Style of translation: An exploration of stylistic patterns in the translations of Margaret Jull Costa and Peter Bush
Saldanha, Gabriela (2005) Style of translation: An exploration of stylistic patterns in the translations of Margaret Jull Costa and Peter Bush. PhD thesis, Dublin City University.
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The aim of this study is to identify and explore typical stylistic traits in the work of two translators, using a corpus-based, data-driven methodology. Following Halliday (1971), Leech and Short (1981) and Baker (2000), the translator’s style is seen here as involving a consistent pattern of choices that distinguishes the work of one translator from that of others. In the present study such patterns emerge from a data-driven analysis of a purpose-built parallel corpus containing works of Spanish and Portuguese fiction and their translations into English by Margaret Jull Costa and Peter Bush. Comparative dataare drawn from COMPARA, a bi-directional parallel corpus of English and Portuguese narrative. The quantitative analysis shows that Margaret Jull Costa makes greater use of italics for emphasis than does Peter Bush, or than would be expected on the basis of norms for translations from Portuguese. Peter Bush’s translations, on the other hand, are characterized by a comparatively high use of source language words. The qualitative analysis focuses on the communicative function of emphatic italics and source language words in context, drawing on the Hallidayan (1967) notion of information focus, on Hermans’ (1996) treatment of self-referentiality and Aixclâ's (1996) treatment of culture-specificity in translation. I argue that Margaret Jull Costa emphasises readability in her translations, which leads to a discussion of explicitation (Blum-Kulka 1986/2001, Klaudy and Kâroly 2005, House 2004), and to a further study, modelled on Olohan and Baker (2000), that compares patterns of omission and inclusion of the connective 'that' after reporting verbs SAY and TELL. The findings are discussed in the light of the translators' backgrounds and ideologies, as evidenced from their writings on translation and from interviews carried out by the researcher. I conclude that one of the motivating factors behind the translators' strategies is how they see their role as translators in relation to their audiences.
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