目的论视域下文化专有项的字幕翻译策略研究一 —以《琅琊榜》为例

来源: 未知 作者:paper 发布时间: 2020-03-06 16:24
论文地区:中国 论文语言:中文 论文类型:英语论文
摘要 2015年出品的古装电视剧《琅琊榜》在中国家喻户晓,并且获得了全世界 观众的广泛关注。尽管如此,相关的学术研宄仍旧稀少,且集中在研宄《琅琊 榜》的受欢迎度及其原因,场
摘要
2015年出品的古装电视剧《琅琊榜》在中国家喻户晓,并且获得了全世界 观众的广泛关注。尽管如此,相关的学术研宄仍旧稀少,且集中在研宄《琅琊 榜》的受欢迎度及其原因,场景、语言、服装以及字幕翻译策略上。本研究以 功能目的论为理论框架分析并评估乐天\/iki社区译者的中英两门语言翻译策 略,即如何处理《琅琊榜》前两集中的文化专有项。本研究的文化专有项特指 有含义的专有名词,即与制度、习俗、节日、家庭关系、成语、等级关系、神 话等有关的词语。
本研究将解决以下两个问题:
1、 译者以哪些翻译策略处理《琅琊榜》中的文化专有项?
2、 在设定目的下,翻译策略的效果如何?哪些翻译策略最佳,为何最佳?
笔者认为,目的论中的“目的”是为观众提供“正宗”体验,该结论基于 以下现象:粉丝社区广泛使用直译与音译等翻译策略,并且使用在字幕下显示 的译者注。本研究中的所有相关字幕来内于乐天Viki平台上提供的《琅琊榜》 前两集,将字幕的翻译策略进行分类和评估。这些文化专有项的翻译策略包括 艾克西拉提倡的转换拼写法、语言(非文化)翻译、文外解释和文内解释等异化 策略,以及使用同义词、有限普遍化、绝对普遍化、同化和删除等归化策略。 本研究发现转换拼写法、文外解释、文内解释、使用同义词和同化等策略最适 合达到目的,而译者应避免删除和有限普遍化等策略。这一结论对于译者在选 择适当影视翻译策略的过程中能够提供帮助,也提醒学者,如何将艾克西拉提 倡的翻译策略整合进目的论框架,并且M不影视翻译作为文化传播工具的作用 与潜力。
1Introduction
1.1Research Background
/>? F/re (J良琊榜 i) is a well-received TV drama set in a fictionalized Chinese dynasty around 1,600 years ago and depicts a military strategist trying to clear his name. Chinese media have compared the series to Alexandre Duma’s novel The Count of Monte Cristo[langya bang] [ http://rn.chinadaily.coin.cn/en/2015-11/16/content 22465502.htm, accessed February 23, 2019] [’ https://en.wikipedia.ora/wikif/Nirvana in_Fire#Intemational broadcast, accessed February 23, 2019]. NiF as one of China's most popular TV shows in recent times was also a hit abroad, having been aired not only by TV stations in Greater China, but also South Korea, Japan and even the USA . Western audiences in particular have had little contact with Asian or Chinese TV productions, yet NiF seems to have struck a chord: enjoying high ratings on IMDB[ https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5141800/. accessed February 23, 2019
1].
NiF's unexpected success in non-Asian countries has inspired an in-depth analysis on how Culture-Specific Items (CSI) pertaining to Chinese culture are conveyed to Western audiences through domestication and foreignization strategies under the functional approach of Skopostheorie.
1.2Research Purpose and Significance
This research aims to demonstrate that a mix of domestication and foreignization strategies was employed to make NiF easily digestible to a non-Asian audience while retaining a flavor of otherness. As of writing of this thesis, no other similar study on NiF was available, neither through scanning Google Scholar nor China's academic network CNKI. Audio-visual translation (AVT) in the West usually resorts to domestication procedures to render CSI, which prevents audiences from realizing cultural differences. As film is one of the main carriers of a country’s culture and as such can serve to improve soft power, the Chinese entertainment industry and their translators would be well-advised to give subtitle translation more thought. Japanese culture has been dominant for decades, introducing Western audiences to some elements of its culture that are Chinese in origin or nature, be it architecture, food or literary classics. Pushing the recent campaign "Telling China's Story to the World'' (讲好-中 N 故事the Chinese government is aiming to instill confidence in the Chinese people and enable understanding abroad, in an attempt to increase China's soft power and cultural influence[jiang hao zhongguo gushi] [ http://wmv_xinhuanet.eom/politics/2Cn8-09/02/c 1123367300.htm, accessed February 23, 2019]. Against this backdrop, the author argues that popular culture in general and film/drama in particular serves as a fitting vehicle for establishing a more dominant cultural position, kimono is a term most English-speakers are familiar with, but what about qipao? The Cantonese cheongsam is more likely to ring a bell stemming from its depiction in Hong Kong cinema. Both of these examples are CSI that very well may simply be rendered as "dress" or ''Japanese/Chinese dress'". If China truly wants to be a force to be reckoned with in terms of cultural influence, it should also export its language with confidence, aiming to raise awareness about its own unique cultural phenomena. This study tries to show whether subtitle translation with the purpose of making Chinese culture palatable through a mix of domestication and foreignization strategies is suitable for translating culture-specific phenomena or not. Hopefully, this study will help practicing translators determine a suitable approach for rendering CSI in film and overall contribute to AVT research.
1.3Research Questions
The purpose of this study is to determine what domestication and foreignization strategies work best for CSI translation under the skopos set in 3.1. More specifically, this study aims to answer the following questions:
1)What translation strategies were employed to deal with the CSI found in NiF?
2)How effective are the strategies under the given skopos? What strategies work best and why?
The goal is to provide subtitle translators, who aim to introduce an audience to an
audiovisual production set in a foreign culture, an overview of the strategies they may choose to employ as well as analysis and reasoning on the effectiveness and shortcomings of the strategies.
1.4Research Methods
Both the Chinese and English version are widely available across the web. The only licensed subtitled version of the original Mandarin release is available on www.viki.com[ https://w\vw.viki.com/tv/22943c-nirvana-in-fire, accessed February 23, 2019]. While a DVD release featuring English subtitles is commercially available, it is based on the Cantonese dub.[ https://w\vw.amazon.coni/Nirvana-Fire-format-version-Eng)ish/dp/B011JQ6CAU, accessed February 23, 2019] [ https://www.viki.com/about, accessed February 23, 2019] [ ^
https://blog.viki.com/rakuten-viki-awarded-android-excellence-as-it-launches-the-next-wave-of-social -tv-36525eb368a. accessed February 23, 2019] Mandarin vs. Cantonese and language vs. dialect discussions aside, given the relatively high asking price, viewers are more prone to go to Viki as NiF may be viewed free of charge. Since this study discusses dissemination of Chinese culture, it is reasonable to designate the medium more readily available as the research object in question. It may also be noted that Viki is the only official source for non-English subtitles for NiF.
Viki itself is a Rakuten-owned crowdsourced subtitling platform910 focusing on East-Asian TV dramas and films. In contrast to unofficial fan communities of subtitle translators, Viki owns the publication rights of any content it serves[ https://blog.viki.com/faq-how-does-viki-license-content-52883673ceQ8, accessed February 23,
2019 — — ~~ ^ -
3]. Given its financial and legal backing. Viki is a reliable provider. There is little fear the research object in question may simply become unwatchable and? consequently, this study difficult to verify. It may also inspire research into other TV and film productions available on Viki.
As Viki's subtitles are provided in the .srt file format, they are easily extracted by means of specialist video download services such as http://www.lilsubs.com/. This helps reduce input error that might have otherwise occurred through manually typing the subtitles as they are shown on screen. Consequently, the English subtitles in this study were extracted using the aforementioned service. It should be noted, however, that the same does not apply for the Chinese subtitles seen later on in this study: as subtitles tend to be “hardcoded”(subtitles are not saved as a separate file but are an inseparable part of the video file instead) on Chinese video portals (such as wAVAv.youku.com). any Mandarin-Chinese release of NiF, which commonly uses the video files from Chinese video portals, available on popular Western streaming sites such as YouTube also has this same quirk. As a result, the Chinese subtitles shown later in this study were typed out manually. The author tried to contact both the channel owner of NiF and Viki’s official support in hopes of obtaining the Chinese subtitles. No satisfactory reply was given.
NiF features 54 episodes in total on Viki. The constraints of this study (both in terms of time and word count) do not allow for a thorough examination of every episode. Instead, the first two episodes were chosen as a sample basis, because TV shows tend to introduce the most important characters and settings in the first few episodes. As such, CSI are more likely to appear in greater number. Since not every utterance contains a CSI, only those doing so will be studied. The Chinese, including pinyin. and English subtitles will be given in tabular form. Orthographical and grammatical errors as well as clumsy wording will be ignored or merely hinted at. since they are not the focus of this study; it should be noted, however, that they are common. The results of the analysis will be presented in tabular form showing conformity with or violation against the Skopos rules. This will not serve as a statistical analysis and will merely serve as an overview for quick reference.
1.5Thesis Structure
Chapter 1 explains the motivation behind this paper, its significance both for
practitioners and scholars, the questions tackled and the research methods employed.
Chapter 2 shows, compares and comments on current research done on Skopos
theory, domestication and foreignization as well as CSI, both from the perspectives
of Western and Chinese academia. Chapter 3 introduces the theoretical framework,
explaining how Skopos theory along with domestication and foreignization will be
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applied in this study. Chapter 4 shows the translation strategies used in subtitle translation of NiF under the skopos determined beforehand and also delivers an overview of NiF, going into detail about language and genre. Chapter 5 discusses the results of this study, provides a summary, points out limitations and gives pointers for future research.


2Literature Review
2.1Overview
This chapter will introduce the reader to current research in both the West and in China pertaining to Skopostheorie, domestication and foreignization, cultural-specific items and subtitle translation. Each section will come with commentary provided by the author, providing personal insight into the state of the art, research and practical applications. It should be noted that the author is German by birth and nationality and may provide his thoughts from a German native speaker's perspective.
2.2Current Research on Skopostheorie
2.2.1Western Academia
Skopostheorie was proposed by Vermeer in 1978 in an effort to create ua general theory of translational action55 (Vermeer 1978:99) and consists of the following rules:
(1)A translatum is determined by its skopos.
(2)A translatum is an offer of information in a target culture and language about an offer of information in a source culture and language.
(3)A translatum is a unique, irreversible mapping of a source-culture offer of information.
(4)A translatum must be coherent in itself.
(5)A translatum must be coherent with the source text.
(6)These rules are interdependent and linked hierarchically in the order set out above. (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:107)
These rules were first formulated in Vemieer's 1978 paper and later used as a summary of the theory’s points and definitions in Vermeer’s and Reil5’ jointly authored ^Grundlegung einer allgemeinen Translationstheorie'' [^Towards a General Theory of Translational Action’’]. The literature review section will refer to both the
German original (indicated by quoting %tReiB & Vermeer'*) and the English translation by Christiane Nord (indicated by quoting "Reiss & Vermeer'*). Within Skopostheorie. “translational action” or the German 'Translation' in this definition, encompasses both translation and interpreting (Vermeer 1994:99). and describes the action of producing a “translatum”(Reiss & Vermeer 2014:11 )• which constitutes “an offer of information” about another offer of information (the source text) (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:26).
“Skopos”,as found in rule 1,is Greek for “purpose” and is the dominating principle for any translational action. There are three different kinds of purposes in translation: the general purpose the translator aims at (e.g.. translating to earn a living), the communicative purpose set forth in the TT towards the target audience (e.g., informing the reader) and the purpose determined by a translation strategy or procedure. “Skopos” usually refers to the communicative purpose (Nord 2018:26-27). The “skopos rule” is the primary rule which dictates any action; any means may be employed to fulfill the skopos. There may be multiple skopos, which are related to each other in hierarchical order, and each of them has to ''make sense,? ("be justifiable5') (Reili & Vermeer 1994:101). The skopos rule is supposed to solve the issue of free vs. faithful translations, since any given translation task may require either extreme or anything in-between renderings, entirely dependent upon the skopos. A translation^ quality should thus not be judged by its conformity with target-culture behavior or expectations. A skopos may be determined or inferred by the translator themselves or by the client in form of a translation brief (“(jbersetzungsauftrag”),which, ideally, would detail the purpose, the target audience, time, place, occasion, medium of communication and the textual function (Nord 2018:28-30). Source-text and target-text skopos may differ from each other in order to achieve the same effect on the respective recipient (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:92-93).
Rule 2 describes the translatum and the source text (ST) as being offers of information rather than communication, since the latter relies on interactivity (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:61). The term "offer of information'' was chosen because any given text, such as the ST, may have various interpretations. Consequently, the ST itself also constitutes an offer of information because translators may interpret the ST differently, with the chosen interpretation being translated into a new offer of information targeted towards the target audience (Vermeer 1982:99). This information may relate to content, form, meaning or expressive character of the source (Reis & Vermeer 2014:70) and may be commentary or a translatum (Vermeer 1982:99).
Rule 3 states that the translational action may transfer the ST sign (i.e. a word, symboL gesture etc.) by using a different sign in the target text (TT), e.g. rendering a verbalized greeting as a gesture. This transfer is "(within certain tolerable limits of vagueness) reversible, but not biuniquely irreversible'' (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:80). Reiss and Vermeer fail to establish what “biuniquely irreversible” exactly entails and resort to exemplary descriptions (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:84); in his 1978 paper, Vermeer links “biuniquely irreversible” and thus rule 3 with coherence (rules 4 and
5), but no further information is given (Vermeer 1978:102). It should be further noted that Vermeer emphasizes the “culture” component of translation. He suggests that a translation theory is supposed to not only be about mapping signs between languages, but also cultural phenomena (Vermeer 1978:100).
Rules 4 and 5 state that a translatum has to be comprehensible to the recipient in their given situation (intratextual coherence) and must be a "correct" translation of the source text (intertextual coherence or fidelity), which is dependent upon the translator’s understanding; however, the skopos rule provides the intended function of the translatum: in case that ST and TT skopos do not align, the fidelity rule is not violated and “correctness” turns into a relative metric. Here, “biuniquely irreversible" is used to describe the process of "mapping hierarchically ordered sets of sets in a source text onto a TT as translatum in such a way that it serves the intendent function^ (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:102-103). Under these rules, it is evident that Skopostheorie is a TT focused theory.
Nord adds to the theory by introducing her own rule of "loyalty", which is supposed to solve the notion of translators disregarding ethics and produce the translatum however the translation brief sees fit. Loyalty is a social component that requires the translator to be a mediator between author and recipient, earning their trust. Authors are usually not translation experts and averse to the idea of adaption; only if they trust the translator to transfer their original intention may they agree with any changes. In the same vein, recipients hope to be informed about the author’s original intention rather than be misled; any alterations that go against the expected translation behavior have to be spelled out clearly. Loyalty also asks the translator to alter their translation strategies or to even refuse translation based on their ethical beliefs (Nord 2018:114-116).
The theory has been the target of criticism, which one of its proponents and the translator of Reiss’ and Vermeer’s seminal work. Nord, explicitly addresses. For brevity’s sake,only a summary of these criticisms will be delivered (Nord 2018:101-112):
1)Not every action has a purpose [or skopos: to Vermeer, these are synonyms, as previously established], referring to works of art such as literary texts.
2)Translators do not have a specific purpose and target audience in mind during translation and a specific purpose limits translation procedures and interpretations of the TT.
3)Skopostheorie's concept of translational action is vague and allows for no way to differentiate classic translation from paraphrasing or adaption.
4)Skopostheorie is banal since human action is always guided by a purpose.
5)Skopostheorie is a theoretical construct and not based on the analysis of corpora.
6)Since TT skopos may differ from ST skopos. translators may pursue an agenda and disregard ethics.
7)Skopostheorie disregards the ST.
8)Skopostheorie is not a theory about translation, but about adaption due to its focus on the target culture.
9)The theory is incompatible with literary translation.
10)The target culture takes a dominating position in the theory.
Luo in her "Reflection of Domestic Researches on Skopos Theorv?,' presents a short retrospective on history, development and application of the theory in China. Up until the 1970s, translation in China was marked by prescriptive rules and no theoretical school of thought with translation as an object of research was established. Translation and its criticism were done intuitively without any abstract, systematic methodology as a basis. Consequently. Chinese translators were very receptive of Western translation theories after the end of Chinese isolationism, among them were Nida?s Dynamic Equivalence, Newmark's Semantic and Communicative Translation and Steiner's Hermeneutic Motion. These linguistic theories then fell out of favor because of a changing translation landscape, which is when theories such as Skopostheorie found their way into China. The theory found widespread appeal and became the target of research. It serves as a popular theoretical framework in graduate theses, almost making up half of all research papers found on China's CNKI. It is here hat Luo heavily criticizes students' understanding of the theory, which apparently does not go deeper than the surface level due to students consulting second-hand accounts in Chinese rather than the original work or the English translation. Many seemingly equate reaching the skopos of a translatum with employing domestication and foreignization strategies and the corresponding procedures. Luo found that, among the remaining 50% of research papers on CNKI, the majority is commentary rather than research. A common feature of all of these papers is their repetitive nature, with very few trying to break new ground. Academic activity on the theory appears to be taking place in an echo chamber, with few criticism and suggestions being proposed (Luo 2016:168-170).
C. J. Peng in "So Many Criteria of Translation: Whereby to Assess their Merits'" disregards Skopostheorie saying that the TT cannot be possibly declared as important as the ST since it is merely a copy with only few small-scale differences, mostly of lingual and cultural nature; information, values, content, meaning, train of thought, imagery, effect and function stay the same. Faithfulness is thus the most important
criterium a translatum has to deliver (Peng 2000:63-64).
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Hou suggests that Skopostheorie is invaluable in providing another perspective in translation theory but cannot possibly be made the backbone of translation studies, since the TT skopos may twist and disrespect the ST. affecting cultural exchange as a whole (Hou 2003:41).
Wur raising an example of literary translation, suggests that functional theories are unable to fully overcome cultural hurdles; either something becomes lost in translation or the meaning is lost on the target audience (Wu 2003:49).
Pan, while acknowledging the theory for acting as a counterweight to "text-based theory*', criticizes Skopostheorie for disrespecting the source text (Pan 2006:14^15).
M. F. Zhang criticizes Christiane Nord’s rule of loyalty for being idealistic and difficult to implement in practice: the translator may find themselves in a conundrum if the author’s intentions do not align with the recipient’s expectations or if ST and TT skopos differ from each other. Loyalty overly restricts functionalism by tying the ST back to the TT and downplaying the importance of the translation brief (Zhang 2005:65).
Chen notes that Nord's rebuttal of criticism against the theory is not convincing and criticizes its proponents of stretching the scope much further than it allows for; it is not fitting for literary translation. Skopostheorie puts the translator on a pedestal and disrespects the author, publishing house and its recipient. A given skopos may make the translator pursue strategies such as adaption, omission and simplification in order to reach the intended function, harming the ST?s literary and artistic value. Skopostheorie claims that every translational action has a purpose, but not every purpose is reasonable or correct. (Chen 2007:50-51)
2.2.3 Commentary
Nord?s translation of Reiss' and Venrieer*s work is arguably erroneous. "Der Zweck heiligt die Mittel'' (ReiB & Venneer 1994:101) was rendered as uthe end justifies the means”(Reiss & Vermeer 2014:90), rather than “the skopos justifies the means”. As previously established. “Z'veck”(purpose) and “skopos” are synonyms;
Vermeer combined a common German expression with a pun to illustrate the skopos' importance. The English expression, while idiomatic, makes the theory as a whole sound radical, which Nord herself seems to have realized when she introduces her own concept of “loyalty' saying “[..•] the main idea of Skopostheorie could be paraphrased as *the translation purpose justifies the translation proceduresBut what happens if the translation brief requires a translation whose communicative aims are contrary to or incompatible with the author's opinion or intention? In this case, the Skopos rule could easily be interpreted as 'the end justifies the means', and there would be no restriction to the range of possible ends'' (Nord 2018:114). Another example is the wording of Skopostheorie rule 3. The English version says,
*'A translatum is a unique, irreversible mapping of a source-culture offer of information”(Reiss & Vermeer 2014:106)
The corresponding explanation found in the preceding chapter says,
'To say that a transfer is rule-based means that it can be understood and checked by others and that it is (within certain tolerable limits of vagueness) even reversible (although not biuniquely reversible)" (Reiss & Vermeer 2014:80).
In both cases, the wording in the German original is unaltered, albeit the word order slightly altered with no effect on its meaning:
Compare:
"[...] die Umsetzung [...] bleibt sogar umkehrbar (nicht: eindeutig umkehrbar),? (ReiB & Vermeer 1994:89) with
“Ein Translat bildet ein Informationsangebot nicht umkehrbar eindeutig ab” (ReiB &Vermeer 1994:119)
The erroneous English wording suggests that every and any translatum is both unique and irreversible because of the comma; however, this directly contradicts the statement in the preceding chapter.
Since it serves as a general theory,Skopostheorie does not take specific
limitations into consideration,e.g. translating under duress (Reiss & Vermeer
2014:90). It is unclear whether time and budget constraints also belong to these
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limitations, which are part of a translator's professional life and may affect translational action. Another common element only briefly touched upon is ability. Nord only mentions "the ability to interpret^ as a side note in reference to literary texts (Nord 2018:75). but the message of every text hinges on the individual's ability to make sense of the information according to a set of individual circumstances - every person has had different experiences and thus operate under an individual framework to interpret the world they see around them. A common criticism leveled against Skopostheorie is the assertion that not every action has a purpose, which is not only true for the ST author, but also for the translator. Skopostheorie is, as repeatedly stated, a general theory, yet translational ability plays a key role in both translation and analysis of translation; one cannot assume that a translator is perfectly aware of what they are doing. Even highly skilled translators may suffer from a momentary lapse of concentration and produce questionable results. Having said that, it would be unwise to make a general assumption and say that an amateur's translatum is unfit for purpose in every single way; while rough around the edges in a linguistic sense, such a translatum may provide a different angle on an information tidbit within the ST. In the same vein, professional translators generally cannot hope to match the pool of knowledge of an industry expert who has had decades of relevant experience, unless the translator is highly specialized.
Since Skopostheorie is not based on empirical data and analysis, any arguments against and for the theory boil down to statement vs statement. None of all the papers cited in the Skopostheorie. including Vermeer's seminal works, use data of any kind to back up their claims. Due to its vagueness, the theory may seemingly be interpreted any way its reader sees fit. Nevertheless, the following section will still try to address the concerns unique to the Chinese situation raised by Luo in order to provide a new argument and its rebuttal not regurgitated countless times in the past.
Luo's criticism is flawed. For one, she fails to produce convincing evidence as to
why a given skopos should or should not be reached through foreignization and
domestication strategies, she merely states her opinion as a matter of fact.
Skopostheorie. as previously established, describes transfer of both language and
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culture, with the TT as the focus and the ST dethroned. The link between the theory and domestication is intuitive, so much so in fact that the theory was described as a theory of adaption by its critics; adaption is. indeed, a domestication strategy. She is right insofar that the theory's scope is much broader and descriptive in nature; students may fail to realize that a translation of the same source using the same strategies under a different skopos may deliver a functionally different result and that there are more strategies to be applied other than the aforementioned two. The author would argue that this is not the (Chinese) students, fault per se? but rather one of training and education. Going further, domestication and foreignization have undergone several paradigm changes in China in the past, with foreignizing strategies being consciously employed to enrich the Chinese language (see 2.3.2). Western translators may not be as sensitive about these two strategies since domestication is the status quo in English-speaking countries, especially the US (see 2.3.1).
A common critique is the theory5s incompatibility with literary translation since the theory is known for t4disrespecting,? the ST. If translation studies have any hope of becoming an acknowledged academic field, any translator and interpreter with any respect for their own profession should detach their translational actions from the written word and stop idolizing the source text. Chinese translators in particular seem overly focused on literary translation, perhaps due to ancient China producing a myriad of classic scriptures that can be interpreted in just as many ways. Ancient scriptures and classic tales are an important part of a cultured identity, yet modern translation goes far beyond solving a cultural-linguistic puzzle carefully crafted by literartis from yore. With the rise of English as a second language and its status as a pivot language in translation and interpreting, one would be foolish to assume that the original utterance is impeccable.
Vermeer’s “offer of information” is a solution to this conundrum — translators are
supposed to convey the intention and content of information the author is trying to
convey yet may fail to do so for various reasons. The translation of an operating
manual that is faithful to the original yet incomprehensible to the recipient might as
well not exist. A translator does not disrespect the original if he or she writes the TT
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according to the responsible engineer's instructions since the original author's intention was to inform the recipient on how to use a given device or equipment in the first place. An end user of smart devices wishes for ease of use first and foremost -should the faithful translation of a smartphone^s user interface fail to display information easily understood at a glance, then the translation is a failure in the recipient's eyes. Any linguist within the course of their career eventually comes to realize that seemingly most people are incapable of expressing themselves clearly and concisely - it is those who can that we hold in high regard. We do not expect programmers and engineers to be the next Jin Yong or Tolkien, though it is often these people who write instructions and, owing to the proliferation of technology, probably have had a much higher impact on our daily text consumption than any famous literary craftsman has. Today's translators are hence not walking dictionaries -they are courageous enough to improve upon the source text and play a vital role in delivering the message as intended.
Many speakers have a nasty habit of repeating sentences, abruptly starting anew, changing their train of thought amidst a sentence or using bad grammar; this does not excuse the interpreter from doing the same, as faithful as that may be (unless the intent is to ridicule the speaker). The move away from prescriptive towards descriptive functionalist theories is a large step towards conscious translational action, allowing translators to actively choose procedures based on concrete reasoning. Skopostheorie may or may not be the best candidate for a general theory of translation: its value lies in casting the shackles off translation, allowing translators to be more than mere servants replaceable by unlearned labor and machine translation. “This translation sounds good” is a compliment translators and interpreters often hear and is a statement often found in prescriptive studies; it is seemingly the highest praise one can hope to receive - it is also a highly subjective statement uttered in ignorance.
2.3Current Research on Domestication and Foreignization
2.3.1Western Academia
Schleiemiacher was one of the first to conceptualize translation studies as its own academic discipline (Lebedewa 2007). In his ^Ueber die verschiedenen Methoden des Uebersetzens“ [“On the Different Methods of Translation”] he describes "foreignization” as the ‘‘translation that remains as close as to the original expressions as the [translator^] own language allows and, thus, sounds foreign to readers of the target language*'. Back then, foreignization was regarded as an odd, even laughable practice. Schleiermacher noted that foreignization was a balancing act where no fixed guidelines for the degree of foreignization existed and which was dependent on the readers' familiarity with the given ideas of the foreign text. The two conditions for successful foreignization are: 1)? learning about foreign concepts is both common and desired in the target language and 2). the target language is flexible enough to allow for foreignization; if met, such translations are conducive to the reader’s “Geistesentwikkelung” [spiritual/mental development]. It is implied that “domesticatiorT fails to act in the same role since it is “the method that does not ask any effort of the reader to understand the author's ideas and that presents the original author's thoughts in such a way as he or she had written them in the target language"'. It is furthermore difficult to ascertain how a foreign author would express his or her ideas in the target language as if it was his or her native tongue, because there is no guarantee the very same train of thought would have been conceptualized the same way in two different languages. Language itself sets the bounds for formation of thought and some concepts may be unthinkable in another language. Consequently, some scientific fields and the arts are unable to be translated through the method of domestication. Only through contact with the foreign is [the German language] able to grow and develop its innate strengths (Storig 1963:55-69). It is evident that Schleiermacher heavily favors foreignization as the preferred translation method.
Today, Venuti is regarded as the ardent defendant of foreignization. He regards
foreignization as a highly desirable way to restrain the ethnocentric violence caused
16
by [domesticated] translation, especially against the backdrop of English-speaking nations dictating the unequal terms of cultural exchange between them and the rest of the world: it is a form of resistance against ethnocentrism. racism, cultural narcissism and imperialism. While specific European countries such as France and Germany are marked by periods of time when foreignization was actively promoted and practiced, translation practices in the United States of America have predominantly favored domestication, valuing fluency above all else (Venuti 1995:20-21).
Nida is the most prominent and influential proponent of domestication (Venuti 1995:21). '"A translation of dynamic equivalence aims at complete naturalness of expression, and tries to relate the receptor to modes of behavior relevant within the context of his own culture: it does not insist that he understand the cultural patterns of the source language context in order to comprehend''. Nida lists the Biblical expression “greet one another with a holy kiss” as an example: a translation attempting to produce a formal equivalence [foreignization] would translate the expression as is and add a footnote; J. B. Phillip’s translation (of dynamic equivalence) [domestication] phrased the expression as "'give one another a hearty handshake all around”(Nida 1964:159-160). Domestication in its essence goes back much further in time? it was a common practice among the Romans. Poets used to replace elements typical for Greek culture with contemporary Roman ones; they even replaced the author^ name on Greek poems with their own, claiming this work of literature as belonging to the Roman Empire (Nietzsche 2012:83).
Interestingly, the notion of domestication vs. foreignization is rarely viewed
through the lens of relay translation. Indeed, despite Venuti?s disapproval of
Anglo-Saxon cultural dominance, he fails to mention that translators who have to
work based on an intermediary translation instead of the original have little to no say
about any translation strategies they may deem fit for the task. One such infamous
example is the localization of the original PlayStation 2 videogame “Final Fantasy
X''. In one of its final cinematic cutscenes, protagonist Yuna says to main protagonist
Tidus in the original Japanese release,“arigatou“ [“thank you’’], while in the US and
European releases she says,“I love you”. As the English dub was the sole voice-over
17


provided on European versions of the game, the other languages were forced to follow suit (Curie 2005:80). 丁he Japanese “thank you” is able to convey multiple layers of meaning, which the word-for-word translation fails to do. Considering the two characters being lovers and Yuna's utterance to be made in the belief that she will never see Tidus again, a simple “thank you” was deemed inappropriate for the English version; additionally, voice-over lip-sync was also a concern, so the translation had to be short and to the point (O’Hagan & Mangiron 2013:173).
2.3.2Chinese Academia
Liu in his paper “Domestication — The Wrong Path of Translation’’,just like Schleiermacher, stresses the importance of foreignization as a means of enriching a given language with foreign ideas and expressions. He laments the fact that translators in the English-to-Chinese context appear to be overly fond towards typical Chinese expressions that may fail to adequately express the original but are chosen for their perceived elegance. He observed five common phenomena: 1) inadequate and overly eager use of four-character idioms (成语L), 2) over-reliance on classical Chinese expressions, 3) over-abstraction (especially of mythological character names into abstract concepts), 4) over-replacement (of foreign metaphors with Chinese ones) and 5) over-use of metaphors (when the original uses an abstract expression) (Liu 1987:59-64).
In the field of poetry translation, Y. C. Xu advocates beauty over truth if a poem cannot be translated such that it is both faithful to the original and a pleasant read in the target language at the same time, for he thinks that poetry places aesthetics above all else (Xu 2000:1).
J. P. Xu and R. X. Zhang say the choice of domestication vs foreignization is dependent on the translation direction: foreignization is the preferred method for English into Chinese, because there appears to be large group of readers in China who are willing to absorb foreign elements, while domestication is preferred for Chinese into English, because the targeted readership would rather read about
chengyu
expressions familiar to them (Xu & Zhang 2002:38). Xu and Zhang, knowingly or not. hint at the Chinese reader group fulfilling the two conditions Schleiermacher proposed for successful foreignization; they also implicitly support Venuti’s argument of English-speaking nations dominating cultural exchange and as such favoring domestication.
Ge warned his fellow scholars in China of regarding domestication and foreignization simply as a difference in style, methods that only care about the written word itself. Having Venuti^ stance in mind, the methods have become political (Ge 2002:32). He suggests that translators should pay heed to the cultural power levels of the ST and TT cultures: if the ST stems from a culturally superior culture and is introduced into a culturally weaker culture, domestication should be adopted to help protect the weaker culture, while he advises to employ foreignization when translating from a weak culture to a strong one (Ge 2002:35).
Guo advocates neither approach, stating that extratextual variables, most importantly the purpose of a given translation, have to be taken into account. An audience of Chinese learners would most likely prefer a foreignized translation of H 楼梦13 (A Dream of Red Mansions/The Story of the Stone) over a domesticated one, while an audience of pastime readers would prefer a domesticated translation. Another variable is textual function: he argues that translation of philosophical texts, political papers as well as historical and folk stories should employ foreignization, while translation of practical texts such as announcements, advertisements, informational, notices, news and popular literature should employ domestication. Translators may apply Skopostheorie and make their choice dependent on the author's intent, the purpose of the translation, text fonn. and the audience, among various factors (Guo 1998:17).
Sun presents an overview of recent translation histor\; in China. Domestication used to be the dominating mode from the 1870s to the 1970s. When China opened its doors to the world in 1978, translators agreed on foreignization as the dominant method. Authors and translators sought inspiration from abroad in 1919 and
hongloumeng
advocated foreignization as a means to enrich non-Iiterary Chinese with new vocabulary, which was coined the “Europeanization” of Chinese. This movement clashed upon a countermovement calling for domestication in the 1930s and was consequently cast aside until China’s opening up. China’s short history of literary translation (starting in the mid to late 19lh century) and period of isolationism shaped the way translators operated. Most of them were writers themselves and had no translation expertise to call upon. They leant more towards a literal-artistic approach and prioritized “literary perfection’’ and “idiomatic Chinese’’. These translators thought of translation as a practical-oriented field and spared little thought on principles and theories. Translation was mostly done by intuition (Sun 2002:40-42). Sun recommends using a mix of both approaches: foreignization should be employed whenever possible, but once readability suffers, domestication should be used instead (Sun 2002:44). Sun fails to establish a clear set of rules that translators may base their strategies upon; the examples he lists seem to be mostly picked out of intuition*
2.3.3Commentary
Foreignization versus domestication appears to often boil down to a choice of red versus blue. As Guo pointed out, there is no need to narrowly focus on one strategy over the other; indeed, as the research object in question shows later on. a mixture of two strategies may very well be employed to entice an audience. English-speaking nations as a whole may heavily favor domestication, but this does not necessarily hold true for every individual or group of individuals. Going further than that, the number of people who speak English as a second language eventually will or even has surpassed the number of people who speak English as a first language (Graddol 2003:164). Consequently, one could argue that there is no need to adhere to traditional translation strategies desired by a group of people that is both heterogenous and dwindling in size.
2.4Current Research on Culture-Specific Items
2.4.1Western Academia
There is no universally agreed upon term for phenomena that are specific to a culture: they are either called cultural units (Newmark 2003:68). realia (Robinson 2003:171), culture-specific references/items/content/artefacts/entities/connotations (Davies 2003:65-71) or culture-specific concepts (Baker 2018:19). Scholars as a whole appear to put forth similar, albeit vague definitions: Robinson defines them as "words and phrases that are so heavily and exclusively grounded in one culture that they are almost impossible to translate into the terms—verbal or otherwise—of another' (Robinson 2003:182). Baker describes them as "'concepts [...] totally unknown in the target culture. [...They] may be abstract or concrete; it may relate to a religious belief, a social custom or even a type of food" (Baker 2018:19). Newmark sees them as “units that have no obvious equivalents in the target language” (Newmark 2003:68).
Aixela, pointedly, says, ''authors avoid any definition, attributing the meaning of the notion to a sort of collective intuition." He criticizes the lack of any definition as arbitrary and authors spreading the idea of CSIs being static, as if there were a set prescriptive translation rules for any given CSI regardless of cultural pairing or textual function. He proceeds to deliver an arguably vague definition: 'Those textually actualized items whose function and connotations in a source text involve a translation problem in their transference to a target text, whenever this problem is the product of the nonexistence of the referred item or of its different intertextual status in the cultural system of the readers of the target text''.
Aixela divides CSI into two categories: proper nouns and common expressions,
with the former including conventional (meaningless) and loaded (suggestive) proper
nouns and the latter including world of objects, institutions, habits and opinions
(Aixela 1996:57-59). He lists several translation strategies for translating CSIs
belonging to “conservation” and “substitution”. The former category comprises
“repetition”(a direct copy of the ST term into the TT). “orthographic adaption”
21
(transcription and transliteration, or the rendering of the term into a different writing system), 'linguistic (non-cultural) translation'' (a rendition that belongs to the target culture but is easily recognizable as belonging to the source culture), "extratextual gloss”(the translator provides explanatory notes in some form, clearly separated from the text) and 'Mntratextual gloss'' (explanations that are given as an indistinct part within the text), “substitution” comprises “synonymy”(use of synonymous terms to avoid repeating the CSI), ''limited universalization'' (the ST CSI might be considered obscure by the target culture and is replaced with a CSI that the audience is more familiar with but is still recognizable as part of the source culture), "absolute universalization”(the CSI is considered obscure but the translator does not find a CSI better known to the target culture or prefers to delete any foreign connotations), "naturalization" (cultural substitution, a CSI within the target culture is chosen, no trace of foreignness), “deletion” (the translator deletes the CSI for reasons of ideology, style, relevancy or obscurity, or is not allowed or does not want to use other techniques such as the gloss) and “autonomous creation”(cultural references are inserted in the TT even though the ST does not contain them) (Aixela 1996:61-65).
2.4.2Chinese Academia
In Chinese,文化词语11 (cultural words).中 _/文化特色词汇11 (words with Chinese/cultural characteristics),文化负载词1 卜(culturally loaded words) and 文化
专有项i (a direct translation of “culture-specific item”)are used to describe CSI. Yang defines the term as follows (in the context of Chinese CSI): uWords as part of Chinese vocabulary that directly reflect cultural information of the Chinese people and the Chinese region'' (Yang 2012:28). K. F. Wang and Y. C. Wang build upon Aixela’s definition and call them 完全空击夬18 (“completely vacant' a given concept in one language is matchless, i.e. has no counterpart in the other language) and
wenhua ciyu
4zhongguo/wenhua tese cihui
5wenhua fuzai ci
6wenhua zhuan you qing
7wanquan kongque
全空缺19 (“not completely vacant.*, a given expression in one language has a counterpart in the other language which lacks the former^ connotations). The first category includes terminology of Traditional Chinese Medicine, politics and familial relationship, the second imagery inspired by nature (e.g. the plum blossom, the orchid, the bamboo and the chrysanthemum) (Wang & Wang 2016:89).
2.4.3Commentary
The very nature of CSI remains a mystery and one could reasonably argue that most words in any given language, nouns in particular, are CSI. This is something Aixela must have realized as well when he presented his definition of the term: What does Jits different inteilextual status in the cultural system of the readers of the target text’’ exactly entail? The word “breakfast”,for example, could be simply understood as the first meal of a day. Time and food items are different from country to country, but the concept itself is universal. In context, this cultural difference may lead to potential confusion: Italians traditionally only have a cup of espresso for breakfast. If the Italian source text says, “He proceeded to consume his breakfast in one gulp??? a Chinese reader might be seriously confused as how one would go about eating an entire bowl of tangyman in one fell swoop. Translators thus have to be aware of the cultural connotations of a given term and have to realize the context where these differing connotations come into play. Hence a translator should not focus on the word or phrase itself but rather on the function it serves.
Fascinatingly, Aixela mentions “domestication” several times in his publication, but never in conjunction with his translation strategies; "foreignization,' he does not even mention once — although his “conservation” and “substitution” strategies imply just that. One could argue that he wished not to politically charge his strategies and chose neutral terms instead.
bu wanquan kongque
2.5Current Research on Audio-Visual Translation
2.5.1 Western Academia
Western linguistic and literary scholars regarded translation studies as the odd one out for decades due its pop-cultural nature, which seemingly clashed with cultural norms. As such, AVT studies has only recently started to gamer academic interest (Delabastita 1989:193). AVT is usually reduced to dubbing and subtitling but can go much farther than that: translators may choose to delete, repeat (i.e. not translate), adapt or inject visual, acoustic, verbal and non-verbal signs, affecting a single scene or the entire film. These procedures may be employed by themselves or in combination (Delabastita 1989:200).
Dubbing, or synchronization, describes the replacement of acoustic verbal signs with translated acoustic verbal signs, which the audience expects to be in sync with the actors7 movements. It is important to note that this not only pertains to lip synchronization, but also to the actor;s entire body since body language is not culturally universal, posing strict constraints on linguistic translation. Subtitling, on the other hand, refers to the visual addition of verbal signs and the substitution of visual non-verbal signs by visual verbal signs, because subtitles are rendered as text that occupies screen estate and thus alter the original image, which is doubly the case for the even lengthier "double subtitles” (e.g. bilingual) and subtitles for the hearing-impaired (Delabastita 1989:204-205).
The choice of subtitling vs dubbing is cultural in nature, with the UK, Benelux, Scandinavia, Greece. Portugal. Israel. Hong Kong and Thailand employing subtitling as their dominant procedures, while Germany. Spain. France. Italy, Austria, Mainland China, Japan, Latin America. Quebec. Wales. Basque and Catalonia are considered dubbing bastions. Dubbing may be used for reasons of protectionism and censorship, while subtitling is inexpensive and reflects an open attitude towards other languages and cultures. This preference for one practice over the other is not set in stone, however, and is dependent on the target audience (especially children) and release platform (TV vs cinema productions).
In English-speaking countries, few foreign productions enter the market, and are usually shown in a subtitled version to the education elite (Chiaro 2009:143-144). Recent development trends attest to the effectiveness of “pop-ups”,i.e. visual nonverbal gloss in the form of images that accentuate a given scene, especially humorous ones (Katan 2018:70).
Fansubbing, or subtitle translation undertaken by amateur translator communities, in contrast to professional subtitling, uses more of the available screen space to display lengthier subtitles in an effort to convey as much information as possible (Massidda 2015:59). Fan-sub communities of Japanese anime shows and Viki's community translators commonly use translator's notes and transliterations in lieu of translations to maintain authenticity (Dwyer 2014:226-228). Another feature absent from professional subtitle practices is Viki's implementation of headnotes, which, upon activation, display audience comments pertaining to a given scene in real time. These headnotes are usually gossipy in nature and serve as a tool for strengthening community interaction (Dwyer 2014:231).
2.5.2Chinese Academia
AVT is a field seemingly looked down upon in China. After the passing of its heydays in the 1980s. the industry has been in eclipse, unable to ensure satisfactory translation quality for various reasons, e.g. low renumeration, employment of low-skilled translators, tight deadlines, rigid workflows, lack of standardized practices and supervision as well as being an industry dominated by a monopoly. New trends in translation studies usually center around literary and business translation: P. Peng's 2013 published "Translation Ethics7', for example, has yet to make a splash in AVT research (Jin 2019:54-55).
2.5.3Commentary
As established in previous chapters, the academic field of translation studies is a young discipline in China that overly concerns itself with the study of literature translation. The points raised by Jin align with the author^ personal experience as a subtitle translator in China: one of China’s official AVT bodies outsources
translations of even high-budget productions to translation intermediaries - notorious
25
for their tight deadlines and low pay - who turn to freelance translators with few quality control checks in place. The author has personally subtitled a dozen or so professional Chinese productions, the most prominent being wThe Great Wall'1 for its re-translated DVD release. Interestingly, neither the intermediary nor the translator are credited in these films - the translation in its entirety is attributed to the AVT body. Seeing as AVT is not a viable career choice and does not adhere to any worthwhile quality assuring standards, it is no surprise that the field is heavily looked down upon in Chinese academia. This stubborn defiance of a proliferating and flourishing field is not unique to China, of course; Western academia harbored ill-feeling towards AVT for decades. Translators have to come to terms with the fact that new media has won the popularity contest against literature - if translators do not go with the times, they will be made obsolete. Students flock to AVT translation as a dissertation topic because new media is part of our everyday lives and easily catches our interest. Rather than berating students for producing research papers not up to snuff, advisors and teaching staff should rather tailor their guidance and courses towards AVT - or at the very least incorporate it.
2.6Summary
Skopostheorie has remained somewhat controversial to this very day and continues to be widely used by Chinese students despite its perceived shortcomings of being unsuitable for literary translation, having no empirical basis and leaning heavily towards the target culture. While it may fail to gamer uncontested academic approval, its value lies in allowing translators to base their translational actions on conscious decisions.
The translation strategies of domestication and foreignization go beyond being mere synonyms for “idiomatic” and “direct^ translations: they have become politically charged terms. These strategies may be consciously employed to suppress any foreign connotations in a translation, simply because the target audience does wish to be exposed to other cultures; or they may be used to alter the target language
itself as can be seen by the Europeanization of Chinese.
26
CSI is a nebulous concept that is difficult to define, yet intuitively known to translators. Aixela's definition of CSI referring to terms that are non-existent or have a differing connotation in the target culture appears just as vague on the surface but does sufficiently explain the phenomenon. Translators have to keep in mind that, given the right context, seemingly innocuous terms can take the role of a CSI.
Audio-visual translation still is a relatively young field that has been shunned by academics for decades and only now is starting to gain relevance in research. AVT usually boils down to subtitles vs synchronization and their use differs from country to country. Subtitles are a cost-effective way to translate film productions, but they also introduce audiences to foreign cultures, which is not always the desired result. Practically speaking, they are difficult to follow and may fail to provide onlookers with the same amount of information that is given in the source material.
3Theoretical Framework
3.1Overview
This chapter will discuss the analysis methods to be employed in Chapter 4, the analysis section of this paper. The analysis is determined by three factors: the Skopos rules (the Skopos itself and the two coherence rules) as meta reference that the translation and the translation strategies have to adhere to; the domestication and foreignization strategies as proposed by Aixela; and potential constraints imposed by the nature of audio-visual translation.
3.2Skopostheorie
This study presumes that the translators at Viki responsible for subbing NiF operated under the following skopos: "Introduce an English-speaking audience to Chinese culture through a mix of domestication and foreignization, so that an audience unfamiliar with the source culture may comfortably understand this TV show with it retaining a sense of authenticity.'' This presumption is based upon the very translation itself and the nature of Viki, as established in 2.5.1. Each instance will be analyzed against the skopos and either deemed acceptable or worthy of improvement. In some instances - more so in the German version - skopos rule 4 (intratextual coherence) and 5 (intertextual coherence or fidelity) are violated and the translation is incomprehensible, which will be pointed out; any violation counts as a violation against the skopos as a whole.
3.3Domestication and Foreignization
The translation strategies as introduced by Aixela (see 2.4.1) will serve as a blueprint in the analysis of CSI translation as handled by the Viki translators, with a few adjustments: “Foreignization” will stand in for “conservation” and the strategies to be analyzed are: orthographic adaption, linguistic (non-cultural) translation, extratextual gloss and intratextual gloss. Considering there are no cases of
“repetition”(using Chinese characters to directly transfer CSI in the TT), this category will not be used in the analysis. Orthographic adaption specifically refers to the transliteration of the Chinese original CSI using pinyin; linguistic (non-cultural) translation refers to a CSI rendition that uses terms familiar to English speakers but can easily identified as belonging to the source culture due to their foreign nature; extratextual gloss here refers to the use of translator’s notes below the subtitles for explanatory reasons; intratextual gloss refers to the addition of terminology in order to make the foreign CSI more approachable and understandable to the target audience (be it to explain a transliterated term or to provide context to a neutral rendition of a given CSI). It should be noted that any use of foreignization methods leads to highlighting the CSI in question and may be thus used as an attention-gamering tool. Plot elements vital to the plot are hence the best target for foreignization. For illustrative purposes,one instance of extratextual gloss is shown here:

“Domestication” will stand in for “substitution” and the strategies to be analyzed
are synonymy, limited universalization, absolute universalization, naturalization and
deletion. The sample contains no instance of “autonomous creation”. Synonymy
refers to the use of different terms for die same CSI in order to avoid repetition,
which is highly relevant in Chinese-English translations: Chinese, unlike English,
29
puts less emphasis on pronoun use and resorts to repetition of expressions to make backreferences: classical Chinese in particular is highly information-dense, making it difficult to render every single tidbit, especially given subtitle constraints. Use of synonyms is consequently a necessity to make subtitles congestible and to reduce information clutter. Limited universalization refers to the replacement of a CSI unknown to an English-speaking audience with a CSI better known in the target culture. Absolute universalization is the procedure of stripping a CSI of its cultural nature and replace it with a neutral term, either because the CSI in question is considered too obscure to translate faithfully or the translator simply wishes to eliminate any cultural connotations. Naturalization is the procedure of replacing a source culture CSI with a target culture CSI, deleting any foreign connotations in the process. Deletion means the elimination of the CSI term, i.e. refers to the non-translation and non-inclusion of the term, which may happen for a variety of reasons that are difficult to ascertain for outsiders to the translation process.
Despite “domestication” and “foreignization” being perceived as politically charged (see 2.3)? this study uses them neutrally. They may be viewed as stand-ins for direct translation, literal translation or faithful translation (in the case of foreignization) and idiomatic translation or free translation (domestication), without any added connotations of subjectivity. After all, Skopostheorie is not about judging a given translation according to its perceived (subjective) quality, but, in this study, about assessing a given strategy in its performance of adhering to the function a translatum is supposed to serve.
3.4Subtitle Constraints
As established in 2.5.1, fan-subbing communities employ a higher character count compared to professional subtitling, allowing for a more complete information transfer between source and translation. In the same vein, Viki translators use translator's notes to provide further insight on cultural phenomena and transliterated translations. As useful as these tools are, there is only so much screen estate to go
around, and compromise is unavoidable. The analysis will take these limitations into
30
account.
3,5Summary
The translation will be dialyzed against the set Skopos of "introduce an English-speaking audience to Chinese culture through a mix of domestication and foreignization, so that an audience unfamiliar with tfie source culture may comfortably understand this TV show with it retaining a sense of authenticity/5 Both foreignization (orthographic adaption, linguistic (non-cultural) translation, extratextual gloss and intratextual gloss) and domestication strategies (synonymy, limited universalization, absolute universalization, naturalization and deletion) will be checked against the set Skopos. The analysis will also take subtitle constraints into consideration,i.e. the screen estate a given line may occupy.
4. Translation of Culture-Specific Items in Nirvana in
Fire under the Skopos
4.1Overview
This chapter will first introduce the reader to the linguistic features of Nirvana in Fire, proceed to shed some light on the wuxia genre and present the categories of culture-specific items found in the show. Next is the analysis part of this thesis, which lists example sentences and the culture-specific items within directly taken from the subtitles. The analysis is categorized according to Aixela's substitution and conservation strategies as established in 3.3.
4.2 Overview of Nirvana in Fire 4.2.1 Name, Language and Style
The original Chinese name of the show and the web novel is 王良讶|^榜20 (Langya List), which describes those ranking atop in looks, charm or martial arts in this fictional world. The English name Nirvana in Fire, on the other hand, describes the trials and tribulations the main protagonist endures to finally die in peace. NiF's language is characterized by generous use of written or classical Chinese, but not to the point that the language becomes unrecognizable to the audience; it is used just enough in combination with modem Chinese to be believably set in ancient China. Part of this setting includes the various forms of address towards nobility and heavy usage of four-character idioms (chengyu) (Han 2017:329). While NiF borrows common wuxia elements that can be seen in terminology used such as wugong and jianghu. plot elements such as the protagonist^ desire for revenge or a cast of strong female characters, it is not a typical story of a martial artist's rise to power; indeed, the protagonist Lin Shu does not know any martial arts at all. Nevertheless, these elements are common enough to warrant a short introduction of the genre.
2Q langya bang
" " 32
The wwx/a (武侠21) genre is often misunderstood in Western media, with the
Condor Heroes even being described as "The Chinese Lord of the Rings''[wuxia] [].成侠 describes a person trained in martial arts and given to chivalrous conduct[https://q2.c0m/quartzv/l 125Q04/iin-VQngs-epic-condor-tril〇gy-the-lord-of-the-ring$-of-chinese-literatu]. This common translation found in dictionaries is an instance of naturalization and arguably wrong. “Chivalry” is defined as “the qualities of the ideal knight” and “the system, spirit, or customs of medieval knighthood*'[re-is-finally-being-translated-into-englishA accessed February 23, 2019]. Most martial artists depicted in wuxia, however, have a lower-class background and are. at best, neutral towards nobility and the empire - a stark contrast to European medieval knights. These martial artists live in their own community, in accordance with their own rules and fight for their own justice. Wuxia is exclusively set in feudal China and is thus permeated with traditional Chinese culture, including social hierarchies, faiths and beliefs and language (Angelis 2011). Two famous characters in Western comic fiction come close in embodying the nature of those practicing wuxia: Batman and Spiderman,who are respectively known as 蝙te侠[http://www.zdic.net/c/6/l 1 lZ298752.htm' accessed February 23. 2019] and _蛛侠[https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chivalrv, accessed February 23. 2019 bianfu xia zhlzhu xia] in China.
4.2.3Culture-Specific Items found in Nirvana in Fire
Borrowing Aixela?s categorization, the CSIs found in NiF are mostly loaded proper nouns, with a few conventional proper nouns (geographical and character names) sprinkled in, and common expressions pertaining to institutions, customs and festivals, familial and hierarchical relationships, idioms and mythology. Loaded proper nouns refers to nouns that possess an underlying connotation or meaning, and conventional proper nouns to those that are meaningless. While NiF does contain conventional proper nouns, e.g. geographical and personal names), they will not be part of the analysis because they were universally transliterated and thus in line with
the skopos. An argument can be made that some names (e.g. ^^o.[21 fei Iiu]) possess
underlying connotations; however, translation of one name would imply translation of all names for consistency's sake, which, considering the vast amount of character names, would imply large-scale domestication. Since these names are not 掉 v[ chuohao] (as in. the alias that martial artists tend to go by), translation would go against naming convention. After all, somebody named “Michael” does not necessarily know the true Hebrew meaning behind his name.
4.3Foreignization Strategies
4.3.1 Orthographic Adaption


This case of transliteration is a case of'lost in translation'' and not easily solved in the audiovisual format.迎 stands for “to welcome sb” or “face sth./sb.”[ http://xh.5156edu.com/html3/4714.html accessed February 23, 2019] [j0 fen^huang], while 凤 represents 凤凰邓,commonly called (Chinese) phoenix in English,although any similarities with the Western phoenix are superficial at best. The phoenix is typically female and is a counterpart to the male (Chinese) dragon 龙' According to traditional Chinese marriage customs, the groom represents the dragon, while the bride the phoenix. This statement was uttered by the Emperor to Nihuang (霓凰 _2; note that the second character also represents the phoenix) when he revealed his plan about organizing a martial arts tournament in order to find a suitable marriage candidate for the princess. The tournament is to be held under this "Yingfeng Tower', establishing a theme of this potential candidate "welcoming or facing the phoenix (the bride)”. While 迎凤 is not a common expression in Chinese, its meaning is obvious to a Chinese audience. Unfortunately, in this case, subtitles and translator's
notes lack sufficient space to deliver easily digestible cultural information at a glance. A domesticated translation may clarify the meaning, but any cultural element would inevitably become lost. This translation is adequate, given the constraints of subtitles, despite this CSI being inadequately expressed in the English version.


These two instances are suggestive proper nouns.虫累 refers to snails of all kinds and sorts3"5;市 commonly stands for “town/city*’ 01. “market (place)’04; and 街 for
“street”.3*、This kind of street name is rather common in China (e.g. Chengdu has a
菜市街th and a 羊市街i(). Given the combination with 佳〒• it reasonable to assume that these names hint at the former function of these places, i.e. buying and selling certain food items.螺市街 could be understood as "Snails Market Street”. This, of course, does not necessarily suggest that the snails trade is still flourishing at this place - a direct translation would most likely confuse the recipient. Similarly
confusing would be a direct translation of 上墟市•上 has a plethora of meanings,
but in this case it means likely ‘‘atop’’ or “on_' 墟 is defined as 1) ruins; 2) hamlet; 3) burial grounds or 4) country fair (as a variant of the homophone i于)j8.市 likely stands for “town” or “city” because it is the last character in this word. The literal translation of this name could be something along the lines of '"City/Town atop the Hiir. This name does not necessarily imply a geographic feature;乐 ill ' for example, could be literally translated as "Mountain of Joy": however, the city was not built upon a mountain but rather surrounded by them (and sits at a relatively low [” http://www.zdic.net/z/23/js/87BA.htm, accessed February 23, 2019 http://www.zdic.net/zZI9/js/5E02.htin. accessed February 23, 2019 http://www.zdic.net/z/23/is/8857.htm, accessed February 23. 2019 16 cai shijie yangshijie
’8 http://xh.5156edu.com/htrnl3/9774.htnii. accessed February 23. 2G19] [ ieshan]
sea level of 375 meters[ https://www.worldatIas.com/as/cny51 /where-is-leshan.html. accessed February 23, 2019]). A direct translation would be misleading in several ways, which is why the transliteration remains the best choice under the chosen skopos.
4.3.2 Linguistic (non-cultural) Translation


江湖[ httpr/Zwww.zdic.net/c/^ 145/318911 .htm, accessed February 23. 2019] stands for 1) “rivers and lakes",2) “all comers of the country”,and 3) refers to the itinerant tradesmen in older times. In martial arts fiction, this term gains a different connotation, as can be seen by the official English translation of (Legend of the Condor Heroes) and this foreword by its translator Anna Holmwood: “For while the Empire regards the south as unruly, law and order in this part of China is in reality maintained by a proud community of men and women who have trained for years in the martial arts. They name themselves for the symbolic landscape of rivers and lakes that is their home, the jianghu, or even the "martial forest77, the wulin, both metaphors for their community'' (Yong & Holmwood 2018:31). She proceeds to use the transliteration jianghu throughout the novel. This term is commonly used in martial arts fiction and thus in NiF. depicting a core force acting independently from the empire - hence the line of dialog, "pugilist'*[ https://www.vocabularv.com/dictionary/pugilist. accessed February 23. 2019
—~^~^ 36 ^] refers to a fighter, especially a boxer, and is negatively connotated, making it thus not an apt choice.
A transliteration added with a translator's note. e.g. "T/N The community of martial artists^, would fit the skopos. since the audience would be able to realize through the transliteration that jianghu is a cultural term and not just about any community, and learns at the same time what the term refers to. Adding the definite article ¥lhe'' makes it also clear ih'di jianghu refers to all martial artists inhabiting this world, and not just some splinter group.
As an aside, "Royal Court" is arguably wrong and better rendered as "Imperial


Court'\ considering members of the imperial court are involved as main actors.


may stand for clique, faction or (criminal) gang.[ http://www.zdic.net/c/e/4/9464.htm. accessed February 23, 2019] [ menpai] In wuxia literature, it commonly refers to group of individuals that share common beliefs (not necessarily of religious nature) and values, adhere to a code of conduct, do not follow an established doctrine and are not necessarily concerned with teaching martial arts (in contrast to martial arts schools 门派 1!)_ The leader of a 帮派 thus may or may not be a grandmaster of martial arts and can be chosen for reasons other than fighting prowess.
“sect” appears to be the commonly accepted translation for 帮'派 in wuxia literature and has been used by Anna Holmwood in her translation of the Legends of the Condor Heroes, “sect” means 1) a body of persons adhering to a particular religious faith; a religious denomination; 2) a group regarded as heretical or as deviating from a generally accepted religious tradition; 3) (in the sociology of religion) a Christian denomination characterized by insistence on strict qualifications for membership, as distinguished from the more inclusive groups called churches; and 4) any group, party, or faction united by a specific doctrine or under a doctrinal leader.[ https://www.dictionary.com/browse/subsect. accessed February 23, 2019] [ quan zhen pai] Wilson notes, ''In English, it is a term that designates a religiously separated group, but in its historical usage in Christendom it carried a distinctly pejorative connotation. A sect was a movement committed to heretical beliefs and often to ritual acts and practices like isolation that departed from orthodox religious procedures'' (Wilson 1982:89). Every definition features religion in some fonn, which is not necessarily the case for 帮派.
In Legends of the Condor Heroes, for example, the 全真派仆 is spiritually based in Daoism; ’Jj 帮丨.the group of beggars, has no obvious spiritual base. Alternatively, some choose to opt for "gang''[ gai bang] [ http://edu.ocac.gov.tw/culture/chinese/cul kungfu/e/5-3-4.htm, accessed February 23, 2019], which also has a negative connotation: a group of persons associated for some criminal or other antisocial purpose. It is noteworthy that the Chinese 帮派 also has this connotation judging from modem language use[ https://news.china.com/socialgd/lQQ0Q169/20170227/3Q284Q51 all.html. accessed February 23,
2019 ^] [ zhongqiu jie]. Under the skopos and in the context of wuxia. a neutral translation such as ''faction'' would be advisable, since “sect”(especially for a Christian audience) and “gang” are undeniably negatively connotated and Western audiences are as a rule not familiar with wuxia terminology. They lack the context of the wuxia genre as a whole to realize that 帮派 are not necessarily evil-spirited. Having said all of this, however, one could also argue to simply follow translation convention and choose “sect’.. After all, if the audience is exposed long enough to a certain term with a different textual status, they may come to gradually accept its new meaning.


中秋之期 is a more literary way of phrasing 中秋节which is commonly known as its direct English translation in the Western world: the Mid-Autumn Festival (even so in the US, despite ''autumn” being traditionally classified as British English). While the name itself may be known as belonging to Chinese culture, its connotation is likely to have the audience puzzled. The festival, also known as Moon Festival or Harvest Moon Festival, is an important date of family reunion and traditionally celebrated on the 15th day of the eighth month of the lunar calendar across East and South East Asia, including China. There are several myths surrounding the origin of this festival, with each involving moon worship, leading to the custom of eating moon-shaped pastries called mooncakes (Young 2018). The connotation behind this utterance thus is “that you even did not celebrate the
Mid-Autumn Festival together with us/your family.7' Without this modifier at the end. Western audiences unfamiliar with Chinese culture would have trouble understanding the statement, violating the intratextual coherence rule.


These direct translations leave the recipient with the impression that the speakers are related by blood. In Chinese culture in general — and by extension in wuxia — people in a group may address each other with familial terms regardless of blood relation.兄(brother) is used by men to address good friends.大哥(big brother or older brother) is said to men around the same age or older than the speaker.小妹妹 (little sister) is used to address usually attractive females younger than the (male) speaker. In the given context, the male speaker is flirting with a younger girl selling merchandise•二弟(Second [Little] Brother) is a special case and actually refers to a familial relationship between the little brother in question. Xie Bi, and the speaker. Xiao Jingrui. Despite not sharing the same last name, the two of them are likely related by blood and grew up in the same household:

Figure 2 Familial relationship between Xiao Jingrui and Xie Bi
Xiao Jingrui's familial relationship is clarified in episode 3: Lady Zhuo of Tianquan Manor and Grand/Elder Princess Liyang went to the same nunnery to give birth. During a storm, the candle lights went out and the then newly bom babies were not able to be differentiated - the sudden death of one of the babies the next day complicated the matter fUrther. The Emperor decided on the surname Xiao as a combination of the names Xie and Zhuo to declare Jingrui son of both houses.
Under the set skopos, these are edge cases. One could easily argue that the translations violate the intratextual coherence rule because terms of address for familial relationships in English are not as flexible; on the other hand, they are indubitably Chinese and may inform the recipient about the very nature of interpersonal relationships in China. Still, they are so bewildering to read that translation notes such as “T/N comrade; not blood-related” for “Brother” and “Older
https://vingtaoblo2.wordDress.com/2015/10/27/%£7%90%85%E7%90%8A%E6%A6%9C-nirvana-iii
-fire-lang-va-bang-english-translation-overview/, accessed February 23,2019
40 必

Brother; “T/N cutie" for "Little Sister'' and “T/N younger brother; blood-related“ for “Second Brother” would be advisable,despite the English highlighting these translations as products of foreignization by capitalization and thus treating them as styles of address.
臣卜虎藏龙’2 is a four-character idiom originating from 6th century


poet Yu XirTs verse “暗石疑藏虎,盘根似卧龙心,which may be translated as “Behind the rock in the dark probably hides a tiger, and the coiling giant root resembles a crouching dragon”(Castenel, Grantham & Hawkins 2018:181), describing a place of unnoticed (martial arts) masters or highly capable people and is markedly not derogatory. Despite this analysis focusing on the English translation exclusively, it should be noted that the German version, while being a direct translation of the Chinese such as the English, produces a different effect on the audience. This is because Ang Lee's film ''Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon"[52 hnp://chen2vu.t086,com/cY〗/1229.html, accessed February 23, 2019 an shi yi cang hu. pan gen shi wolong
M https://www.imdb.com/title/ttO 190332/quotes/qt0367764< accessed February 23, 2019 55 http://www.quotez.net/german/tiger and dra&on.htm- accessed February 23, 2019] offers different translations of the idiom in its subtitles: "Giang Hu is a world of tigers and dragons, full of corruption.1904 The German version of this quote differs from the English, saying, "in unserer Welt des Kampfes gibt es lauemde Tiger und verborgene Drachen. Auch in unserer Seele ist Verborgenes versteckt.?,55 [“In our world of fight, there are lurking tigers and hidden dragons. Even in our souls, something hidden is concealed'*]. As one of the more popular if not most popular w^uxia productions in the West, this is likely the only definition English and German speaking audiences are familiar with. The former might view this idiom as having a negative connotation, while the Gennan audience might be able to understand the utterance. Although a direct translation by its own would normally violate intratextual coherence, this
idiom is a special case considering its cinema fame. This direct translation paired with a translator's note (e.g. 'T/N Unnoticed martial arts masters7') would help a Western audience not only understand this utterance but also the meaning behind the title of Ang Lee's film. This example also shows that externalities may influence translation reception.


亲王 is the highest rank of royalty bestowed upon the emperor’s uncles, brothers and sons during Sui Dynasty (581 — 618 AD) and his brothers and sons from Tang Dynasty onwards (starting from 618). The title was changed to 和硕亲王 during Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1912).'7 In other words, the Emperor does not recognize the person in question as of his own blood, implying that the prince is low in rank. Intensive search on the term “Noble Prince” has not resulted in any substantial results. Taking the British monarchy as an example, a “prince” is a male whose parent or grandparent is or was the King or Queen of the United Kingdom, and thus refers to royalty. Princes may be ranked according to their line of succession* dependent on the order of birth.^8 The Chinese imperial family did not follow the British system, which is why any translation has to include gloss in some form in order not to confuse the audience. The simple translation of “prince” is not sufficient, considering the person in question was introduced to the audience as Prince Jing during his first appearance. Under the skopos, one could either render 亲王 as the fictional albeit comprehensible '"High Prince"' or transliterate the word and add a translator's note along the lines of "T/N highest-ranking prince'' or even *'T/N prince considered important to the Emperor^. The latter would help reinforce the notion that Prince Jing in the beginning is the least important prince to the Emperor. [ he shuo qlnwang
"7 http://cd.hwxnet.com/view/iimmgbfchdohdego.html. accessed February 23, 2019 https://www.bbc.coni/news/uk-2327249K accessed February 23, 2019
^ _ 一 犯 —]


小• among other meanings, stands for “young”. It is also used,as correctly stated, as a diminutive endearment between youngsters and by elders towards the younger generation (this statement was uttered by Shu?s father). The translation note for *.gege"(哥哥)is not necessarily wrong and conveys the dictionary meaning’9: its connotations run a bit deeper. In contrast to 兄 and 哥,哥哥 is also used by females towards their male (potential) love interest as a term of deep affection - as a general rule, doubling the character has an endearing effect akin to the diminutive form present in some languages such as German or? in limited form, in English (compare dog with 狗狗 doggy). In this case, the addressee is Fei Liu who is mentally deficient and extremely loyal to Lin Shu (the 哥哥 in this case) and thus treated by the speaker like a little child. An appropriate rendering in English would be “beloved”. The translator’s note does not have enough space to convey all of this information, ergo intratextual gloss such as "'Your beloved Su-gege...,? would clarify the meaning of this utterance, “jiejie”(姐姐)and “jie”(姐)may appear to be similar in meaning, yet their difference is subtle. Following the established rule of doubling
http;//cd.hwxnet.com/view.do?pindex=lhnbdg.dmUbcmbp, accessed February 23, 2019 g〇u
characters, this address is uttered by Yan Yujin towards Nihuang, the same character who addressed a girl as ’J、妹妹(see 4.3.2). His personality is established as rather playful, especially towards females; his tone of speaking tends to be quite soft. The translator's note is not wrong, though it does require the recipient to be receptive of Yan Yujin's mannerisms and tone of speaking.
姐,while still a term of endearment, is not as intimate or playful as 姐姐, befitting of the speaker Nihuang, who is portrayed as a steadfast, no-nonsense warrior. The English translator’s note wrongly establishes familial relationship between Nihuang and Xia Dong, violating the fidelity rule.
4.3.4 Intratextual Gloss


高手 simply means “expert in a certain field”61* In this context and in wuxia in general,it is heavily implied that these “experts” refer to “experts of martial arts”,a fact which is reflected in the English translation and does not leave the audience guessing what kind of experts the speakers are talking about. An English-speaking audience lacks the wuxia reference frame to make sense of the term "expert" by itself and would associate the term with differing connotations; it can also be argued that English as a low-context language is in need of a context-providing modifier regardless. Chinese is a high-context language, which leads to information-dense utterances that rely on context and reading between the lines, which can be seen in [61 http://\vww.zdic.net/c/8/2e/70223.htm, accessed February 23. 2019] []
both examples: the langya list is a ranking list pertaining to and issued by the jianghu martial artists; the second example establishes the context in the first sentence by saying. 'Though he personally knows no martial arts../', which works perfectly fine in Chinese, but might confuse an English-speaking audience unless they pay close attention. A one-for-one rendition of ^expert'' without gloss thus would violate the rule of intertextual coherence.
4.4Domestication Strategies
4.4.1 Synonymy


Chinese traditionally is a language without heavy pronoun use and instead relies on repetition to make backreferences, in contrast to English. In these instances, foreignization would necessarily involve transliteration, which, although compatible with the set skopos. may potentially confuse the recipient if used too frequently. The audience is either familiar with these names already or their name-dropping is not important enough to the given scene. While the use of synonymy is strictly lexically speaking not faithful to the original it does enhance readability of the TT immensely and is hence compatible with the set skopos.


There exists no established way of discerning between 武功h」,功夫M and 武术 in English - these terms are all rendered as martial arts or (Chinese) kungfu.
Wushu is the full-contact sport known for its training programs and competitions around the world and what Westerners would typically call "martial arts'.
Gongfu is a synonym for wushu, although it mainly refers to any undertaking that requires time and energy to complete.6? Wuxia authors are not necessarily trained in wushu. In their novels, wushu breaks the limits of time and space, lets its practitioners jump up high and practically fly; it has little basis in reality and is part of their imagination.
Wugong is used to differentiate this fantastical form of wushu from its
counterpart in the real world. [ -- wugong] [gongfu] [ wushu] [ http://cd.hwxnet.com/view/agonigfkipeiomph.htmK accessed February 23, 2019] [ http://edu.ocac.gov.tw/culture/chinese/cul kungfu/e/1-2-14.htm, accessed February 23, 2019] The term originally refers to military
accomplishments and acrobatic skill in Chinese operas.[ http://cd.hwxnet.com/view/kknnfkchilkinnbn.html. accessed February 23, 2019
46~]
Audiences are, of course, able to tell that martial arts displayed in wnixia are
detached from reality; nevertheless, a lexical way of differentiating real martial arts
from fictional martial arts just as the Chinese would arguably only serve to enrich the
language. Since all three terms are Chinese regardless and with wugong being a core
cultural component to Mmxia, a transliteration of the term with an added translation
note along the lines of "T/N martial arts in film and literature'' or "T/N fictional
martial arts7' would be suited best to inform an English-speaking audience about the
different forms of martial arts and also provide them with a lexical way of
differentiation. Otherwise, the translation violates the fidelity rule for purposely eliminating a CSI with another for the sake of perceived familiarity. Fansub translations distinguish themselves from professional productions because they emphasize delivery of a feeling of authenticity. Limited universalization goes against this principle by providing a sense of security and thus a fake sense of authenticity through use of CSI familiar to the audience. As established in 2.5.L subtitled productions are explicitly sought after by the education elite in English-speaking countries, implying they have a higher tolerance of foreignization and capacity of learning about new cultures.
4.4.3 Absolute universalization


大人 is a form of address used towards a person of high social standing, one's elders, a person of noble character, and, more importantly in this context, a dignitary or a government official.[ http://w\vw.zdic.net/c/7/l 5Z33273.htm, accessed February 237 2019] No uniform translation for 大人 exists: Sir,Your Majesty (Yueh 2016:66) or High Official. Your Excellency (Pan. Kadar 2011:52,70). The Collins dictionary suggests the English “Lordship”[ https://www.collinsdictionary.com/zh/dictionary/chinese-english/%E5%A4%A7%E4%BA%BA, accessed February 23, 2019] • which is highly context-dependent since it indicates nobility in contrast to the Chinese. In NiF itself, the supporting cast's social standing is not cleai*: Xu and Zhu. for example, play a minor role: they only appear briefly in episode 1 .“minister” refers to a) the head of a government department, b) a member of the clergy, c) a diplomatic agent or d)
someone used to achieve or convey something[ https://en,oxforddictionaries.com/definition/minister' accessed February 23, 2019], "dignitary'* is closer in meaning: person considered to be important because of high rank or office/'[ https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/dignitarv. accessed February 23. 2019] [ http://cd.hwxnet.com/view/boidkaibcemafeil.htmK accessed February 23, 2019] [7j http://cd.hwxnet.com/view/pchiondnjifeIeac.htniK accessed February 23, 2019] As the dictionary entry shows, however, it is not usually used as a form of address. Under the set skopos. the term may either be transliterated and explained through a translator's note or it may be universally translated as “Officia厂 or “High Official”. Either one of these suggests affiliation with a governmental organization, independent from nobility.


白衣 refers to a commoner without an academic or official title (and without the prestige that goes with it)7273. The translations highlight the fact that the person being talked about, Lin Shu, is a scholar (instead of a fighter). This is not wrong — Lin Shu is seen as taking great interest in studying and acquiring new books; still, this is not the original meaning of the term. Under the set skopos. while the translation is adequate, there is arguably room for a more elegant solution. A foreignization attempt could be “He’s just a white robe in jianghu/the community of martial artists” together with i%T/N commoner without rank or name''; a domesticated transfer could be rendered as “He is just a nobody in jianghu/the community of martial artists”.


清乐 refers to elegant music (as opposed to overpowering and loud music) or (Buddhist) psalmody with musical accompaniment[ http://cd.hwxnet.com/view/mdiifdndfgnhgien.html, accessed February 23. 2019
一— —一———一… 48 . ^]. In this context. most likely has the same connotation as tg and refers to a commercial place offering a service,
although it usually refers to a workshop7、. On the surface, the English “music theater' appears to be a fitting translation. The speaker, however, is shortly afterwards reprimanded by the Crown Prince for recommending such lowly places to Lin Shu. which clashes with the seemingly innocent sounding “music theater”, confusing the recipient and thus violating the rule of intratextual coherence.清乐坊 also stands for 青楼1h — or “brothel” in English. The musical performers in a $青乐 士方 tend to be female, who may or may not prostitute themselves to their (male) listeners. Although it is unlikely Lin Shu engaged in this kind of behavior and not every 清乐坊 offers that kind of service, there is still a stigma attached to them; much in the same way as with massage places in today's China. Consequently, any translation has to express this double-entendre in some form or another without sounding outright obvious.
In English, one could possible opt for ''nunnery^[73http://www.zdic.net/z/17/js/574A.htm, accessed February 23, 2019] [ qlnglou] [ https://www.bLuk/collection-items/first-use-of-the-word-nunnerv-to-mean-brothel-1593, accessed February 23, 2019], which was used as slang for "brother'. This, of course, raises the question what Lin Shu and company were doing at a nunnery - not the first place of entertainment that comes to mind. The easier solution is keeping the translation as is and add a translator’s note, e.g. “T/N The music theater may also function as a brothel''. One could possibly aim for a different translation that achieves the same effect by substituting the direct translation with ‘'massage place”,arguably going against the skopos and the fidelity rule since the CSI may convey he implicit meaning, but has a feeling of modernity potentially feeling out of place in NiF5s setting of ancient China. Having said that, this place is only mentioned once and mainly serves as establishing the speaker Yan Yujin's playful nature - conveying the reaction the CSI tries to provoke may be more important than a factual translation explained through gloss. After all. this dialog is meant to produce a comedic effect on the audience, which is potentially wasted by letting the audience not only focus on the subtitle portraying the dialog itself but also on the translator’s note below. Put simply, jokes usually fail when they have to be explained, "massage place'' is short, succinct and gets the message across, even if it is not 100% faithful to the original CS1.
4.4.4 Naturalization


天下(literally ""[Earth] beneath the heaven'') is an ancient Chinese concept that was commonly spread as early as the Spring and Autumn period (from approximately 771 to 476 BC) and may be understood as "China’’ or “the world” in conjunction with 治(rule or domination), “rule” not only governs territory, time and place,and groups of people, but also 天人关系,H and 天人互动w (relationship and interaction between “heaven and man” or “nature and humankind’’;),building civilization and forming order (Liang 2016:6). The ruler of tianxia is the 天子' the t;Son of Heaven", who is by birth entitled to reign the world under the heaven, commonly referred to as the Chinese emperor (Zhao 2006:31). Mencius argued that the iianzi could not confer tianxia upon just any successor under the reign of Emperors Yao, Shun and Yu (ca. 2356 - 2255 BC) (Liang 2016:7), rather anybody could claim the mandate of heaven but would have to be reconfirmed as the tianzi by the people. The mandate to reign was deemed legitimate when the people upon their wish only were saved by a calamity and deemed justified when it kept up the order most people wanted (Zhao 2006:31).
In NiF?s setting, of course, dynasties have long been established and as such also lines of successions within imperial families. The Emperor refers to the "divine talent^ (^he^) in the second instance, implying that tianxia has the same meaning in [ zhi] [ tian ren guanxi] [ tian ren hudong] [ tianzi]
both instances and thus creating a consistency issue. Under the set skopos, one could argue either for a transliteration of the term accompanied with a translator’s note since since tianxia is a CSI that is not explained easily within in English, or for a consistent translation such as "'empire*' because while being a uniquely Chinese CSI, its philosophical implications are not relevant in NiF. While one could argue for “world” as well, this might be a hard sell to English-speaking audiences who naturally associate the “world” with “every country in the world” 一 even though that is exactly what tianxia implies: the Chinese emperor was regarded as ruling the world. Considering the original function, “empire” would be the most fitting translation given that NiF is a show about political intrigue and martial arts rather than philosophy.


麟麟[ http://cd.hwxnet.com/viewA3ecb1bichgencnmI.html, accessed February 23, 2019
51] known as Qilin or Kirin (from Japanese) is a mythological creature with a deer body covered in scales, antlers and an ox tail. It is an auspicious animal whose appearance is said to be a good omen. Qilin is also used as a metaphor to describe a highly capable, outstanding person. The translation tried to catch the mythological nature of the Qilin and combine it with the metaphorical meaning, losing the cultural component in the process. Under the set skopos, a foreignization attempt through transliteration is advisable; 'The Qilin Talent'' with the translator's note 'T/N Qilin: mythological beast possessing great intelligence'". This way. the audience learns of the existence of a creature called Qilin and is able to realize that Qilin^ intelligence and status outweigh the intelligence of common animals (e.g. the fox).


郡主H’s definition changed over the course of history and was first created during Jin Dynasty (266 to 420 AD); during Tang Dynasty, the title referred to the crown prince’s (太子M) wife; in Song, the scope of this definition was widened to include females of the imperial clan: in Ming and Qing,only the 亲王心’s (i.e. the sons of the reigning sovereign, the emperor) wives bore this title.[jun zhu taizi
qlnwang
https://cidian.91 lcha.com/MXF3bXk^.htmU accessed February 23, 2019
52 "] Nihuang fits none of these definitions: