Translation – Finding Equivalents Or Providing an Appropriate Meaning?

Everyone knows what translation is and how important it is to communicate in the modern world. It is very easy to change words in one language into another but is it enough to just find equivalents of the source words in a target language? Even someone whose English is rather not good realises that translating certainly does not mean only removing the original words and replacing them with the words in another language.

The best translators are usually the native speakers of the target language as they possess knowledge of a country’s culture, politics, economy etc. A perfect translation is such which conveys the meaning of words not their equivalents. Professional translators often come up with problems which act in two ways. Firstly, assuming that one must translate a text from English to French and there appears a phrase that is difficult to interpret as it is very language specific like a proverb or saying. Then a similar phrase has to be found in French or a completely different one which would still provide the meaning of the text but would be understandable for the target readers. Secondly, a translator is obliged to make a decision from time to time whether to use a phrase in the target language which is different from the source language but conveys similar meaning or not. This is a task which requires carefulness as one may go too far and change the authors ideas.

Translation has recently become a profitable and popular business industry which attracts many businessmen as it creates perfect conditions for money making. It also leaves a huge space for freelancers who find this way of earning money very attractive. The competition is huge and while looking for a professional translator one must be very careful not to receive an unnaturally sounding text which will rather discourage clients than invite them to visit a website or read an article. That is why translators with certificates are probably the best choice for professional texts. Online translation becomes even more popular than regular office in which we have direct contact with the person who will interpret our texts. This form leading a translation business is still popular for official papers which often require a sworn translator – one that swore to translate the truth and only truth. They have a government stamp to certify the validity of the text.

On the one side, we have the author of the text who wants it to be translated by a translator who stands on the other side. Which role is more difficult? The author’s – who eagerly puts the words together to let the world know about his own idea? Or the translator’s – who has to understand the author’s idea, the author’s language and apply it to the target readers. One may judge it themselves, however, it is worth to understand that a translator is also an author. It is the author of the perfectly mastered copy of a text in another language. Although his name is printed in a small font somewhere. It is worth realizing especially by the thousands of translators around the world who still try to gain experience in order to be able to honestly call themselves professionals.


Source by Damian Doman

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I am a self‐learned digital executive, leader, strategist and trainer by profession and experience. I have rich experience as marketer, trainer, entrepreneurial evangelist and start up facilitator. I admire first generation of entrepreneurs and conducted more than 200 programs to establish startup ecosystem in Central India. I have worn many hats in my career, as a result, I have a unique ability to manage multi‐disciplinary projects and navigate complex challenges in the process. I have big ideas and I don't care who gets credit, I just like to facilitate. Drop me a line anytime, whether it's a collaboration, writing projects, skills training or just business - will love to hear from you - sachin@eq4c.com

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