Dissertation > Language, writing > Linguistics > Translation Studies

On Lin Yutang’s Translation Theory and Practice

Author DaiLiLi
Tutor YangWenDi
School Central South University
Course Foreign Linguistics and Applied Linguistics
Keywords Lin Yutang translation theory and practice FuShengLiuJi harmony theory
CLC H059
Type Master's thesis
Year 2011
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Building a theoretical system for Chinese translation studies requires the re-examining of Chinese translators’ translation theories and practice. Therefore, I would like to choose Lin Yutang who has achieved a great success in introducing Chinese culture to the West, as the subject of study.The thesis, by analyzing Lin Yutang’s translation theory and his translation of Fushengliuji (Six Chapters of a Floating Life), attempts to prove that Lin Yutang has reached a harmony both in translation theory and practice. The careful analysis of his theory on translation leads to the finding that his theory takes some important factors of the translation activity, for example, the source text, the translator, the target reader and the target text, into consideration. On the one hand, the source text, being the starting point of the translation activity, should be given due weight, so the target text should be faithful to it. On the other hand, since the faithfulness in the target text is relative and the target text is actually for the target readers, this target text should be in accordance with the grammatical rules of the target language. Accordingly the target text is faithful yet reader-friendly, thus reaching a harmony between the source text and the target text. In order to achieve the harmony, the translator, due to his subjectivity such as his competence, his purpose of the translation and his translation method, will certainly influence the appearance and quality of the target text, but at the same time, he is restricted by the source text and the uniqueness of the languages involved and the cultural differences behind them. Therefore, to some extent, Lin’s view on the factors of the translation activity conforms to the harmony theory in translation.With the analysis of his translation of Six Chapters of a Floating Life at the syntactic level and the method employed, the author proves that his translation theory and practice has reached a harmonious integration in terms of form, creativity and style.

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