Text Linguistics and translation: Redefining the concept of "cultural mark"


  • João Azenha Júnior University of São Paulo.




Text Linguistics, cultural marks, translation teaching.


Since the works of Nida and Taber (1964, 1969) on the influence of target cultures on texts to be translated, theoretical considerations on the presence of ‘cultural marks’ and consequently on analytical procedures that would serve to identify these marks have been more systematically studied as a result of the so-called ‘cultural turn’ in Translation Studies (Reiss 1971, 1983; Nord 1988, 1993; Snell-Hornby 1986) and heavily criticized by the Deconstruction approach to translation (for instance, Arrojo 1986, 1992). The development of Text Linguistics has also contributed to enlarge the boundaries of the concept, bringing it, so to speak, from the outside world – where it seemed to be embedded in the 60s – to the inner domain of the text itself and discourse. This paper aims at briefly revising this conceptual turn and at discussing its consequences for translation teaching. Examples taken from German texts translated by Brazilian students shall demonstrate how efficient the systematic use of text linguistics concepts can be to help students in identifying layers of meaning which, distant from the idea of ‘cultural marks’ as a reference to a concrete reality, define a point of view in the source text, legitimate interpretations that demand shifts in the target text and therefore can also be taken as cultural in a broader sense.


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Como Citar

Azenha Júnior, J. (2008). Text Linguistics and translation: Redefining the concept of "cultural mark". Tradterm, 14, 51-68. https://doi.org/10.11606/issn.2317-9511.tradterm.2008.46382