The Translational Force of Words: The Journey of “Come” and “Go” into Arabic

Abdullah Saleh Aziz Mohammad, Arif Ahmed Mohammed Hassan Al-Ahdal


This study delves into the translational challenges Arabic translators face in preserving the dynamism and multifaceted meanings of ‘come’ and ‘go’ phrasal verbs during translation using machine tools. Though existing literature has focused on linguistic and cultural equivalence, the ‘translational force’ of specific words is still under-researched. The aim of this study is to verify the accuracy of the output across tools, and to conclude how effective these applications were in the given language pair. The study adopts a mixed methods approach with a survey used to identify the most frequently used machine tools for translation by 27 learners of Translation Studies at Shaqra University, Saudi Arabia. Thereafter, a set of frequently used phrasal verbs in English that use the root verbs ‘come’ and ‘go’ were translated by a convenience sample of 27 final year students of translation as well as by using the popular and free translation tools in the English-Arabic language pair. Results indicated that Saudi students enrolled in translation studies used MateCAT, Google Translate, Reverso to a limited extent, but relied more on online dictionaries for translation to and from English. In addition to this, translation of English phrasal verbs was found to be most accurate in MateCat and there too, accuracy in back translation was found to be more accurate in the case of the phrasal verbs formed with ‘come’ at the root than with ‘go’ verb. Finally, it was found that the translation students preferred ‘soft tools’ like English movies for learning, recall, and use of English phrasal verbs in practice. This study is expected to provide a deeper understanding of the concept of "translational force" and its implications for translating dynamic words in the English-Arabic language pair in the realm of machine-based translation tools.

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

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