Institutionen för Orientaliska språk Mellanösterns språk och kulturer 5. Formalia: Att översätta - PDF

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Institutionen för Orientaliska språk Mellanösterns språk och kulturer 5. Formalia: Att översätta När ska en arabisk text översättas och när ska den citeras? Översättningsstrategier

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Institutionen för Orientaliska språk Mellanösterns språk och kulturer 5. Formalia: Att översätta När ska en arabisk text översättas och när ska den citeras? Översättningsstrategier QUOTING AND TRANSLATING ARABIC TEXTS Principles and Strategies Required in essays, papers and theses at The Section for Middle Eastern Studies Department of Oriental Languages Stockholm University prepared by Elie Wardini Januray 2013, v.1 Quoting and Translating Arabic Texts Principles and Strategies The main and essential questions when deciding on quoting and translating Arabic texts are: Why do I need a quotation? Why do I need a translation? The answers to these questions decide the rest. The overarching principle should be that the quotations and the translations are: a. Necessary b. Relevant c. Adequate d. Consistent No more, no less! NB: The present pamphlet is not meant to be a complete introduction to the intricacies of translation. It is just a very short outline to answer the most elementary questions that need to be addressed in the process of writing essays, papers and theses at the Section for Middle Eastern Studies. 1 2 Contents 1. The Purpose of a Quotation The Corpus The Quotations The Purpose of a Translation Reader Friendliness Verifiability and Accountability Existing Translations Translation Strategies World, Language, Text and Translation Goals and Training Types of Translations Terminology Equivalence Strategies An Example Literature 4 1. The Purpose of a Quotation Every academic essay, paper or thesis should be reader friendly. The language, structure and presentation should be clear and easy to read. Ambiguities should be more or less nonexistent. New information should be presented clearly. There should be a clear and well structured progression in the arguments presented in the work. The format should be clear, logical and consistent. The reader should not be required unnecessarily to flip back and forth in the text or to extensively consult external texts. You will at times be required to base your essay, paper or thesis (henceforth your work ) on Arabic sources. The analysis in your work should be based on the Arabic data, not the translations. When writing your work, you will have to present some or all of your Arabic data. The extent to which this is done depends on the Arabic data itself, the nature of your work and the intended reader. 1.1 The Corpus Arabic sources, as with any other sources, should be clearly defined and identified and obtained from the most reliable editions. They should be clearly presented both in the section where your data is discussed in the body of your work and in the bibliography. There should be no doubt about the exact corpus the selected texts on which your analysis is based. The intended reader (and examiner) should be able to easily consult your sources in order to verify and hold you accountable for your understanding, treatment and analysis of the data. Depending on the amount of Arabic data in your corpus, you will have to decide how to present it. 1. If the Arabic data is not extensive, you may want to include all of it in the body of your work. 2. If the Arabic data is extensive but not freely available, you may want to include it in its entirety in an appendix. NB: Use a detached appendix if the data is too extensive. 3. If the Arabic data is extensive, yet freely available, you will need to reference it accurately (author, edition, year, place of publication, editor, website, etc.) 5 ] : -, : Z % ذX : J - - هW يE % : Z Ka -, - % TRANSLATING AND QUOTING ARABIC TEXTS: Principles and Strategies 1.2 The Quotations When arguing a certain issue in your work, you may want to present evidence for your arguments. This evidence may be in Arabic. There should always be a balanced approach to the presentation of evidence: Not too much and not too little. As with any presentation of evidence, the main principle is as stated above: Necessary, Relevant, Adequate and Consistent. No more, no less. This could be defined as key evidence, or key examples. Depending on the type of the Arabic key evidence, you will have to decide how to present the data. NB: For transcription, consult the pamphlet Transcription Rules. 1. If the Arabic data is a word or a short phrase, you may want to include it in the actual paragraph. eg. The semantic content of the term $ # ! fitna strife is not easily represented in English with one single equivalent. The phrase )4/., ا+, ا-,. 0/ 3 ا- )' % bi-smi al-lāhi al-raḥmāni al-raḥīmi In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. (Quran: Surat al- Fatiha 1:1; translation by Pickthall) 1 is not easily translated into English since the terms ا -. / 0 ن 5 al-raḥmān and ) 4 /. - ا al-raḥīm are more or less synonyms in Arabic. 2. If the Arabic data is a long sentence or a whole paragraph or a section, then present it in a separate indented paragraph. When possible the quoted text should be in a minimally smaller font size than the one used in the body of the text. eg. The body of the text is in 12pts, the quoted text and translation could be in 10pts. eg. The following verse from the Quran, known as Ayat al-kursi, is central to Islamic belief: ! ! ا- ', 0 5K و J 8 $ #G C B ; ا? = ا 8 ا+, 8 إ - : إ 8, ا M ض ر ا م ED ه م و 5K و 5K ات و 5 ه د و 8 d R و 8 ) ] TZ D ) [ أ RW R % 5K ) Y R إ,8 إ 8, b 50 ء 5 و?4G. c UG ا- ', 0 ات و 5 ا و M ض ر (Quran: Surat al-baqara 2:255) ) 4f #V U TS 0 R V Y - ا? ZY 1) All Quranic texts in Arabic and translation are retrieved from: 3 3K ذا ء S ; ا ن و ^4= 50 ] f T/ R 6 هE ر و لW ر ي 5 ر 5 TRANSLATING AND QUOTING ARABIC TEXTS: Principles and Strategies NB: Usually followed by a translation, also in a separate indented paragraph. NB: Reproduce the source text as is, diacritical signs, errors or any specific characteristics that the text has. Do not alter the source text, since you will not be representing it faithfully. In case there are errors in the text, you should mark them with [sic], indicating that they are part of the quoted source text. NB: If it is absolutely necessary, you may add short clarifying remarks in the quoted Arabic text. Always include them in brackets [xxx] in order to mark that they are not part of the quoted source text. eg. Quran: Surat al-fatiha 1:3 (Quran: Surat al-fatiha 1:3) )4/ 3 ا-,. 0/ ا[ + [ ا-,. NB: If you need to omit part of the quoted source text, indicate the position of the omission with [ ], informing the reader of the omission and that it is not part of the quoted source text. eg. Text 1, chapter 21, Schulz p.292 ا # $ % & ا ' ( ) * + ) &, - ا '. * ' / ا '. 0-1 W k و [ ] $ T Z j K $ ' R 5 4 G $ 0 f J ا - 4 م دو 8 ذ ا ت أ h / %. Y - - ) ا 5 Y - ا ! W g J ا - V h Z أ G س 5 ا - ' 4 0 ت 5 ا - ' 4 $ 4 G 5 ا - / o W Y % l Z ا ] J 4 u G و M ق ا. S - 5 و ا R.!! إ 0 Y م ا G 8 5 f # - $ و ا 4 J 5 0 s Y - ا $ R ; l K 5 k ا q K p ا. r NB: If it is necessary, you may want to add comments either in the body of your work or in footnotes. NB: Always be consistent. 7 8 2. The Purpose of a Translation Translations serve several purposes. The main purposes are, as with quotations, reader friendliness, verifiability and accountability. Again the main principle is that the translations should be: Necessary, Relevant, Adequate and Consistent. No more, no less. In general, you should present translations of all the Arabic quotes that are included in your work. If you use translations of Arabic texts that you do not include in your work, you should motivate why you are basing your arguments and analysis on translations and not the Arabic text. You do not need to present translations of your corpus should you include it in an appendix. If translations of your corpus exist, you should make a clear reference to them. 2.1 Reader Friendliness As mentioned above, academic writing should be reader friendly. Not everyone who will read your work will know Arabic or know it well enough. It is therefore necessary to present the reader with an appropriate and adequate translation of your quotes. Translations are also necessary from an angle of completeness. This will reduce unnecessary consultations of external works and will make for a fluid reading of your work. Presentation Translations should be presented in close proximity to the quoted text, so as not to open for confusion. Translations should be clearly marked, so that there is no doubt that a certain string of text is a translation of a given Arabic text. Depending on the type of the Arabic key evidence and their translations, you will have to decide how to present the data. 1. If the Arabic data is a word or a short phrase, you may want to include it in the actual paragraph. The transcription should be in italics and the translation included in single quotation marks xxx eg. The semantic content of the term $ # ! fitna strife is not easily represented in English with one single equivalent. 9 ر 5 هE ر و لW ر ر ي 5 TRANSLATING AND QUOTING ARABIC TEXTS: Principles and Strategies 2. If the Arabic data is a long sentence or a whole paragraph or a section, then present it in a separate indented paragraph. Do the same for the translation. With longer sentences, paragraphs or sections you should weigh between whether a transcription of the whole passage is necessary and/or useful on the one hand and the extra information and reading the transcription entails on the other. The necessity and usefulness of the information should take precedence, all the while trying to keep the text as simple as possible. eg. Text 1, chapter 21, Schulz p.292 R ت 5 ا # $ % & ا ' ( ) * + ) &, - ا '. * ' / ا '. 0-1 ] 0 g - 5 c $ T Z j K $ ' R 5 4 G $ 0 f J ا - 4 م دو 8 ذ ا ت أ h / %. Y - - ) ا 5 Y - ا ! W g J h Z V أ G س 5 ا - ' 4 0 ت 5 0 Y م ا G 8 5 f # - $ و ا 4 J 5 0 s Y - ا $ R و ا w v و ا - ' Z 5 J 5 ^ ت و ا x R 5 S v و ; l K 5 k W k ا - ا - ' 4 $ 4 G 5 ا - / o W Y % l Z ا ] J 4 ا q K p ا. r! إ!. 4 5 و ا - S. ق ا M و u G The political systems in the Arab world We find in the Arab world, up to the present, countries that have different political systems, such as republics, kingdoms, sultanates and shaykhdoms. These countries are based on the political divisions that have occurred after the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the colonial regime in Africa and the Middle East. [my translation]. NB: Remember to reproduce the source text as is, diactritical signs, errors or any specific characteristic that the text has. NB: The translation should be of all the quoted text. If you want to omit a part of the text, this should be done in the quoted Arabic text, not in the translation. NB: Omissions in the quoted Arabic text should be faithfully reflected in the translation, indicated by [ ] in the quoted text as well as the translation. NB: Always be consistent. See comments above p.7. 10 2.2 Verifiability and Accountability Any reading, analysis or translation of any text is an exercise in interpretation. In an essay, paper or thesis you are presenting the reader (and examiner) with your reading, understanding and interpretation of the Arabic texts that are included in your corpus. While your analysis should be based on the Arabic text and not the translations, translations are one of several means by which you present your understanding of the text, and thus the basis on which you argue for a certain conclusion. While a conclusion in your work may be based on grammar, images, intertextuality, etc., translations give the reader (and examiner) insight into your understanding of a word, phrase, passage or of a text as a whole. In other words, translations are one of the main tools that you will be using while building an argument. Based on your translations and comments, the reader will be able to verify whether and how you have understood a certain term, passage or text. Based on your understanding and analysis of your Arabic data you will be held accountable for your conclusions. Therefore, good and adequate translations are of the utmost importance to a study based on Arabic sources. They reflect your understanding of the sources and form the basis for your analysis, and thus the conclusions you arrive to. eg. The phrase W - - ب. ا y is open to several interpretations. Depending on your understanding and interpretation of this phrase in its context you may come to divergent conclusions: ḍaraba al-waladu The child has hit (walad is subject and therefore agent) ḍaraba al-walada He has hit the child (walad is object and therefore patient) ḍuriba al-waladu The child was hit (walad is subject of a passive verb and therefore patient) NB: A good and fluid translation often requires some choices and at times a certain departure of the source text. See Section 3. Translation Strategies below. If it is necessary for the sake of comprehension, analysis or argument you may want to add comments to your own or somebody else s translation, either in the body of your text or in a footnote. 11 % TRANSLATING AND QUOTING ARABIC TEXTS: Principles and Strategies eg. Quran: Surat al-fatiha 1:1 (Quran: Surat al-fatiha 1:1) )4/ 3 ا-,. 0/ )' ا+, ا-,. In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. [translation by Pickthall]. The phrase )4/., ا+, ا-,. 0/ 3 ا- )' % bi-smi al-lāhi al-raḥmāni al-raḥīmi is not easily translated into English since the terms ا -. / 0 ن 5 al-raḥmān and Arabic. al-raḥīm are more or less synonyms in ا -. / 4 ) eg. $ # ! fitna strife 2 is prohibited in Islam. NB: Again the main principle is that the comments should be: Necessary, Relevant, Adequate and Consistent. No more, no less. 2.3 Existing Translations When working with Arabic texts, it is not only acceptable to consult other translations, but when possible it is indeed necessary and required. All scholarship builds on that which has preceded it. Unless there are special reasons to do otherwise, you are required to consult and quote existing good and accepted translations. You should not throw yourself into unnecessary double work or work that you may not be qualified to do, eg. Quran translations etc. In many cases there will exist several editions and translations of a certain text. In your work, you will have to make a choice concerning the editions and/or translations that you will be using. Whichever choice you make, it should be motivated based on the needs of your work. In most academic fields, some editions of texts or translations are considered as more reliable and are better received and more widely accepted and used than others. Therefore you should acquaint yourself with the field and the preferred texts and translations. Unless you have special reasons, you should use the more widely accepted texts and translations. eg. The translation by Guillaume of Ibn Isḥāq s Sīrat al-nabī is widely used, or Zettersten s Swedish translation of the Quran is usually preferred to Bernström s. 2) The semantic content of the term $ # ! fitna is not easily represented in English with one single equivalent. 12 ر 5 هE ر و لW ر ر ي 5 ] : -, : Z % ذX : J - - هW يE % : Z م 5 م 5 Ka -, - % TRANSLATING AND QUOTING ARABIC TEXTS: Principles and Strategies NB: If it is necessary for the sake of comprehension, your analysis and argument you may want to deviate from or add comments to a certain text or translation. There should be no doubt whatsoever about the authorship of the editions and/or translations presented in your work. There should be no doubt in your work about which translations are yours and which are quoted from other translators. The sources of your translations, whether your own or those of others, should be clearly marked in your work, in the body of the text as well as in the bibliography. Having said that, you are ultimately responsible for all your choices. You will be held accountable for the choices you make, even if you choose to use translations produced by others. Presentation eg. Text 1, chapter 21, Schulz p.292 R ت 5 ا # $ % & ا ' ( ) * + ) &, - ا '. * ' / ا '. 0-1 ] 0 g - 5 c $ T Z j K $ ' R 5 4 G $ 0 f J ا - 4 م دو 8 ذ ا ت أ h / %. Y - - ) ا 5 Y - ا ! W g J h Z V أ G س 5 ا - ' 4 0 ت 5 0 Y م ا G 8 5 f # - $ و ا 4 J 5 0 s Y - ا $ R و ا w v و ا - ' Z 5 J 5 ^ ت و ا x R 5 S v و ; l K 5 k W k ا - ا - ' 4 $ 4 G 5 ا - / o W Y % l Z ا ] J 4 ا q K p ا. r! إ!. 4 5 و ا - S. ق ا M و u G The political systems in the Arab world We find in the Arab world, up to the present, countries that have different political systems, such as republics, kingdoms, sultanates and shaykhdoms. These countries are based[ 3 ] on the political divisions that have occurred after the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the colonial regime in Africa and the Middle East. [my translation]. eg. Quran: Surat al-baqara 2:255 ! ! ا- ', 0 5K و J 8 $ #G C B ; ا? = ا 8 ا+, 8 إ - : إ 8, ا M ض ر ا م ED ه م و 5K و 5K ات و 5 و 8 d R و 8 ) ] TZ D ) [ أ RW R % 5K ) Y R #V إ 8, U TS 0 R V 3 3K ذا ن ء S و إ 8, b 50 ء 5 و?4G. c UG ا- ', 0 ات و 5 ا و M ض ر ه د (Quran: Surat al-baqara 2:255) ) 4f ; ا? ZY ا - Y ^4= 50 ] f T/ R h Z V k qām alā asās literally has risen on the basis of. The verb h Z V k qām alā is in the active ا G س 5 3) voice. It is here translated as passive voice in order to achieve a more idiomatic English translation. 13 Allah! There is no deity save Him, the Alive, the Eternal. Neither slumber nor sleep overtaketh Him. Unto Him belongeth whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth. Who is he that intercedeth with Him save by His leave? He knoweth that which is in front of them and that which is behind them, while they encompass nothing of His knowledge save what He will. His throne includeth the heavens and the earth, and He is never weary of preserving them. He is the Sublime, the Tremendous. [translation by Pickthall]. NB: If it is absolutely necessary, you may add short clarifying remarks in the translation. Always include them in brackets [xxx] in order to mark that they are not part of the translated source text. NB: Always be consistent. 14 3. Translation Strategies Many have argued that translation is like a window into a world to which the reader may or may not have access. As a medium, the less of a hindrance it is and the more transparent it is, the more effective translation becomes. In research, we have argued above, translation is also a tool in the hands of the researcher. One could argue that translation is a window into the mind of the researcher. It exposes the understanding and reasoning of the researcher. It reveals the way linguistic data is handled, understood and analyzed. In research, therefore, translation plays a double role. It: gives the reader access to a world expressed in language gives the reader access to the thinking of the researcher 3.1 WORLD, LANGUAGE, TEXT and TRANSLATION WORLD and LANGUAGE Broadly one could say that LANGUAGE is a means of communication. Language is a complex phenomenon. The complexity of language arises from two main factors. The complex WORLD which language is used to communicate about, in and through and the complexity of language itself. TEXT In the same logic, TEXT, in its broadest sense, is complex. Text is one of many media through which communication is transmitted. Text is a subset of language, it is more or less limited to a narrower sense of language, excluding for example music, body language, etc. The complexity of text is due on the one hand to the many different elements involved in the composition of a text: the language, the medium, the author, the reader, the transmitter, etc. On the other hand, the nature of text is also complex and diverse. In addition to the elements involved in the
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