A Comparative Study on the English Translation of the Personalized Language of the Character Huniu (虎妞) in Luotuo Xiangzi

Cao Jing, Nor Shahila Mansor, Diana Abu Ujum


This study aims to compare and discuss the Chinese-English translations of Huniu’s (虎妞) personalized language in four different English translations of the Chinese novel Luotuo Xiangzi, supported by Nida’s theory of “functional equivalence” and with a demonstration of the features of Huniu’s personalized language that lead to difficulties in translation as a framework for the analysis. The analysis reveals that, when translating Huniu’s personalized language, the translators adopted various translation methods, including euphemism, literal translation, deletion, and free translation. The findings indicate that the use of euphemisms as a translation strategy does not support maintaining the character’s language features and style when translating the swear words used by the character. Proactive changes in the tone of the speech of the character in translation impacts the reproduction of that character’s personality and image. In addition, Huniu’s language style of the Beijing dialect is difficult to maintain in translation. These findings serve as a reference for the Chinese-English translation of a character’s personalized language in novels to facilitate the dissemination of Chinese literature around the world.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/wjel.v13n2p364

World Journal of English Language
ISSN 1925-0703(Print)  ISSN 1925-0711(Online)

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