[Copy and Imitate?]
By: LI Yanan, Nana (Sir Gordon and Lady Ivy Wu Hall)
In terms of translation, the concepts which we are most familiar with may be word-for-word translation and sense-for-sense translation. Actually, if we divide translation methods from different perspectives, there are many other methods such as transcription and calque. There is another method which is unfamiliar to us, called “graphic translation”. It plays a significant role in translating subjects which have certain shapes.
Translators use the shapes of animals, plants, characters and other subjects wisely, which helps readers formulate images in their minds and impresses them deeply. Meanwhile, translators do not have to worry whether graphic translation will bring about misunderstanding, because readers who are equipped with certain literacy do not only read the literal meanings. For instance, in Chinese, “bow (蝴蝶結)” has nothing to do with “butterfly (蝴蝶)” physically but they both contain the term “butterfly”. Also, “hunting cap (鴨舌帽)” is not made of “duck tongue (鴨舌)”. Through rational thinking, it is easy for the readers to find the similar shapes shared by them.
譯者巧用動植物、漢字等形態來翻譯，使讀者在腦海中自動生成畫面，從而留下深刻的印象。同時，譯者也不必擔心象譯會造成誤解，因為具有一定文化素養的讀者不會單憑字面意義理解詞彙。比如，蝴蝶結(bow) 自然和蝴蝶本身沒什麼關係，鴨舌帽(hunting cap) 自然也不是用鴨舌做的。通過理性思考，讀者很容易就能聯想到形態這一共通之處。