On Right and Wrong Uses of Translation Theory: A Case Study and Implications for Research



Year of publication 2010
Type Article in Proceedings
Conference Theories in Practice
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Field Linguistics
Keywords literary translation; translation theory; application of; David Lodge; Anton Popovič; shifts of expression; Czech; Slovak
Description This paper discusses the misguided attempt by Biloveský and Brenkusová (2006, 177-85) to apply Popovič's theory of translation shifts to the Slovak translation of Changing Places by David Lodge. It shows how these authors' concern with demonstrating the applicability of Popovič's theory in literary translation blurs the rich socio-cultural context in which the translation took place. Their failure echoes Ján Vilikovský's failure to situate the translation culturally in the afterword to the Slovak translation (Vilikovský 2004, 250-63). Profesorská rošáda (2004), the first ever translation of a David Lodge novel into Slovak, is reassessed as a re-translation in the context of the still fuzzy Czech/Slovak socio-cultural divide. Methodological conclusions are drawn, especially that of the necessity to engage in an active dialogue with translation theory in the descriptive translation studies framework, which will inevitably include studying translations into Czech and Slovak within a non-reductive socio-cultural context.