TRANSLATING CRAFT TRADITIONS: PROBLEMS OF TERMINOLOGY IN LATVIAN TRADITIONAL KNITTING BOOKS
Keywords:Latvian, English, translation, knitting, specialized language
Language for special purposes is in every aspect of life, even our cultural traditions and crafts. Often, cultural terms seem self-explanatory to the people within the source text culture, in this case, Latvians, and might be unknown to other cultures. There is often a goal to achieve perfect equivalency in translation, so there should be a translation for every term. However, it is not always possible to transfer the meaning of a concept that has both technical and cultural aspects. The translator has to look at both the source and the target culture's knowledge to adapt the translation as needed.
This paper will look at the terminological problems encountered within the English translations of two books that look at Latvian traditional knitting – Suiti patterned socks and south Kurzeme jackets. While it might seem like these books describe simple items, there is a lot of special terminology used therein. Through a selection of translation problems found in these sources, the cause of the mistakes is explored and the suggestions of the correct variant are given. The results of the research show that while specific cultural terms can be hard to translate, there are strategies to translate even the most complex culture-bound terms correctly and what skills and background knowledge are needed for it.
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