Three Monkeys Online

A Curious, Alternative Magazine

Translator Training

House, quoted in Kiraly, quoted in Kelly (under heading “What not to do!”), paraphrased by me:

Don’t set translation students a text to translate that is full of traps, let them prepare it and then go through it sentence by sentence, student by student, eliciting alternative translations for each sentence before plumping for the one “right” answer. This is “naturally very frustrating for the students” House wrote way back in 1980, if I recall correctly.

Later on Kelly suggests what to do, for example “brainstorming.” This is the spontaneous generation of ideas. It is useful for finding solutions (to translation problems) and showing that there is rarely if ever one “right” way to translate something. “It foments creativity…” That sounds not a million miles away from going through a text and getting the students to suggest numerous alternative ways to translate sentences or phrases. If you call it “brainstorming” it foments creativity. If you don’t it “frustrates” (naturally).

Dorothy Kelly, A Handbook for Translator Trainers.

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