Translating the Untraslatable

Topics: Translation, German language, Language Pages: 3 (769 words) Published: June 25, 2013
Translating the untranslatable

Within the last few years, the world has become more and more connected. With the development of the means of communication, especially the internet, the possibility of mutual understanding has become easier and bigger at the same time. As a consequence, the need of an international way of communication is now more important than ever before. This change has made the role of the translator indispensable to global communication. With the establishment of English as the main global language, translation into English is the most demanded task in media and communication nowadays and a fundamental responsibility to connect the world with the help of one universal language. However, the growing importance of translation also increases the difficulties within this field. Translation is not only a simple word-by-word adaptation process, more than that it involves transferring ideas and mentalities. This originates from the fact that language is the reflection of the need of communicating certain ideas that may differ in various cultures, leading to the fact that there are terms in every language that are considered untranslatable.

Untranslatability is the phenomenon that creates the biggest problems within the translating process. By this procedure the translator is forced to deviate from the original structure and composition of the text in order to find a solution that satisfies the comprehension of the readers in the target culture and still does not falsify the original aims of the text. Nevertheless, a translator can never compensate the lack of understanding of the original culture in the target culture. Although there are different theories about this problem that suggest various approaches, no adequate solution has been provided for it yet.

By dealing with untranslatability the complexity of language can be observed as well as its strong correlation with culture. Understanding a language means understanding a culture....
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