Translation is the carrying of a meaning/ idea from one language to another. Because there often times aren’t corresponding words to every two languages, it is important that the same meaning be conveyed by a different expression. In translation studies, there exist two branches of equivalence- formal equivalence and dynamic equivalence. The two differ in that formal equivalence relates to linguistic factors (word-word translation) and cultural factors (sense-sense translation). How does one maintain an equilibrium between both aspects of linguistic equivalence and cultural equivalence regarding translation?
I was most intrigued by Jakobson’s theory regarding semiotics as it relates to translation studies. Jakobson examines the referential, emotive, conative, phatic, metalingual, and poetic functions as part of the factors of communication. When we examine the functions of language for a certain image, word, or text, we also examine the relationships that operates between the two along with the characteristics of these functions.
One factor I was particularly interested in are the different prosodic effects that arise in the translation from word to word between two languages. For instance, the word “chicken” in American culture signifies chicken as a live animal and chicken as meat/food. In Spanish, the signifier “pollo” signifies chicken as in meat/food while the word “gallita” signifies chicken as in a hen or rooster.