Fiction is usually and initially oriented by authors to readers, who have proper cultural codes and coexist with them in the same information and semantic field. Decoding of textual, subtext and implied information requires the reader to have a high level of development of the linguistic and language personality. The translator is acting as the primary reader of the original and quasi (co)author of the text for the secondary reader from the system of the target language. In the case of textual bilingual communication, the differences in the cognitive fields of the author and the translator predetermine the degree of text understanding or misunderstanding on behalf of the translator. It is the translator who turns out to be responsible for readers’ misunderstanding and failures. The process and the result of translation are affected by the objective factors, including the historical and temporal and subjective factors. Translators are trying to coordinate events from the imagined text world due to the existing cultural context, historical context, text schemes, stylistic registers, etc. The article deals with parameters of complicated settings of literary texts which make the translator choose interpretation strategies that will allow keeping linguistic and cultural meanings, including word connotations, as well as readers’ access to the conceptual links of words.
Keywords: Textsubtextlinguistic culturemeaninginterpretation
Pragmatic and semantic diversity of fiction reflects its ability to direct its readers’ understanding, text interpretation and text reinterpretation. Individuality of text interpretations as readers’ individual text projections seems relative. The different nature of these projections depends on readers’ background and experience, knowledge systems, etc., and the way of decoding the text message. A special fictional space created in the text by its author implies relationships, formally similar to those relationships that are characteristic of a real (physical) space. WORD is considered as a point of the N-dimensional space of a literary text and allows the reader to navigate the text. The establishment of explicit and implicit intentions is to distinguish the interpretation from other main types of treatment of signs (Demyankov, 1987).
Translation activity includes the goal; potential secondary readers; strategies and tactics chosen or preferred by the translator seen as an interpreter. The translator as the equal participant of text communication selects and starts to follow an appropriate communicative role, focusing on the rules of the generation of meanings adopted in the source culture and in the secondary target culture.
Traditional theories of translation practically do not take into account the linguistic and cognitive factors and ethno-cultural parameters that predetermine the textual bilingual communication. The interpretive text range may be limited by certain conditions imposed on WORDS as topological objects of the given textual space. WORD also turns out to be a “key” to textual worlds. Being activated in the process of reading, WORD participates in the general conceptual organization of the text. WORD’s associative nets take in various combinations of other words and their associative nets.
Paper Theoretical Foundation
Fiction is initially oriented by its author to its “own” readers, who have got appropriate and relevant cultural codes. Readers are supposed to be located with the author within the same information and semantic field. Readers’ expectations concerning the text its plot and meanings are based on his knowledge and information available. V.A. Maslova (Maslova, 1988) considers the text and subtext as different ways of sharing information, while the subtext turns out to be the result of the interpretation and the product of the co-creation of the author and readers. Text information is mainly given verbally and perceived explicitly. Implied information is also called subtextual information (Galperin, 1981). When processing subtext information, readers need information presumably available to them. They also should have the common background knowledge. The possibility or impossibility of decoding this information is directly dependent on the level of development of readers’ linguistic abilities and their “openness” to work with the text they are addressing to.
Interpretative essence of translation as a bilingual text communication manifests itself in the fact how actively the translator is working with the source text when trying to convey to the secondary reader from another cultural and language system the subjective representation of the text world created by the author. The subjective nature of interpretation reflects the peculiarities of a person’s individual conceptual system (Boldyrev, 2015).The target text can be adapted due to the cultural environment where the translator and secondary readers co-exist.
Text interpretation correlates with objects and events’ interpretation and their evaluation within a particular area. When structuring conceptual and thematic areas, the interpreter tries to find connections between certain areas. This study sought to describe the correlation between different cultural contexts and linguacultural peculiarities that influence the choice of equivalents within the same lexical category.
Purpose of the Study
Translators’ activity is initially mediated by another text, and includes not only text perception and understanding. The aim is to produce a secondary text that is seen as a N-variant of the source text or a text projection constructed by the translator who participates in the dialogue “author – text - reader” both as a primary of the source text and a quasi-(co)author of the target text for the host audience.
There are six translations of M.A Bulgakov’s novel “The Master and Margarita” (1929–1940) into English, some are focused on British and American readers. In British English the title of Chapter 7 “Нехорошаяквартира” / “Nekhoroshaya kvartira” (literally, ‘A Bad Flat’) is rendered is rendered with the help of the equivalent
A complete one-to-one mapping of points in primary and secondary textual spaces is possible in very rare cases: even translation equivalents given in dictionaries can be used in different contexts in a different way because of, for example, concept formation (Kasevich, 2013) and situation context.
In this study, methods of semantic and pragmatic interpretation are applied. Socio-contextual methods were used to study the nature of social and intercultural relations of communicants. The meaning of the text is interpreted by reference to communicative and pragmatic context.
In the process of translation attributes of an object or event are actualized under influence of context, available meaningful and factual information about this object or facts, conceptual information about the author’s vision and perception of the real world and represented fictional worlds, implied information. Modification of the represented meaning of the word allows A. Olenich-Gnenenko (Carroll, 1958) to transform
As for optimal word selection, classified parameters of the primary textual worlds should be taken into consideration. This search for words gets much more complicated in case of different cultural spaces. In a
The translator distinguishes different aspects of knowledge that a particular language unit transmits, taking into account not only information about the actual, i.e. real, world, but also about the possible fictional world created by the author in the text. The name of the fictional
The constructed reality of any literary text is embodied in textual Worlds that involve the establishment of special relationships between this text and its reader. The reader considers the reality of textual events as the make-believe worlds. The author tries to create these make-believe illusory worlds and makes the characters look realistic and true to life. Interpretations’ selectivity depends on the subjective cause. The target text may represent certain cultural realities out of the reader’s real world. Literary translation is closely linked with sociocultural competence needed for the translator as a primary reader to re-create the world of the target text. In Russia housewives usually make strawberry jam, so translators prefer to turn
The translator’s ability to actualize subtexts is interdependent on misunderstanding of words, the author’s idiolect, inconsistency of a text fragment with reality, ignorance of host culture, non-coincidence of aesthetic and ethical views.
Encyclopaedic, cultural-historical and biographical contexts are important for text understanding and the further realization of its communicative task. For example, the Russian noun
To perceive subtext and text implication along and acquire new knowledge readers should know how to discern and experience of meanings. Interpretation of events from textual Worlds implies readers’ ability to coordinate these events with reference to actual reality surrounding them.
In literary texts, words often turn into a tool that helps to code nationally specific values. In Russian culture the image of a
Deployment of textual Worlds depends on the translator’s personal experience as well. The act of literary translation is a bilingual text mediated communication.
In the process of translation considered as a secondary text interpretation ethno-cultural and cross-language correlations depend on: 1) the relation of inclusion in the class; 2) the establishment of superordinate and subordinative relations; 3) actualization and orientation of generic relations; 4) generalization level; 5) establishment of associative links, etc.
Translators and translations are to give readers from the secondary system an “output” into other cultures and introduction with their ethnic and cultural peculiarities, presented in the original text. There are three options of making-up a text projection as a secondary interpretation: 1) “adjustment” when the text source is adjusted due to limits and specificity of its target audience, existing patterns and behaviour models, rules and regulations; 2) modification of represented values as expansion or narrowing concepts, the partial shift of the text’s focus, updating of values represented in the source text; 3) reorganization or complete restructuring. Cognitive-discursive approach is able to broaden traditional translation studies, and strengthen their interdisciplinary ties. Activation of the WORD and its links to a definite situation allow readers to set the necessary context taken as the text frame or schemata.
The translator should not only follow the author’s intention realised in a definite text, but also try to reconstruct blurred or unambiguous text components and meanings aiming to help secondary readers follow the author and the text as well, find their ways for text meanings.
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30 April 2018
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Sociolinguistics, linguistics, semantics, discourse analysis, translation, interpretation
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Maslennikova, E. M. (2018). Word In The Text And Subtext Meanings. In & I. V. Denisova (Ed.), Word, Utterance, Text: Cognitive, Pragmatic and Cultural Aspects, vol 39. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 102-108). Future Academy. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2018.04.02.15