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Post Graduate Diploma in Translation Studies
 

UNIT 423-2: TRANSLATION AND THE APPLICATION OF LINGUISTICS

 

423.2.0  : AIMS, OBJECTIVES & STRUCTURE

 

     This unit explores some topics at the boundary between linguistic theory and the applied linguistic foundations of the practice of translation, because we believe that for knowing more about the technical aspects of translation, some groundwork has to be made. This is why we have an entire block on the background material.

 

     This unit has the following structure:

 
     
  423.2.1

Introduction

  423.2.2 The Irrelevance of Avant-garde
  423.2.3

The Irrelevance of the Technical

  423.2.4 The Substantive Base of Translation
  423.2.5

Pragmatics, Applied Studies and Scientific Progress

  423.2.6 Summary
  423.2.7 References
 

423.2.1  : INTRODUCTION

 

     This unit is couched in a deliberately Indian style. The opening section, for instance, presents the view of the opponent, as a 'puurva-paksha' and our counterview as a 'siddhaanta-paksha' in classical Indian style. Also Indian is the emphasis on impersonal reference to ideas rather than name-dropping. Hence we do not give many bibliographical references. This is also in agreement with some who agree that translators should not be asked to read large quantities of linguistics.

     The second section, the irrelevance of the avant-garde, considers the relation between such academic adventures as semiotics and poststructuralism on the one hand and the theory of language and the practice of translation on the other, and argues that radical antiscientism do not bear on the foundations of translation.

     Section 423.2.3, The irrelevance of the technical, looks at formal syntax and semantics in relation to the concepts of applied linguistics and shows that careful contemporary linguistics cannot underpin an applied enterprise that includes translation studies.

     The next section, entitled the substantive base of translation, indicates (in some detail for translation and at a general level for other applied linguistic activities) the direction that the contemporary integration of various lines of linguistic research is taking vis-à-vis the needs of such applied enterprises as translation, literary studies, language planning, lexicography, and language teaching. Here, we invoke a concept of substance as opposed to form and this sets the scene for the penultimate section.

     Before the section on summary, the section 423.2.5. on pragmatics, applied studies, and scientific progress, argues that it is necessary to take help from linguistics in order to construct the field of translation studies in such a way that practitioners can truly benefit freely from all the relevant branches of knowledge, in view of the fact that chaos is an obstacle to genuine freedom.

 
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