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Translating -ing forms from English into Croatian


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Dubravec, Helena. (2014). Translating -ing forms from English into Croatian. Diploma Thesis. Filozofski fakultet u Zagrebu, Department of English Language and Literature. [mentor Hoyt, Alexander D].

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The purpose of this paper was to show how differences between languages in the aspect of grammatical norms and syntactical rules complicate the process of transposing meaning expressed by -ing forms from a source text in English into a Croatian target text. By using examples from certain sections of three different books that I translated for the purposes of my master’s thesis, I focused on adjectives, present participles and gerunds as the most common occurrences in these texts which carry the suffix -ing. Translators should be aware that the absence of equivalent units in the target language does not mean that equivalence is not achievable in a different way. Namely, they need to focus on creating equivalent messages and not syntactic structures. This means that being creative and playing with the arrangement of syntactic units by introducing new ones is an important part of the translation process. Having illustrated the three main types of -ing forms and their equivalent forms in the target language, I examined how the issues that arise in the process of translating them may be resolved and I found that there is rarely only one possible solution. One of the conclusions of this paper is that adjectives ending in -ing are usually easily translatable into Croatian. However, English often allows the use of hyphenated units consisting of two words for the purposes of syntactic compression, which is why translators need to reconfigure whole phrases and clauses to preserve the intended message. Furthermore, while present participles mostly appear in verb phrases which are then translated with an appropriate verb in the target language, they may also be replaced with a present or past adverb when they are used in non-finite clauses referring to the subject in their superordinate clause. Moreover, such non-finite clauses may also be transformed into finite ones to avoid possible ambiguity. Lastly, since gerunds essentially behave as nouns and take on the same functions within a sentence, they can mostly be translated using Croatian verbal nouns, but translators may also make use of their strong verbal sense to create more explicit clauses and restore omitted elements. When faced with so many choices, translators need to assess which method would lead to the best possible solution in a given situation. This implies trying to achieve equivalence in form, but most of all a strong focus on fully preserving the original message.

Item Type: Diploma Thesis
Subjects: English language and literature
Departments: Department of English Language and Literature
Supervisor: Hoyt, Alexander D
Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2015 11:22
Last Modified: 01 Apr 2015 11:22

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