Monday, November 7, 2011

The Importance of the Source Text Language

The Importance of the Source Text Language adalah salah satu catatan Peter Newmark. Namun begitu, bagi seorang penerjemah, Teks Bahasa Sumber adalah salah satu elemen penting dalam penerjemahan. Untuk itu, mari kita bersama-sama melihat apa yang diungkapkan oleh Peter Newmark (1998: 112) berikut ini:

In my opinion, in the future, the degree of closeness both of a literary and a non-literary translation should depend on the importance of the source text language. (By 'language', I mean 'the words on the page' (Leavis), as opposed to the thought-content, the facts or the hidden agenda of the original.)

The importance of the language depends on the following factors:

  1. The authority of the text. I take it that in serious poetry (the densest and most expressive of all forms of language), short stories, plays to a lesser extent, novels, works by experts with pretensions to style, statutes, patents, treaties, and many official statements, the language is as important as the content.
  2. The make-up of the language. Technical and institutional terms and standardized language have to be translated by their accepted equivalents, if these exist, and, additionally, explained in couplets, if the readership is unlikely to understand them. Cohesive markers are always important. Translationally, concrete nouns are more important than verbs, concept-nouns, adjectives and adverbs (in that order) since the four latter are more affected by ideology, and are likely to have more synonyms in the source and target languages. Thus in a headline, 'A nasty odour in Parliament', only 'Parliament' is likely to be invariant in translation.
  3. In art for art's sake writing and in nonsense literature, as well as strongly alliterative, sonorous and figurative passages, the sense where necessary gives way to the rhetoric.
  4. In strongly reader-oriented texts, the source language where appropriate gives way to cultural or technical explanations.


Newmark, Peter. 1998. More Paragraphs on Translation. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters Ltd.


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