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No.3 2023

June 30, 2023

English Abstracts of Major Papers

The Independent Turn in the Development of Chinese Translation Studies 

By FANG Mengzhi (Shanghai University, Shanghai, China) p.5 

Abstract: Following a phase of development oriented primarily toward absorbing contemporary  Western theories of translation and integrating with the current trends in international scholarship  concerned, China's translatology has taken an independent turn since the beginning of the 21st  century. An increasing number of new translation-related concepts and theories have been proposed  by Chinese scholars in the first two decades of the century, and as a result of their newly gained  cultural consciousness and added confidence in the justification of their unique approach, a translation  studies with Chinese characteristics is taking shape. This paper traces the new theories, categories and  concepts of translation emerging in China since the beginning of this century back to their sources, and  discusses the factors contributing to the rapid development of Chinese translatology during this period,  including the crucial role played by the Translators Association of China.  

Keywords: Chinese translatology; subjectivity; originality; category; concept

Translation Interactology: Conception and Interpretation 

By MENG Xiangchun (Soochow University, Suzhou, China) p.14 

Abstract: The Studies of Translation Dynamics (STD), also called Translation Interactology, is informed,  inspired and underpinned by the concepts of systematicity and "unity of opposites" expounded in traditional  Chinese theories of Yin and Yang and the Five Elements, and it also incorporates elements and methods  of communication theory, comparative literature and contemporary Western translation studies. It mainly  studies the way in which elements or actors/agents in translation act on, react to and interact with each other and the way in which these elements and actors/agents, in isolation or combination, realize, influence,  shape or determine translation in all possible senses and respects. It also studies why these elements or  actors/agents act, react, and interact that way. Its theoretical rationale is yinyang baofu huasheng (the  mutual embracing, becoming and generation of yin and yang), which is not only the ultimate driving force  and the overarching rule for all translation phenomena but also their ultimate reason and expression. The  foundational theoretical framework of STD is the dual 7W interaction, or the interaction among the 7Ws of  the SL and those of the TL. The core principles of STD include "systematic interaction", "flowing/dynamic  equivalibrium" and "central-peripheral representation." It proposes a series of new concepts, including "reception paradox", "texperience shift", "covert text" and "comparative glocalism". An attempt towards the integration of theory, practical criticism, and guide for translation practice, STD is aimed at constructing a Chinese school of translation theory that offers new perspectives, approaches and concepts to translation criticism, and provides a practical guide for translation practice and evaluation.

Keywords: translation dynamics; dual 7W interaction; systematic interaction; flowing equivalibrium;  central- peripheral translation; new concepts

Interpreting Competence Scales in Military Settings as an Example of  National Translation Competence Assessment 

By MU Lei & ZHANG Rong (Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, Guangzhou, China) p.34 

Abstract: As an important part of the national translation competence, military translation competence ensures  a country's right to know and to speak in international military exchanges and cooperation. While scholars  have begun to discuss what constitutes national military translation competence, how such competence can be assessed remains largely unexplored. This paper takes into consideration the objectives, principles, methods, and utilities for the construction of a military interpreting competence scale, proposing a framework for the  training, screening, and evaluation of military interpreters. Undertaking this project is also expected to throw some light on the development of China's national translation competence as a whole. 

Keywords: national military translation competence; assessment and evaluation system; military interpreting; competence scale

The Translation of Zhuangzi in the German-speaking World 

By PANG Nana & GUI Shujie (Shandong University, Jinan, China) p.53 

Abstract: Dating back to Heinrich Kurz's initial work in 1830, the translation of Zhuangzi in the German speaking world has had a history of nearly two hundred years and has already gone through three stages: selective translations in the 19th century, abridged translations in the first half of the 20th century, and deepening full translations in the second half of the 20th century. During this process, translators in the fields of sinology, philosophy and religion have brought their respective expertises to bear on the interpretation of Zhuangzi, and there have emerged many excellent translators of this Chinese classic, such as Martin Buber, Richard Wilhelm, Wolfgang Kubin and Viktor Kalinke. Their renditions have not only become an important  entry point for German-speaking readers to understanding traditional Chinese culture and values, but have also made available yet another medium for a dialogue between Chinese and German literature and philosophy.  

Keywords: Zhuangzi; translation; research; Germany

A Neural Networks-based System for Automatic Determination of Speech  Difficulty Level in Interpreter Training  

By LIU Chenxuan (University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China); WANG Yinying (Shanghai International Studies University, Shanghai, China); LI Xiaoxi (iFLYTEK Research, Hefei,  China) & DAI Lirong (University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China) p.71

Abstract: Speech difficulty level of materials for training interpreters is dependent on a myriad of complicated factors. While the established practice for determining the level is to rely on expert trainers' opinions so far, what is involved is actually a pattern-cognition problem solvable by using machine learning. In this paper, we propose a neural network architecture for automatically determining the level of speech difficulty in this context. Based on the RoBERTa pre-training model, our system was trained  using 286 tagged data points and additional training sets generated through knowledge distilling and data augmentation. Its application promises to lend much help to trainers and students of interpreting in their efforts to select suitable training materials for classroom activities and after-class practice. 

Keywords: textbooks; pedagogical corpus; speech difficulty level; pattern recognition algorithm; RoBERTa; data augmentation

Overcoming a Cultural Divide Through Translation: Luo Dagang's French Renditions of Classical Chinese Poetry

By GAO Fang (Nanjing University, Nanjing, China) p.81 

Abstract: An erudite scholar of French literature, Luo Dagang also wrote poems in both Chinese and  French. From 1933 to 1947, when he studied in France and spent some time living in Switzerland, Luo contributed to the dissemination of Chinese literature abroad by actively engaging himself in translating Chinese literary classics. This paper takes a close look at Luo's French renditions of classical Chinese poetry during this period in reference to some newly discovered textual sources, focusing on the motivation underlying his selection of source texts and the effects of his translational work. In addition to generalizing  on Luo's conception of translation and his attitude toward cross-cultural communication, the paper also  calls attention to France-residing Chinese intellectuals' collective efforts to introduce and promote Chinese cultural and literary heritages in Europe in the first half of the 20th century.  

Keywords: Luo Dagang; classical poetry; French translation; transcultural connectedness