpose, on the clip and topographic point of communicating ( in relation to the receiving system ‘s age and geographic beginning ) , on text map ( in relation to the receiving system ‘s purpose ) , and on the intratextual characteristics ( e.g. the presuppositions ) .

As was pointed out in connexion with the transmitter, a fabricated receiving system is portion of the “ internal ” communicative state of affairs and non of the external communicative state of affairs. But even externally a text can be directed at different possible receiving systems.


Whilst imprisoned for being a member of the Resistance motion against the Nazi government, the German author G. Weisenborn ( 1902-1962 ) wrote some letters to his married woman, Joy Weisenborn, which were published after the war. In the original state of affairs, these letters had one exactly defined and addressed receiving system. Published subsequently in a book together with some replying letters from his married woman and some vocals and verse forms, they address a group of receiving systems that is much larger and non so clearly defined, i.e. anyone interested in the paperss and personal testimonies of Resistance in the Third Reich. If a immature adult male gives this book, which contains many stamp love-letters, to his girlfriend many old ages subsequently, the conditions of response will be different once more, non to advert those of a interlingual rendition of the book into English, Dutch, or Spanish.

Therefore, the transcriber must analyze non merely the features of the ST addressees ( or receiving systems ) and their relationship to the beginning text, but besides those of the TT receiving system, whose outlooks, cognition and communicative function will act upon the stylistic organisation of the mark text.

The stronger the orientation of the ST towards a peculiar SL addressee or audience, the higher the chance that the ST has to be translated in a documental manner, which means that the mark text can merely give information about the beginning text in its state of affairs but non carry through an correspondent map.

How to obtain information about the addressed audience

As in instance of the transmitter, information about the addressees can first of all be inferred from the text environment ( e.g. dedications, notes ) , including the rubric ( e.g. Bad Child s Pop-Up Book of Beasts ) .It can besides be elicited from the information obtained about the transmitter and his/her purpose or from the situational factors, such as medium, topographic point, clip, and motivation. Standardized genres frequently raise every bit standardised outlooks in the receiving systems.


A homemaker usually expects a formula to incorporate instructions for the readying of a certain dish, and, so, that is why she reads it. Her attending is directed at the content of the text ( e.g. what ingredients will she necessitate, what has she got to make? ) . Recipes normally have a instead conventionalised signifier, non merely with respect to their composing ( foremost a list of ingredients, so the instructions in chronological order ) but besides with respect to syntactical constructions ( e.g. jussive moods, parataxis ) and lexical characteristics ( e.g. nomenclature and formulaic looks, such as “ bring to the furuncle ” , “ stirring invariably ” , etc. ) . The reader will merely go cognizant of the text signifier if it is non as expected: if, for illustration, the formula is written as a verse form or if the list of ingredients is losing.

The outlook of the receiving system can sometimes take to a certain tolerance. For illustration, when reading a bill of fare, whose text map can clearly be inferred from the state of affairs, but which is translated severely into their ain linguistic communication, tourers in a foreign state may non experience annoyed, as they usually would, but instead amused by the orthographic errors or unidiomatic collocations every bit long as they get some information about what to eat or imbibe.

Normally, of class, the text manufacturer will seek every bit far as possible to run into the outlooks of the addressed audience. There are instances, nevertheless, where an writer neglects or even intentionally ignores the addressees ‘ outlooks in order to do them sit up and take notice or to do them cognizant of certain forms of thought, etc.


The undermentioned inquiries may assist to happen out the relevant information

about the addressed audience and their outlooks:

1.What information about the addressed audience can be inferred from the text environment?

2.What can be learned about the addressees from the available information about the transmitter and his/her purpose?

3.What hints to the ST addressee ‘s outlooks, background cognition etc. can be inferred from other situational factors ( medium, topographic point, clip, motivation, and map ) ?

4.Is there any information about the reactions of the ST receiving system ( s ) which may act upon interlingual rendition schemes?

5.What decisions can be drawn from the informations and hints obtained about the addressee sing

( a ) other extratextual dimensions ( purpose, topographic point, clip, and map ) , and

( B ) the intratextual characteristics?


Speech vs. composing

The construct of medium or channel has to be interpreted instead loosely. We refer to “ medium ” as the agencies or vehicle which conveys the text to the reader ( in communicating theory, “ channel ” bases for sound moving ridges or print on paper ) . The transcriber is, nevertheless, interested less in the proficient differentiations and more in the facets of perceptibility, storage of information and the presuppositions of communicative interaction.

First of all we have to inquire whether the text is being transmitted in a face-to-face communicating or in composing. The agencies of transmittal affects non merely the conditions of response, but more peculiarly besides those of production. It determines how the information should be presented in regard of degree of explicitness, agreement of statements, pick of sentence types, characteristics of coherence, usage of non-verbal elements such as facial looks and gestures, etc. The consequence of the chosen medium on the intratextual factors can be illustrated by looking at the deictic facet: situational mentions, which in face-to-face communicating do non hold to be verbalized explicitly because the participants are a portion of the state of affairs, must be expressed much more clearly in written communicating.


In face-to-face communicating, deictic looks, such as here, by my side,or today,or looks mentioning to the participants of communicating, such as all of us,or as the talker before me right remarked,are unambiguous. However, in a written text they can merely be decoded right in connexion with the information on clip, topographic point, transmitter, receiving systems, etc. given in the text itself or in the text environment, such as title page, imprint, debut lead, etc.

The classs of address and composing can non, nevertheless, ever be separated wholly, as there are spoken texts which are reproduced in a written signifier ( e.g. a statement made by a informant ) and written texts which are spoken ( e.g. talks ) . Crystal & A ; Davy ( 1969 ) hence introduce the construct of complex medium, consisting “ linguistic communication which is spoken to be written, as in command, or linguistic communication written to be spoken, as in news-broadcasting ” , and even subclassifications such as “ linguistic communication written to be read aloud as if written ” .

This shows that for our intents it would non be wise to take at a mere “ labeling ” of texts as respects medium. What we have to make is arouse specific characteristics of the medium such as happenstance or discontinuity of text production and response, indirect or direct signifier of communicating, spontaneousness of text production, chances for feedback operations, one-way communicating, etc.

What to happen out about the medium

In spoken communicating, the dimension of medium includes the proficient devices for information transportation ( such as telephones or mikes ) , and these, of class, affect the production, response and comprehension of the text. In written communicating, on the other manus, it is the agencies of publication that is referred to as the “ medium ” , i.e. newspaper, magazine, book, multi-volume encyclopaedia, cusp, booklet, etc. , every bit good as subclassifications such as concern intelligence, literary addendum, etc.

The dimension of medium is relevant because it provides some hints as to the size and individuality of the addressed audience. The readership of a national day-to-day newspaper is non merely much larger, but normally represents a different degree of instruction and information with different outlooks and different criterions of stylistic quality from that of a medical, non to advert a neurosurgical, diary. The inexpensive paper-back book edition of a novel would be expected to make a wider public than an expensive, multi-volume aggregation of Cantonese love verse forms. A personal missive is directed at one person receiving system whereas a standard concern missive can be addressed to any figure of companies on a mailing list, and a posting on an advertisement board is targeted at anyone passing by, etc. , etc.

In add-on, the specification of the medium may give some hint as to the transmitter ‘s purpose ( e.g. in the instance of a posting or a image post card ) and to the motivation for the communicating ( e.g. in the instance of a decease proclamation in a newspaper ) . Since the scope and conventions of medium usage may change from civilization to civilization and from one coevals to another, the specification of medium may even give some thought of the clip and topographic point of text production.

Although the pick of a peculiar medium evidently provides pre-signals for the receiving system ‘s outlooks sing the intended text map, map and medium must non be automatically associated or even equated. The receiving systems ‘ outlooks are surely based on their experience with the medium in inquiry, but, once more, a peculiar transmitter may mean to surprise or let down the receiving system by utilizing a medium for a purpose rather different from that normally associated with it. For the transcriber it is of import, excessively, to take into history the fact that the “ same ” media may hold rather different maps in another civilization.

As a general regulation, nevertheless, the medium determines the receiving system ‘s outlooks as to text map. A cusp distributed at the entryway of a celebrated church is expected to incorporate basic information on the objects of involvement in the signifier of a guided circuit. The text in a guidebook normally has the maps of information plus advertisement, and an article in an encyclopaedia is expected to supply elaborate information non merely on the positive but besides on the negative facets of a topographic point.


a ) This program draws your attending to some of the chief characteristics of the edifice. More inside informations may be obtained from guide books on sale in the store. The Nave, begun in 1291 and finished in the 1350 ‘s in the Decorated Gothic manner, is one of the widest Gothic naves in Europe. It is used for services throughout the twelvemonth. The dais on the left commemorates Archbishops Temple and Lang, and the brass reading desk has been used since 1686. The Great West Window is being repaired and can non at present be seen. ( First paragraphs of the information cusp Welcome to York Minster.There is a program with Numberss on the opposite page. )

B ) THE MINSTER ( by the late Chancellor F. Harrison )

Beloved to Yorkshiremen, renowned the universe over. This is true. Of great and baronial churches in this state, likely three pull the greatest figure of visitants. These three are Westminster Abbey, St. Paul ‘s Cathedral and York Minster ) . ( … ) The east window deserves a note of its ain. Seventy-six pess high and 32 pess wide, incorporating hence more than two-thousand square pess of medieval glass – the great window at Gloucester Cathedral mensurating 72 pess by 38 pess, and incorporating more than two-thousand-three-hundred square pess of glass, but non entirely coloured – this great and expansive window ne’er ceases to excite esteem and admiration. The master-glazier, John Thornton, of Coventry, received for his work, in all, the amount of Ј 55 in three old ages, worth in modern currency – Ј 2,000? Who knows, even about? This was the wage of merely one adult male. ( From the booklet City and County of the City of York,Official Guide, 112 pages. I have left out the 12 pages on the history of the Minster. ) .

degree Celsius ) There are many little old churches, quaint and frequently glorious towers and the breathless spectacle of the Minster. It took two-and-a-half centuries, from 1220 to 1470, to finish this verse form in rock. Inside, a kaleidoscope of light explodes from Windowss of medieval stained glass that are among the art hoarded wealths of the universe. ( Last of the three paragraphs on York, from the book AA Illustrated Guide to Britain,544 pages )

vitamin D ) York Minster is the largest of England ‘s mediaeval cathedrals. The consequence of 250 old ages of edifice, it shows a assortment of manners. The transepts are the earliest portion of the present edifice, dating from 1220-1260 ; the nave, chapter house, and anteroom were built in 1291-1345 in Decorated manner ; the choir in 1361, the cardinal tower in 1400-1423, and the western towers in 1433-1474 in early and late Perpendicular. The Minster contains some of the earliest glass and the biggest land area of stained glass in Britain. The lancet visible radiations of the “ Five Sisters ” in the north transept are a peculiarly all right illustration of 13th-century grisaille glass. ( Paragraph on York Minster – under the heading “ York ” -from The New Caxton Encyclopedia,18 vols. )

For translation-oriented text analysis, it is most of import to arouse characteristics typical of the medium, i.e. characteristics of content and/or signifier, and to sort them as culture-specific or transcultural or even cosmopolitan. This is peculiarly relevant in those instances where the mark text is to be transmitted through a medium or impart different from that of the beginning text.

How to obtain information about the medium

If the beginning text is non available in its original medium, but merely in a transcript or typescript ( which really occurs reasonably often in interlingual rendition pattern ) , the transcriber must take a firm stand on holding detailed information about the medium, as it is instead hard to place the medium from intratextual analysis entirely. There may be some hints in the dimensions of the transmitter and his/her purpose or motivation ; clip and topographic point, excessively, sometimes narrow the field of possible media. In some instances, the pick of medium is determined by convention since there are favorite media for peculiar communicative intents in every civilization ( e.g. postings or newspaper advertizements for merchandise publicity, cusps for tourer information, etc. ) .


The undermentioned inquiries may assist to happen out the relevant information about the dimension of medium or channel:

1.Has the text been taken from a spoken or a written communicating? By which medium was it transmitted?

2.Which medium is used to show the text to the mark audience? Is at that place any extratextual information on the medium?

3.What hints as to medium or impart can be inferred from other situational factors ( transmitter, purpose, motivation, map ) ?

4.What decisions can be drawn from the informations and hints obtained about the medium as respects

( a ) other extratextual dimensions, such as the addressees and their outlooks, motivation, and map, and

( B ) the intratextual characteristics?

Topographic point of communicating

The dimension of infinite refers non merely to the topographic point of text production, i.e. the existent state of affairs of the transmitter and the text manufacturer, but besides, at least in connexion with certain media, to the topographic point of text response. It can non be equated with the dimension of medium. The dimension of infinite is of peculiar importance where linguistic communications exist in assorted geographical assortments ( such as the Spanish spoken in Spain as opposed to Latin America or even Peru, Mexico, Argentina etc. , and the English spoken in Great Britain as opposed to the United States, Australia, India etc..


The Lusitanian version of the information booklet published by the Tourist Office of Munich was accepted unhesitatingly as being right and appropriate by a group of Brazilian instructors in a seminar on interlingual rendition, whereas their co-workers from Portugal classified the text as “ more or less apprehensible, but unidiomatic and non conforming to normal use ” . In this instance, an analysis of the dimension of topographic point could non throw any visible radiation on this job because the text had been produced in Munich for “ Lusitanian ” -speaking receiving systems. As the name of the transcriber was non specified in the text imprint, the participants in the seminar could merely presume that the transcriber – whether he or she was a native talker or non – had used the Brazilian assortment of Portuguese. The sender/initiator ( the Tourist Office ) had likely non been cognizant of the job. For the German version of this booklet, nevertheless, the dimension of topographic point ( of response ) would propose that the text is written in the assortment used in Germany ( as opposed to Austria or Switzerland ) .

In add-on to the lingual facets, the dimension of infinite can be of import for the comprehension and reading of a text in that the topographic point of text production may be regarded as the Centre of a “ comparative geographics ” . The distance or significance of other topographic points must frequently be judged in relation to this Centre. The transcriber has to take into history that the “ comparative geographics ” from the point of view of TT production may be rather different from that of ST production.


a ) The difference in cultural or societal degree could be called “ downgrade ” or “ upgrade ” , depending on whether it is seen from the lower or the higher degree.

B ) The distance between London and Liverpool is much “ shorter ” as perceived by a Texan than by an Englishman,

degree Celsius ) The names of topographic points, countries and folks listed in Act 2, 9-11, do non do sense as a description of the “ skyline of the Judaic universe ” unless Syria is assumed to be the topographic point of text production, and non Jerusalem, where the Pentecostal event is set.

What to happen out about the dimension of infinite

In the dimension of infinite we have to see non merely lingual facets but besides cultural and political conditions. A text published in a state where literature is censored must be read “ in another visible radiation ” than a text whose writer has non been capable to any limitations, since writers under censoring frequently write “ between the lines ” .

In add-on to the name of the province or state the text comes from, it may even be necessary to cognize the exact country or town of text production in order to be able to construe the deictic elements right. This applies to the ST every bit good as to the TT, which would usually be read in the mark cultural environment.


In the instance of newspaper articles, the topographic point where the paper is published is usually taken to be the topographic point of text production every bit good. Therefore, readers of the Sunday Times can presume that the information “ Mortgage cut in sight ” refers to Great Britain, while all articles on the first page of the international edition of the Herald Tribune have to bespeak the topographic point the article refers to: “ U.S. Banks Lower Prime Interest Rate ” , “ In Leipzig, Protesters Fear Resurgence of Communist Power ” , “ Tamil Guerrilla Army Nears Goal in Sri Lanka ” , etc. If letter writers send their studies from someplace else, the topographic point of text production is normally specified together with the writer ‘s name ( “ By David Binder, New York Times Service, Bucharest ” ) or at the beginning of the text ( “ LEIPZIG, East Germany ” ) , so that the reader can construe a sentence as “ Now everything is quiet around here once more ” right. In a interlingual rendition, excessively, the dimension of topographic poi

Cite this Text analysis in translation

Text analysis in translation. (2017, Jul 22). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/text-analysis-in-translation/

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