Aspects of cohesion in web site translation: a translator's perspective
Schiller, Annette (2008) Aspects of cohesion in web site translation: a translator's perspective. PhD thesis, Dublin City University.
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This dissertation investigates the nature of cohesion on a web site and the implications for the web site translator. It approaches the subject from the perspective of the freelance translator.
Cohesion traditionally refers to the network of grammatical and lexical items in a text that combine to link different parts of a text and give structure to the text. It is one of the most challenging aspects of translation as each language has its own unique manner in which it employs cohesive devices in the creation of a cohesive text.
A web site can be described as a multi-modal and multi-linear instrument of communication where language, image and audio content combine to create cohesion. Hypertext, the
defining feature of the World Wide Web has led to a change in the way in which content is accessed, in reading patterns and in the general ordering of information on a web page and web site. Three key areas are identified as being fundamental to web site cohesion, Online Search, Navigation and Page Content, which reflect changing user interaction with the web site as text. Information is now available to the user much in the way that people think, that is, by association rather than in linear sequence. As such, the web site presents a new challenge to the translator in terms of identifying and addressing items that are capable of functioning cohesively on a web site.
Traditional models of cohesion are examined and found to be inadequate for the analysis of web site cohesion. A definition of web-specific cohesion is proposed and a model is created for the analysis of aspects of cohesion that are relevant to the translated web site. The model
is applied to the English-language content of a corpus of German source-language web sites.
The findings are discussed, implications examined, the changing role of the freelance translator in web site translation outlined and topics for further research suggested.
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