Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation [1st ed.] 9781137519665, 9781137519672

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Table of contents :
Front Matter ....Pages i-xi
Introducing Specialised Translation (Federica Scarpa)....Pages 1-109
Theoretical Issues in Specialised Translation (Federica Scarpa)....Pages 111-185
Translating Specialised Texts (Federica Scarpa)....Pages 187-290
Quality in Specialised Translation (Federica Scarpa)....Pages 291-365
Back Matter ....Pages 367-419
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PALGRAVE STUDIES IN TRANSLATING AND INTERPRETING SERIES EDITOR: MARGARET ROGERS

Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation Federica Scarpa

Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting

Series Editor Margaret Rogers School of Literature and Languages University of Surrey Guildford, UK

This series examines the crucial role which translation and interpreting in their myriad forms play at all levels of communication in today's world, from the local to the global. Whilst this role is being increasingly recognised in some quarters (for example, through European Union legislation), in others it remains controversial for economic, political and social reasons. The rapidly changing landscape of translation and interpreting practice is accompanied by equally challenging developments in their academic study, often in an interdisciplinary framework and increasingly reflecting commonalities between what were once considered to be separate disciplines. The books in this series address specific issues in both translation and interpreting with the aim not only of charting but also of shaping the discipline with respect to contemporary practice and research. More information about this series at http://www.palgrave.com/gp/series/14574

Federica Scarpa

Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation

Federica Scarpa University of Trieste Trieste, Italy

Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting ISBN 978-1-137-51966-5    ISBN 978-1-137-51967-2 (eBook) https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51967-2 © The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2020 The author(s) has/have asserted their right(s) to be identified as the author(s) of this work in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. This work is subject to copyright. All rights are solely and exclusively licensed by the Publisher, whether the whole or part of the material is concerned, specifically the rights of translation, reprinting, reuse of illustrations, recitation, broadcasting, reproduction on microfilms or in any other physical way, and ­transmission or information storage and retrieval, electronic adaptation, computer software, or by similar or dissimilar methodology now known or hereafter developed. The use of general descriptive names, registered names, trademarks, service marks, etc. in this publication does not imply, even in the absence of a specific statement, that such names are exempt from the relevant protective laws and regulations and therefore free for general use. The publisher, the authors and the editors are safe to assume that the advice and information in this book are believed to be true and accurate at the date of publication. Neither the publisher nor the authors or the editors give a warranty, expressed or implied, with respect to the material contained herein or for any errors or omissions that may have been made. The publisher remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations. Cover illustration: Melanie Hobson / EyeEm This Palgrave Macmillan imprint is published by the registered company Springer Nature Limited The registered company address is: The Campus, 4 Crinan Street, London, N1 9XW, United Kingdom

In memory of my brother Angelo (1958–2017)

Preface

This book is aimed primarily at translation trainees and trainers at an academic postgraduate level, but also professional translators wishing to give a more theoretical grounding to their everyday activity. It has been growing steadily from my experience of teaching specialised translation from English to Italian for nearly thirty years at the University of Trieste and, more specifically, develops from my textbook in specialised translation which was published in Italian in 2001 (and, in its second edition, in 2008) and also in French in 2010 (thanks to Marco Fiola, who translated it), and which in this English version has been updated and reorganised. Although aiming to be a pedagogical resource, what this book is not is a practical coursebook or handbook providing the conceptual and terminological basic knowledge required by translators in a limited number of specialised domains and translation tasks and/or dictionaries at the end of each didactic section. Instead, whilst it does provide examples of specialised texts and their translations—especially for the English-Italian pair—this volume aims to be a textbook for an academic course in specialised translation having, however, also a very practical orientation. Thus, its strong theoretical component has the primary aim to help evaluate and inform practice in real-life translation situations, because the three fundamental assumptions throughout the book are that: (1) reflecting on what translators do makes them better translators; (2) the only way to enhance the status of the translator in society is through a vii

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collaboration between the theoretical and practical worlds of translation; and (3) appropriately trained specialised translators can indeed translate scientific and technical texts even if they do not have the same conceptual knowledge of the source-text specialised domain as specialists of that domain. Whilst being firmly embedded in the language-oriented theoretical strand, the approach to specialised translation adopted in this volume sees translation as a linguistic reformulation and a social/cultural mediation that is oriented towards one or more communicative aims and has the main objective of making it possible for members of different languages/cultures (who would otherwise have no chance to do so) to communicate with each other. This linguistic and functional perspective of translation broadly falls within ‘action research’ in Translation Studies, based on the belief that, in order to improve our knowledge about translation and phenomena related to it, research in translation should focus on actual translation practice as a basis for developing theoretical concepts (cf. Lauscher 2000: 161). Thus, throughout the book I have drawn on different theories and approaches to describe and explain what specialised translators do, with the immediate aim of using these findings to improve the efficiency of the translation process and the quality of the translation product. Given the book’s primarily pedagogical aim and that specialised translation deals predominantly with text genres requiring standardised translation approaches, in places the book has also a prescriptive ambition. Indeed, like Lauscher (2000: 162), I believe that “in quality control (…) or translator training, prescriptive judgements are necessary”. This view is also very similar to that expressed by James Holmes (1988 [1972]: 109), the founding ‘father’ of Translation Studies, who stated that the major task of teachers of translation is “to impart norms to the students”. Seen from the perspective of the descriptive/prescriptive divide that characterises the divergence between academics and professionals on what to expect from translation theory, my target-oriented approach is both ‘declarative’, i.e. studying “how things are”, but also ‘imperative’, applying theoretical insights to describe “how things ought to be: what constitutes good or effective translation and what can help to achieve a better or more effective product” (Halliday 2001: 13–14). Hence, it is indeed

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descriptive, drawn from the problems of a variety of professional translation scenarios and adapted for training purposes, but then crucially also feeds the results of description into prescriptive statements for translational behaviour that are aimed at achieving possible optimal versions. However, as I have argued elsewhere (Scarpa et al. 2009), this is not the kind of prescriptive attitude of translator-training institutions that has been criticised by Toury (1995: 261, 1999: 23), with trainers likely to give a distorted presentation of what translation is and how it is practised. Instead, I believe it is an attitude that could be equated with an ‘informed prescription’, aiming, wherever possible, at being founded on probabilities, or what Toury (1999: 21) calls ‘regularities’, and where prescriptive statements should be treated as hypotheses to be tested (Chesterman 1999). It is, in my view, what realistic and, especially, honest translator training should be about. Throughout the book, translation is seen as a professional service activity (Gile 2009: 44), where the word ‘service’ goes somewhat against current trends aiming to increase the ‘visibility’ and ‘agency’ of translators and interpreters. In fact, as I will argue in the book when dealing with the ethical issue of the specialised translator’s responsibility (Chap. 2), I believe that in professional specialised translation it is the translator’s ‘invisibility’ in the translated text, to create the illusion of a translation that reads like an original, which in fact should be considered as a positive ethical tactic and a manifestation of agency. As elegantly put by Maia (2010: 442), and as we know too well from our daily experience as users of translated non-literary texts, “the ‘visibility’ of translators whose terminology is incorrect (and even invented), and whose appreciation of the textual conventions of certain subjects leaves much to be desired” is all too frequent in today’s translation market. This textual invisibility should be distinguished from the increased visibility for the translation profession, which is still to be achieved and certainly a battle worth fighting for. Linked to the issue of agency is that of translation technology, which is taken for granted in the book, because in today’s translation market virtually all translations are produced with the help of computers and technology. Although the activity of specialised translators continues to a certain extent to be seen as a mechanical and non-creative linguistic process that could be very well done by machines, also in this branch of

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translation, technology will never substitute human interpretation, language sensitivity and decision making (Montgomery 2010: 302, 304). Indeed, a related aim of the book is to paint a positive picture of the specialised translator’s profession (cf. Chris Durban’s view in her 2010 book The Prosperous Translator) and to give academic dignity to this non-­ literary branch of the formal academic discipline of Translation Studies, which is still today somewhat left off the research radar, owing to the traditional bias towards the humanities that has characterised Translation Studies right from its inception in the mid-1970s. I am grateful to my colleagues and students in the Department of Legal, Language, Interpreting and Translation Studies (IUSLIT) at the University of Trieste, the language section of which was formerly known as the University of Trieste’s School for Translators and Interpreters’ (SSLMIT), for providing throughout the years a perfect environment for exchanging ideas and experiences on how to do research in translation and train translators in such a way as to reflect the everyday setting of most translators’ work. Among the colleagues of IUSLIT and those of the former SSLMIT who have since migrated to other universities, I am particularly grateful to Lorenza Rega, Nadine Celotti, David Katan, Marella Magris, Maria Teresa Musacchio and Giuseppe Palumbo for the informative and interesting discussions we have engaged in over many years, which have been a major source of inspiration for many of the ideas and opinions expressed in the book. Special thanks also go to Margaret Rogers, for encouraging me to write a book on specialised translation for this series and also for her excellent work editing it. Finally, I owe a special debt of gratitude to my husband, Russell King, for finding the time to read and edit the final version of this book with the critical eye coming from his huge experience in academic writing and editing in English as part and parcel of his long and distinguished academic career in migration studies. My thanks go to him and to my friends and colleagues also for their extensive support during the long years that it took me to write the book, owing to unexpected and unwelcome events both family- and health-related. Trieste, Italy

Federica Scarpa

Contents

1 Introducing Specialised Translation  1 2 Theoretical Issues in Specialised Translation111 3 Translating Specialised Texts187 4 Quality in Specialised Translation291 References367 Index409

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1 Introducing Specialised Translation

Translation is an ancient craft but a relatively young discipline. Since the 1960s, when some linguists began to give a theoretical basis to the activity of translating, the institutionalisation of translation as an academic discipline was carried out under the auspices of linguistics, a discipline that, as Neubert (1998: 15) recalls, was itself hailed as “a science pilote”. Until the 1980s translation was therefore considered as a branch of applied linguistics, whose absolute and indisputed paradigm was that of contrastive linguistics, i.e. the study of cross-language correspondences between language pairs. In keeping with this, early linguistic theories of translation were more focused on the formal traits of language than on the features that characterise them today, which are the relations between language patterns, the translators using them and the social/cultural context in which they were used (cf. Baker 2000: 31–32). Crucially, however, by the early 1970s translation was also taking its first steps as an autonomous discipline. The traditional starting point for this process is set in the paper “The Name and Nature of Translation Studies”, delivered in Amsterdam in 1972 at the Third International Conference of Applied Linguistics by James Holmes, who coined the name ‘Translation Studies’

© The Author(s) 2020 F. Scarpa, Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation, Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting, https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51967-2_1

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to highlight the interdisciplinary and humanistic nature of translation (Holmes 1988 [1972]). In the early 1980s, the concepts of ‘textual domains’ and ‘similar communicative situations’ of the source text and target text (from now onwards, ST and TT respectively) were introduced in translation via the text-linguistic paradigm and within a more general ‘pragmatic turn’1 of linguistics (Snell-Hornby 2006: 35–40). These two concepts proved to be particularly useful in specialised translation because they provided the basis for ‘comparable’ texts, called back then ‘parallel texts’, which are texts similar in topic and text type that were produced independently of each other by the source language and target language (from now onwards, SL and TL respectively) and are a crucial source of information for specialised translators. In the same decade, a new paradigm of translation also began to emerge, which moved beyond a purely linguistic approach and was both process-oriented and interdisciplinary. Despite being still viewed as a fundamentally linguistic activity, translation began to be seen, on the one hand, as having its focus on the process of translating (hence the so-called ‘translation process research’ or TPR) rather than on the translation product (i.e. the translated text) and, on the other, encompassing components from other neighbouring disciplines as well as the various specialised domains of the texts to be translated. In the wake of this paradigm shift, Translation Studies also began to be viewed as a discipline that itself influences the conceptual and methodological frameworks of other research areas. The new focus on process has also inevitably brought the academic discipline of Translation Studies closer to the professional practice of translation and the practical methodology for producing and revising translations. It has also reduced the predominance of linguistics, which continues nevertheless to be crucial in a discipline that is still inevitably anchored in language. This introductory chapter provides a first stab at defining the scope of specialised translation, which will be discussed in more detail at the beginning of Chap. 2. In the first part of the chapter (Sect. 1.1), my general goal will be to define the object of specialised translation, i.e. Languages for Special Purposes or LSPs, which are also called with the collective term ‘specialised (or LSP) discourse’ to reflect more clearly the specialist user and domain of use of language in contexts which are typical

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of a specialist community, either academic or professional or technical (cf. Gotti 2011: 15). Indeed, it is because of these different contexts that, besides the formal differences of LSPs resulting from the different specialised topics, there is also a pragmatic variation of LSPs’ features in response to different situations of language use (Sect. 1.1.1). After an overview of the general pragmatic criteria of use of LSPs (Sect. 1.2.1) and the general formal features which are distinctive of LSPs vs. everyday language (Sect. 1.2.2), using a top-down approach I next analyse the linguistic features of LSPs at the levels of text, syntax and terminology (Sect. 1.2.3–1.2.5). In the succeeding two sections of the chapter, I will then discuss the dominance of Anglo-American models in the communication of scientific and technological knowledge, especially in academic discourse (1.3), and the importance of specialised translation in today’s language industry (1.4). In the final section of the chapter (1.5), I will define contrastively specialised translation vis-à-vis literary translation, despite sharing Rogers’ (2015: 2) view that these two translation macroareas are in fact not in opposition but complementary one to the other.

1.1 Defining Special Languages Special languages are language varieties found in documents with a predominant emphasis on the information they convey and directed to a more or less restricted target specialist community, ranging from experts to laypersons and having very specific professionally or subject-related communicative needs and expectations. In a restricted sense, these language varieties are characterised by (1) distinctive terminological features and (2) a specialised use of textual, syntactical and lexical features which have been drawn from ‘general’ everyday language, the so-called ‘Language for General Purposes’ (LGP, from now onwards ‘general language’). These features are in fact not exclusive of LSPs but only more frequent than in general language, so that between LSPs and general language there is more a continuum than a clear-cut delimitation (e.g. Varantola 1986). The specific features of LSPs are used in pragmatically specific ways to provide scientists and professionals with the most effective and functional communication tool for specific topics and activities, and also serve as a

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social tool to recognise and acknowledge their users’ shared belonging to a specific group of specialists. Between the specialised knowledge of a given discipline and its specialised discourse there is in fact a particularly close relationship. The language of science represents a case in point. The linguist who stands out above the rest for his cognitive view of the indivisibility of language from scientific content is Michael Halliday (1993[1988]: 74): “it is the practice, the activity of ‘doing science’, that is enacted in the forms of the language […]. It is this reality that is construed in scientific discourse”. An even stronger version of the homology between scientific knowledge and the language used to convey it is typically held by scientists, who stress the differences between, on the one hand, the different ‘universes’ created by the contents, procedures and argumentation practices of different disciplines and, on the other, between the LSPs of each discipline, with each LSP “creating a new way of perceiving the universe” (Bruschi 1999: 56, my translation and emphasis in the original). The special languages that will be dealt with in this book as being the object of specialised translation do not include LSPs in a broad sense, i.e. language varieties which, despite being typical of specific topics and communicative contexts, are not characterised by homogeneous distinctive features especially—though not exclusively—at the lexical/terminological level. Examples of this broader type of LSPs are the language of texts written for potential tourists (e.g. tourist guides and travelogues) and also the language of politics, whose terminological features are not distinctive but are rather drawn from other LSPs, such as the languages of law, economics, finance, administration etc., and indeed the LSP of any specialised domain which happens to be the specific topic of the communication activity. Neither do they include jargons, which despite being characterised by distinctive lexical features, are language varieties based more on specific groups of users than on specialised topics (e.g. youth urban slang). Instead, the object of study of this book are the LSPs found in ‘sci-tech’ texts, which are typically translated in the context of science and technology. Strictly speaking, whilst being complementary, science and technology designate different, if related, knowledge domains. To put it in a nutshell, “science produces ideas whereas technology results in the production of

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usable objects” (Wolpert 1992: 25). The goal of science is the study of objective truths about the world using a systematic process called the ‘scientific method’, which is the foundation of modern scientific enquiry and involves the following four basic steps: identification of a problem; formulation of a hypothesis; practical or theoretical testing of the hypothesis; rejection or adjustment of the hypothesis if it is falsified (Walliman 2011: 177). Technology, on the other hand, is the practical application of science to create products that can solve problems and do tasks. From a linguistic point of view, the language of science is concept-oriented whilst in technology it is object-oriented (Newmark 1988: 155). Another difference concerns the explicitation of the criteria to be adhered to and the terminology to be used, which has to be carried out in science but not in technology (Dardano 1994: 501). However, despite these distinctions and the associated need to differentiate between scientific translation and technical translation (cf. Byrne 2012: 2–3; Rogers 2015: 21–22) and, more generally, despite the great variety of special languages associated with different disciplinary domains and communicative settings, in this book I will concentrate on the communicative features shared by scientific and technical texts, resulting in more similarities than differences with regard to text-type conventions (Göpferich 1995: 307). The very similar translation challenges and approaches existing between scientific and technical texts (see Olohan 2016: 6–7) justify the one category ‘specialised translation’ that is the object of this book.

1.1.1 Axes of Variation of LSPs If we accept that special languages are not a homogeneous entity but are characterised by a great degree of internal variation, which is related to the different situations in which they are produced and used, then LSPs should be viewed in terms of specialised registers. These are varieties of language that users consider appropriate to specific situations, govern the selection of linguistic features at all the levels of a text (Halliday et al. 1965) and contribute to implementing different textual genres (House 1997: 107). By viewing LSPs as registers, the specificity of specialised texts is more immediately recognisable based on the parameter of field,

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i.e. the disciplinary domain of the text as reflected mainly in its terminology (e.g. medical, legal, economic etc.) and providing the ‘horizontal’ dimension of variation of specialised discourse. In specialised registers it is in fact mostly the content that takes care of meeting the very specific professionally or subject-related communicative needs and expectations of specialised discourse communities, and produces for the translator the most immediate and intuitive way of classifying LSP texts. When dealing with specialised content, a useful distinction between scientific disciplines is that between ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ sciences. ‘Hard’ (or ‘physical’) sciences (physics, maths, biology, chemistry, engineering, medicine etc.) are disciplines that explore the workings of the natural world, whilst ‘soft’ (or ‘human’ or ‘social’) sciences (law, economics, sociology, psychology, anthropology etc.) are disciplines that deal with phenomena occurring inside society. In line with this distinction, hard and soft sciences apply the scientific method with different rigour and objectivity owing to the: • Different nature of the phenomena being studied: unlike hard sciences, the world studied by soft sciences is extremely complex, reflecting the fact that human behaviour is only marginally predictable and social phenomena (e.g. production techniques, organisation of labour, migration flows) are not immutable but vary along the axis of time. • Empirical verification and testing of an initial hypothesis: unlike hard sciences, controlled experiments cannot be carried out in soft sciences, where the lack of laboratory testing means that each statement is inevitably tied to elements of an interpretative and subjective nature. • Different degree of certainty of results, which is absolute in hard sciences but not in soft sciences, where the results are better described as being ‘tendencies’ with or without statistical significance. On its own, however, the horizontal dimension of LSPs based on content/terminology is not a sufficient basis of classification of specialised discourse. The first reason is that formal typologies based only on the field of discourse implicitly confirm the identification of LSPs with their terminologies, a false tenet that has traditionally not only dominated the study of LSPs until the 1980s, but also—more relevantly—relegated specialised translation to little more than a transfer of ‘technical terms’.

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Secondly, because each LSP is not a closed system, there is a constant interchange of terminology between different specialised domains (cf. Varantola 1986: 11), which can make the attribution of a text to a single specialised field rather difficult. A good example is the interdisciplinary language of economics, which besides strictly economic terms encompasses also terms from the legal, fiscal, political and mathematical special languages; or the language of patents, which strictly speaking is legal but typically contains also a considerable amount of technical (engineering) terminology. There is, however, an even more fundamental reason why ‘static’ classifications based exclusively on the horizontal dimension of LSPs are of little use to translators and should be integrated with more sociological and pragmatic considerations. Indeed, such taxonomies do not cater for the fact that the same specialised content can be dealt with in different ways in different types of text: e.g. the results of the same genetics experiment as published in a scientific journal vs. a newspaper. Specialised discourse is in fact sufficiently flexible and dynamic to respond to the different situations in which it is used, ranging from experts conveying to other experts highly complex scientific contents to other, very different, purposes, such as explaining and popularising science. Consequently, the parameter of field cannot single-handedly account for either the different depths of complexity of the content of specialised discourse in response to different discourse communities, or the other communicative functions that LSP texts may have on top of the main one of transmitting information. This is the so-called ‘vertical’ or ‘pragmatic’ dimension of specialised discourse, accounting for the fact that the LSP writer is expected to choose, besides the field, also the other two parameters of register, i.e. the appropriate tenor (the relationships between the people taking part in the discourse, typically the level of formality) and mode of discourse (both the role that language is playing, e.g. speech, essay, instructions etc., and the medium of transmission, i.e. spoken, written) (cf. Baker 2011: 14). The vertical dimension refers then to the context in which an LSP text occurs, where ‘context’ can be regarded in either of two different perspectives:

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• the external situational context of use and wider cultural context in which the text is embedded (social/cultural context), i.e. how situational, social and cultural factors affect the contextual constraints on a text and its appropriateness (Austin 1962; Searle 1969, 1975); • the internal cognitive factors that can influence one another in linguistic acts (cognitive context) (Faber 2009: 66–67; House 2016: 60, 63), i.e. how cognitive principles—such as previous knowledge, writer and readers’ intentions, expectations and beliefs—govern both the linguistic formulation by the writer of the text and the inferential processes leading to the final interpretation of its meaning by the text receiver (Grice 1975; Sperber and Wilson 1995[1986]; Levinson 1983, 2000). Reflecting the fact that the same specialised content can be dealt with in different ways according to both the text’s situation/use and the writer’s and reader’s intentions, in LSP texts the main pragmatic factors influencing the formal features of discourse are the following four, which will be addressed in turn in the rest of this section: • • • •

the social interaction between writer and reader, the main communicative function of the text, the purpose of the addressee in reading the LSP document, the relationship between LSP writer and the object of his study.

1.1.1.1  Social Writer/Reader Interaction The strong link between language and the situation in which it is produced and used determines an internal stratification of each LSP corresponding to different levels of discourse specialisation, with each LSP variation being characterised by a conventional situation of use and standard appropriateness conditions (see the four Gricean maxims in Sect. 1.2.1). The same specialised topic can in fact be presented differently to different readers by taking into account the different degree of background knowledge of the specialised topic that the reader can be assumed to possess. When looking at texts in their context of production, meaning is derived not only from what is said but also from what is not said (cf.

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Saldanha and O’Brien 2013: 82), and at each level of specialisation the writer can accordingly leave implicit in his2 communication some information that he assumes the reader already has in order to arrive at a coherent interpretation of the text. Given that the higher the specialisation level of a text the more information can be assumed to be shared by the readers and left implicit in the text, the degree of implicitness of what is actually written (‘linguistic underdeterminacy’) is at its highest in the symmetrical communicative situation of expert-to-expert discourse (Krüger 2015: 78). As observed by Gotti (2011: 17–18), there are three main situations leading to as many levels of specificity in LSP language use where the specialist may address a topic relating to his profession. The first is when an expert addresses other specialists for academic or professional purposes, with the writer taking for granted that his addressees share his specialised knowledge: in ‘peer or academic writing’, the specific terminology and conventionalised patterns of the LSP textual genre are frequently used and definitions are only seldom provided. The second situation is when a specialist addresses non-specialists for educational or instructional purposes: in ‘learning texts’, the writer explains the concepts of the specialised discipline using its LSP and defines terminology whenever it occurs for the first time, with the aim of making non-specialists become specialists. At this same level of specialisation, in ‘instructional texts’ the aim of the writer is to enable users to perform a given task. The third situation is the level of ‘popular science’, when the specialist addresses the general public or interested layperson to give information of a technical nature using as little as possible LSP terminology and providing only few definitions. Besides these three main levels of specialisation, two other possible situations of special language use are when the technician addresses, often informally, other technicians for eminently practical occupational purposes, i.e. Trimble’s (1985: 5–6) ‘technician writing’ and Pinchuck’s (1977: 13–16; 161–165) ‘workshop discourse’, and when the specialist addresses either other specialists or non-­specialists with a promotional aim, i.e. Pinchuck’s ‘sales discourse’. The different writer-reader relationship implied in each communicative situation is also carried out by different linguistic features which have to be re-created in translation. For example, compared to the author of academic science

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writings, the writer of popular science uses linguistic resources to construct solidarity with non-specialist readers (Parkinson and Adendorff 2004) and cohesion has to be created very carefully, because it cannot be provided by readers with no or little previous specialised knowledge (Musacchio 2017a: 56).

1.1.1.2  Main Communicative Function of the Text The second pragmatic factor influencing the formal features of LSP discourse is the text’s communicative function, i.e. what the writer is trying to achieve with his text, which of course needs to be interpreted correctly by the addressee/translator in order for the act of communication to be carried out successfully. This is particularly true in LSP texts, where the author’s intentionality is expected to be transparent or least opaque, i.e. to inform with minimal expenditure of unnecessary effort on the reader’s part (cf. Sect. 1.2.1). Communicative functions rank higher and are more abstract than the ‘speech acts’ realising them, which are verbal actions that accomplish something, such as requests, warnings, invitations, promises, apologies, predictions, and the like.3 As the taxonomies of speech acts devised by Austin (1962) and developed further by Searle (1969, 1975) make no discrimination between specialised and non-specialised texts, at a lower level of analysis of LSP texts the alternative notion of ‘rhetorical function (or purpose)’ will be used (cf. Sect. 1.2.3). Roman Jakobson’s (1960) functional model of language use, which the Russian-American structural linguist developed from Karl Buhler’s ‘Organon theory’, encompasses six macrofunctions of language (expressive, poetic, conative, referential, metalinguistic and phatic), each oriented to one of the factors of communication (respectively: sender, message, receiver, context, common code and contact). In the case of LSP discourse, it is unquestionable that the writer’s functional needs are mainly referential, i.e. oriented to the exchange of information between two or more people, what Jakobson refers to as ‘context’, i.e. the thing ‘spoken of ’ and its truth value in the reference universe. However, given that any text is fundamentally multi-functional, even LSPs cannot be reduced to having the sole function of transmitting information and

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knowledge, as most scientists and, more generally, subject specialists would typically claim. Exemplary of such a ‘pure’ and ‘aseptic’ view of special languages is the claim that the language of science “aims at describing the world and explaining its events on the basis of evidence and explicit argumentations: it seeks neither to persuade nor exhort” (Bruschi 1999: 55, my translation). Such an idealistic view of science has now been replaced among linguists by a more realistic one taking into account the different intentions and social motivations behind the production of LSP texts. Consequently, alongside the main function to inform, i.e. increase the readers’ specialised knowledge, other communicative functions of LSP texts are the following four: • the metalinguistic function, which is essential not only because of the above-mentioned indivisibility of special language from specialised content, but also because the creation of definitions and new words involves explicit considerations on the use of language; • the conative function, when the LSP author aims at motivating the readers, i.e. make them do something that otherwise they would not do, e.g. pursue a new avenue of scientific enquiry, buy new equipment and, typically in technical instructions, guide the user to learn a procedure or operate a piece of machinery; • the phatic function, to keep contact with the reader besides merely conveying information, e.g. the informal user-friendly approach typical of many English-American instruction manuals (cf. also Sects. 2.3 and 2.4); • the expressive function, associated to (a) any segment of LSP text where the writer expresses a set of opinions or beliefs with the aim of persuading the readers, i.e. change their opinions and certainties by convincing them of the validity and importance of what he communicates, and (b) figurative language, which, as we shall see (cf. Sect. 1.2.5.3), in the language of scientific research and description can be considered as a fundamental cognitive tool. A further function that can be associated to special-language use and is not part of Jakobson’s model is what has been called ‘identifying function’ (Balboni 2000: 22, 24, 48), because it provides LSP producers with a

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means of identity construction and social recognition, as they need to master a specific communicative style in order to be recognised as members of a specific ‘discourse community’ (Swales 1990) sharing collective interests and values.

1.1.1.3  Purpose of the Reader The third pragmatic factor influencing the formal features of LSP discourse is the purpose of the receiver in reading a specialised text, because the different ways of reading a LSP text produce in turn different writing strategies. Although in general discourse the reader’s pragmatic goal may be different from the aims of the producer’s ‘intended readers’, in specialised discourse this does not normally happen. The reader may read a LSP text in order to: (1) do something, in which case the text can be considered merely as a reference that the reader uses to look for information needed only when having to perform a given task (e.g. instruction manuals, reference and user guides, operating or installation instructions); (2) learn something, when the text is read and studied from beginning to end because the reader needs to remember its content (e.g. treatises, textbooks etc.); (3) assess the text’s future usability, when it is read very quickly in its entirety or only partially (title, abstract, introduction, conclusion) but not for an immediate need. Pragmatic goals (1) and (2) correspond to two separate subcategories of the category ‘Didactic-instructive LSP texts’ in Göpferich’s (1995: 312–313) pragmatic classification of LSP texts, where recognition of a given textual genre is instrumental in both raising the expectations of its readers and determining the writer’s assumptions about the readers’ background knowledge and expectations. The first subcategory is that of ‘Man-technology interaction-oriented texts’, “written for the purpose of facilitating the practical use of objects (substances, tools or devices)”, where “the reader […] shifts his or her attention between the text and the object described”. These are ‘bidirectional’ texts, where the first direction is provided by the receiver handling or operating the objects according to the instructions in the text and the second by the ‘reaction’ of the object. The second subcategory of Göpferich’s ‘Didactic-instructive LSP texts’ is that of ‘Theoretical texts’,

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where the receiver concentrates on the text alone. These are instead ‘unidirectional’ texts, where “information flows from the text to the reader only”.

1.1.1.4  Writer’s Relationship with Subject Matter The fourth pragmatic factor influencing the formal features of LSP discourse is the relationship between the LSP writer and the text’s subject matter. Given that, whatever the nature of the subject matter, the writer’s language both presents and constructs a certain world view and represents certain identity positions about himself and others (Saldanha and O’Brien 2013: 82), in LSP discourse a distinction can be made between hard and soft sciences concerning the personal involvement of the producer with his content and the level of subjectivity emerging in his writing. Whilst nuclear physicists study natural phenomena, e.g. elementary particles, which they are not involved in emotionally and do not identify with because these phenomena basically remain external to them, economists investigate the economic problems of a society that they are an integral part of, which entails that they cannot be absolutely objective in their studies as they are inevitably influenced by their own personal opinions and value judgements. This distinction is however not as clear-cut as it appears. For one thing, in some social sciences such as economics there is a growing bias towards the use of depersonalising quantitative research methods (mathematical models, theories and hypotheses) which is replacing the traditional philosophical and sociological foundations of the discipline. For another, this distinction is becoming somewhat blurred also in the natural sciences, as suggested by the new approach to science proposed in the 1950s and 1960s by some philosophers of science, among whom Thomas Kuhn and Paul Feyerabend are key figures, which also has important consequences for the language of science. This new approach challenged the traditional positivist conceptions of scientific progress where later science improves on earlier science by moving closer to the truth. In particular, Kuhn (1970[1962]) developed the view that science progresses through a

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revolutionary process whereby an older paradigm is rejected and replaced by an incompatible new one. This ‘incommensurability’ among different scientific theories not only denies a unique scientific method but also has an impact on the language used for reporting observable phenomena and objects, which is not seen any more as shared and semantically invariant but is considered as context-­dependent on alternative scientific theories, so that the vocabulary of one theory cannot be translated into the vocabulary of the other (Sankie 2000). An example is provided by Musacchio (2017a: 18) with the meaning shift of the term atom, which in early twentieth century physics changed from being ‘the smallest, indivisible particle’, as expressed in its Greek origin, to ‘a divisible particle consisting of protons, neutrons and electrons’. This new sociological approach to science entails that there is a difference between ‘normal’ science—where a scientist accepts the validity of an existing paradigm and, as a writer, aims at describing a scientific fact—and ‘revolutionary’ science—where a scientist aims at establishing a new paradigm which is partially incompatible with the existing one and also at changing the dominant writing paradigms. As pertains to language proper, it also entails that, even in traditionally hard sciences, the language used by scientists becomes less neutral and impersonal, because, just like in literature, it is the product of the individual’s creativity (Sankie 2000). Such a personalisation of scientific communication can be seen in the choice of language expressing the author’s subjectivity and his stance both to the content of the text and towards the reader (cf. Sect. 1.2.4.4).

1.2 Main Language Features of LSPs After identifying the horizontal and vertical axes of variation influencing the formal features of LSP discourse, this section deals with the actual distinctive linguistic features characterising specialised communication. But before doing so, there are three preliminary general issues to be considered. First of all, despite the fact that the formal features described in the following pages are those of English specialised discourse, these characteristics can also be taken to apply to the specialised discourse of most

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other languages (cf. Cronin 1998; Bennett 2011: 190) (cf. Sect. 1.3). Secondly, even within English specialised discourse, not all the distinctive features of LSPs are in fact applicable to all special languages and, within any one LSP, to its various textual genres (cf. Gotti 2011: 21). Yet, despite the fact that these features may be excessively generalised, it is still useful for the specialised translator to be familiar with the conventionalised characteristics of LSP communication in highly specialised situations and also the related general rule that, the more specialised a text and specific a situation, the less relevant becomes the individual style of the writer as compared to the accepted conventions of the discourse community which he is addressing. A third consideration is that, at all levels of specialisation, LSP norms and conventions are much more stringent than in general discourse because their function is to express a given content in the way that is most effective (in achieving its communicative purpose) and efficient (in achieving a balance between results obtained and allocated resources). This is how such conventionalised characterics determine, for each LSP and textual genre, linguistic appropriateness in a specific situation of use. The overwhelmingly instrumental character of LSPs makes it in fact of paramount importance for the writer to use a conventional code to help the reader focus as much as possible on the information content of a text and its complexity (cf. the ‘code condition’ of specialised communication in Sager et al. 1980: 52). Given the already-mentioned close interrelationship of formal features of language and pragmatic criteria of use, the first part of this section (Sect. 1.2.1) will focus on the general functional criteria governing the linguistic choices made in specialised discourse. The bulk of the section (Sects. 1.2.2–1.2.5) will then be devoted to a description of how these pragmatic criteria are in turn reflected in the distinctive features of LSPs at the textual, syntactic and lexical levels. The perspective adopted is that, despite the fact that much importance has been traditionally placed on terminology (and phraseology), these in fact make up only a small part of a technical or scientific text, where the most frequent words are taken from the general language and genre-specific syntactic and stylistic conventions play a very important role (Musacchio 2006: 173). Hence, in the analysis of the distinctive linguistic features of LSPs, textual and syntactic aspects have been given more space than terminological features.

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1.2.1 General Pragmatic Criteria In LSP discourse, the writer’s assumptions with regard to the readers’ background knowledge (level of specialisation), beliefs and attitudes towards reality (which are normally shared) and motivations (learn about new scientific results, convince themselves of the validity of a theory, use a product etc.) are pivotal in his choices for the presentation of specialised content (cf. Sect. 1.1.1.3). These background assumptions made in the process of communication make up the pragmatic concept of ‘presuppositions’ (Baker 2011: 234–239, 271–272, 302; Munday 2012: 148–150).4 In a very general sense, to be effective and efficient, specialised communication should comply with the four maxims of Grice’s (1975: 41–58) ‘Cooperative Principle’ of communication, to be abided by both producer and reader: make your contribution true (maxim of quality), make your contribution as informative as required but not more (maxim of quantity), avoid obscurity and ambiguity (maxim of manner) and make your contribution relevant to the situation (maxim of relevance). Any deliberate non-compliance with any of these four maxims leads to an ‘implicature’, a pragmatic concept referring to what the producer means or implies rather than what he explicitly or literally says (Baker 2011: 302). An example of implicature in LSP discourse is provided by the aim of promoting the author’s own findings or a product, which can be found across different LSP genres: technical instructions, scientific research articles and abstracts, technical data sheets and brochures (Olohan 2016: 58, 71, 80, 85, 159). In this specific case the implicature arises from flouting the maxim of quality, because the rigorous self-effacing techniques of exposition and argumentation governing the objectivity that should characterise the style of LSP writing are in fact used by the author to render “contentious, positioned and interested representations a matter of general ‘common sense’” (Fairclough 2003: 82). However, it is important to note that implicature is not an instance of downright miscommunication: for an implicature to have been successfully generated by the writer, the intended reader should in fact be (supposedly) able to understand what the writer is driving at.

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Closely linked to the major pragmatic concepts of presupposition and implicature are those of coherence and cohesion. At the level of text organisation, the efficiency and effectiveness of a specialised text (its ‘texture’) are provided by its being coherent and cohesive. Coherence is “the network of conceptual relations which underlie the surface text” (Baker 2011: 230, 232, 300), i.e. the way a text ‘hangs together’ from the logical and semantic viewpoints. Such a network of mainly lexical and grammatical relations organises and creates a text by establishing continuity of sense and is the result of the interaction between knowledge presented in the text and the reader’s own presupposed knowledge. Coherence is realised in the text by cohesion, which is “the network of lexical, grammatical and other relations which provides links between various parts of a text” (Baker 2011: 190) and the manifestation of underlying coherence at the surface level of discourse. In LSP discourse, whatever the level of specialisation, a coherent and cohesive text is one exhibiting a ‘transparent’ style (Leech and Short 1981: 19, 29; Snell-Hornby 1988: 120–124), a dynamic notion meaning the correct and accepted use (i.e. the ‘unmarked’ norm) by the (more or less) specialist community addressed by the text, as opposed to an ‘opaque’ style, representing instead a creative extension of the norm and, consequently, a deviation from it. Transparency in this specific sense of ‘clarity’ can then be considered to be the direct outcome of the pragmatic requirement of ‘appropriateness’, i.e. the suitability of a text to a specific communicative situation (Sager et al. 1980: 206ff.) and the ability of a specialist writer to communicate the same content effectively and efficiently in different ways to different receivers. That of appropriateness is a superordinate requirement of the three pragmatic features of LSP discourse—precision, economy and objectivity—and is an admittedly ‘fuzzy’ criterion (cf. Gotti 2011: 22) given that the degree of pervasiveness and solidity with which these three requirements inform the different linguistic levels of LSP texts is not constant but decreases as communicative situations become less specialised. These general pragmatic criteria are not exclusive of LSPs but are rather features inherent to the referential dimension (at the expense of the interpersonal one) of the general language system to which specialised communication belongs. Given however their particular relevance in LSPs, in a description of the characteristics of special languages which is to be

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functional to the main goal and aims of the specialised translator such as the one in this book, listing these features provides a useful insight that may guide translators in both making their decisions and assessing the quality of a translation (cf. Sect. 4.2). The pragmatic feature of referential ‘precision’ entails absence of ambiguity (Ortony 1993: 1) and, at the level of terminology, includes the requirements of ‘monoreferentiality’ (the biunivocal relationship between term and concept for any given context) and ‘transparency’ (of a term’s meaning through its surface form). For example, in medical language, hepatic encephalopathy is immediately recognisable as meaning ‘a neuropsychiatric (encephalo-) syndrome (-pathy) affecting patients with liver (hepatic) disfunction’. At the higher linguistic levels, precision entails lack of ambiguity of both syntactic constructs (each sentence or group of words having only one possible meaning) and text organisation (logical structuring of flow of information and thematic progression; textual standardisation of different genres; logical and consistent use of cohesive devices etc.). An example of precision at these levels is the basic rhetorical principle of parallelism, whereby paragraphs on comparable phenomena should have a parallel grammatical structure. The parallelism principle is important for the readability and comprehensibility of a text because it increases the predictability of what comes next in the text: hence, infringing it5 makes the text more difficult to process. The pragmatic requirement of ‘economy’ entails a communicative use of language which is efficient, i.e. not redundant, and also achieving an optimum balance between maximum differentiation among linguistic items (maximum communicative effectiveness) and minimal processing effort on the part of receivers (see Jiří Levý’s ‘minimax principle’, quoted in Pym 2012: 136). Such an optimal use of linguistic structures can be achieved by expressing concepts in the shortest possible form by condensing and compacting information (conciseness) and avoiding structural and textual redundancy (simplicity) (cf. Varantola 1986: 15). As noted by Bennett (2011: 192–193), the need for conciseness entailing a reduction in textual surface was a linguistic consequence of the major epistemological shift of the 1600s and early 1700s from the old system of deductive reasoning to inductive logic, the so-called ‘European Scientific Revolution’. To build upon findings that had already been described and

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discussed in some detail, scientists had in fact to find a way of presenting them in a more concise form in subsequent references. At the level of syntax, this summarisation of previous findings was carried out mainly via the process of nominalisation, whereby the information contained in clauses was packed into complex nominal groups (Halliday and Martin 1993) (cf. Sect. 1.2.4.1). In such a regrammaticalisation, conciseness also entailed the feature of ‘simplicity’, with the structure of sentences and clauses in the language of science becoming much simpler than in general language: Fire intensity has a profound effect on smoke injection instead of ‘If a fire is intense it will give off a lot of smoke’ (Halliday 2004[1999]: 105). However, even for the specialist reader, economy at the level of syntax is a pragmatic feature that can clash with the requirement of referential precision: in English, ambiguities can in fact arise when having to explicitate the semantic and syntactic relations left implicit in the strings of nouns making up complex nominal groups, or determine the true meaning of often indeterminate verbs such as mean, be associated with etc. (Halliday 1993[1988]: 67–68) (cf. Sects. 1.2.2 and 1.2.4). By contrast, in the formation of LSP terms, economy enhances referential precision for the specialist reader and is responsible for many morphological processes of word-creation, which in special languages are far more frequent than in general language: examples are affixation (e.g. Hyperproteinemia instead of ‘increase in the concentration of protein in the bloodstream’) and abbreviation (the acronym CAT or CT for computerised axial tomography) (cf. Sect. 1.2.5.2). A third pragmatic requirement to emerge from the Scientific Revolution was that of ‘objectivity’, whereby “[m]odern factual discourse is predicated upon the belief that there exists an external reality that is independent of human perception and sign systems, which can be observed, analysed and discussed in an entirely objective fashion” (Bennett 2011: 191). Given that the main function of LSPs is to inform, LSP style strives to be as impartial, detached and objective as possible and is governed by rigorous techniques of exposition and argumentation. At the level of syntax, a style such as this—characterised by apparent lack of emotion (Gotti 2011: 26–27) and impersonality (Hoffmann 1984), where the emphasis is on a static world formed entirely of ‘things’ (cf. Halliday and Martin 1993)—is underpinned by nominalisation, “a new noun-based grammar

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that ultimately removed the subjective observer from the picture altogether” (Bennett 2011: 190–191). Nevertheless, as already noted (cf. Sect. 1.1.1.4), even the most specialised texts are never only informative, because besides increasing scientific and technical knowledge, they have also other pragmatic purposes (obtain support, raise funding, sensitise the public) and their supposed neutrality is no more than a linguistic construct (Musacchio 2017b: 53). The need to create an identity as a credible researcher is at its highest in the communication of popular science or in a LSP genre such as the biographical statement that accompanies a research article. The same principle also applies to LSP academic discourse and, as observed by Hyland and Tse (2012: 155), represents “probably the most explicit assertion of self-representation in scholarly life” in juxtaposition to the prescribed anonymity of the article.

1.2.2 H  alliday’s ‘Syndrome of Features’ of the Language of Science Taken as a whole, the three pragmatic characteristics of precision, economy and objectivity seem to me to provide a complementary approach to Halliday’s categories of description of the linguistic resources characterising scientific English, rather than an alternative to it (Musacchio 2017a: 42–43). Summing up Halliday’s (1993[1988]: 54, 67) perspective, the linguist identifies what he calls a ‘prototypical syndrome of features’, tending to cluster together and in which “the practice, the activity of ‘doing science’ […] is enacted […]. It is this reality that is construed in scientific discourse”, so that “‘learning science’ is the same thing as learning the language of science” (Halliday 1993[1989]: 70, 84). More specifically, he sees seven closely related ‘lexicogrammatical’6 features as characteristic of scientific (English) discourse and causing difficulty to the novice (i.e. non-scientist): interlocking definitions, technical taxonomies, special expressions, lexical density, syntactic ambiguity, semantic discontinuity and grammatical metaphor. Each will be briefly dealt with in this section.

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A series of ‘interlocking definitions’ is a technical construction in which a cluster of related concepts are all used to define each other. For example, the definitions of the terms circle, centre, radius, diameter and circumference in: A circle is a plane curve with the special property that every point on it is at the same distance from a particular point called the centre. This distance is called the radius of the circle. The diameter of the circle is twice the radius. The length of the circle is called its circumference. (Halliday 1993[1989]: 72, emphasis in the original)

The related feature of ‘technical taxonomies’ refers to the organisation of technical concepts in highly ordered constructions (taxonomies) in which every term has a definite functional value and derives its meaning only from its semantic relationship with the other concepts in the same taxonomy. This makes technical taxonomies closely linked to Kuhn’s notion of ‘semantic incommensurability’ among different scientific paradigms (Sect. 1.1.1.4). The two fundamental semantic relationships on which a technical taxonomy is based are superordination (‘A is a kind of X’) and composition (‘B is a part of Y’). For example, different kinds of climate are tropical, sub-tropical, temperate, cold (which, in turn, can be boreal, polar or highland) or dry (superordination), whilst the various parts of the climate system are solar radiation, temperature, pressure systems and atmospheric moisture (composition) (Halliday 1993[1989]: 73). The feature that Halliday calls ‘special expressions’ are basically LSP collocations (cf. Sect. 1.2.5), i.e. “features which tend to go together in modern scientific writing, forming a kind of syndrome by which we recognize that something is written in the language of science” (Halliday 1993[1989]: 75). Examples are standardised constructs such as establish a framework for, evidence suggests that…, perform a test etc. An important feature of the language of science is ‘lexical density’, i.e. “a measure of the density of information in any passage of text, according to how tightly the lexical items (content words) have been packed into the grammatical structure” (Halliday 1993[1989]: 76). In English, lexical density can be measured as the number of lexical words per clause, where lexical words are “those which belong in the dictionary” (Halliday

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2004[1997]: 195)—such as nouns, adjectives, verbs and adverbs—rather than in the grammar, like ‘grammatical, or function, words’—such as prepositions, pronouns, conjunctions, articles, auxiliaries etc.—although distinguishing between the two categories is not always straightforward. Other ways of measuring lexical density are the ratio of the number of lexical words to the running words (tokens) in a text and the ratio of the amount of lexical words to the total number of ranking clauses (i.e. paratactical, hypotactical and independent clauses) in that text (cf. Castello 2008: 49ff.). Within the general tendency for written language to have a higher lexical density than speech, because it is more planned and more formal than the latter, the lexical density of scientific writing is particularly high because almost all the lexical words occur inside nominal groups. Given the predominantly nominal style of the LSP text, an increase in lexical density correlates with an increase of processing difficulty by the reader but also with a decrease in both the syntactic complexity of the text and the intricacy of sentence structure, i.e. the ratio of the total number of independent and paratactically/hypotactically related clauses, on the one hand, and the total number of sentences, on the other (cf. Castello 2008) (cf. Sect. 1.2.4.1). The features of ‘syntactic ambiguity’ and ‘semantic discontinuity’ occur in scientific writing because the author assumes that, in order to draw highly complex conclusions, the readers can identify the nature of semantic leaps or provide themselves the missing logical relationships between processes (e.g. inter-sentential connectives such as indeed, however etc.) (Halliday 1993[1989]: 82–83). As we shall see later in the book (Sects. 2.3.2 and 3.2.2), semantic gaps of this type are more typical of English than other scientific languages and providing the missing logical-­semantic links in the TT can be part of the specialised translator’s task. An example is the sentence Lung cancer death rates are clearly associated with increased smoking, where it is not clear whether the verbal form are associated with indicates a relationship of cause and effect and, if yes, which causes which (Halliday 1993[1989]: 77) (cf. Sect. 1.2.1). The final feature of ‘grammatical metaphor’ (and especially ‘nominalisation’, its most evident form,) certainly plays a prominent role in scientific discourse because both a high lexical density and syntactic ambiguity can be considered to be ‘by-products’ of this process (Halliday 1993[1989]:

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79). Indeed, as noted by Palumbo (2007: 79–80), grammatical metaphor is often taken as an ‘umbrella’ concept for all the seven features of the English language of science, especially in studies of translation difficulty within the domain of Machine Translation. Whilst in lexico-semantic metaphor one lexical item (word) can be taken to be a substitution of another (e.g. Aminoacids are the building blocks of proteins), in grammatical metaphor one ‘congruent’ unmarked grammatical structure is substituted by another ‘incongruent’ marked realisation: e.g. glass crack growth rate instead of ‘how quickly cracks in glass grow’ (Halliday 1993[1989]: 79). Here the process (cracks) is ‘frozen’ and, via nominalisation, reduced to the grammatical status of a ‘thing’. An important point that Halliday makes throughout his writings on the language of science is that these seven features are suitable for experts but problematic for novices, not because “[scientific] language is difficult to understand” but because it is “a difficulty that is inherent in the nature of science itself ” (Halliday 1993[1989]: 70) and, if anything, is in fact increasing for the non-specialist (see Hayes 1992). On the real extent to which Halliday’s cluster of features causing difficulty to the non-specialist can be used also to describe the cognitive problems specific to the scientific translator’s activity (cf. Musacchio 2017a: 43ff.), I will come back in the next chapter (Sect. 2.3.2). After analysing the general pragmatic criteria of LSPs and the lexicogrammatical features of the language of science according to Halliday, the following three sections (Sects. 1.2.3–1.2.5) will deal in some detail with the distinctive linguistic features of LSPs at the three levels of text, syntax and terminology. Whilst it is certainly the case that assigning each feature to one or other of these three levels has been in some cases arbitrary— given that language cannot be divided neatly into watertight compartments—this division is still useful for the purposes of analysis and has been done in this book only for the sake of convenience.

1.2.3 Text The classification of texts in types on the basis of their similarities and correlations with other texts (intertextuality) is a precondition for the

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production of intelligible texts. Intertextuality is particularly important in LSP texts, not only ‘horizontally’, involving direct reference to another text, but also ‘vertically’, involving an allusion and referring to a mode of writing (Hatim and Munday 2004: 88–89, 343). With specific respect to vertical intertextuality, LSP producers must adhere to codified norms and conventions concerning what should be said and the way to say it, which govern texts sharing the same pragmatic features. This ensures that their texts are accepted and correctly interpreted by the intended receivers, who should find the intended meaning without being involved in unnecessary processing effort (cf. Sect. 1.2.1). Even more importantly for specialised translators, as we shall see later in the book (Sect. 3.1.2), text typologies can also be very useful for the purposes of decision-making and assessment in translation. As noted earlier (Sect. 1.1.1), whilst being the most immediate and intuitive, a static ‘formal’ classification of LSP texts based only on the horizontal dimension (a text’s special subject field) generally makes a limited resource for the translator. By contrast, dynamic ‘functional’ classifications of LSP texts based on the vertical dimension of situation and use, i.e. what the text is intended to do in a given context for a given text user, are much more ‘delicate’ and useful. These pragmatic typologies define broad text types in terms of the main communicative function/purpose of a text, have a predictive value and are based on the assumption that the surface characteristics of a text are closely linked to its pragmatic variables. An early example of a functional typology of LSP texts is provided by Hoffmann (1985: 64–66), whose classification specifies different levels of cognitive-conceptual abstraction of medical language based on the two pragmatic parameters of situational context of use (Basic theoretical science; Experimental science; Applied science and technology etc.) and relationship between text producer and intended reader (researcherresearcher; researcher-specialist; specialist-general practitioner etc.). In Translation Studies, functional taxonomies have been used to link the different text-types to specific aspects of the translation which should be privileged when choosing a translation approach (cf. Sect. 3.1.2). At the level of whole texts, which is seen as the only level at which communication is achieved, such translation-oriented functional typologies have typically (e.g. Katharina Reiss, Peter Newmark)

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adopted a three-way distinction, derived from Jakobson’s functional model of language use, between expressive, informative and vocative functions of communication, depending on whether the main communicative emphasis of a text is on the producer (expressive texts), on the reader (vocative texts) or on extralinguistic, referential reality (informative texts) (cf. Sect. 1.1.1.2). Text-types determined in such a way are in fact abstract categories defining universal deep structures and are realised in practice via surface structures that are only partly language-­independent, the so-called ‘text forms’ (or ‘text varieties’). Examples of text forms typically associated with informative texts are the research article, technical instructions, the business letter etc. Pragmatic classifications that are specific of scientific and technical discourse are Sabatini’s (1999) taxonomy of Italian specialised texts, Göpferich’s (1995) multi-level text typology and Krüger’s (2015: 66–76) three-dimensional classification. Göpferich’s and Krüger’s classifications have been devised also for the purpose of deriving translation strategies from them, although this second step has been left implicit by both scholars. In Sabatini’s (1999) simple but effective typology of Italian LSP texts, which is the only one of the three that is not specifically aimed at translators, the criterion for text classification along the specialisation continuum is an implicit ‘communicative agreement’ between sender and receiver about: (1) the degree of ‘interpretative constraint’ imposed on the reader when decoding the message, and (2) the extent to which the sender is expected to use more or less conventional formulations. Based on this criterion, texts are allocated to one of three categories: high, medium and low ‘constraining’ texts, with technical manuals being classified in the most constraining category together with legal texts. At the first level of Göpferich’s more elaborate classification, four primary informative functions are distinguished based on the text’s main communicative intention, each corresponding to one specific sci-tech text type: Juridical-Normative, Progress-oriented Actualising (conveying new research results/findings), Didactic-Instructive and Compilation (making the information provided in the other three text types accessible to readers). Four further levels of the classification distinguish each category of texts in theory- vs. practice-oriented and classify them based on

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the means of presenting information, as well as on the primary and secondary text genres in which each type of information is organised. For example, didactic-instructive texts are distinguished in theoretical vs. practical texts. On the one hand, didactic-instructive theoretical texts are further divided in texts organised mnemonically (realised in the primary genres ‘school/university textbooks’ and in the secondary genres ‘exercise books’, ‘reviews’ etc.) vs. texts engaging the reader’s interest (realised in the primary genres ‘articles in popular science magazines and journals’, ‘product-specific information’ etc., and in the secondary genres ‘summaries’, ‘reviews’, ‘science news’ etc.). On the other, didactic-instructive practical texts are realised in the primary genres ‘instructions for use’, ‘user’s manuals’ etc. and for the secondary genres ‘reference books’, ‘short guides’ etc. Lastly, in Krüger’s (2015: 66–76) classification, which is based on Göpferich’s primary text functions, scientific and technical texts are categorised along three closely interrelated dimensions: (1) the primary text function; (2) the subject-matter competence of the discourse participants (expert-to-expert communication, expert-to-semi-expert communication, expert-to-layperson communication); and, based on the ranking scale developed by Arntz (2001), (3) the degree of technicality, determined by the two factors of complexity of the subject matter/topic of the text and specialisation of the text in a given domain. For example, compilation texts can be classified as ‘expert-to-layperson’ communication, requiring little or no specialised knowledge on the part of the intended readers and thus exhibiting a fairly low degree of technicality. Typologies focusing on whole texts have however the disadvantage of not taking into account the different types of information and functions that can be realised in different portions of the same text thus influencing the formal features of each portion. For example, Olohan (2016: 56, 58, 61, 64–65, 70, 71, 85) identifies as many as four different types of information in technical instructions, texts such as instruction manuals and user guides which are aimed at helping users to install or operate technical products: procedural (the steps in a procedure guiding users to perform a task); conceptual (further information to help the user to decide whether to perform the procedure); declarative (or ‘operational’ or ‘system’ information, describing the workings of the equipment, device or

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system); and motivational (information helping to engage users by giving them a sense of satisfaction from using the instructions or motivate them to persevere with the task). In order to take into account the in-built multifunctionality or ‘hybridity’ of all texts, other functional text typologies define broad types not for texts as a whole but for specific text portions in terms of the predominant pragmatic purpose of that segment. For example, Hatim and Mason (1990, 1997) identify five different macrotypes—‘descriptive’, ‘narrative’, ‘expository’, ‘argumentative’ or ‘instructional’—each having various text forms accounting for the influence of variables such as field, mode and tenor in message construction (cf. Hatim 1998: 264). An alternative way of classifying whole texts is by assigning them to ‘genres’ rather than types. Whilst the starting point for classifying texts in types is provided by the formal characteristics of a text, attributing texts to genres gives emphasis to the communicative event in which a text is embedded (Hatim and Munday 2004: 76) and the actual use of language to achieve specific communicative purposes. The institutionalised labels of genres (‘research article’, ‘science textbook’, ‘newspaper editorial’, ‘instructions for use’ etc.) loosely correspond to the concrete textual realisations of text-types (text forms). Genres are classes of texts characterised by shared surface conventions which have been shaped by the specific communicative purpose and context in which the texts have been produced and are based on the shared understanding of such purpose and context by both sender and intended receivers, i.e. the specific socio-­ professional group (‘discourse community’) using a specific genre (Swales 1990: 471–473). As a reflection of the producer’s specific communicative intention and relationship between participants, LSP genres have a highly codified structure, which is suited to the type of communication required by specific situations of use and, in each genre, results in specific preferred patterns of organisation. For example, in a comparable English corpus comprising the two different genres ‘official economic reports’ and ‘newspaper/magazine articles’, both dealing with economics and finance, Musacchio (2017b: 60–61) found different discourse characteristics between the two genres. Reports displayed higher frequencies of nouns, prepositional phrases and repetitive vocabulary, which are all typical of ‘informational’ production, where facts are listed and interpretation is

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often left to the readers. On the other hand, newspaper/magazine articles were characterised by ‘involved’ production having a more overtly persuasive aim (second-person pronouns addressing directly the readers, more varied vocabulary etc.). Despite the highly codified structure of each LSP genre, an important area of genre research focuses in fact on ‘contamination’ or ‘blending’ or ‘hybridisation’ of LSP genres (Bhatia 2004; Garzone et  al. 2012) especially in web communication, which typically occurs at the less specialised levels of discourse but could eventually affect also expert-to-expert communication. An example is the online practice of creating authored video abstracts to supplement written research-article abstracts, which allows medical journals and their authors to gain major promotional advantages and is resulting in a different new genre from the traditional research-article ‘abstract’ genre (Plastina 2017). The two notions of ‘genre’ and ‘text-type’ are distinct but partially overlapping. Both types of classification relate to the way textual material is organised, are crucial in the meaning-making of a specialised text and are therefore useful in defining translation problems and justifying specific strategies to overcome them (Baker 2011: 123). Following Baker, the differences between the two categories can be summarised as follows. On the one hand, text typologies are necessarily idealised and more subjective (and therefore much vaguer) classifications based on the nature of the messages involved and the relationship between participants, and can be applied both to a whole text and to parts of it. On the other, genres are directly linked to a specific pragmatic situation (producer’s communicative purpose and relationship between participants) and can necessarily be applied only to complete texts, because they specify the conditions to begin, develop and conclude a text. Moreover, as claimed by Göpferich (1995: 306), genres cover only a relatively restricted range of texts and do not provide the necessary degree of abstraction to reveal the features shared by text types that are somehow related to each other. The distinctive features of LSPs at the level of the text which are going to be dealt with in the next sections are the most relevant for translating specialised texts (cf. 2.3.2 and 3.2.2) and are their standardised argumentative patterns (1.2.3.1), the distribution of information in thematic structure and progression (1.2.3.2) and the use of cohesive devices (1.2.3.3).

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1.2.3.1  Argumentative Pattern Each LSP text has a standardised ‘argumentative pattern’, i.e. a functional structure providing a standardised framework where information is (1) distributed in logical and hierarchical sequences according to norms and conventions that vary according to type, function and content of discourse, and (2) organised in rhetorical units made of the individual physical sections and subsections into which the text is divided. As we have seen in the previous section, on top of the main informative function or overall pragmatic purpose of the text as a whole (e.g. report an experiment, illustrate a new theory, teaching how to use a technical device etc.), each specific portion in which a specialised text is divided realises a predominant pragmatic purpose (to inform, describe, discuss, instruct, conclude etc.). In genre analysis, the standardised argumentative pattern of a specialised text is organised in moves and submoves (or ‘steps’), which are conventional content units conveying specific communicative functions that LSP authors use to mark the various passages of their argumentation (cf. Bhatia 1993), each contributing to the overall pattern. Each specialised genre has its own conventional textual organisation and the familiarity of the intended readers with both the subject field and such genre-specific conventions functioning as an ‘advance organiser’ makes text reception easier for them (cf. Göpferich 2009: 38). The conventional textual organisation of genres becomes however less rigorous at the less specialised levels of discourse. The LSP genre that has been most extensively studied by researchers of English for Academic Purposes (EAP) is by far the ‘research article’, a genre that is typical of the hard sciences but is becoming increasingly ubiquitous also in the social sciences and humanities. The standardised argumentative pattern of this genre is known as the ‘IMRAD model’, where the acronym IMRAD comes from a typical sequence of moves, each reflecting the sequence of steps of the scientific method (cf. Sect. 1.1) and having a dedicated physical section in the text: Introduction (to create a context for the topic by stating purpose, reviewing previous research and stating the problem), Method (presenting information on the project, methodology followed, materials etc.), Results (presenting

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the results of the research) and Discussion (discussing the findings). Typical of this genre are also the sections Abstract (a brief summary of the contents of the article) and a Conclusion (summarising findings and indicating possible future research paths). The highly structured argumentative pattern of the research article reflects the main object of the author of convincing readers that his perspective is the right one, despite the apparently neutral and objective way with which data and facts are presented (Gotti 2011: 100ff.). Indeed, to give the reader the impression of not being conditioned by the author, the skilful writer adopts a set of linguistic and rhetorical resources to express judgements and take up positions which have been cumulatively called ‘evaluation’ by Hunston and Thompson (2000: 5), indicating the “writer’s attitude or stance towards, viewpoint on, or feelings about the entities or propositions that he or she is talking about”. In the same genre, a general standard sequence of moves and submoves within the Introduction section has been called ‘CARS model’ (Swales 1990), where the acronym CARS stands for ‘Creating a Research Space’. The model reflects the author’s stance toward the content of what he is writing and describes and explains the writer’s rhetorical choices in response to two types of challenge in establishing a presence within a particular research domain: (1) the competition to create a rhetorical space, and (2) the competition to attract readers into that space. The model proposes three moves and the specific steps to achieve them: Establishing a Territory [the situation], Establishing a Niche [the problem], and Occupying a Niche [the solution]. Although the genre ‘research article’ is largely independent of the specialised subject it deals with, different disciplines (especially in the social sciences and humanities) have different ways of producing and presenting knowledge, thus reflecting the close correlation in LSPs between epistemic aspects (the author’s method of argumentation) and textual realisation (the author’s choice of discourse). For example, in the discourse of economics, the standard sequence of argumentation is Analysis-­ Prediction-­Proposal, with the three components reflecting the economist’s theoretical approach: Analysis of a problem, Prediction of its consequences and Proposal of a solution (Merlini Barbaresi 1983: 144–145). Prediction can in turn be either interpretative (to establish a relationship

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of causality between two phenomena), illustrative (to build a simplified model of reality), applied (to analyse the current situation and forecast possible future developments) or instrumental (to show the validity of a proposal or a warning). Even within the same ‘hard’ discipline, the genre may contain other subgenres besides the ‘standard’ scientific experimental paper. For example, in the astrophysics journal article Tarone et  al. (1998) have identified a different subtype of research article, which they call ‘logical argument scientific paper’. This subgenre covers journal papers also in all the other disciplines in which the subject matter does not lend itself to experimentation and has a rhetorical structure where passive and active verbs have different rhetorical functions (see Sect. 1.2.4.2). At a lower level of analysis, the highly standardised argumentative pattern of the research article is reflected in the conventional linguistic expressions used by writers in English to convey the speech acts which are typical of this LSP genre: present a problem, describe materials and methods, refer to relevant literature, describe and explain experimental data, present and interpret findings, make deductions, formulate hypotheses, develop experiments based on those hypotheses, make predictions etc. An example of both the highly codified expressions used in English research articles and the extent to which English has become the global ‘lingua franca’ of science and technology is provided by Riabtseva’s (2000) Guide to Academic Writing, which is aimed at those authors who do not have English as their first language of use and is a real treasure trove for specialised translators. For each section in which the research article is structured, the author provides an extensive list of typical speech patterns and phrases, vocabulary and examples of abstracts, reviews etc. For example, the section ‘Results and their interpretation’ contains at least 200 different constructs to conclude an article, eight of which only to complete the sentence beginning with As our results / observations indicate,… (…there is ample evidence to suggest that P (is related to Q); …there is a connection / relationship between P and Q; …the rate of P depends on / changes with the amount of Q etc.). Outside the confines of the research article and in LSP discourse at large, the rhetorical organisation and the hierarchical order in which information is presented to reflect the author’s intention behind the

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production of a text are also highlighted in Trimble’s (1985) analytical model of English specialised discourse, which is particularly useful for teaching specialised translation. This is a rhetorical and functional approach which pre-dates the genre analysis approach, and where the typical speech acts of scientific and technical discourse are categorised in ‘general rhetorical functions’ (stating purpose, reporting past research, stating the problem etc.) and, at a lower level of analysis, in more ‘specific rhetorical functions’. A general rhetorical function is the fundamental pragmatic element of the model and informs the fundamental rhetorical unit of the ‘conceptual paragraph’, a semantic unit containing all the information that has been selected by the author to develop a ‘core generalisation’ and which does not necessarily coincide with the self-contained typographical unit of the physical paragraph. At a lower structural level, Trimble’s taxonomy of five specific rhetorical functions, each having different subtypes, reflects the LSP author’s most salient pragmatic purposes when writing a text: classification (complete, partial or implicit), description (physical, function or process), definition (formal, semi-formal, non-­formal, expanded),7 instruction (direct or indirect) and visualverbal relationships (between the text and extralinguistic elements such as charts, figures, formulas etc.).

1.2.3.2  Thematic Structure and Progression Besides the argumentative pattern, other key factors of the rhetorical organisation of an LSP text are the distribution of information in a thematic structure and the patterning of thematic choice. The so-called ‘thematic and information structures’ of a text are two overlapping features of discourse organisation that are associated with the sequential ordering of elements in a text. In Systemic Functional Linguistics (Eggins 2004), ‘thematic structure’ is the theme-rheme structure within the clause whereby the ‘theme’ is the element at the beginning of the clause and typically carries familiar or ‘Given’ information (shared by the reader), and the ‘rheme’ is what comes after the theme and typically carries unfamiliar or ‘New’ information (not shared by the reader and not retrievable in the preceding text or context), pushing text development forward.

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Two important aspects of thematic structure are thematic selection and thematic progression, which are of great relevance to specialised translators (cf. Sects. 2.3.2 and 3.2.2). At the clause level, the selection of what the writer places in the theme plays an important role in determining the communicative effect of the message and is based on three main parameters: what the reader already knows, the communicative relevance the writer wants to give to one aspect of the information rather than others and how easy it is to retrieve the information already given in the text. As noted by Gerzymisch-­ Arbogast (1993: 24), following Grice’s (1975) cooperative maxim of manner (‘avoid obscurity and ambiguity; be brief and orderly’) (cf. Sect. 1.2.1), the selection by the writer of the Given and New elements reflects an implicit author-reader ‘contract’ (cf. Sabatini’s text typology in Sect. 1.2.3) relating to the distribution and sequencing of information in the text. Languages with a relatively fixed SVO (subject-verb-object) order, such as English, French, Italian and German, are also ‘subject-prominent’ languages because, in an unmarked thematic and information structure, typical of LSP discourse to focus on propositional content,8 the Given element shares the same sentence-initial position as both the theme (thematic or topical position) and the grammatical subject, whilst the New element shares the same sentence-final position as the rheme (information-­ focus position). In marked structures, on the other hand, these elements have been moved to add emphasis to one of the other elements of the clause (‘foregrounding’) and/or provide some additional meaning besides the propositional one of the utterance. Marked structures have different frequencies in different types of discourse and genres. At the textual level, the patterning of thematic selection in a text is the thematic progression of that text, i.e. the ways the theme and rheme in a clause connect to those of surrounding clauses as the text unfolds. To meet special-language users’ high degree of expectedness of unmarked thematic structures which make it easier for them to know what will come next in the text, the standard thematic progression of LSP texts is of the simple ‘linear’ type, where the rheme in a sentence becomes the theme of the following sentence etc.:

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The quality of displayed or printed text and graphics is called resolution. Resolution is determined by the number of dots used per inch. More dots per inch makes the dots closer together so text and graphics have more detail and sharper edges. (Curtin et al. 1998: 91)

In declarative sentences, linear progression can result in an inversion, as for example in Attached to the X is a Y…, where the past participle attached introduces the theme of the sentence (the X) (Sager et  al. 1980: 188). Another common pattern of LSP discourse is a ‘parallel’ thematic progression, where the theme of one clause is derived from the theme of the previous clause and the different themes refer to the same opening one: Information technology can do at least three things:  • Information technology can process raw data into useful information […]  • Information technology can recycle processed information and use it as data in another processing step […].  • Information technology can package information in a new form so it’s easier to understand, more attractive, or more useful […]. (Curtin et al. 1998: 20)

However, in LSP discourse there are also other patterns based on variations and combinations of these two basic structures (Gotti 2011: 86–87); for example, one in which the rheme of the first sentence becomes two or more different themes in the following sentences: There are three basic ways to improve a system’s performance: make it carry more data at the same time, make it run faster, or make it more efficient. (Curtin et al. 1998: 58)

Each of the three parts making up the rheme of the sentence (make it carry…, make it run…, or make it more…) becomes then the theme of the three following subparagraphs, entitled respectively Improving data capacity, Improving processing speed and Improving efficiency.

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1.2.3.3  Cohesive Ties Besides via text-forming resources of grammar such as the distribution of information in thematic structure and progression in the text, textual cohesion is achieved also in LSP discourse via surface lexicogrammatical links (cf. Sect. 1.2.1), which specialised translators should familiarise themselves with. Halliday and Hasan (1976) have identified five general types of cohesive devices (‘ties’) that create coherence in texts: reference, substitution, ellipsis, conjunction and lexical cohesion. Textual ‘reference’ can be either anaphoric, by far the commonest in LSPs, or cataphoric, depending on whether an item points back to what has already been said in the text (‘anaphora’) or forward to what still has to be said (‘cataphora’). Reference proforms can be personal (it, they etc.), demonstrative (this, those, the latter etc.), possessive (its, their etc.) or comparative (same, equal, different, better, more / so, such, similarly, otherwise etc.). Reference items can also be expressions consisting of more than one word (cf. p. X above; as we will see in Section Y; the experiment which has just been described etc.). ‘Substitution’ and ‘ellipsis’ are cohesive ties which operate by replacement (usually by one(s)) or omission of a textual element which has been assumed to be already obvious from the context. In LSP texts, substitution and ellipsis are generally avoided because they could be a source of referential ambiguity. However, in highly specialised texts ellipsis can be considered as part of the feature of ‘semantic discontinuity’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.2). The relation of ‘conjunction’ involves the use of intra- and inter-­ sentential connectives (in fact, of course, however, on the other hand etc.) which signal the logical (additive, adversative, causal, temporal, continuative etc.) relations between ideas and different segments of the text (sentences and paragraphs) in order to provide the reader with information for the final interpretation of its meaning. A particularly significant relationship between ideas by means of connective ties in scientific and in popular-science texts is that of reformulation (that is, in other words, namely, i.e., in fact, actually, this means that etc.), which is based on an equivalence operation so that an idea is re-worded by the author in a better, more relevant way, and includes discourse values such as explanation,

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specification, generalisation, implication, gloss or summary (Cuenca and Bach 2007: 150–151). Grammatically, connective items include conjunctions (and, or, but, so, then etc.) and other parts of speech such as nouns/adjectives (the first, the second…), adverbials (finally, similarly, consequently, first, therefore), prepositional phrases (on the other hand, for this reason, as a result, needless to say), and clauses (to conclude; my aim here is to). Specifically in academic sci-tech discourse, these linguistic resources are called by Hyland (2005) ‘interactive metadiscursive resources’, textual markers used to explicitly organise discourse and engage readers by helping to guide them through the text. ‘Metadiscursive’ here comes from ‘metadiscourse’, which is used by Hyland (2005: 46) as a “cover term for the self-reflective expressions used to negotiate interactions in a text, assisting the writer (or speaker) to express a viewpoint and engage with readers as members of a particular community”. Within metadiscourse, ‘interactive metadiscursive resources’ should be distinguished from ‘interactional metadiscursive resources’, a different type of interpersonal linguistic features that signal the writer’s stance to the text content and towards the reader, which have been (somewhat arbitrarily) assigned in this book to the level of syntax (cf. Sect. 1.2.4.4). Falling under the relation of conjunction are also punctuation marks and new paragraphs, which help to clarify and direct the line of discourse. As observed by Baker (2011: 205), some genres are ‘more conjunctive’ than others and each genre has its own preferences for certain types of conjunction. For example, in expository texts, which are based on the explanation of terms and ideas, the use of connectives is highly significant (Cuenca and Bach 2007). Instead, in highly specialised scientific and technical texts, connectives are relatively infrequent and sentences can be simply juxtaposed one to the other because the level of assumed shared specialised knowledge and the need to give an impression of objectivity are both very high. This is in line with Myers’ (1991) finding that texts aimed at non-experts make greater use of explicit cohesive markers such as conjunctions and demonstrative pronouns as opposed to expert-to-­ expert communication, where implicit cohesive devices such as lexical cohesion are more frequent. As we have already noted in relation to the features of ‘semantic discontinuity’ and ‘syntactic ambiguity’ (cf. Sect.

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1.2.2), the use of inter-sentential connectives varies also cross-­linguistically, which can prove to be problematic for the translator (cf. Sects. 2.3.2 and 3.2.2). Finally, ‘lexical cohesion’ is associated with the three features characterising scientific English of ‘technical taxonomies’ (i.e. the semantic relationship of every term with the other terms in a taxonomy), ‘interlocking definitions’ (clusters of related concepts which are all used to define each other) and ‘special expressions’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.2). The simplest device to create lexical cohesion in a text is via ‘reiteration’, involving the repetition of the same lexical item. The reiterated item may be the repetition of an entity already mentioned in the text or its near-repetition (e.g. observe/ observation). Other types of lexical cohesion are the relations of synonymy or near-synonymy, where the referential meaning of two items coincides (buy and purchase), antonymy (buy/sell) and hyponymy, where the lexical relation is instead of a hierarchical type between a general class and its subclasses (a more general word, i.e. a hyperonym or superordinate, that includes the meaning of the more specific term, i.e. a hyponym). For example, in chemistry state of aggregation is a hyperonym of the hyponyms solid state, liquid state and gaseous state. A special case of synonymy is ‘co-reference’, involving a chain of co-referential items such as IBM → the computer giant → Big Blue, where understanding that the three different lexical items have the same referent depends on the receiver’s specialised knowledge. Another category of lexical cohesion is ‘collocation’, involving lexical items frequently co-occurring with each other, which will be analysed later in this chapter (Sect. 1.2.5). In LSP texts, repetition is more frequent than in general language because it helps the interpretation of a text and, in a cost-benefit perspective, is an economical textual device for the reader. However, in a translation perspective, languages differ in the level of lexical repetition they will normally tolerate (Baker 2011: 219), a point we will come back to later in the book (cf. Sect. 3.2.4). A further type of lexical cohesion which is very frequent in LSP texts is ‘lexical anaphora’, consisting in the use of a demonstrative (this, such a etc.) followed by a noun that summarises and encapsulates a concept that has been expressed in the previous sentence or paragraph. An example is provided by the nominal group This method in:

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The connection is kept open for a time so that a client can make several requests over a short period of time without needing to reestablish the communications connection with the server. This method leads to significant increases in the efficiency of the Web. (Sebesta 2002: 15)

1.2.4 Syntax The characteristic features that LSP producers are expected to adhere to are also at the level of syntax, though these peculiarities are quantitative rather than qualitative in nature and vary across different disciplines. Indeed, the main syntactic differences between special languages and general language “lie not in the inventory of available structures but in their textual distribution” (Jakobsen 1994: 10) and also in the way these structures are used. As in the case of features at the textual level, the selection of certain relevant syntactic formulations rather than others is highly influenced by pragmatic reasons, mainly the functional and stylistic requirements of economy, clarity and objectivity, and is regulated by strict conventions. For example, at the level of the sentence—the main structural and formal unit of thought in special languages—achieving an extremely compact structure by omitting phrasal elements such as articles or prepositions is not necessarily considered to be a cause of potential ambiguity in the same way as omission at the textual level is considered to be (cf. Sect. 1.2.3.3). Thus, an instruction such as Remove puncturing object if still in the tyre (Tyre is not dismounted from the rim) (Trimble 1985: 121, quoted in Gotti 2011: 49), where the article the is also used somewhat inconsistently, would not seem out of place in a technical manual. On the other hand, clarity can be the pragmatic motivation behind formulaic patterns of language use, such as the highly conventionalised syntactic construct If… then in the language of physics, which engenders a high degree of predictability in the order of constituents of the clause. For example, in the sentence If an object is moving with a constant velocity, then by definition it has zero acceleration, the writer would not ever consider selecting an alternative non-formulaic sequence such as *An object by definition has zero acceleration when it is moving with a constant velocity.

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Clarity also motivates those cases where grammatical form and pragmatic use of an utterance diverge, as in rhetorical questions, where the real aim is not that of eliciting information from the reader. For example, in a textbook a rhetorical question such as Where are we going from here? may have the communicative purpose of introducing a new topic or, if occurring at the end of an article on environmental protection, it may aim to enhance readers’ fears about governmental inactivity on global sustainability. However, as in the case of implicature (see Sect. 1.2.1), an important point to be made here is that, in order to use writing conventions such as this one, the writer must ensure that the intended reader is able to understand its real pragmatic meaning. The specific features of LSPs at the level of syntax that are going to be dealt with in the next four sections are the more relevant for translating specialised texts (cf. Sects. 2.3.2 and 3.2.3): nominalisation (1.2.4.1), the use of passive and impersonal forms (1.2.4.2), the specialised use of some verb tenses (1.2.4.3) and the linguistic resources used to signal the writer’s stance to the text content and towards the reader (1.2.4.4).

1.2.4.1  Nominalisation The process of nominalisation is emblematic of all three pragmatic requirements of economy, objectivity and clarity, as well as the regrammaticalisation that underpins the scientific worldview that came into being with the European Scientific Revolution of the seventeenth century (Bennett 2011: 193–194, 196). As noted earlier (Sect. 1.2.2), the process of nominalising clausal information into complex nominal groups containing all the semantic load is one of the key features of English scientific writing because it is central for the scientific construal of reality and ideally suited to scientists’ modes of argumentation. The nominal group has in fact been defined as “a rhetorical structure which […] developed as the prototypical discourse pattern for experimental science” (Halliday and Martin 1993: 7). One of the many illustrations of the syntactic compactness of this structure can be found across Halliday’s writings on grammatical metaphor in the language of science (e.g. Halliday 1993[1988], 2004[1997], 2004[1999]), as in the following

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example, where the same sentence from a scientific text is reworded in five different versions moving from a clausal mode of grammar (two clauses with a finite verb: cracks and press), which is the most congruent and explicit, to a nominal mode (two complex nominal groups: glass crack growth rate and applied stress magnitude), which is the most incongruent and complex: glass cracks more quickly the harder you press it, [thing a undergoes process b in manner c to the extent that in manner x person w does action y to thing a] cracks in glass grow faster the more pressure is put on, glass crack growth is faster if greater stress is applied, the rate of glass crack growth depends on the magnitude of the applied stress, glass crack growth rate is associated with applied stress magnitude. [(complex abstract) thing abdc causes/is caused by (complex abstract) thing zyx]

As the example shows, nominalisation involves the gradual construction of grammatical metaphor and the increasingly higher specialisation of language. Compactness, however, does not always entail conciseness, because the clause glass cracks more quickly the harder you press it is in fact shorter than its nominalised equivalent glass crack growth rate is associated with applied stress magnitude (9 items instead of 10). This apparent contradiction lends support to the pervasiveness of the nominal style in LSPs as being motivated also by other considerations on top of the pragmatic one of summarising previous findings. One such motivation is satisfying the requirement of objectivity, which will be discussed later in this section in relation to the general depersonalising tendency of English scientific discourse. Nominalisation is also characterised by ‘objectification’, i.e. “representing actions and events, and also qualities, as if they were objects” (Halliday and Martin 1993: 52).9 On top of compactness and objectivity, nominalisation also fulfils the requirement of clarity, at least for the intended recipients of the LSP text. As already noted (Sect. 1.2.2), of all the features that Halliday sees as characteristic of scientific English discourse, he considers grammatical metaphor (i.e. nominalisation) to be the most pervasive but also causing

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more difficulty to the novice (and the translator) for the difficulty intrinsic in the field of discourse, i.e. science itself. Nonetheless, independently of the background knowledge to be assumed by the reader, the increase in lexical density (i.e. a higher percentage of content words) associated to a high incidence of nominal groups correlates strongly with an increase of processing difficulty by the reader. This is why the frequency of nominal groups in a text can be used to determine the level of specialisation of discourse (high lexical density = high level of specialisation) (Halliday 1998: 207). Grammatically, a complex nominal group is composed of a variable number of constituents with a ‘head noun’ being premodified and/or postmodified by adjectives and/or other parts of speech having an adjectival function (nouns, adverbs and nominal verb forms), and is virtually unrestricted in length. Identifying and decoding the semantic and syntactic links between these different constituents can provide a challenge to readers not well-equipped with the relevant specialised knowledge but also to specialist receivers not having English as their first language of use. An example is provided by a title such as the following, consisting of a total number of 14 words and composed of a noun (comparison) followed by two nominal groups, the first consisting of two parts having the same head noun imaging and linked by the conjunction and (of contrast-­ enhanced breath-hold and free-breathing respiratory-gated imaging): Comparison of contrast-enhanced breath-hold and free-breathing respiratory-­gated imaging in three-dimensional magnetic resonance coronary angiography. (The Am. J. Cardiol. 90/7: 725–730, 2002, quoted in Soler 2011)

If particularly complex, some elements within the nominal group can be linked by a hyphen to make their decoding easier by signalling the semantic links between words. In the example above, in the first nominal group the hyphens in the compounds contrast-enhanced, breath-hold, free-­ breathing and respiratory-gated signal that they all premodify the head noun imaging as compounds and not as single nouns/adjectives/participles. Thus the pre- and postmodifiers enhanced, breath, free and gated refer only to their respective heads (contrast, hold, breathing and

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respiratory respectively) meaning ‘with enhanced contrast’, ‘holding of breath’, ‘free breathing’ and ‘gating of respiration’. Here then the reader needs not only linguistic competence but also specialised knowledge in order to understand that, within the main nominal group (contrast-­ enhanced…imaging), the compounds breath-hold and free-breathing premodify only the compound respiratory-gated, which acts as sub-head of the second-level nominal group breath-hold and free-breathing respiratory-­ gated and pre-modifies as a whole the head noun imaging together with the other first-level nominal group contrast-enhanced. In sum, the meaning of the nominal group Comparison … imaging can then be ‘decompressed’ as being: ‘Imaging with enhanced contrast using a system which gates respiration and supports both breath holding and free breathing’. The previous example also provides an instance of the linguistic strategies to avoid relative clauses by condensing them through premodification (cf. Gotti 2011: 51–55) (respiratory-gated…imaging standing for ‘imaging which gates respiration’). Other such condensing strategies to avoid relative clauses involve the use of prepositions (patients with [= who suffer from] single-vessel coronary artery disease), adjectives ending with the suffix -ble (reversible change = change which can be reversed), past participles (updated error correction code = code of correction of errors which has been updated) and the -ing form (lesions involving [= which involve] peripheral nerve axons). As already noted (Sect. 1.2.2), the increase in lexical density brought about by the compact clause construction represented by the nominal group is balanced by a decrease of the syntactic complexity of the text. At the level of the sentence, the syntactic structure of English specialised discourse is in fact simpler than in general discourse and has a tendency to avoid subordination (Gotti 2011: 63–64). The recurrent pattern of the surface structure of sentences is Noun Group + Verb + Noun Group, with loss of verbal value and the verb often functioning “merely as a copula, a link between increasingly complex noun phrases” (Gotti 2011: 60). Besides the typical verbs of scientific investigation (cause, involve, follow, be due to, prove, indicate, suggest, show, depend, consist of etc.), the preferred verb is be, as well as other semantically indeterminate ‘empty’ verbs such as copulative seem, appear, become, which perform a mainly

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linking purpose, and stative verbs, which express a state or a condition rather than an action (be composed of, be associated with, be located in, be limited to etc.).

1.2.4.2  The Passive Voice The use of predominantly passive structures in English scientific and technical writing is a convention that is so difficult to break away from that it can be conceived as a ‘norm’ in this type of discourse (Baker 2011: 113).10 The motivation of the frequency in English LSPs of the passive and other impersonal verb structures is the need to make the text more formal, objective and impersonal, by enabling the writer to distance himself from what is said in the text. By inverting the normal Subject + Verb word order and placing the verb at the beginning of the clause, the passive voice “generally emphasises the effect or outcome of an action rather than its cause or originator” (Gotti 2011: 74). The impression of objectivity is achieved also by leaving the subject of the verb unspecified and constructing agentless clauses (e.g. Once the engine is lowered into the engine compartment, it can be carefully positioned on the engine mounts), as opposed to the case of stative verbs, where the agent is omitted simply because there is no specific actor behind a given action (Gotti 2011: 74) (e.g. The power system is composed of both interconnected and isolated grids). However, when the agent is specifically mentioned, it carries the semantic value of emphasising that an effect or an action are determined or performed by that very agent and not others (e.g. This effect is achieved by the increased release of serotonin which is responsible for your appetite intensity). Using a passive or active structure has further pragmatic implications that may be either conscious or unconscious on the author’s part, such as the use of impersonal structures and nominalisations by scientists as hedging devices in order to put forward a claim whilst at the same time avoiding the responsibility of making it (Hyland 1998; Varttala 1999) (cf. Sect. 1.2.4.4). In a paper by Tarone et al. (1998), different recurrent patterns of use for the passive and active voice were found by the researchers in the subgenre of the research article which they call ‘logical argument scientific paper’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.3.1). Indeed, the authors of the articles tended to use the passive voice to describe an established or standard

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procedural choice, to refer to the work of others or the authors’ proposed studies, whilst the active voice (we plus an active verb) was used to illustrate a unique procedure chosen by the authors, to refer to the authors’ own work or to the work of others which was in contrast to the authors’. In all other cases, the use of active or passive verb forms (which incidentally occurred with the same frequency in their corpus) was determined by other considerations such as focus due to the length of an element or the need for emphasis. Similar results on the use of the active voice are mentioned by Gotti (2011: 77–78) who, quoting Hyland (1999), notes that academic writers use first-person markers for either of three main purposes: (1) to organise arguments and structure their texts (In this article, I/we will first…, then…, and finally…); (2) to introduce or discuss research activities; and (3) to explicitly indicate their attitudes to findings or align themselves with theoretical positions. More generally, the first-person pronoun we can either have an exclusive value (‘reader-excluding we’) and refer to the authors only, thus expressing a personal statement with an emphasis on the author’s autonomy within the discipline, or it can be used to involve readers, for example to convince them of the validity of what is being put forward in the text, in which case we has an inclusive or generalising value (‘reader-including we’). Besides the passive voice, other ways to achieve depersonalisation are through the use of: (1) impersonal forms (it is clear that; it follows that), to convey the idea of the general validity of a statement or a concept; (2) reflexive forms, of course only in languages which have them (e.g. French, Italian and Russian); (3) indirect reference to the authors themselves through third-person pronouns and nominal groups such as the author and the research team (instead of using the first person I or we); and (4) the socalled ‘impersonal active’, i.e. the deliberate suppression of human agency which is replaced with inanimate agency (This chapter aims at…) (Hatim and Munday 2004: 297). This personalisation of inanimate elements such as sections of the text falls in fact within the metaphorisation process which is characteristic of LSP discourse: in this specific case, an inanimate noun (chapter, section etc.) is associated with a verb (demonstrate, highlight, show etc.) which, in a more ‘congruous’ configuration, should be used instead in relation to an animate noun (Stålhammar 2007: 511–512).

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1.2.4.3  Tense The use and textual distribution of verb tenses in LSPs is another grammatical feature that is highly influenced by the LSP texts’ specialised pragmatic goals and topic. As observed by Gotti (2011: 70–72), the predominance of the simple present tense in English expository scientific texts is due to the fact that the prevalent pragmatic functions of these texts are those of describing, observing, illustrating, stating general truths or timeless facts, postulating hypotheses, explaining standard procedures etc., all requiring the present tense also in general language. By the same token, the number of imperative forms is predictably higher compared to general language in the genres ‘instructions for use’ (Press the red button) and ‘textbook’, at least in the sections providing exemplifications and guiding the reader through the argumentation (Assume the electron is moving in a relativistic way; Let us take the direction of motion to be the x direction). Also the use of past and future verb tenses is strongly correlated to text type and topic. Examples are the simple past tense in the ‘Materials and Methods’ section of a research article to describe the experimental procedure (The intended depth was 60 micrometers but the tool was positioned on the uncut work piece manually with the aid of a video microscope); the present perfect tense in a manual or textbook to specify the time relations between two events (After the switch has been closed, the fraction of the initial current still flowing in the circuit is…); or the higher occurrence of future verb forms in texts on economics and finance containing predictions and forecasts (After the acceleration of growth last year, the economy will develop at a more affordable speed in the future). A specialised use of tenses to express specific pragmatic functions can be found in the ‘IMRAD model’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.3.1), which provides general style guidelines to authors wishing to submit an article for publication in a research journal, although different journals follow different norms and styles of formatting (e.g. Chicago; APA—American Psychological Association; NLM—National Library of Medicine etc.).

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According to these guidelines, the present tense should be used for statements having general validity (water boils at 100 degrees centigrade) or containing the justification and motivation of the study, current knowledge (from literature) believed to be relevant for the current paper, the interpretation of results, and conclusions. The past tense should be used for the review of literature (Studies showed that …), the work being reported and discussed in the paper, the ‘Materials and methods’ section describing what happened or was observed during the experiment, the results (Treatment A was better than Treatment B, which suggests that…) and the objective of the study in the conclusions (The objective of the current study was…). Finally, the present perfect tense should be used for reporting common knowledge (Studies have shown that …). However, tense choice may even take on “additional, more subtle meanings” (Baker 2011: 110). By way of illustration, Baker quotes a study by Johns (1991) on the use of tense in academic abstracts in English (and Brazilian Portuguese). Whilst the present was used to report the contents of the paper itself via so-called ‘indicative verbs’ (present, mention, propose and refer to), the past was used to report on the procedures actually undertaken in the research via so-called ‘informative verbs’ (determine, record, select and detect). Similarly, Trimble (1985: 123–127) observes that in technical and scientific English there is also a ‘non-­ temporal use of tenses’. For example, the description of scientific apparatus is normally in the present tense but it is in the past if the apparatus is historical and no longer in use. Likewise, in references to figures and images, the past tense is used to describe the methods of data collection but when the figure itself and its relevance to the current paper are being discussed, the present is used instead. Also, when reviewing research done previously by the authors themselves or by others, if that research is not directly relevant to the current paper the writer uses the past tense, but if that research is directly relevant to the current paper the writer then uses the present perfect or the present tense. On the other hand, in English science and engineering academic abstracts, Johns (quoted in Baker 2011: 111) found that the present perfect is specifically used to refer to the work of scientists other than the author of the paper (It has been proposed that…) whilst the present tense (It is proposed that….) suggests that it is the writer who is doing the proposing.

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Another verbal feature of LSPs is mentioned by Gotti (2011: 72–74), who quotes a number of studies on verb tense in specialised discourse finding a general tendency to use a higher number of non-finite forms compared to general language (as opposed to comparable frequencies of finite verb forms). This finding is however not very surprising in the light of the functional and stylistic requirement of economy characterising all types of LSP discourse. Among non-finite verb forms, Gotti specifically mentions the wide use as condensing strategies of both the present participle and the infinitive to avoid relative clauses (a lower energy orbital functioning [= which functions] as the donor orbital; the substance to be studied [= which is to be studied] in solution) (cf. Sect. 1.2.4.1). Similarly, the present participle (-ing form) is used also to simplify concessive clauses (Although naturally occurring radioisotopes [= although radioisotopes which occur naturally] are rare), whereas the past participle is used also to achieve a more compact syntactic structure by omitting both subject and auxiliary (HCl and HF molecules treated [= which have been treated] as rigid rotors are examined when colliding [= they are colliding] with electrons).

1.2.4.4  Interactional Metadiscursive Resources ‘Interactional’ metadiscursive devices are interpersonal linguistic features of the clause used to signal the writer’s stance to the text content and towards the reader and should be distinguished from ‘interactive’ metadiscursive resource (cf. Sect. 1.2.3.3). Just as interactive metadiscursive devices were considered as resources at the textual rather than at the syntactic level, it would have been equally possible to consider also interactional resources at the level of the text as a whole on the basis that, because they have communicative, pragmatic and semiotic implications, they are part of pragmatics and as such are to be dealt with at the macrostructural level of the text (cf. Musacchio 2017a: 56). However, precisely because pragmatics cuts through all the levels of the text (textual, syntactic and lexical), and all linguistic levels are pragmatically related to both the communicative context in which the text is produced and the purpose it is

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designed to achieve, I have chosen here a more strictly grammatical approach and considered interactional discourse markers as syntactic (rather than textual) features (cf. Sect. 3.2.1). Indeed, unlike interactive markers, which are conjunctive resources that are mainly inter-sentential, interactional markers are linguistic selections that are mainly intra-­ sentential, i.e. realised primarily under the clause level. Interactional metadiscursive devices are ‘modal’ selections encompassing the writer’s subjective judgement of the validity of the proposition being conveyed and his adoption and assignment of speech roles in the writer-reader interaction (Halliday 2004[1997]: 215–216). In English specialised discourse, these resources are commonly (though not exclusively) realised by modal auxiliaries such as can, might, should and will, which may have pragmatic meanings that are relatively rare in general language. For example, non-standard uses of should and may to mean deontic ‘be obliged/required to’ (duty, obligation, permission, forbidding), rather than the standard epistemic (possibility, prediction) meaning of ‘desirable but not necessary’, can occur in LSP texts having a mainly performative or prescriptive function such as instructions, warnings or general guidelines and principles having strongly moral or ethical overtones: When a form is submitted, the ‘Submit’ button should [= must] be disabled to avoid duplicate submission. If you do not show a valid ticket when asked, you may [= will] be liable to pay a penalty fare The benefits should [= shall], where appropriate, be granted, taking into account the resources and the circumstances of the child and persons having responsibility for the maintenance of the child. Other, more subtle, differences can arise in different LSP text-types. In his analysis of the highly-structured argumentative pattern of texts having the main (more or less overt) purpose of convincing readers that the author’s perspective is the right one, Gotti (2011: 100–104) has found that some modal verbs have specific pragmatic functions in different parts of the same text. One example is the epistemic modal form cannot used with a deontic meaning, to demonstrate the obvious inconsistency

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found by the author in his analysis of previous research (Hence, if there is no change in the propensity to consume, employment cannot increase) and to convince the reader that his conclusions are not imposed but rather are logically drawn from the evidence produced (This level cannot be greater than full employment).11 Another example in argumentative LSP texts is the rhetorical use of may, which can be used to introduce one or more arguments in favour of a proposition relayed in the initial sentence which, however, will be rejected straight away by one or more counter-arguments relayed in the following sentences (cf. Hatim and Mason 1997: 165–171). In the example below, there are two instances of this type of argumentation, both following a general apparently ‘neutral’ statement (In conditions of overpopulation…) and introduced by the modal may correlated to the conjunction but ushering in the counter-arguments which express the real (critical) stance of the writer. The first is introduced by may reward (and correlated to but they) and the second is correlated retroactively to the emphatic may well and occurs after a long series of subordinate and embedded clauses: In conditions of overpopulation in agriculture, labour is the abundant factor and land and capital the scarce ones. New labour saving techniques may reward the profit-seeking landlord, but they will hardly improve the lot of the peasant. To regulate production by individual profit maximisation is probably the worst thing that can happen to an underdeveloped agrarian economy, for it will tend to increase unemployment and unwanted leisure. Owners of large private estates may well maximise their personal incomes by substituting machines for men, particularly if there are government grants for mechanisation and the ready availability of large scale imported machinery, and especially if local labour, although in abundant supply, is governed by minimum wages or is strongly unionised, but these owners generally render a less than useful service to a struggling, low-income, capital scarce economy. Such discrepancies between private and collective benefits are similar to those of a factory prospering at the same time as it incurs social costs by air and water pollution. (King 1977: 54–55)

In instructions, the modal verb form will may have other modal meanings rather than the standard one of referring to a time in the future,

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because it can express the inevitability of a given event in specific circumstances (If the program normally prompts the user for input, the prompt will not appear on the screen, because it too is being sent to the output file). In the discourse of economics, Merlini Barbaresi (1983, 1996) has found that only in applied predictions (if A happens then B will occur) (cf. Sect. 1.2.3.1) will refers to a time in the future, whilst in the other types of prediction (interpretative, illustrative and instrumental) it has an epistemic function, i.e. it expresses the degree of certainty of the writer in the truth-value of his prediction. For example, in the interpretative prediction of the first example below, will indicates a hypothesis whose validity is linked to the existence of a state of things that could be realised in the future, whilst in the illustrative prediction of the second example, will indicates a hypothesis that is valid under all circumstances: If the economy […] experiences a shock that reduces income, people whose incomes have gone down will spend less. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 197) Now suppose that the price of corn rises from $1 per bushel at planting to $1.10 per bushel at harvest. An initial $100 investment will yield $115, so the farmer will plant if she can borrow for less than 15 percent per year. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 325)

In both examples, the degree of certainty and objectivity of the prediction expressed by will can be either strengthened or mitigated lexically by adding adverbials such as probably, possibly, certainly, conceivably, of course, clearly, without doubt etc., or clauses such as one might reasonably expect, everybody will agree that, it is obvious that etc. Closely connected to the pragmatic considerations of the writer’s degree of certainty and objectivity with respect to the proposition being conveyed is the expression of doubt and conviction which is central to the rhetorical and interactive character of academic writing via the interactional metadiscursive devices known as ‘hedges’ and ‘boosters’ (Hyland 1998). Hedges are pragmatic markers introducing fuzziness with respect to the writer’s degree of commitment to the truth of the specific claim being made (cf. Schäffner 1998: 187). These devices are particularly frequent in

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academic sci-text discourse, where they mark the writer’s reluctance to present propositional information or put forward a claim categorically in order to avoid criticism (cf. Musacchio 2017b: 56). Hedges can be verbs with a modal meaning (think, suggest, might, to be likely/possible), adverbs (just, obviously, perhaps), downtoners and approximating expressions (rather; approximately; it is possible to hypothesise; there is some evidence to suggest…; the likely conclusion is that; to the best of my knowledge…). These commitment-reducing or -avoiding devices conveying (often false) modesty have the function to relieve authors of some of the responsibility for their statements and are the so-called ‘evidentiality-hedges’ (e.g. I think; it seemed that; to the best of my knowledge etc.). Because of their function to protect the author from the risk of error by leaving open a way of retreat, these hedges have also been linked to the “mystification and obfuscation (…) of agency and responsibility” (Fairclough 2003: 13) which is at the core of the stylistically aseptic writing and the prescribed anonymity of the language used to report scientific observation (cf. also the ‘impersonal active’ in Sect. 1.2.4.2) Boosters, on the other hand, are discourse markers that “imply certainty and emphasise the force of a proposition” (Hyland and Tse 2004: 168) as well as the author’s level of confidence in it. Following Olohan (2016: 156–157), in scientific and technical discourse boosters can be realised by modal auxiliaries (must, will), epistemic verbs (show, demonstrate, find), adverbs (clearly, in fact, definitely), adjectives and constructions such as it is clear that. Though boosters are an indispensable part of the writing conventions of academics trying to persuade their readers regarding their claims, they are much less frequent in highly specialised LSP discourse than in popular science, which relies more on intensifiers and emphatic expressions to impress the readers (Musacchio 2017b: 66). Other interactional metadiscursive devices which are important in academic writing are engagement markers, attitude markers and self-­ reference. Engagement markers explicitly refer to or build a relationship with the readers by including them as participants in the text through second-person pronouns, imperatives, questions or directives (consider,; note that, you can see that), whilst attitude markers “express the writer’s appraisal of propositional information, conveying surprise, obligation, agreement, importance, etc.” (Hyland and Tse 2004: 168) and are

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conveyed by evaluative resources of language (unfortunately, surprisingly, I agree). Together with self-mentions, i.e. direct references to the author (I, we, my, our) which make his presence explicit, attitude markers are an expression of the author’s subjectivity. Despite a general tendency of sci-tech discourse to use impersonal constructions to enhance its objectivity and highlight the fact or the process and its effects, linguistic resources expressing the writer-reader interaction and, more generally, interactional metadiscursive resources may be considered as instances of the already mentioned personalisation of scientific communication and a means for representing the author’s academic self (cf. Sect. 1.1.1.4). Moreover, as observed by Bennett (2011: 193), the fact that hedging devices allow the writer to be tentative and avoid sweeping generalisations can also be seen more generally as a reflection of the lack of certainty characterising modern scientific discourse.

1.2.5 Terminology Within a specialist community, selecting the right terms is the first condition to produce an LSP text that is clear and precise because (a) it enables specialists to describe and explain scientific and technological phenomena in an effective and efficient way, and (b) it fulfils the already mentioned (cf. Sect. 1.1.1.2) ‘identifying’ function which establishes LSP writers as members of a discourse community having a “threshold of membership” (Swales 1990: 220–222), i.e. more expertise in the specialised domain than others, thus providing them with a means of social recognition. It is therefore somewhat paradoxical that the very term ‘terminology’ should be polysemous and be used with at least three different meanings: (1) terminology as the discipline concerned with specialised terms, (2) terminology as the set of principles which govern term compilation, and (3) terminology as the product which is generated by the practice, i.e. the set of terms of any specific subject domain (Cabré Castellví 1996: 16–17). Traditionally, in LSP teaching specialised terminology was considered as the only characterising feature of scientific and technical languages (cf. Rogers 2012: 2), with each LSP having its own closed set of terms to be

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studied in isolation in ‘technical glossaries’ (cf. Sect. 1.5), which were two-column lists of terms with the first column displaying terms in one language and the second column displaying corresponding terms in another language, with each term in one language having an exact equivalent in the other (cf. Melby 2012: 9). With the advent in the 1970s and 1980s of a less static and more ‘textual’ and ‘pragmatic’ approach to language, other aspects of LSPs were considered as playing an equally important role as terminology. Nevertheless, being the most easily identifiable component of LSP texts and the linguistic aspect that more than any other originates and develops in response to specific technical needs, terminology is and remains a key feature of LSPs. It is certainly the most studied aspect of special languages and, crucially, the most problematic for translators. In both inter- and intra-lingual communication, terms have a key role in creating or obstructing mutual comprehension. Thus, Halliday’s (1993[1989]: 71) statement that “technical terms are not, in themselves, difficult to master and students are not particularly dismayed by them” might be true for students in science studying the LSP of their discipline in English (either as their first or second language of use), but not for non-specialists. It is in fact the lexical items of a specialised domain that provide the features of a specific LSP that distinguish it from both other LSPs and general language, unlike LSP syntax, which instead has no distinctive rules compared with general language (cf. Sect. 1.2.4). The relationship between terminology and specialised translation has always been very close, because they are both intimately connected to the transfer of specialised knowledge. The related field of ‘terminography’ plays an even more key role than terminology in the translator’s actual work. Whilst the discipline of terminology is concerned with the relationship between concepts in specialised domains of knowledge, and between those concepts and their linguistic designations, i.e. terms, terminography designates the set of activities connected to the compilation and management of collections of terms which today are in the form of translation-oriented multilingual databases (termbases or term banks). These termbases are however very different from the ‘technical glossaries’ that specialised translation was traditionally identified with, because they contain further information about terms and the concepts they represent

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(such as definitions, contexts, grammatical and usage information, synonyms and conceptual relations) and have the advantage of being easily updated (cf. Sects. 2.1 and 3.2.4). Although translators need to be something of terminologists too because they have to be able to look for corresponding units of meaning in different languages, translators and terminologists have quite different roles and work modes (cf. Sager 1998a: 251; Cabré 2010). Terminologists have the main aim of naming concepts in specialised domains of knowledge; they collect specialised terms, compile them and produce terminological resources (glossaries and databases) to be used by domain experts and translators. To do this, they traditionally isolated terms from their contexts and fitted them into abstract systems of concepts. Translators, on the other hand, work with concepts and terms in their context of use in order to create correspondences in a text in a different language: they consider terminology as an instrument both to solve terminological problems and to acquire knowledge about a specialised domain. This distinction, however, today has become fuzzier, mainly because one of the most widely practised applications of terminology is in the domain of translation. Given that, as noted by Rogers (2012: 3), “in their unavoidable dealings with texts, [translators] soon realise that denotative equivalence is often hard to establish”, the study of terminology has revalued a ‘communicative’ dimension that traditionally took only second place to its prescriptive and normative purpose (‘representative’ dimension) of providing unambiguous reference and terms are not considered anymore as context-­independent labels (Bowker 2011: 286–287). In fact, the communicative dimension of terminology has now all but obscured its representative function, as illustrated by Cabré’s (2010: 356) vigorous claim that both terminology and translation are “information and communication areas which have knowledge categories and units expressing them that are projected on communicative acts immersed in particular social contexts”. In the overwhelmingly textual and pragmatic perspective of terminology that informs the translation activity, terms are considered not in isolation but exclusively in their specialised contexts of use as part of ‘technical taxonomies’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.2), with each taxonomy being largely—but far from totally—‘incommensurable’ with the others. This perspective also entails that the nature of reference is seen as being

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different in specialised subjects and general knowledge: terms have special reference within a specific discipline as opposed to ‘words’ functioning in general reference over a variety of subject fields (which is instead the perspective adopted by lexicographers) (Sager 1994: 43).12 This distinction between ‘terms’ and ‘words’, however, is not as clear-cut as it seems. In a traditional classification of lexical items in LSPs (Sager et al. 1980: 242), terms are not only those highly technical words specific to a discipline which are normally used only by domain specialists (e.g. lathe, calcium oxide, polymer etc.) and make up as little as 5–10% of the vocabulary of a specialised text (Newmark 1988: 151, 160), but also generallanguage words which have acquired through the process of ‘terminologisation’ a more specialised meaning in a specific discipline. Examples are force, energy and power in the language of physics13 and the word care in nursing or physiotherapy or memory training (Whitehorn 2015).14 The remaining lexical items contained in LSP texts are what Gardner and Davies (2014) call ‘academic core words’, i.e. general-language words that either: (1) have kept their meaning and are used in all specialised disciplines (e.g. the verbs demonstrate, observe etc.; the nouns hypothesis, conclusion etc.), or (2) are used with a restricted or different meaning in different specialised domains, as for example the term analysis, denoting in chemistry a method to provide information about the composition and structure of substances, but in mathematics a branch that studies functions and includes differential and integral calculus. Consistently with the higher stringency of LSP conventions at all levels of specialisation as compared to general discourse (cf. Sect. 1.2.1), the meanings of terms in specialised contexts are much more stable than those of words in non-specialised contexts, which are more unstable because they are more bound to the specific context of occurrence. However, this does not mean that terminology does not vary in space and time. Examples are the geographical allomorphic term variation of the suffix -isation/ization in British and American English (e.g. hybridisation / hybridization) and the variation relating to a different time frame provided by the set of challenges of translating today Darwin’s terminology in his On the Origin of Species (1859). For example, both his theory and the terminology to expose it came before modern genetics and its arithmetic of inheritance,15 on the one hand, and before the discovery of

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DNA, the genetic material that transmits inheritance16 and its double helix structure,17 on the other (Radford 2008). Neither does the higher stability of the meaning of terms as compared to general-language words mean that, as in other features of natural languages, the same concept is referred to by the same term in different situations of use, even within the same specialised discipline. An example is provided by the term green building ˗ referring to the practice of creating and using healthier and more resource-efficient models of construction, renovation, operation, maintenance and demolition ˗ and its many synonyms (sustainable architecture/building/construction/development; environmentally friendly/natural/ecological building; green/eco-/organic architecture) which in fact, according to Woolley et al. (1998: 5), have different “nuances of […] use” that “depend on the context and the audience”. Given the variation of LSP terminology, when carrying out terminographical work a correlation can be made between, on the one hand, the pragmatic variables of the final users of the term collection to be created and the aims of the terminographical activity and, on the other, the sources of the term collection to be compiled (Ahmad et  al. 1994: 268–269). If the final users of the collection are domain specialists, the purpose of the termbase will be prescriptive (cf. Sect. 1.2.5.1) and its sources may consist of a limited number of documents written by other specialists (representative function of terminology). But if the users are linguists and translators, the purpose of the termbase will be descriptive and it may well include sources from different levels of specialisation and also information on the use of each term (communicative function of terminology). From the point of view of their surface realisation, terms usually consist of one lexical item (usually a word, but also a symbol, an abbreviation, an acronym etc.)18 which is typically a noun, but can also be a verb, an adjective or a verb. Terms can also consist of two or more items that are used together to express a specific concept and make up a single terminological unit (e.g. energy efficient building envelope). Following Sinclair’s (1991: 170) broad definition of ‘collocations’ as any recurrent (statistically significant) co-occurrence of a combination of words, in special languages these multiword expressions are called ‘LSP collocations’ or ‘LSP phraseology’ and are considered to be multiword terms, i.e. single

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units. They are one of the typical features of the language of science that Halliday calls ‘special expressions’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.2) which, as remarked by Musacchio (2017a: 50) following Dardano (1994), “are not essential to their denotational meaning, but give scientists some sense that the speaker/writer is an expert in the field”. The formal characteristics of the most common types of English LSP collocations are: Noun + Noun (encryption key), Adjective + Noun: (private key), Participle + Noun (encrypted data), Noun + Preposition + Noun (rectification of data), although other combinations are also possible (e.g. Noun + Participle as in drug-resistant). An important point is that the potential for collocation in LSPs is more restricted than in general language (Sager et al. 1980: 231). For one thing, this applies to their lexical features: thus, in the domain of personal data protection, an alternative to rectification of data such as *reconsideration of data would not have the same meaning of ‘adjustment of process measurements to eliminate noise and/or random gross errors’. For another, it applies also to the syntactic characteristics of collocations. According to the BBI Combinatory Dictionary of English (Benson et al. 2009: xxxiii), the main distinguishing feature of LSP collocations compared to general language is in fact their syntactic behaviour, which is less loose. For example, the general-language collocation dog sitter can be reformulated as sitter of dogs, because it is the head noun sitter which carries most of the specific semantic load, whilst in LSP collocations such as hosting system, fossil record and gene-editing technology such a syntactic reformulation is not possible. Compared to their general-­ language counterparts, the distinctive feature of LSP collocations is in fact their internal structure, where a generic head noun is (pre-)modified by increasingly specific attributes. The next two sections will deal with the three pragmatic requirements characterising the word-formation processes of new LSP terms to respond to the need to communicate specialised knowledge efficiently and unambiguously, i.e. monoreferentiality (1.2.5.1), transparency and conciseness (1.2.5.2). These requirements are not specific only to terminology but are comprised within the general pragmatic criteria of precision, economy and objectivity informing all the distinctive features of LSP discourse (cf. Sect. 1.2.1). The last section (1.2.5.3) will be focused on the important role of metaphorical processes in LSP term formation.

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1.2.5.1  Monoreferentiality The pragmatic requirement of monoreferentiality falls within the general criterion of precision characterising LSP discourse. Following Gotti’s (2011: 25) use of the term, ‘monoreferentiality’ indicates that, within each specialised domain and independently of the context, a term should ideally have only one specific referent (meaning) and, conversely, each concept should be expressed by only one specific term. Unlike what happens in general language, there is a tendency for terms to be context-­ independent (at least, for highly technical terms such as atom, byte etc.) and for subject specialists to try and avoid both using synonyms  and paraphrasing a term. In fact, the norm is for the LSP writer to repeat the same term in highly specialised texts or use a hyperonym (a more general term) in less specialised texts. For example, to avoid repeating the term ankylosing spondylitis or converting it into a lexical anaphora via the rather cumbersome paraphrase this progressive inflammatory disease of the spine, the best option in expert-to-layperson communication is to use the hyperonym inflammation in the phrase this (type of ) inflammation. However, even within the same discipline, in different situations of use (different users and/or different levels of specialisation) the same concept is not necessarily referred to by the same term. This functional view of (near-)synonymy within a discourse community challenges the univocity ideal of traditional terminology and is the premise of new ways to describe terminology using a sociocognitive approach. By way of an example that the synonyms to name the same concept can indeed reflect slightly different perspectives, Temmerman (2000: 150–153) provides the term Southern blotting (see also Sect. 1.2.5.2)—indicating a common research technique in molecular biology to determine transfer DNA, which has been named after the scientist Edwin M. Southern who devised it—and the two near-synonyms Southern transfer and Southern hybridization. As noted by Temmerman, these three near-synonymous terms should in fact be considered as a functional advantage and not as a drawback to the requirement of monoreferentiality, because Southern’s own original description of his technique contained all three elements (blotting,

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transfer and hybridization), which were subsequently used for naming his method. Despite this positive attitude by some scholars towards synonymy, the need to communicate specialised knowledge efficiently and unambiguously that is increasingly felt in today’s world in response to the global circulation of conceptual and practical innovations has resulted in a growing demand for an intra-lingual reorganisation of the terminology of each discipline, which is further bolstered internationally by the need to provide terms with univocal definitions in order to facilitate communication between different languages. Besides the regularisation of the use of specific terms carried out by various style guides, norms, recommendations and guidelines, there are two terminological activities aimed at achieving unambiguous communication in LSP domains: terminology standardisation (or normalisation) and harmonisation. The standardisation of terminology deals with the ordering and univocal definition of (1) the terms within a specialised domain, and (2) the general methods and procedures of collecting and describing terms. In order to increase effective communication among specialists, standardisation is aimed at eliminating semantic ambiguity by establishing a clear one-to-one correspondence between term and concept, and has a prescriptive and normative purpose (representative function of terminology). It is usually introduced when there are alternative designations (terms) for the same concept and consists of two steps: (1) fixing each referent (concept), and (2) standardising its designation (term) (Sager 1990: 122, 1998b: 255–256; Bowker 2011: 287). The choice among a range of competing terms for the same concept is generally based on the pragmatic criteria of economy, transparency and frequency of use. Standardisation is officially carried out by national and international independent bodies and committees which, with the support and consensus of the relevant interested parties and often with national government assistance, develop and publish voluntary (i.e. not mandated by law) standards and specifications across a wide variety of industry sectors, including science, technology and also translation services (cf. Sect. 4.1). The main international body setting international standards is ISO (International Organization for Standardization), a federation of various national standards organisations that was founded in 1947 and is

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headquartered in Geneva. Other international standards organisations are the International Electrotechnical Commission and the International Telecommunication Union, also based in Geneva. In Europe, the main public standards organisation is CEN (Comité Européen de Normalisation), founded in 1961 and operating in all industrial sectors other than the electrotechnical and telecommunications. Besides international ISO and EN norms, other standards are developed by national standards bodies, i.e. standardisation organisations which are specific to each country and are members of ISO, such as BSI (British Standards Institution) and DIN (Deutsches Institut für Normung). Each country can decide whether to further enhance the relevance of ISO standards by adopting them as national standards written in languages different from ISO’s three official languages (English, French and Russian). The content and terminology of these national norms must then be made compatible and compliant with the corresponding international standards by means of a process called ‘harmonisation’ of standards, which is compulsory in the European Union. The resulting harmonised standards begin with the suffixes BSI ISO (or BSI EN ISO) in the United Kingdom, DIN ISO (or DIN EN ISO) in Germany etc. Besides national standards bodies, thousands of standards organisations develop and publish industry-specific standards, such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Audio Engineering Society (AES). Lack of standardisation in terminology can be a real problem, first of all for subject specialists. An example is provided by the international panel set up by medical researchers on stroke to standardise an internationally agreed terminology of early neurological deterioration in acute stroke, as it was felt that lack of standardisation had hitherto hampered the study of acute stroke (Birschel et al. 2004). Inconsistent terminology is also a problem for LSP translators, who more often than not cannot access the advanced terminology tools necessary to guide them in the selection among different variants. Whilst some disciplines such as medicine, botany, zoology and chemistry have long adopted international Latin/Greek-based nomenclatures,19 in the social sciences and the emerging disciplines (e.g. information technology, economics and even linguistics) there is still a long way to go before achieving terminological consistency. The motivations of this lack of standardisation are

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heterogeneous. For example, in the terminology of information technology (IT) it is the result of at least three factors: the sector’s quick and chaotic development in the last 40 years, a generalised resistance to language prescription and, crucially, a widespread lack of interest in language issues by the major IT companies. It is against this background that whoever ended up becoming the market leader in a specific market always imposed their own terminology on that sub-sector and made it the tacitly accepted standard via the elimination of any competing terms and the introduction of terms that would be gradually absorbed into the general vocabulary through progressive circles of diffusion (Sager 1990: 114, 1994: 39). Because of the inherent tendency of terminology to be stable, the different variants used to denote the same concept can coexist for a long time before one term wins out on all the others, thus resulting in semantic ambiguities both intra- and inter-lingually. The only synonymic variations that do not hinder communication are those motivated by different contexts of use, even when the different situations in which variants are used are not kept completely separate. For example, in the domain of good manufacturing practice for drugs, there is a marked difference between the terminology used in official documents (laws and pharmacopeias) and that of non-official texts (specialised journals), with the first typically belonging to a more formal register and being graphically longer than the latter (Bacterial endotoxin test vs. LAL (test); French20 essai des endotoxins bactériennes vs. test LAL; Italian saggio per la ricerca delle endotossine batteriche vs. LAL (test)). In all the other cases where there is not a clear socio-functional distinction between different contexts of use, synonymy can have a negative impact on both intra- and inter-lingual LSP communication where it can lead to referential errors. In languages different from English, a typical case of synonymy arises from the competition of different terms to refer to the same concept in the same specialised domain with one term being a loanword from English, which is generally preferred because it is shorter than other competing variants. For example, in both French and Italian the IT term buffer is used more frequently than the synonyms mémoire tampon and memoria di transito respectively. Another possible way the period of co-existence/conflict can end up is with the loanword acquiring a more restricted and specialised meaning

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than the existing term. An example is provided by the Italian loanword format, which is now used exclusively in the sense of ‘television format’, whilst the pre-existing term formato is used in many other specialised contexts such as word-processing. Besides use-related variation, terminological variants can be temporal, commercial or graphical (cf. Bédard 1986). Temporal variants are two or more competing terms being used over the same period of time, which however ends with the prevalence of one over the other brought about by the intervening advancement of science and technology. For example, the term electronic brain, which was coined in the early 1940s, co-existed well into the 1970s with the synonyms electronic calculator, electronic processor and computer, with the latter finally prevailing in the 1980s but now competing with other more specialised variants reflecting the exponential progress of IT in the last decades (PC, Mac, desktop, server, portable, laptop, tablet etc.). Temporal variants also include the so-called ‘symmetrical’ variants, terms that were coined by analogy with already existing terms denoting similar concepts and coexisting with the latter for a certain amount of time. For example, in electrical technology (Hann 1992: 224–225) the terms condenser and capacity coexisted for a time with the new terms capacitor and capacitance, which had been coined by analogy on the pre-existent resistor/resistance and inductor/inductance, but were finally supplanted also because the new terms were semantically more transparent and easier to memorise. Commercial variants are terms which are introduced by companies to distinguish their products from those of their competitors. Here the motivation of the success of one variant over another is to be found in the lack of standardisation and market success of one product over another already noted for IT terminology. For example, the variants navigate and explore as in navigate/explore the web reflect the early browser war between the two companies Netscape and Microsoft competing for the web browser market (which was eventually lost by Netscape): Netscape’s browser was in fact called Navigator (launched in 1994) whilst Microsoft’s product was called Internet Explorer (launched in 1995). Commercial variants also include the so-called ‘commercial eponyms’, terms derived from the name of the company which marketed a product first, whose success is linked to their brevity or easier memorisation, and which end

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up with denoting the entire class of products having similar characteristics (e.g. hoover instead of vacuum cleaner). Eponyms may vary across different countries, even within the same language: for example, ‘adhesive tape’ is sellotape in the UK but scotch tape in the US and Canada (and simply scotch in Italy). Finally, graphic (allomorphic) variants include ‘orthographic’ variants, involving the use of the hyphen (shelf life/shelf-life), different prepositions (contrôle de qualité/contrôle de la qualité/contrôle qualité), abbreviated forms (lab for laboratory), acronyms (MA for Marketing Authorisation), symbols etc., and also ‘geographical’ variants (the suffix -isation/ization in British and American English). Geographical variants may also be partial synonyms if they refer to the same concept which however is realised differently by the regulations of different countries. One such example from the domain of good manufacturing practice for drugs is provided by the variants marketing authorisation, New Drug Application and Product License Application, all three referring to the approval by the competent drug regulatory authority of a product for marketing. Whilst the first is used in the United Kingdom, the other two are used in the US to denote, however, two different types of approval by the Food and Drug Administration: New Drug Application refers only to drug products for human use whilst Product License Application (or product license) is a hyponym that refers only to drug products for human use which are biological.

1.2.5.2  Transparency and Conciseness Another pragmatic requirement characterising LSP terminology is that of transparency, i.e. the ease with which a specialist can access the concept underlying a term. Besides the general criterion of precision, the ready accessibility of a term can also be considered to fall within the other major pragmatic criterion of economy, because expressing concepts in the shortest possible form should achieve communicative effectiveness and efficiency (cf. Jiří Levý’s ‘minimax principle’ in Sect. 1.2.1). Both transparency and economy characterise the processes to create new terms, which play a key role in specialised discourse. Neologisms, i.e. newly

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formed linguistic expressions (with new meanings), are specifically coined by specialists (and sometimes by translators) to convey new highly specialised concepts specific to a discipline involving new discoveries and developments, and are a measure of scientific advance. LSPs term-­ formation processes aim at being regular and predictable, yielding an output that both expresses the underlying concept in the shortest possible surface form and is also transparent and precise, pointing immediately to its own concept and making it easily accessed by the specialist (cf. Gotti 2011: 27–30). The more regular and predictable these rules are, the more the terminological system of a discipline will be close to being an international rule system of nomenclature (cf. Sager 1998a: 252). Within the same language, the word-formation rules through which new terms are created in LSPs are derivation, compounding and blending. In neologisms created by derivation, an affix having a conventional meaning attaches to the root of a word. The affix can be a ‘prefix’ (if in initial position) or a ‘suffix’ (if in final position) and the resulting new word can belong to the same or a different grammatical category from the root word. Examples from the terminology of economics are antonyms created using negative prefixes such as un- (unanticipated from anticipated), dis- (dissaving from saving), non- (nondurables from durables) and privative prefixes such as de- (devaluation from evaluation). An illustration of the functionality of combining the same word root with different affixes having fixed meanings comes from the terminology of medicine, where the suffix -scopy means ‘observation or visual examination’, as in laparoscopy, whilst the suffix -tomy means ‘incision’, as in the surgical operation of laparotomy. Both medical terms indicate a surgical procedure to allow the surgeon to access the abdominal cavity, but whilst in laparoscopy the operation is only minimally invasive, in laparotomy it involves a large surgical incision in the skin. Another word-formation process by derivation that is typical of English and, because of its conciseness, has also been spreading to LSPs in other languages, is ‘back-­ formation’ (or ‘zero derivation’), meaning to create from an existing term a new one belonging to a different word class (vaccinate from vaccination, secrete from secretion). Examples of back-formations in other languages are the Italian verb repertare (from the noun reperto, ‘find or describe a

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sample, an object’) and the French adjective micro-ondable (from the nominal group four à micro-ondes). Compounding is an equally productive word-formation process in LSPs and occurs when two or more items combine into a single terminological unit, the meaning of which is determined by combining the meanings of its constituent parts. The resulting new terms are multiword expressions that were described as LSP collocations or phraseology in Sect. 1.2.5 (certification key, private key, encrypted data, rectification of data etc.) and nominal groups in Sect. 1.2.4.1 (glass crack growth rate and applied stress magnitude). Compounding is the most language-specific of all word-formation processes and compounds represent a major translation difficulty for novice specialised translators. This is because the semantic and syntactic relationships between the different parts of a term, which are left implicit in Germanic languages such as English and German, have to be made explicit in Romance languages such as French and Italian (e.g. English idle speed valve, German Leerlauf-Ventil, French électrovanne de commande de démarrage à froid, Italian valvola di avviamento a freddo) (Rogers 2015: 53). A special subcategory of compounds is made up by eponyms named after the scientist who invented or was the first to describe a phenomenon or a procedure. They are frequent in medicine (Montgomery tubercles, Paget disease), economics (Phillips curve, Mundell-Fleming model), and mathematics and physics (Planck constant, Faraday’s law, Gauss curve etc.). An interesting case is the eponym Southern blot analysis, indicating a common research technique in molecular biology to determine transfer DNA, named after Edwin M.  Southern (cf. Southern blotting in Sect. 1.2.5.1). This compound has in fact provided the basis on which the new term northern blot analysis has been subsequently created by analogy, to indicate a related technique to detect RNA molecules, where the adjective northern, presumably chosen because of its antonymic relation with Southern, is not capitalised to signal its non-­ eponymic origin. The word-formation process of blending is somewhere between compounding and abbreviation and is the combination of parts of two or more words to create a new word whose meaning is often, as the name suggests, an amalgamation of the meaning of the original words (cybernetic + organism = cyborg). Unlike derivation and compounding, the

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blending process does not follow rules which are totally regular and, unlike abbreviations, blending creates a new word with a new meaning. In specialised discourse, blends are particularly used to create new names for chemical substances and compounds. Quoting Marchand (1969: 453), Mattiello (2012: 151, 156) mentions regular blends such as aldol (← aldehyde + alcohol), alkargen (← alkarsin + oxygen) and chloral (← chlorine + alcohol); less prototypical examples such as amatol (← ammonium nitrate + trinitrotoluene); hybrid cases between blends and acronyms such as LUMCON (← Louisiana Universities Marine CONsortium); and borderline cases lying between clipping and blending such as the abbreviation Fermilab from the compound Fermi national accelerator laboratory, which in fact blends the personal name Fermi with the lexicalized clipping lab. New terms are also created via abbreviation, which falls completely within the pragmatic requirement of economy. Even if they create new terms, reduced or shortened words do not convey new meanings but keep the meaning of their full forms. The abbreviating morphological mechanisms of clipping and alphabetism (acronyms and initialisms) formation are very productive in LSP terminology and, together with blending, have not been drawn from general language but are exclusive of LSPs (Cortelazzo 1994: 14). Examples of clipping or ‘in-text variation’ (Rogers 2015: 55) are matching instead of computer matching (IT), bone scan instead of bone scintiscan (medicine) and acrylic instead of polymethyl methacrylate (industrial chemistry). Examples of initialisms, which are pronounced letter by letter, are HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) and CPU (Central Processor Unit), whilst examples of acronyms, which are pronounced as single words, are AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) and PIN (Personal Identification Number). Unlike morphological rules of word-formation, which are regular and predictable, abbreviations do not always operate in a regular way and, rather like blendings, often violate the predictability of their output thus reducing transparency. One example provided by Mattiello (2012: 153) is HiRISE (← High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment), where more than one letter from the words in the full form are retained to allow the formation of the acronym.

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Abbreviating processes illustrate very clearly how the pragmatic requirement of economy can often come into conflict with that of transparency. Indeed, the inevitable condensation of knowledge achieved by means of LSP lexicogrammar (abbreviations, symbols, formulas etc. but also compounds) to comply with the requirement of economy can be taken as a ‘threshold of membership’ to be used by members of a discourse community to exclude outsiders from understanding their specialised ‘jargon’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.5). This sociological motivation would account for those situations where an abbreviated variant—or indeed a symbol, a compound or a loanword—is preferred not for its higher denotative precision but for its greater technical connotation, making it “an index of social meaning or a marker of social identity” and contributing “to establish professional closeness among the members of the scientific community, who recognize and share the same language” (Mattiello 2012: 150, 160). Abbreviations have an important function also at the textual level, as they create cohesion by functioning as anaphoric co-referents, pointing back within the same text to previously introduced full forms. A final method of creating new terms is by borrowing them from other languages, a process which has been a very productive means of expanding terminology for many centuries (see Rogers 2015: 117–121) and an instrumental strategy in making LSP translation “the great pollinator of science” (Fischbach 1993), spreading the discoveries and methods of scientific research throughout Europe from the Scientific Revolution until the nineteenth century (Montgomery 2010: 300). Based on the translation techniques of ‘borrowing’ and ‘calque’ originally proposed by Vinay and Darbelnet (1958), borrowings can be formally distinguished in at least three different categories: 1. direct borrowings or loanwords (depending on whether the perspective is TL or SL oriented), when a term is adopted into one language from another without any formal changes: e.g. French spin [de l’electron] and shunt [électrique] (physics); 2. adapted borrowings, when a term is adopted into one language from another after undergoing a ‘nativisation’ (Sager 1990: 85) or ‘naturalisation’ (Newmark 1988: 82) process which adapts the borrowed word to the normal morphology of the TL: e.g. French scattéromètre (←

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scatterometer) (physics); French [fonction de] hachurage (← hashing function) (IT); 3. loan translation or calque, a special type of borrowing where a term or an expression is adopted into one language from another in a more or less literally translated form: e.g. Italian stadiazione (← staging) (medicine); French force électromotrice (← electromotive force) (physics). Loan translations can be further distinguished into ‘loan formations’, ‘loan meanings’ and ‘partial calques’ (Montero-Martinez et al. 2001: 691). In ‘loan formations’ (or ‘loan creations’), SL (here, English) words have been adopted in the TL with little or no modification. They can be one-word formations (e.g. Spanish privacidad ← privacy) or complex formations or ‘syntactic calques’ (e.g. Spanish terapia ocupacional ← occupational therapy). ‘Loan meanings’ consist of the semantic expansion of a given TL word to include a new specialised SL meaning (e.g. French souris (← [computer] mouse). Finally, in ‘partial calques’, only part of the expression has been translated: e.g. French bus de donneés (← data bus) (IT). Following the international dimension of scientific research and technology after World War II, characterised by the dominance of Anglo-­ American models and English as the lingua franca both within teams with members from different countries and for research publication and dissemination (see Sect. 1.3), borrowing has become a very frequent process of lexical innovation in languages of international lesser diffusion such as Italian, where there is no political, or even social/cultural, resistance to importing loanwords from a language seen as more prestigious. Indeed, the extent of English direct borrowings and, to a much lesser extent, loan translations in Italian LSPs (and also in general language) is so great that it often completely contravenes the transparency rule of communication. This rule consists of some guiding principles by Sager (1998a: 254) on the wider usefulness of a terminology developed through native means and the unacceptability of direct borrowings and loan translations if they violate the natural word-formation techniques of a TL21 (cf. Sect. 2.3.1).

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1.2.5.3  Metaphorisation Besides the word-formation processes illustrated in the preceding section, metaphorisation plays a fundamental role in the creation of new specialised terms, especially in the formulation of new scientific theories, by extending the meaning of already existing words, which can be either general-language words (‘terminologisation’) or terms from the terminology of a different LSP (‘resemantisation’). An example of terminologisation is the term doping, which in general language means ‘the use of a substance to illegally improve athletic performance’ whilst in solar photovoltaic technology designates ‘the intentional introduction of impurities into a semiconductor to enhance its intrinsic electrical properties’. An example of resemantisation is the polysemous term navigation, which has different—though related—specialised meanings in the maritime, aeronautical, astronautical and IT domains. As a general rule, emerging disciplines and scientific developments frequently borrow metaphorical concepts and terms from other more established domains and the resulting polysemous metaphorical terms are monosemic only within the target specialised domain. Other examples of such highly context-dependent metaphorical terms are dome (‘hemispherical structure evolved from the arch, usually forming a ceiling or roof ’ in architecture, but ‘large or elliptical structure formed by the fractureless upwarping of rock strata’ in geology) and valley (‘an elongated depression between uplands’ in geography, but ‘the minimum value of a signal’ in telecommunications) (Durán Escribano 2017). Resemantisation may involve a word taken from literature, such as the term quark, a nonsense word used by James Joyce in the novel Finnegan’s Wake, which in physics denotes an elementary particle. Traditional views of metaphor22 consider it as a linguistic device of substitution, i.e. one expression used metaphorically for another that could have been literal (Richard is a lion, where lion stands for ‘brave’). A special case of substitution is the so-called ‘comparison view of metaphor’, according to which a metaphor consists in the presentation of an underlying analogy or similarity between two unlike entities (here, Richard and a lion).23 The motivation for such a substitution/comparison can be lexical necessity (‘catachresis’), i.e. the use of metaphor to remedy

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lexical gaps, or simply stylistic preference, with metaphor being a mere figure of speech, an embellishment aimed at providing the reader with a ‘puzzle’ to be solved (Black 1962). A classification of metaphor as a linguistic device where words are used ‘non-literally’ to talk (and potentially think) about one thing in terms of another is Halliday’s (1985: 319–320) distinction between: (1) ‘metaphor’ in a strict sense, when a word is used to denote a concept that is in a relationship of resemblance with the concept it usually refers to (seahorse ‘fish with a horse-like head’; bottlenose dolphin ‘species of dolphin having a nose which resembles a bottle’); (2) ‘metonymy’, when a word is used to denote a concept that is in a relationship of contiguity with the concept it usually refers to (a migration wave; cut and paste); (3) ‘synecdoche’, when a word is used with an extension or reduction of its meaning, e.g. to indicate a part for the whole (hired hands instead of workers), the genus for the species (the feline instead of the cat) or the singular for the plural (man instead of mankind). In general discourse, the two main purposes of metaphors are those identified by Newmark (2004): (1) a concentrating purpose “to describe an object, a person, or a concept more comprehensively, yet more concisely, than is possible in literal, non-figurative language”, and (2) a pragmatic purpose “directed to the reader’s intelligence and emotions […] intended to enlighten, to please or to surprise the reader”. In LSP discourse, these two purposes can be assimilated to the three advantages of metaphorisation mentioned by Gotti (2011: 42), i.e. terminological transparency and conciseness (concentrating purpose), and the “tangible quality” of “images from the physical world used to represent abstract and often complex concepts that would otherwise be difficult to define” (pragmatic purpose). In Translation Studies, metaphor has been mainly understood and described in terms of the ‘interaction view of metaphor’, which Black (1962, 1979) derived from Richards (1936) as an alternative to the traditional comparison view, and has been widely discussed within the discipline, predominantly with respect to translatability and transfer strategies from a SL to a TL (Schäffner 2004: 1254–1257) (see Sect. 3.2.4.1). According to the interaction view of metaphor, the two factors of ‘object’ or ‘topic’ (the item being described or qualified by the metaphor) and the ‘image’ or ‘vehicle’ (the item in terms of which the object is described) interact in producing a system of ‘associated implications’, i.e. the ‘sense’

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or ‘tenor’ of the metaphor, which views the object from the perspective of our general knowledge about the image. For example, in the metaphorical expression navigating the internet, the object is the internet, the image is navigating (over a stretch of water or terrain) and the sense of the metaphor is made up by the attributes: (a) plan a desired route for one’s search of a specific goal or place (in an ocean of data); (b) follow a course, carefully or with difficulty, through different nodes and links; (c) do so by using wayfinding computer equipment (e.g. a browser and anti-virus) and skills (e.g. keyboarding and word processing). Even though this particular metaphor has lost much of its power and should be considered merely as a ‘standard’ metaphor or even a ‘cliché’, where the figurative language is all but unnoticed (cf. Newmark 2004), the verb navigate still expresses metaphorically a central concept for users of hypertext and multimedia and has become a core term of IT. Unlike the traditional view of metaphor as a linguistic device having a merely illustrating or embellishing function, in a cognitive perspective metaphor is considered as a basic resource for thought, using our experience or understanding from a ‘concrete’ domain to understand and experience by analogy an ‘abstract’ one. In Lakoff and Johnson’s (1980) influential Conceptual Metaphor Theory, metaphor is seen as a pervasive cognitive tool which influences our perception of the world. The so-­ called ‘conceptual metaphors’ are the realisations of underlying cognitive structures organising our everyday experience of the world by combining two conceptual domains of experience and making us understand one unknown domain (target domain) in terms of another, familar one (source domain). The so-called ‘core’ conceptual metaphors are grounded in bodily experience and are thus thought to be universal ontological categories. One such conceptual metaphor is UNDERSTANDING IS SEEING, where the metaphorical process is started by a ‘mapping’ (i.e mental connection) from the source conceptual domain SEEING (the concept drawn upon, or used to create the metaphorical construction) to the target domain UNDERSTANDING (the concept to be described by the metaphor), highlighting some aspects and backgrounding others. Any mapping from one conceptual domain onto another can then be viewed as a larger metaphorical structure (i.e. a conceptual metaphor) that may be productive and support an open-ended number of individual

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micro-level ‘metaphorical expressions’, i.e. individual linguistic expressions “based on a conceptualisation and thus sanctioned by a mapping” (Schäffner 2004: 1258), which relate to that particular area. This view of the pervasiveness of metaphor as an indispensable tool for conceptualising figuratively the new by means of the familiar explains why metaphors are employed so frequently in the language of science and technology to capture the reader’s attention, support the understanding of new concepts and increase the degree of persuasiveness of a new theory (cf. Rogers 2015: 123, 126). Examples of conceptual metaphors that are shared by all LSPs besides UNDERSTANDING IS SEEING (point of view, point out something)  are THEORIES ARE BUILDINGS (the foundation of a theory) and IDEAS ARE PEOPLE (the theory of relativity gave birth to…; cognitive psychology is still in its infancy) (Lakoff and Johnson 1980). In the last few years, some LSP researchers have begun to use cognitive insights of metaphor in their studies, though often drawing from different approaches and using different terminologies for their descriptions. Applying to the analysis of the discourse of popular science a revised notion of conceptual metaphor (Lakoff 1993: 203), Shuttleworth (2011: 302–303, 308) argues that in the metaphorical expression artificial genetic letters the less familiar and more abstract genetic material is portrayed in terms of the more familiar and less abstract, i.e. as if it were text. The same mapping ALL GENETIC MATERIAL IS TEXT produces and supports other metaphorical expressions for genetic material such as editing out, libraries and transcript. Besides this specific conceptual metaphor, other parallel mappings are also possible for genetic material, e.g. in terms of circuitry, code, data, instructions, language, machinery or software, with each mapping highlighting certain characteristics attributed to genetic material whilst concealing others. The use of metaphor can vary considerably within the same special language or in different specialised disciplines depending on discourse level (genre, register and discourse community). For example, in their study on the use of metaphors of violence in relation to cancer and end of life, Demmen et  al. (2015) found that prototypical metaphorical expressions such as battle and fight (e.g. dying after a battle with cancer) were part of a larger pattern of metaphors with a common adversarial theme (including struggle, protect, confront and hit) which were used in

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different ways by different stakeholder groups (cancer patients, family carers and healthcare professionals). They also found that such violence metaphors were used differently in different genres (interviews vs. online forum settings) in terms of contrast in formality and anonymity (greater frankness and openness of discussions online also by means of violence metaphors). Likewise, in a corpus of written English academic discourse consisting of published material from leading journals in applied linguistics, economics, law and medicine, Giannoni (2010: 417) found a different distribution among different genres and specialised disciplines of evaluative metaphors (a clearer picture; strong scholarly impact; the wide area of issues; one of the central goals etc.). These differences reflect the amount of evaluation required by the communicative purpose of each genre, with the highest number of evaluative markers in editorials and book reviews, followed by abstracts and research articles. Lakoff and Johnson’s (1980: 3–4) cognitive view that metaphors are not just a way of expressing ideas by means of language but a way of thinking about things and creating a new reality is closely connected to Kuhn’s (1993[1979]: 539) claim that “metaphor plays an essential role in establishing links between scientific language and the world”. The use of metaphors and metaphorical processes in LSPs not only to describe but also to create new theories and introduce new theoretical terminology (Boyd 1993; Kuhn 1993[1979]; Brown 2008[2003]) is at the heart of the distinction between (1) ‘exegetical’ (or ‘pedagogical’ or ‘interpretive’) metaphors and (2) ‘theory-constitutive’ (or ‘foundational’) metaphors. Exegetical metaphors are linked to the ‘tangible quality’ of metaphors (Gotti 2011: 42) and allow us to understand new and unfamiliar concepts by creating analogies with what is more familiar. These metaphors have the pedagogical and popularising function of illustrating difficult concepts by exemplification and, by using very concrete and everyday images, manage to strike a balance between maximum expressive transparency and condensation. They are typical of expert-to-layperson communication, especially in scientific education and popular science, where, besides metaphors, an important role is also played by similes (Musacchio 2017a: 74). An example of exegetical metaphor is the following so-called ‘Bathtub Metaphor’, taken from the language of economics and finance. It is an extended metaphor to explain in an effective and concise way the

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difference between stocks and flows, a rather complex concept having a great relevance in macroeconomics, by drawing a comparison using a well-known concept, i.e. the behaviour of water in a bathtub: Stocks and flows are often compared using a bathtub metaphor, with the level of the bathwater playing the role of the stock of capital and the flow from the spigot being analogous to the flow of investment. A small change in demand for the level of bathwater can call forth a large change in the flow from the spigot. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 321)24

Theory-constitutive metaphors are an integral part of scientific theory and meaning construction, and are peculiar to the language of science because metaphorical reasoning is a mechanism present at the core of creative scientific argumentation and development. They are used by experts for ‘internal’ communication and their success relies on the users’ ability to grasp the similarities and analogies between the primary and the metaphorical meaning. They are, in fact, themselves the theory, idea or phenomenon they express in an economical and condensed way, and their most important function is to introduce new scientific terminology ‘accommodating’ language to new facts or new hypotheses. For example, within the language of cognitive psychology, the language of IT is a constant source of theory-constitutive metaphors (information processing, memory storage capacities, brain-language etc.) (Boyd 1993: 486–490). Other examples are abdominal wall, cumulus of cells and coronary tree in the language of medicine (Salager-Meyer 1990: 151) and, in the languages of geology, electronics, and telecommunication/computing engineering, the metaphors ROCKS AND MINERALS ARE HUMAN BEINGS, ELECTRIC/INFORMATION MOVEMENT IS WATER FLOW and ELECTRONIC TRANSMISSION VARIATIONS ARE GEOLOGICAL FEATURES AND EVENTS (Durán Escribano 2017). An interesting example of a constitutive metaphor that, in time, turned into an exegetical one is provided by Musacchio (2017a: 20). Niels Bohr’s statement in 1913 that the atom was like a solar system (where the nucleus and the electrons were interacting according to the laws of mechanics and electromagnetism) provided a model that the scientist used to explain his findings and constituted a metaphorical construct which laid the

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foundations for the development of quantum theory. The turning from a constitutive into an exegetical metaphor was the result of the model being used long after it had been superseded by other models for the atom. Theory-­constitutive metaphors in the language of science can be viewed as part of the broader new historical and sociological approach to science proposed by Thomas Kuhn and Paul Feyerabend, where a scientist aims at establishing a new revolutionary paradigm which is partially incompatible with the existing one and, as a writer, aims at ‘changing’ the dominant paradigms. Metaphor becomes then an integral part of the language used not only to report scientific observation, but to create the reality of science, and as such a product of the individual’s creativity (see also Johnson 1987; Taylor 1989) (cf. Sect. 1.1.1.4).

1.3 E  nglish as the Lingua Franca of Science and Technology Besides being characterised by a great degree of internal variation, LSPs also vary across different languages. Indeed, the interpretation of our experience of the world never occurs in totally objective terms but is always influenced by the expectations deriving from the mental schemata—abstract configurations structuring experiences (events, actions and situations)—that are stored in our minds and embedded in a given cultural, social, physical and linguistic context, which can be modified in response to any new unknown experience. Examples are the cross-­cultural discrepancies in English-language grant applications for funding to the European Union, which are dominated by an Anglo-American rhetorical tradition of assertiveness that clashes with the modesty of Finnish scientific rhetoric (Tirkkonen-Condit 2010: 219–220) or, in the genre ‘report on the nonprofit sector’, the differences in content between the reports issued by US research centres and those by the Italian ISTAT (National Statistical Institute), with the first focusing on data (with only a short commentary or no commentary at all) and the second being particularly rich in commentary (Fusari 2009: 100).

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However, it is generally agreed that the linguistic and social/cultural phenomenon of English effectively becoming a global ‘lingua franca’ of science and technology—but also politically, economically and culturally—is a major cultural influence.25 In the case of science, quoting Crystal (2005) and other sources, Montgomery (2009: 7) claims that “over 80% of scientific publication takes place in English, as do the vast majority of international scientific meetings, symposia, research programmes and other exchanges (in international settings)”. The cultural products resulting from scientific translation qualify as originals in the TL and are potent actors in the globalisation of scientific knowledge. More generally, the dominance of the Anglo-American transnational models in academic and research settings has been considered by some scholars (e.g. House 2002; Snell-Hornby 2006: 154–174) as a danger to multilingualism and cultural pluralism, the latter in the sense of the “capacity to use and to produce a plurality of text types in more traditions of writing” (Cortese 2007: 427–428). The great influence of English Academic Discourse has been called a form of ‘linguistic imperialism’ or ‘hegemony’ (cf. Phillipson 1992) and even ‘colonialism’ (Cronin 2003: 127), and has been likened by Swales (1997: 374) to a Tyrannosaurus Rex “gobbling up the other denizens of the academic linguistic grazing grounds”. The link between the erosion of LSPs in other languages and the homogenisation of sci-tech knowledge is borne out by studies showing that, in the domain of science, the English calques and borrowings that have appeared in many European languages in recent decades have entered not indirectly, via translation, but directly, through a process of spontaneous imitation that is not relegated to the word-level and is called ‘calquing’, whereby scientists themselves reproduce in their mother tongues patterns they have encountered in English (Bennett 2011: 198). This is in keeping with the fact that scientists not having English as their first language are themselves actively engaged in some type of translation activity (Montgomery’s 2009: 7, 2010: 303). But it contradicts to a certain extent Cronin’s (1998) claim that the process of calquing through which the discourse of science and technology in most languages is to a large extent a mirror image of the ‘dominant’ English equivalent has been partly consciously brought about by translators. Most probably all three

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scholars have a point. The results of studies by Kranich et al. (2012) for German popular-science writing and by Musacchio (2007) for Italian texts in economics have shown evidence of both ‘direct’ (non-permanent) lexical and syntactic interference from the English STs, and ‘indirect’ interference, affecting the very norms of specific LSP genres in native (non-translated) texts of the TLs, leading instead to permanent language changes in the target LSP. Nevertheless, one reason for the influence of English on both German and Italian native can perhaps be associated to the cross-language and cross-cultural differences or ‘text orientations’ mentioned by Rogers (2015: 35) when anecdotally recalling her own experience as a teacher at a German university, with students preferring to read academic textbooks in English (their L2) because they found them more accessible than textbooks in German (their L1). Looking at the relationship between author and reader, English is in fact considered to be more ‘reader-centred’ than the more ‘author-centred’ text orientations of both German and Italian (cf. Sect. 2.3.1). Also at the higher levels of specialisation, the main reason why English has been welcomed so eagerly by domain specialists in virtually all disciplines is very practical: the adoption of a global language is needed to share results within an international specialist community (cf. the concept of ‘cultura franca’ in Sect. 2.4). In addition to facilitating international communication, English is also viewed as the most influential and powerful language in terms of the greater opportunities it offers for its users, like the ability to consume knowledge, travel and engage in dialogue and international relations (Chan 2016). For all these reasons, scientists view competence in English not as “a necessary, inevitable replacement tongue” that makes them ‘linguistically enslaved’, but rather as providing them with “a skill or power, personal and professional” (Montgomery 2009: 7, 11). Moreover, the active role of the world’s scientists not only in shaping and disseminating English as a lingua franca but also in translating scientific information themselves has, from their specific point of view, the added bonus of reducing translation costs. The fact that, at the higher levels of specialisation, translations are carried out by scientists, and not professional translators, resonates with Olohan’s (2011: 246) claim that scientific texts generate increasingly less demand for translation (see Sect. 1.4) and also

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explains, at least partially, why there are so many calques and borrowings from English in most LSPs. Despite this supposed ‘cultural colonisation’, non-English scientific discourses have indeed maintained some traits from traditional indigenous writing styles (Bennett 2011), a linguistic diversity which is in fact inevitable given the human dimension of science (Montgomery 2009: 8–9, 11). Far from the stance taken by some language scholars that other languages are withering as a result of the dominance of English, Montgomery claims that there is a growing linguistic pluralism in all types of communication, also at the more informal levels of science, as a result of scientists’ need to engage also with lay public, media and politicians, and that there is a correlated large expansion in the activity of scientific translation at such lower levels of specialisation (Montgomery 2010: 301). In academic discourse, this variation across languages has been confirmed by studies such as Pisanski Peterlin’s (2008), who found substantial differences between native English and Slovene texts in the use of the rhetorical convention of the ‘thesis statement’ (outlining purposes or announcing present research within the context of occupying a niche), typical of English academic discourse, in a corpus of geography research articles, with the thesis statement being much more frequent in English than in Slovene originals. It has also been indirectly corroborated by a number of contrastive-rhetoric studies investigating culture-specific differences in styles of argumentation and rhetoric among non-English speaking academics of different nationalities having to publish in English (e.g. Molino 2011; Carter-Thomas and Rowley-Jolivet 2013: 111–112). In sum, the results of these studies show that the writer’s L1 has a non-­ negligible influence on a wide range of linguistic and rhetorical features (e.g. putting forward claims in introductions; authorial presence in the text; modality and hedging) of the research article. In the specific case of the language of science, an alternative view is provided by Halliday and Martin (1993: 18), who argue that the way different languages construe scientific phenomena is in fact only minimally divergent because “the grammar of scientific theory is largely in common”: for example, in the case of English and French, “the former constructs reality more along empiricist, the latter more along rationalist lines”. Halliday sees then the influence of English writing structures as a

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realisation of the wide consensus existing today on what is an international way of doing science and technology (Halliday 1993[1988]: 68). The approach taken in the current volume to English as a lingua franca in science and technology is that, if we accept that global scientific and technological progress needs an international language, today provided by English, then we must also accept the flip side of the coin, i.e. the homogenising influence of Anglo-American models of how to ‘do’ science and technology as well as their associated writing norms. From this perspective, the linguistic and cultural hybridisation brought about by English on other languages can then be seen as the down-side of the positive role of English as a lingua franca in the construction of an international discourse of science, facilitating the flow of knowledge around the globe and functioning as a shared ‘semiotic technology’ (Martin 1991: 307). If the price to pay for the huge progress made in science and technology over the past decades is a cultural neutralisation relegated to the documents produced in those areas of knowledge, then this price does indeed not seem to be that high. Summing this up, as far as scientific and technical discourse is concerned, rather than either fighting this spread of English as a potential vehicle of cultural and linguistic homogenisation, or, conversely, acritically accepting it, the best attitude to what seems to be an unstoppable linguistic process is represented by the ‘third way’ suggested by House (2003: 559–562). This is to use English only as a ‘language for communication’ for pragmatic and utilitarian aims, rather than as a ‘language for (cultural) identification’, a suggestion that implicitly provides an answer to Montgomery’s (2009: 12) question: “At what point, practically speaking, does allegiance to one’s mother tongue in science actually begin to conflict with use of English(es) as a lingua franca in this domain?”.

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1.4 S  pecialised Translation in Today’s Language Industry Notwithstanding the rising status of English as a global lingua franca, in our communication society the global market for the provision of language services has been growing for at least two decades, even outstripping growth of trade in general (Drugan 2013: 9). This trend seems set to continue, although the 2019 results of the yearly Language Industry Survey commissioned by the European Commission’s Directorate-­ General for Translation (DGT 2019) show, mainly for Europe, a much more modest growth than in 2017 and 2018. Besides translation and interpreting, other sectors of the language industry are, according to the Language Industry Survey commissioned by the DGT in 2009, “software localisation and website localisation, language technology tool development, language teaching, consultancy in linguistic issues and organisation of international conferences with multilingual requirements” as well as “related activities performed in corporate environments” (Rinsche and Portera-Zanotti 2009: 3). The domains that generate demand for translation are overwhelmingly specialised. According to Vande Walle (2007), in Europe in 2006 as much as 99% of translations was informative, with the bulk of content being technical (39%), commercial (26%), legal (12%), medical and pharmaceutical (9%), administrative (9%) and scientific (4%). Within the remaining 1%, 0.87% was in a miscellaneous ‘Other’ category where literary translation accounted for only 0.03% of translations, and 0.1% was made of what Vande Walle calls ‘editorial translation’ (traduction d’édition), a container comprising texts such as tourist guides, cookery books, encyclopedias, school textbooks, biographies etc.—which in fact could also be considered as ‘specialised’. Interestingly, Vande Walle’s estimated percentage of 0.03% for the total volume of literary translations in Europe broadly matches Nida’s (1997: 9) statement that, throughout the world, “the translation of literary texts probably represents not more than one percent of the total production of translations”. Likewise, Mossop (2016) claims that, in the ‘real world’ (as opposed to the focus of Translation Studies on non-specialised

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translation), translators work mainly on specialised genres (legal, technological, financial, scientific, medical and administrative). According to more recent data, in the European Union “legal services remain one of the top customer types”, although “government (for independent professionals) and industry, finance and life sciences (for language service companies) score at least as high” (DGT 2019). Industry accounts for the demand of so-called ‘technical’ translation, which 20 years ago was already claimed to comprise “more than 90% of the translation of the professional world output” (Kingscott 2002). By the same token, Olohan (2011: 246) claims that technical translation is an “activity [that] is flourishing in today’s global economy and information society, in which there is strong demand for product specifications, instruction leaflets, user guides etc. in many languages, as well as for the localization of software applications”, as opposed to scientific texts which “are now increasingly written with international consumption in mind and in the lingua franca of English” and therefore generate increasingly less demand for translation, especially in professional and academic circles (cf. Sect. 1.3). However, it is always tricky to assess the specialised domains generating most demand, because the specialist areas subsumed by the same label by different researchers may indeed differ widely across different sources. So, for example, the tag ‘technical translation’ is often used as a much broader label to denote translation in all specialised areas, including law, business, economics etc. (Wright and Wright 1993; Franco Aixelá 2004), and not only technology (cf. Byrne 2006: 3). What is however certain is that technical content such as websites, software, apps, games and audiovisual material accounts for an increasing proportion of translators’ workloads (Drugan 2013: 20), also because providing technical documentation in the TLs of the users where a product is going to be sold is required by various laws, directives and regulations around the world (Byrne 2006: 2). In addition to the great demand for technical, scientific and commercial (or ‘business’) translation, what emerges from the data above is that, in today’s globalised world, the bulk of demand is for legal translation, as well as the translation of those texts variously called ‘institutional’ or ‘administrative’. These are texts produced by corporations, governments and international and supranational organisations, and belong to a

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particularly ‘grey’ area, partially overlapping with both commercial and legal translation (e.g. business administration, education, patents, trademarks, contracts). Within the general category of ‘specialised translation’, institutional translation is distinguished by Newmark (1988: 151) from ‘technical’ translation in terms of general translation approach: technical translation is taken as “potentially (but far from actually) non-cultural, therefore ‘universal’”, whilst ‘institutional’ translation is “the area of politics, commerce, finance, government etc.”, which instead is ‘cultural’. The growing demand for legal and institutional translation is generated by two main factors: (1) the growing international transfer of legal information from one national legal system/language into another (to address cross-border issues such as migration, human trafficking and smuggling, or to fight terrorism, organised crime and drug trafficking); and (2) the increasing rights for immigrants and minority language communities to have equal access to justice by using their own language.26 As for the types of services being requested of a specialised translator in the translation market, besides the traditional activity of translating a whole document from a language A to a language B, the tasks required take many other forms. They range from checking a translation in order to assess its suitability for purpose and make the necessary changes to achieve this (cf. Sects. 4.3 and 4.4), to the various forms of more or less conventional translation tasks that are listed by Montgomery (2009: 9–10) based on his own experience as a translator of science, with a few involving some degree of oral interpretation or explanation and no real end-product, as in the case of a “discussion among colleagues (in the mother tongue) of an article or talk written/presented in English”. The following is a selection of the more frequent, organised and paid for (and less instantaneous and make-it-up-as-you-go-along) tasks qualifying as ‘translation’ in the professional world of translation which is very loosely based on Montgomery’s own list, with a few additions that are not specific to science and/or involve multimodal translation (i.e. between written and spoken mode and visually-grounded translation): –– translating only sections (including figure captions or references) of an article, report or book for personal use;

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–– translating between different genres, e.g. summarising (or, in the case of a research article, making a proper abstract of ) in a language B a text written in a language A for promotional aims; –– translating into English a text first written in the L1 of the ST author, who can also be the client commissioning the translation to be made, to be submitted for publication; –– improving the ST author’s own translation into English of a text in the ST author’s own L1, to be submitted for publication; –– translating into English a written text in language A for oral delivery at a conference, or vice versa; –– reviewing the translation product when a publisher has a ST (scientific book, article, website) translated into another language; –– localising digital content (software, website, app, video game etc.), i.e. “the linguistic and cultural adaptation of digital content to the requirements and locale of a foreign market” (Schäler 2009: 157), where the locale is to be “defined in terms of geographical area, language and culture” (Dunne 2006: 115), e.g. a product to be localised in Canadian French has a different locale from the same product to be localised in French as spoken in France; –– writing technical documentation directly in English, even if one’s own L1 is different; –– compiling and managing terminology resources, i.e codified termbases enabling translators to search, recognise and automatically insert in their translations the appropriate terminology quickly and effectively; –– managing multilingual documentation (or content), a process through which information or ‘content’ is provided to global markets via documentation production (or ‘generation’), localisation, publication and updating.

1.5 Specialised vs. Literary Translation When defining ‘specialised translation’, a very first consideration is that the labels ‘general’ and ‘generalist’ to indicate content in an area of knowledge which allegedly does not present a very high level of specialisation (for example, news articles, tourist guidebooks, job applications and

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essays) may be pedagogically useful but in fact does not reflect daily working practice, where all content is, to a greater or lesser extent, specialised. Moving then away from the traditional label ‘general’ as opposed to ‘specialised’ translation (Sect. 1.2), the only binary that makes sense to maintain for its explanatory power is that between ‘specialised’ and ‘literary’ translation. Though in the wider perspective of translators as creative beings, and translation as a creative process, the similarities between the two are a good deal more significant than the differences (cf. Sorvali 1998), there are at least three pedagogical reasons why I think it is useful to use the opposition between ‘literary’ and ‘specialised’ translation. The first is that the general approach to translating literary texts is markedly different from that of LSP texts, and the dichotomy ‘literary’ vs. ‘specialised’ is useful for highlighting these important differences. The second is that, through literary translation, the distinctive features of specialised translation can be introduced contrastively by moving from what is known to what is less known: it is in fact highly likely that translation trainees have already been exposed to literary translation not only by reading (more or less) acclaimed foreign authors, but also through translation tasks in the foreign-language classroom. The third reason is that the two concepts of ‘literary’ and ‘specialised’ translation might be considered as ‘default prototypes’27 in the minds of most consumers of translations (Chesterman 1998: 208; Chesterman and Arrojo 2000: 153–154; Halverson 1999), i.e. these two subcategories are in the central area of the category ‘Translation’ and most people accept them as typical examples. Each subcategory has in turn further subcategories, each having its own default prototype. For example, among the subcategories of ‘Literary translation’ listed by Venuti (2008[1995]: 34), some literary genres (‘poetry’ and ‘fiction’) are more conventional, i.e. prototypical, than others (‘biography’, ‘history’, ‘philosophy’ and ‘psychology’), which instead can be considered as more peripheral and less representative. The same is true for the category ‘Specialised translation’, where the subcategories ‘science’ and ‘technology’ are arguably more prototypical than ‘law’ and ‘administration’, or for other categories such as ‘autobiography’, ‘literary criticism’ and the ‘humanities’, which is why the latter are included by Newmark (2005) in the ‘grey area’ between literary and specialised translation.

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The contrastive approach in the current volume to defining specialised translation vs. literary translation somewhat departs from Rogers’ (2015: 2–5) stance of presenting specialised translation alongside, and not in opposition to, literary translation in her book focusing on shedding the tag of ‘non-literary’ for specialised translation, a perspective that is closely linked to her focus on terminology as a key feature of LSPs. Whilst agreeing with Rogers on “the key role played by terms in the communication of specialist content” (cf. Sect. 1.2.5), the stance of this book is rather on her statement that “terminological knowledge is a necessary but insufficient condition for specialised translators to do their job” (Rogers 2015: 3). Indeed, it is certainly the case that (1) there is a continuum between literary and specialised translation, which makes it impossible to make a sharp distinction between the two, and (2) the translation strategies used by the specialised translator are much the same as those used for translating literature. However, it is also true that the translation approach to a research article on astrophysics is completely different from that to a novel or a poem because there is a shift of emphasis from one set of problems to another. A first set of differences between these two translation prototypes can be found in three characteristics that are specific only to literary translation (Sager 1998c: 81–83; Bell 1995; Wilss 1999: 81): the individuality of both the ST author and the translator, the creative nature of the language and the lack of a predominant communicative purpose. In contrast to these, the main features of a specialised text are the availability of pre-­ existing comparable texts in the TL serving as important reference points for the translator’s choices, and the translation’s orientation to the users of the TT. A second, closely related, difference is that, in literary translation, STs are ‘open’ texts, whilst in specialised translation they are ‘closed’ texts. In the traditional approach to literary translation, each text is ‘open’ because it represents an unrepeatable ‘unicum’ that can have multiple interpretations, which each time needs to be re-created by the translator.28 The resulting translation in the TL is considered as a rewriting that is the end-product of a critical reading of the original and a multiplicity of ideological and aesthetic constraints, both calling for a series of compromises between content and style. Each resulting version is however different from other possible versions because each time the

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‘translator-­recreator’ highlights some features of the ST and not others. Hence the fundamental assumption in literary translation that equivalence at all levels is impossible to achieve and translation ‘losses’ in the transfer from one language to another are inevitable. This heuristic method of interpretation in the literary translator’s approach contrasts with the cognitive and rational approach of the specialised translator, who must generally deal with ‘closed’ texts, calling for a translation approach based on the axioms that, in the actual circumstances29 in which the translation has been commissioned, only one correct interpretation of the text to be translated is possible and the information expressed in the ST can be translated in the TL only in a finite number of ways (Baumgartner 1993: 297). Whilst both approaches are hermeneutic, the latter is both oriented to and constrained by the translation’s purpose and end-users, and characterised by more or less stringent rhetorical and stylistic conventions. A third related aspect is the issue of translatability. Whilst Roman Jakobson (1960: 238) famously stated that “poetry by definition is untranslatable” and “[o]nly creative transposition is possible”, in the same essay he also voiced a basic tenet for specialised translation, i.e. that “all cognitive experience and its classification is conveyable in any existing language” (1960: 234). Indeed, as a rule untranslatability does not apply to specialised translation, where meanings can always be conveyed across different languages, dealing as it does with service texts written in a special language and directed to a restricted target discourse community. The only exceptions to this rule are when the text to be translated is either poorly written (grammar mistakes, convoluted style of writing, inconsistent terminology etc.) or characterised by the linguistic features typical of a poetic text (ambiguities, redundancies, puns, phonic effects etc.). In both such cases, the ST is unsuited to its intended multilingual vocation and needs to be rewritten in the TL (Troiano et al. 2002: 41–42), a costly process which in professional translation is done only in extreme cases. Even when the notion of ‘translatability’ is analysed beyond individual texts at an inter-lingual level, the specific conceptual subsystems pertaining to the specialised domain of the ST which underlie the two different language systems of the ST and the TT get closer to congruence or ‘commensurability’ (cf. Lakoff 1987: 322) as the text is aimed at an

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increasingly specialised readership. However, it is worth noting that even in disciplines applying the scientific method, near-commensurability is not the same as total identity. This is why the strong form of the ‘universalist’ approach to scientific discourse proposed by Widdowson (1979: 61) in his ‘universality of scientific discourse theory’—where science is considered as a form of supracultural knowledge underlying different linguistic realisations—is only an ideal towards which specialised translation strives. In fact, the incontrovertible truth that in everyday life specialised translations are always (more or less) successful is more consistent with a weak form of universalism, whereby conceptual systems in science and technology are characterised by a high stability and universality but are also “subject to a certain degree of socially, economically, culturally and linguistically induced variation” (Krüger 2015: 436). So, similar concepts and procedures of scientific inquiry produce different conceptualisations and rhetorical structures in the scientific discourse of different languages (cf. Sects. 1.3 and 2.2). A fourth set of differences between literary and specialised translation is related to the evaluation of translation errors (cf. Sect. 4.5). In a literary translation, errors distorting/falsifying the information content of the original text do not have serious consequences. As a general rule, such factual errors are not overly important for a literary translation to be deemed successful, based on the already-mentioned premise that equivalence at all levels is impossible to achieve. It is in this sense that, in literary translation, complex as they may be, translation problems are ‘low-risk’, meaning that “there is more than one viable target option and there are no rules dictating the selection of just one of them” (Pym 2004: 14). By contrast, in specialised translation the translator’s responsibility concerning the factual correctness of the TT is of paramount importance and translation problems can affect parts of the text which are ‘high-risk’, meaning that for them there is a “greater determinism of successful and unsuccessful options” in the TL (Pym 2004: 14). In other words, in specialised translation wrong options concerning content or terminology can be classified as downright errors, the consequences of which can sometimes be disastrous.30 A fifth and final aspect of the different general translation approach in literary and specialised texts concerns a different consideration of the

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target reader. In literary translation, what counts most is the ST, which is considered to be much more than a mere vehicle to carry information. Consequently the norm is a ‘foreignising’31 translation, where readers are confronted with a deliberately ‘alien’ and challenging rendering of the ST, whose features influence the language of the TT and which forces them to move towards the ‘otherness’ of the source language/culture. Conversely, in specialised translation the main objective is not necessarily that of being ‘faithful’ to the ST’s form, which in fact often needs to be improved. Hence, whilst the norm for the quality of a literary TT is that of being considered lower than that of its ST, the quality of a specialised TT is often considered to be much better than that of its original. The main objective of the specialised translator is in fact the reproduction of all the information of the original and its adaptation to the appropriate stylistic conventions in the target language/culture. The norm is consequently a ‘domesticating’ translation, where it is the ST author to be moved towards the final reader’s target language/culture and not the reverse. In such a ‘familiarising’ and ‘localising’ approach, the ‘otherness’ of the ST is adapted to the language and cultural values of the translation’s end-users because the original is considered most of all as a vehicle to carry information. The specialised translator’s responsibility (the so-called translator’s ‘loyalty’) should be then equally divided between the ST author and the end-users of the TT (cf. Sects. 2.1 and 2.4), who are typically members of a well-defined social and professional community whose equally well-defined expectations concerning the (inter)textual norms and conventions of the TT should be met. Yet, the fundamentally different approach in literary and specialised translation has always been associated with a sort of hierarchical subordination of the second to the first, which in fact has no reason to be. This supposed subordination is confirmed by the fact that, until the 1960s, specialised (or ‘technical’, as it was called back then) translation was confined to being only a language exercise (‘word-for-word’ translation, glossary of technical words etc.) in the teaching of LSPs. So much so that, in the early 1970s, for James Holmes the object of study of the new discipline of Translation Studies was nearly exclusively literary translation, with the remaining categories of translation being considered as ‘inferior’ forms based on a mechanistic approach and thus more suited to be

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relegated to ‘applied’ linguistics. Still today, the activity of the literary translator is considered as more prestigious than other types of translation because it is deemed to be more ‘difficult’ and creative as well as associated to ‘higher’ contents and universal values. In the final paragraphs of this section, I provide four of the most common myths that underlie the supposed superiority of literary translation over specialised translation and some arguments on how to debunk them. 1. Literary translation requires a higher inter-cultural and inter-lingual competence on the part of the translator to overcome the greater complexity of a literary text. The lack of complexity that has often been attributed to LSP translation as opposed to literary translation is in fact ill-­ founded. Assuming that a specialised translator may indeed have some difficulties in translating a literary text, the opposite is also true, i.e. translating a specialised text may very well prove a challenge for an expert literary translator who is not familiar with the codified norms and conventions that govern the specialised LSP and genre of the text to be translated. Also, the supposed greater expertise of the literary translator is not actually borne out by the often less-than-excellent quality of published literary translations. 2. The translation of a literary work is associated with greater freedom. From the point of view of the text to be translated, as already noted long ago by Lefevere and Bassnett (1990: 6–7), any ‘manipulation’ of the ST by the translator should in fact always be previously approved by the publisher, whose ultimate aim is earning a profit. Along the same lines is Vermeer’s (1996: 37) rather pointed observation that “publishers often do tamper with literary translations (and translators allow them to do so—sometimes making a show of squeezing frightfully tragic ‘crocodile tears’ out of tragic eyes)”. The need for rewriting for “profitability and marketing considerations” applies not only to ‘technical’ (i.e. specialised) texts, as stated by Tirkkonen-Condit (2010: 219), but also to literary ones. By the same token, the ‘foreignising’ standard posed by Venuti (2008[1995]) for translating a literary text is somehow contradicted by his notation that the prevailing norm in the Anglo-American translation market is in fact a fluent and acceptable style to minimise the strangeness and foreignness of the ST for target

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readers. A further major constraint on the freedom of the literary translator is provided by the dominant literary canons and genres governing the production, promotion and reception of published literary products at any specific time, which is why literary works need to be retranslated at least every 30 years. Freedom does not seem to apply any more also to the working conditions of literary translators: the situation described by Hewson and Martin (1995: 30), where an academic translates in his/her own time a favourite author and submits the translation to a publisher once it has been completed, has in fact become exceptional in today’s highly competitive and rapidly changing publishing market. 3. The translation of a literary work is associated with greater creativity. If specialised translation were really some sort of mechanical activity,32 human translation would have been supplanted by machine translation already long ago, and not only in some very restricted domains such as weather forecasts but also in many other specialised domains. In fact, the truth is that, if done properly, specialised translation too can be very creative and satisfying, and, as observed more than 40 years ago by Isadore Pinchuck (1977: 21), “does have its moments of ‘splendour’” because, like any other type of translation, “it demands intelligence, ingenuity and a great deal of knowledge”. The specular myth to the greater creativity of literary translation, i.e. the supposed automatism and lack of creativity of specialised translation, should then be put to rest, because the need for human interpretation and decision making in LSP translation cannot be achieved without human agency (Montgomery 2010: 302). 4. Literary translators wield greatest power. In fact, if anything, there may be more decision-making power and social impact associated to the choices of the more-invisible specialised translator (cf. Pym 2004: 20). Whilst the social changes brought about by literary translation in the target culture are very restricted, specialised translations have a greater impact on everyday life because of the pragmatic nature of LSP texts (medical articles, computer manuals, appliance instructions etc.). Also, ‘foreignising’ choices such as new terms to describe technical and scientific innovations have a much greater chance of being completely assimilated in everyday language. Power defined in this way

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can also be seen in translation’s pivotal role in the diffusion of scientific knowledge in physics, chemistry, radiology, bacteriology, pharmacology and medicine in the last century (cf. Fischbach 1993: 91–92). By way of concluding this section, however, it should be said that an excessive emphasis on the different skills required by the two subcategories of translation is in fact meaningless, primarily because any type of translation implies both linguistic and literary skills (Salkie 2000: 5). Notwithstanding Wilss’ (1999: 79) assertion that he knew only one translator professionally active both in literary and specialised translation, today this double competence is more widespread than commonly assumed (cf. Sela-Sheffy 2016). The first reason is that the demand for literary translations is infinitesimal compared to that for specialised ones (cf. Sect. 1.4), which results in a surplus of literary translators on the market. The second is that literary translators are normally paid even less than specialised ones, especially if the expertise of the latter lies in certain highly specialised fields (such as law or finance), which explains why more often than not a literary translator also translates specialised texts for a living. The complementarity of these two translation prototypes finds further confirmation in the translation classroom, where translating a literary text is rightly considered as a very good exercise for training students to deal with any translation problem they will encounter in their professional activity. Indeed, literary texts are particularly suited “to raising the students’ awareness on problems that apparently are of no practical relevance, but in fact prove to be excellent opportunities to reflect also on concrete and real-world issues” (Rega 2001: 33, my translation), thus echoing Chesterman’s (2016: 44) statement that “our understanding of translation is best enhanced by using a multitude of different theories and approaches”.

Notes 1. Pragmatics is the study of the way meaning is intended and conveyed by the text sender and how it is understood by the text receiver in real contexts.

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2. Throughout the book, I am using the masculine form when referring to the ST author/writer and the feminine form when referring to the translator. This is to avoid constant use of ‘he/she’, ‘him/her’, ‘his/her’ and also the plural ‘they/them’. 3. In pragmatics, any speech act can be analysed as either a ‘locutionary act’, that is the well-formedness and ostensible meaning of an actual utterance, or an ‘illocutionary act’, that is the utterance’s intended force and effect, or a ‘perlocutionary act’, its supposed or actual effect on the reader. 4. In Translation Studies, the concept of ‘presupposition’ refers specifically to ‘pragmatic presuppositions’, that is the assumptions relating to what the writer presumes is shared with the reader for an utterance to be appropriate. Pragmatic presuppositions should therefore be distinguished from ‘linguistic presuppositions’, which are those pragmatic inferences or assumptions which seem to be built into linguistic expressions and, as in the case of semantic presuppositions, refer to what must be true for an utterance to make sense (Levinson 1983: 68). For example, in the utterance Mary gave her niece a puppy for her birthday, whilst linguistic presuppositions are that Mary has a niece and that it was her birthday, a possible pragmatic presupposition is that Mary’s niece likes dogs, which was not explicitated by the writer and can therefore only be assumed by the reader. 5. For example, in a popular science text on diabetes, structuring the information on type 2 diabetes in a different way to that on type 1 diabetes and also giving it in a different part of the text (Göpferich 2006: 233–234). 6. Halliday himself coined the term ‘lexicogrammar’ to argue that lexis and grammar are part of the same phenomenon. So, whenever he used the term ‘grammar’, he used it as a short form for ‘lexicogrammar’ (Halliday 2004[1997]: 183). 7. By including subtypes such as ‘operational definition’ (‘freezing’ is when a liquid is at or below 0 degrees Celsius and is turning solid), ‘definition by synonym’ (a ‘lawyer’ is an attorney) and ‘by ostension’ (‘professionals’ include doctors, lawyers and accountants), Trimble’s four categories of definition override and simplify the traditional philosophical distinction of definitions into ‘intensional’ (definition by genus and difference: a ‘ship’ is a vehicle for conveyance on water) vs. ‘extensional’ (definition by enu-

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meration of the members of the class that the term denotes: ‘ships’ include cargo ships, passenger ships, battleships and sailing ships). 8. Based on Baker (2011: 303), the ‘propositional meaning’ of a word or an utterance arises from the relationship between it and what it refers to or describes in a real or imaginary world. 9. At least in English, a tendency to use nouns in preference to other parts of speech increasingly characterises also general language and has been called ‘nounism’ by Zinsser (2001), who provides a brilliant example, i.e. the nominal group communication facilitation skills development intervention, of which he writes: “[n]ot a person in sight, or a working verb. I think it’s a program to help students write better”. 10. Though the bulk of this section will be on the language of science, it is worth mentioning that a pervasive use of the passive voice characterises also other LSPs. For example, as noted by Baker (2011: 116), also English formal correspondence relies heavily on formulae or semi-fixed expressions using passive forms. 11. Both examples are taken from Gotti (2011). 12. For a more in-depth discussion of what distinguishes a term from a general-language word, see the section of her book that Rogers (2015: 49–59) devotes to the notion of ‘termhood’. 13. Each of the three concepts denoted by the terms force, energy and power is in fact expressed by a different unit of measurement (respectively, the newton, the joule and the watt). 14. Strictly speaking, however, these words/terms (force, energy, power, care) do not refer to exactly the same concept in LSPs and in general language. For example, water is both a word (in general language) and a term (in chemistry), but non-specialists use the word water in a correct and ­appropriate way (‘something moist, fluid, transparent etc.’) without necessarily thinking of its chemical formula H2O (that is the essential meaning of the thing ‘water’) as chemists do. In cognitive semantics this is explained in terms of reference being primarily a social phenomenon and the meaning of any term being interactional, that is the result of a structured cooperation between expert and non-specialised use of that term (Putnam 1988). 15. Gregor Mendel’s study of garden peas was published seven years after the publication of The Origin of Species in 1866. 16. DNA was discovered by Alfred Hershey and Martha Chase in 1952.

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17. The structure of DNA was discovered by James Watson, Francis Crick and Rosalind Franklin in 1953. 18. It should be noted, however, that considering symbols and formulae as ‘terms’ is not universally accepted by translation scholars and terminologists, a fact that represents well the fuzziness between linguistic designation (terms) and non-linguistic designations. For a discussion of the reasons why considering symbols and formulae as terms “seems to be a step too far”, see Rogers (2015: 58). 19. In fact, because of the internationalisation and interdisciplinarity that have characterised medical research in the last decades, English has today become so pervasive in medical terminology that it has put an end to the fundamental role traditionally played by Greek and Latin in the creation of new terms. 20. The French translations of all the examples in the book have been taken from the French translation and adaptation by Marco Fiola of my Italian volume on specialised translation (Scarpa 2010). 21. An example of such an unacceptable terminology is provided by the increasing number of adjectives in Italian medical terminology which, following English grammar rules, are pre-modified by a noun: for example, farmaco-resistente (← drug-resistant) and HIV-positivo (← HIV positive) instead of the only marginally longer alternatives resistente ai farmaci and positivo all’HIV. 22. Throughout this book, ‘metaphor’ (on its own) should be understood as ‘lexico-semantic metaphor’ and distinguished from metaphor as a lexicogrammatical device, as in Halliday’s ‘grammatical metaphor’ (cf. Sect. 1.2.2). 23. Formally, a metaphor should be distinguished from a simile, an explicit comparison signalled by the words like or as (Richard is like a lion). 24. In the metaphor, the stock of the resource is represented by the amount of water in the tub at any given time, whilst the flows of the resource are represented by the water coming into the tub through the spigot and out of the tub through the drain. Thus, the stock of a resource at a given time is important, but the flows of the resource determine whether it produces a change in unit effectiveness (Ployhart et al. 2009: 1000). 25. Immune to this cultural influence are some specialised areas, such as the production of multilingual technical documentation, where the ‘internationalised’ English template used as a ST to produce the different

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language versions accompanying a product or service is merely of a blandly ‘a-cultural’ internationalised variety (Rogers 2015: 30). 26. These rights are enshrined by legislative acts such as the two Directives of the European Parliament and of the Council 2010/64/EU, on the right to interpretation and translation in criminal proceedings, and 2012/13/ EU, on the right to information in criminal proceedings. 27. ‘Prototype theory’ was developed by the psychologist Eleanor Rosch in the 1970s and has influenced linguistics (Lakoff 1987) and also, more relevantly, Translation Studies (Snell-Hornby 1988). According to the basic assumption of Prototype theory, people conceptualise certain members of a cognitive category as better examples of that category than others. The ‘prototype’ is the most central, that is ‘typical’, instance of any given cognitive category, whilst at the periphery of the category we find less typical examples. For instance, the kitchen knife is considered a better instance of the category KNIFE than the penknife. 28. Within Translation Studies, an important theoretical approach reflects the postmodernist and deconstructionist views of the relationship author-­reader put forward by the eminent contemporary theoreticians Jacques Derrida and Michel Foucault who, reacting against the traditional search for a true meaning in words and texts, place heavy emphasis on the role of the reader in the production of meaning and on multiple interpretations in which true meaning is impossible to pin down. Consequently, in translation the ‘original’ text is called into question and translations are to be considered not any more as secondary texts but as original creations. 29. ‘Circumstances’ is used here in the sense given to it by Vermeer (1996: 14), that is the ‘specific conditions’ (Hewson and Martin 1995: 30) in which the actual translation takes place. They include all the ‘actors’ (or ‘stakeholders’) in the translation process (or ‘workflow’): the document initiator, that is the person or entity responsible for the production of the original SL document; the translation initiator, that is the commissioner who places a translation order; the translator, that is the person (an in-­ house or a freelancer) or entity (translation/language service provider) responsible for the production of the TL version of the original SL document; the reviser; the final user/reader, that is the person who is the real reason for the production of both the original text (SL user) and its translation (TL user).

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30. An extreme example of oversights of this kind is the fateful translation of the Japanese mokusatsu suru as “reject with contempt [the American proposals]” instead of “give further consideration to”, which allegedly caused the destruction of Hiroshima in 1945 (Sykes 1989: 35). 31. Even though this terminology is taken from the ‘foreignising’ vs. ‘domesticating’ translation strategies coined by Venuti (2008[1995]), as acknowledged by the scholar himself these two fundamental translation approaches have existed in Western translation history and theories at least since Ancient Rome (Cicero). In more recent times, foreignising translation was a prominent issue in the translation theory of the German Romantics in the early nineteenth century (cf. Friedrich Schleiermacher) and, even more recently, the same opposition was at the basis of Peter Newmark’s (1981) semantic vs. communicative translation dichotomy (cf. Sect. 3.1.2). 32. Rogers (2015: 83) describes very effectively such a misconception in terms of LSP translation being “still often misleadingly reduced to a term substitution exercise in which bilingual lists of neatly matching terms provide lexical solutions which slot smoothly into place”.

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Molino, A. (2011). A Contrastive Study of Knowledge Claims in Linguistics Research Article Introductions in English and Italian. ESP Across Cultures, 8, 89–101. Montero-Martinez, S., Fuertes-Olivera, P. A., & García De Quesada, M. (2001). The Translator as ‘Language Planner’: Syntactic Calquing in an English-­ Spanish Technical Translation of Chemical Engineering. Meta, 46(4), 687–698. Montgomery, S.  L. (2009). English and Science: Realities and Issues for Translation in the Age of an Expanding lingua franca. Jostrans. The Journal of Specialised Translation, 11, 6–16. Montgomery, S.  L. (2010). Scientific Translation. In Y.  Gambier & L.  Van Doorslaer (Eds.), Handbook of Translation Studies (Vol. 1, pp.  299–305). Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Mossop, B. (2016, 4 May). Invariance Orientation: Identifying an Object for Translation Studies. Translation Studies Forum, 329–338. Retrieved October 29, 2019, from http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/1478170 0.2016.1170629?scroll=top&needAccess=true. Munday, J. (2012). Introducing Translation Studies. Theories and Applications. London and New York: Routledge. Musacchio, M. T. (2006). Quality in Published Italian Specialised Translation. In M.  Gotti & S. Šarčević (Eds.), Insights into Specialized Translation (pp. 173–192). Bern and Berlin: Peter Lang. Musacchio, M. T. (2007). The Distribution of Information in LSP Translation. A Corpus Study of Italian. In K. Ahmad & M. Rogers (Eds.), Evidence-based LSP.  Translation, Text and Terminology (pp.  97–117). Bern and Berlin: Peter Lang. Musacchio, M. T. (2017a). Translating Popular Science. Padova: CLEUP. Musacchio, M.  T. (2017b). Mediating Across Languages and Cultures: Economics and Finance as Popular Science in Translation. In G. H. Sòstero, M.  T. Musacchio, & L.  T. Soliman (Eds.), La traduzione. Esplorazioni e metodi (pp. 53–70). Padova: CLEUP. Myers, G. (1991). Lexical Repetition in Science and Popular Science Articles. Discourse Processes, 14, 1–26. Neubert, A. (1998). Theory and Practice of Translation Studies Revisited. 25 Years of Translator Training in Europe. In A. Beeby, D. Ensinger, & M. Presas (Eds.), Investigating Translation. Selected Papers from the 4th International Congress on Translation, Barcelona, 1998 (pp.  12–26). Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

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Newmark, P. (1981). Approaches to Translation. Oxford: Pergamon. Newmark, P. (1988). A Textbook of Translation. London: Prentice Hall. Newmark, P. (2004). Translation Now—27. Based on a Lecture Entitled ‘Metaphor and Tone in Translation’ Delivered at Middlesex University in March, 2004. The Linguist, 43(4), 127–129. Newmark, P. (2005). Translation Now—31. The Linguist, 43(3), 26–27. Nida, E. A. (1997). Translation in the Information Age. In M. B. Labrum (Ed.), The Changing Scene in World Languages. Issues and Challenges (pp.  9–17). Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Olohan, M. (2011). Scientific and Technical Translation. In M.  Baker & G.  Saldanha (Eds.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies (2nd ed., pp. 246–249). London and New York: Routledge. Olohan, M. (2016). Scientific and Technical Translation. London and New York: Routledge. Ortony, A. (1993). Metaphor, Language, and Thought. In A.  Ortony (Ed.), Metaphor and Thought (pp. 1–16). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Palumbo, G. (2007). Explaining Errors and Difficulties in LSP Translation— Beyond Content? Rassegna Italiana di Linguistica Applicata. Special issue: Voices on Translation, A. Baicchi (Ed.), 1/2, 79–96. Parkinson, J., & Adendorff, R. (2004). The Use of Popular Science Articles in Teaching Scientific Literacy. English for Specific Purposes, 23(4), 379–396. Phillipson, R. (1992). Linguistic Imperialism. Oxford: Oxford Uuniversity Press. Pinchuck, I. (1977). Scientific and Technical Translation. London: André Deutsch. Pisanski Peterlin, A. (2008). The Thesis Statement in Translations of Academic Discourse: An Exploratory Study. Jostrans. The Journal of Specialised Translation, 10, 10–22. Plastina, A. F. (2017). Professional Discourse in Video Abstracts: Re-articulating the Meaning of Written Research Article Abstracts. In G.  Garzone, P.  Catenaccio, K.  Grego, & R.  Doerr (Eds.), Specialised and Professional Discourse Across Media and Genres (pp. 57–74). Ledizioni: Milano. Ployhart, R.  E., Weekley, J.  A., & Ramsey, J. (2009). The Consequences of Human Resource Stocks and Flows: A Longitudinal Examination of Unit Service Orientation and Unit Effectiveness. The Academy of Management Journal, 52(5), 996–1015. Putnam, H. (1988). Representation and Reality. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Pym, A. (2004). Propositions on Cross-Cultural Communication and Translation. Target, 16(1), 1–28.

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Pym, A. (2012). On Translator Ethics: Principles for Mediation between Cultures. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Radford, T. (2008, April 27). Evolution and Darwin. The Observer. Rega, L. (2001). La traduzione letteraria. Aspetti e problemi. Torino: UTET Libreria. Riabtseva, N.  K. (2000). English for Scientific Purposes. Guide to Academic Writing. Moskva: Flinta Nauka. Richards, I.  A. (1936). The Philosophy of Rhetoric. London: Oxford University Press. Rinsche, A., & Portera-Zanotti, N. (2009). Study on the Size of the Language Industry in the EU. European Commission Directorate-General for Translation. Retrieved December 2, 2019, from http://bookshop.europa.eu/ en/study-on-the-size-of-the-language-industry-in-the-eu-pbHC8009985/. Rogers, M. (2012). Translating Specialised Texts: From Terms to Communication. JosTrans. The Journal of Specialised Translation, 18, 2–6. Rogers, M. (2015). Specialised Translation. Shedding the ‘Non-literary’ Tag. London and New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Sabatini, F. (1999). ‘Rigidità-esplicitezza’ vs ‘elasticità-implicitezza’: possibili parametri massimi per una tipologia dei testi. In G.  Skytte & F.  Sabatini (Eds.), Linguistica testuale comparativa (pp. 141–172). Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press. Sager, J. C. (1990). A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Sager, J.  C. (1994). Language Engineering and Translation Consequences of Automation. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Sager, J. C. (1998a). Terminology Applications. In M. Baker (Ed.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies. Assisted by K. Malmkjaer (pp. 251–255). London and New York: Routledge. Sager, J. C. (1998b). Terminology Standardization. In M. Baker (Ed.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies. Assisted by K. Malmkjaer (pp. 255–258). London and New York: Routledge. Sager, J.  C. (1998c). What Distinguishes Major Types of Translation? The Translator, 4(1), 69–89. Sager, J.  C., Dungworth, D., & McDonald, P.  F. (1980). English Special Languages. Principles and Practice in Science and Technology. Wiesbaden: Brandstetter. Salager-Meyer, F. (1990). Metaphors in Medical English Prose: A Comparative Study with French and Spanish. English for Specific Purposes, 9, 145–159.

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Saldanha, G., & O’Brien, S. (2013). Research Methodologies in Translation Studies. Manchester: St. Jerome. Salkie, R. (2000). Two Types of Translation Equivalence. In B.  Altenberg & S.  Granger (Eds.), Lexis in Contrast. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Sankie, H. (2000). The Language of Science: Meaning Variance and Theory Comparison. Language Sciences, 22(2), 117–136. Scarpa, F. (2010). La traduction spécialisée. Une approche professionelle à l’enseignement de la traduction. Trans. and adapt. M. Fiola. Ottawa: Les Presses de l’Université d’Ottawa. Schäffner, C. (1998). Hedges in Political Texts: A Translational Perspective. In L.  Hickey (Ed.), The Pragmatics of Translation (pp.  185–202). Clevedon: Multilingual Matters. Schäffner, C. (2004). Metaphor in Translation: Some Implications of a Cognitive Approach. Journal of Pragmatics, 36, 1253–1269. Schäler, R. (2009). Localization. In M. Baker & G. Saldanha (Eds.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies (2nd ed., pp.  157–161). London and New York: Routledge. Searle, J.  R. (1969). Speech Acts. An Essay in the Philosophy of Language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Searle, J. R. (1975). Experience and Meaning. Studies in the Theory of Speech Acts. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Sebesta, R. W. (2002). Programming the World Wide Web. Boston: Addison Wesley. Sela-Sheffy, R. (2016). Elite and Non-elite Translator Manpower. JoSTrans. The Journal of Specialised Translation, 25, 54–73. Shuttleworth, M. (2011). Translational Behaviour at the Frontiers of Scientific Knowledge. A Multilingual Investigation into Popular Science Metaphor in Translation. The Translator, 17(2), 301–323. Sinclair, J. (1991). Corpus Concordance Collocation. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Snell-Hornby, M. (1988). Translation Studies. An Integrated Approach. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Snell-Hornby, M. (2006). The Turns of Translation Studies. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Soler, V. (2011). Designing ESP Material for Spanish-speaking Scientists: The Case of Specialized Scientific Titles under the Nominal-group Construction in English and in Spanish. ESP Across Cultures, 8, 125–138.

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Vermeer, H. (1996). A Skopos Theory of Translation (Some Arguments For and Against). Heidelberg: TEXTconTEXT. Vinay, J.  P., & Darbelnet, J.  L. (1958). Stylistique comparée du français et de l’anglais. Paris: Didier. Walliman, N. (2011). Research Methods: The Basics. London: Routledge. Whitehorn, K. (2015, February 9). We Need to Widen Our Definition of the Word ‘Care’. The Guardian. Retrieved May 19, 2019, from https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/feb/09/widening-definition-of-the-word-carekatharine-whitehorn Widdowson, H. (1979). Explorations in Applied Linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Wilss, W. (1999). Translation and Interpreting in the 20th Century. Focus on German. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Wolpert, L. (1992). The Unnatural Nature of Science. London and New York: Faber & Faber. Woolley, T., Kimmins, S., Harrison, P., & Harrison, R. (1998). Green Building Handbook. A Guide to Building Products and Their Impact on the Environment. London: Spon Press (Routledge). Wright, S. E., & Wright, L. D. (1993). Editors’ Preface: Technical Translation and the American Translator. In S. E. Wright & L. D. Wright (Eds.), Scientific and Technical Translation. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Zinsser, W. (2001). On Writing Well. The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction. New York: HarperResource Quill. Retrieved February 9, 2019, from https:// archive.org/stream/OnWritingWell/on-writing-well_djvu.txt.

2 Theoretical Issues in Specialised Translation

Specialised translation has long been considered the Cinderella of academic research in translation, as also shown by a general lack of interest in Translation Studies and, even more, in non-literary translation, by research-funding bodies.1 Back in 2001, when the first Italian edition of my volume on specialised translation was published, translation theory was still overwhelmingly concerned with literary and, at best, ‘generalist’ texts (Franco Aixelá 2004), despite the very small volume of literary translations as compared to “the rapidly expanding political, juridical, technological, and commercial translating” (Nida 1997: 9). In English, back then the only recent volumes on non-literary translation were focused on very specific subdomains (Esselink 2000; Gambier and Gottlieb 2001). A glaring example of the lack of interest of specialised translation as an object of study at that time is the first 1998 edition of the Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies (Baker 1998a), containing no entry for ‘Specialised Translation’ (nor indeed ‘Scientific’, ‘Technical’ or ‘Pragmatic’ translation), whilst there were two separate entries for ‘Literary Translation’ (the first subtitled ‘Practices’ and the second ‘Research Issues’), plus two separate entries for ‘Poetry Translation’ and ‘Shakespeare Translation’. On the other hand, the fact that in the © The Author(s) 2020 F. Scarpa, Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation, Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting, https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51967-2_2

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Encyclopedia three different entries were devoted to ‘Terminology’ (subtitled respectively ‘Applications’, ‘Standardization’ and ‘Theory’) could be taken to reflect what Rogers (2015: 3) calls “the early narrow scoping of LSP studies as terminological studies”. The only possible exception to this academic neglect of non-literary translation in those years was legal translation (e.g. Šarčević 1997; Bhatia 1997), which has always had a unique place within specialised translation because in no other specialised domain are the social and cultural contexts of the SL and TL as different as in legal texts, the legal system of a state being its cultural manifestation par excellence. Even when the second Italian edition of my book came out in 2008 and, in its French translation, in 2010, the idea of specialised translation as being less empowering and intriguing—as well as fundamentally more ‘boring’ and ‘easier’—than either literary translation or translation/interpreting as ‘mediation’ in ‘extreme’ work situations such as conflict and war settings, was still there, though with a few notable exceptions. In English, these were mainly practical handbooks and coursebooks on specific subdomains (Hann 2004; Byrne 2006; Montalt Resurrecció and González Davies 2007; Pym 2004b; Diaz Cintas and Remael 2007), and also an edited volume on the broader and more theoretical issues of specialised translation (Gotti and Šarčević 2006). In the last few years, however, ‘non-literary’ translation has increasingly attracted Translation Studies scholars’ attention, also following the ‘sociological turn’ and the ‘power turn’ that the discipline has seen in the last three decades, which have both focused on the translator as an ‘agent’ actively involved in the translation process via her own history, interests and perspectives on her profession (cf. Wolf 2014: 7–8). Not to mention that the increasing popularity of translator-training academic programmes and the emphasis on their professionalisation helmed by university networks such as the European Master’s in Translation (EMT) entail that many such programmes offer at least some tuition in specialised translation, which in turn leads to the need of pedagogical resources for trainees and trainers of both a practical and, crucially, theoretical nature. This new interest in the societal relevance and professional aspects of translation has given rise to a string of academic publications focusing on this traditionally neglected branch of Translation Studies, which is also

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incidentally the most relevant to the types of text translated in daily working practice (cf. Sect. 1.4). Thus, in the last ten years or so, on top of the second edition of the Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies (Baker and Saldanha 2011), this time including an entry devoted to ‘Scientific and Technical Translation’ (Olohan 2011), a number of publications on non-literary translation have seen the light: three books on scientific and technical translation (Byrne 2012; Krüger 2015; Olohan 2016); one book (in French) on pragmatic (i.e. non-literary) translation (Froeliger 2013); a special issue of the journal The Translator on “Science in Translation” (Olohan and Salama-Carr 2011); a book on the translation of popular science (Musacchio 2017); a volume on specialised translation (in the same series as this book) mainly focused on terminology (Rogers 2015); and, still on specialised translation though with a rather more specific focus, a volume on the concept of ‘quality’ in professional translation (Drugan 2013). The emphasis I have given to the various names used by different authors for loosely addressing the same macroarea of translation is a sign that the nomenclature to refer to it is far from straightforward because it involves the challenging task of defining the exact scope of the object of study. In this book, specialised translation (or LSP translation) is used as a collective term referring to the cross-language translator-mediated communication of LSP documents, i.e. service texts having a practical and mainly informative function external to the text itself. Hence the label ‘pragmatic translation’, chosen by authors such as Delisle (1988) and Froeliger (2013: 220–221) to highlight (1) the translation method for texts where the predominant element is not the aesthetic one, and (2) the extralinguistic and communicative dimensions of the translation process. The label ‘scientific and technical translation’ has instead been chosen to highlight the fact that texts having technical and scientific contents share an inventory of very distinctive linguistic features. My choice of calling this macroarea of translation using the broader term ‘specialised translation’ is motivated by two main reasons: the first is its clear link with ‘special language’ and the second is that this label is less narrow than the ‘scientific and technical translation’ one, as it brings together specialised areas as different as science, technology, economics, finance, law, institutions, philosophy etc. Notwithstanding the very

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marked differences that the LSPs of all these areas of knowledge may indeed display from one another, and not only in relation to terminology, from the point of view of the translator’s choices the umbrella term ‘specialised translation’ has the advantage of highlighting what all these LSPs have in common, which is the need for a similar translation approach. Moreover, and related to this, in the perspective of this book specialised translation is always also ‘professional’, i.e. a service “(usually) paid, for a client, to a deadline, with an intended end use and some sort of translation specification” (Drugan 2013: 8). So, as observed by Sager (1994: 165), besides the nature of the texts being translated, the unifying factors of all translations falling under the broad definition of ‘specialised translation’ are “that they have a clearly definable origin and use and that they are undertaken as a professional activity to serve a particular communicative purpose specified by the circumstances of the task or an agent”. Despite, or perhaps even because translation is being considered in this volume as a professional service provision, the focus of this chapter will be on specialised translation as an object of academic study and translator training. This is because the perspective adopted in this book is that the translator’s knowledge of the theory and methodology that lie behind her activity help define the quality of her translations. In other words, besides the translator’s ability to do her job properly, the ability to stand back and reflect on what has been done and describe how it has been done is crucial in translation, as indeed in any other profession. So, translation students should be taught not only the actual ability to translate, but also how to ‘disassociate’ themselves from the translation process and develop the “out-of-awareness understanding” of the text that is necessary to create virtual translations (Katan 2004[1999]: 168, 325). Likewise, they should also learn “to talk like a translator” (Robinson 2003: 135), a crucial skill when aiming to project enough credibility to convince an agency you are the right person for a job and/or justify your choices to the client. The theoretical and descriptive components need then to be integrated in all university programmes for translators, including those that are based on professional practice such as the programmes envisaged by the EMT (European Master’s in Translation) framework (EMT 2017), which should also include teaching students how to do research in Translation Studies. This is not only because universities are about teaching and

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research, with the first ideally being inspired by the second, and because some of the students will become translation trainers and researchers themselves, but also because a collaboration between the ‘theoretical’ and ‘practical’ worlds of translation is the only way to enhance both the status of translation as an academic discipline and that of the translator in society. In the following sections, focusing on specialised translation I will sketch the arguably most relevant conceptual issues in this macroarea of translation. The process- and product-oriented theoretical models which have been used are mostly the result of actual translation practice and, more generally, of experimental approaches and models based on professional experience, which I believe are the most useful for translation students to help them become professional translators. The theoretical aspects of translation which are going to be discussed are the notions of translation ‘equivalence’ (Sect. 2.1) and translation ‘problems’ (Sect. 2.3), the theoretical paradigm of descriptivism with the related notion of translation ‘norms’ (Sect. 2.2) and the ethical responsibility of specialised translators (Sect. 2.4).

2.1 Equivalence The notion of ‘translation equivalence’, i.e. the exact nature of the relationship between ST and TT, is an issue that has been central in translation theory up until the 1980s and long before Nida’s (1964; Nida and Taber 1969) distinction between ‘formal or linguistic equivalence’ (correspondence limited to the surface linguistic structures of ST and TT, i.e. word-for-word/literal translation) as opposed to ‘dynamic or functional equivalence’ (communicative correspondence seeking sameness of response in ST and TT readers, i.e. sense-for-sense/free translation). The reason for the centrality of equivalence might very well lie, as suggested by Pym (2004a: 10), in the clients’ potential mistrust towards translators because their work cannot be checked by whoever commissioned the translation (who generally does not know the SL) and is often purported to be in the name of somebody else (the ST producer). Whatever the case may be, since the 1970s translation theory has been informed by a

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dynamic and relative parole-oriented approach to translation, i.e. based on equivalence relations obtaining between texts in real time and real situations. As far as specialised translation is concerned, this pragmatic approach has totally replaced the more static and absolute langue-­oriented notion envisaged in formal equivalence, i.e. based on formal similarity at the level of the abstract system underlying language (cf. Hatim and Munday 2004: 49). At the heart of such a ‘pragmatics turn’ (Snell-Hornby 2006: 35–40; Hatim 2013[2001]: 107ff.) in both linguistics and Translation Studies are the concepts of ‘communicative function’ and ‘text’ as “language used in a specific situation that cannot be separated from the cultural context in which it is embedded” (Snell-Hornby 1995: 48–49, emphasis in the original; my translation). In theoretical approaches to translations, the idea that language is intimately connected with context has then brought about a shift from a purely linguistic and abstract view of ‘sameness’ of meaning to a weaker view where meaning is variable across linguistic and cultural divides, and ‘sameness’ has been replaced by more realistic expectations such as ‘matching’ or ‘similarity’ (Chesterman 2016: 5). Thus ‘equivalence’ has come to be seen as a context-bound relationship that needs to be mediated by the translator between different social/cultural contexts. This shift, however, does not fully reflect the view of translation practitioners, who still view equivalence mainly in terms of sameness of meaning between ST and TT. Hence Mossop’s (2016: 329) proposal that the core of Translation Studies should be ‘invariance-oriented’, i.e. focus on the translator’s point of view at the moment of production (i.e. his/her ‘mental stance’) to produce sameness (process-focused invariance/sameness), as opposed to what results from “after-the-fact comparisons of source text and translation wordings” (product-focused equivalence). The variable nature of translational equivalence for the translator is made evident by the fact that texts in different languages can be made (more or less) equivalent at various levels (semantic, syntactic, stylistic, pragmatic/functional), depending on both the translation unit being considered (word, group, phrase, paragraph, whole text) and the type of text being translated. Such a dynamic and pluralistic view of equivalence has its most influential representative in Werner Koller (1979: 191, 1995: 197), who identifies five different types of equivalence to be achieved

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between ST and TT, each providing a reference for the translator’s choices: denotative or referential equivalence: the ST and TT refer to the same thing in the ‘real world’; connotative equivalence: the ST and TT trigger the same associations in the minds of native speakers of the SL and TL; text-normative equivalence: the ST and TT are used with similar textual conventions in the SL and TL; pragmatic or dynamic equivalence: the ST and TT are used in matching contexts and with a similar effect on their respective readers; and formal/aesthetic equivalence: the ST and TT have similar orthographic or phonological features (Hatim and Munday 2004: 50–51; Kenny 2011: 96–97). Depending on the translation task at hand, the translator should then establish a hierarchy among these different types of equivalence to be achieved, based on the actual text to be translated and, more generally, the specific translation situation. A view of equivalence informed by pragmatics is very valuable in specialised translation, which is by definition a situational activity. The most relevant types of equivalence to be achieved between specialised ST and TT are referential, pragmatic and text-normative. Referential equivalence is achieved thanks to the translator’s own subject-matter competence and is based on the high degree of invariance of meaning which is required in specialised translation (cf. Mossop 2016), where the main underlying assumption is that meanings can indeed be conveyed across different languages. However, one important thing to be said about the translator’s subject-matter competence is that it somewhat differs from that of the specialist. As Newmark (1988: 155) observes, “you [the translator] are learning a language rather than the content of the subject” and consequently “to translate a text you do not have to be an expert in its technology or its topic; but you have to understand that text and temporarily know the vocabulary it uses”. Pragmatic equivalence concerns the TT’s optimal effectiveness and efficiency for the target discourse community and appropriateness for their very specific professionally or subject-­ related communicative needs. Finally, text-normative equivalence is achieved by being able to recognise and use the standardised conventions that govern LSP text genres at all levels of textualisation, from text organisation (cf. Göpferich 1995) to terminology, in both SL and TL. The most influential example of a pragmatic approach to translation is Juliane House’s (1977, 1997), in which the guiding principle is the

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‘functional equivalence’ that must obtain between ST and TT in a given communicative situation, so much so that, in case of conflict between semantic (i.e. context-free) and pragmatic (i.e. contextual) equivalence, “it is always necessary to aim at equivalence of pragmatic meaning, if necessary at the expense of semantic equivalence” (House 1977: 28). Other pragmatic approaches to equivalence can be found in theoretical perspectives centred on translation as an act of communication, with special reference to its wider social/cultural aspects and the translator as a mediator. For example, in M.A.K. Halliday’s (1992) functional approach to translation the emphasis is on translation as essentially a social activity and the translator as a social being (cf. also Robinson 2003: 160–161). Hence, semantic equivalence between ST and TT coincides with their functional equivalence in a specific context and translation is seen as a “guided creation of meaning” (Halliday 1992: 15). To achieve functional equivalence and solve all the translation problems in a text, the translator has to take into account all four levels of contextual information, with the first two referring to the immediate linguistic environment (‘lexicogrammatical context’ and ‘context of discourse’), and the other two relating to the non-linguistic environment (‘context of situation’ and ‘social/cultural context’). In Ernest-August Gutt’s (2000) cognitive model, based on Sperber and Wilson’s (1995[1986]) “relevance theory of communication”, the fundamental principle governing translation is ‘optimal relevance’, which ensures that the addressee finds the intended meaning without being involved in unnecessary processing effort. In this model, equivalence is in terms of communicative success and varies because the TT receivers’ expectations, situational context and cognitive experience—which are used to interpret utterances—are different from those of the ST receivers. In a ‘direct’ translation, where the status of a text as a translation is known, equivalence is to be understood as an ‘interpretative resemblance’ of the ST context of production to the TT context of reception. A concrete example is the functional approach to translation adopted within international organisations such as UN and OECD, where translators are asked not to adapt a translation to a different use or type of audience from those of the ST but, keeping the same communicative purpose of the ST in the TT, to put ST receivers on a par with TT ones (Prioux and

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Rochard 2007). In a ‘relevant’ translation, the TT reader can then presume to recognise the original ‘informative intention’ of that text just as it was meant by the ST sender and was recognised by the ST receivers. Such a ‘presumption’ of equivalence advocated by Gutt’s approach not only indicates a profound shift of focus within the equivalence paradigm (Pym 2010a: 37), but is also emblematic of a shift away from the centrality of the concept of equivalence in translation theory. Such a shift had in fact already started with the so-called ‘cultural turn’ that was taking place in the late 1970s and mid-1980s (cf. Sect. 2.4) as part of the rise of the new autonomous discipline of Translation Studies (Holmes 1988 [1972]), when equivalence began to be seen as theoretically misleading (cf. Snell-­ Hornby 1988: 22). Having lost its meaning of ‘having the same communicative value as the ST’, equivalence was demoted to the more general meaning of ‘translational relationship’ between two texts, one of which is considered as the translation of the other in a given social and cultural system (Hermans 1991: 157). Also the supremacy of the ST over the TT, on which the paradigm of equivalence is traditionally founded, began to be rejected. Indeed, in the functionalist approaches to translation that emerged in the 1980s, among which the most influential is Skopostheorie (Vermeer 1983; Reiss and Vermeer 1991[1984]; Vermeer 1996), the main focus of translation as a ‘purposeful activity’ is on the communicative goal or purpose (i.e. the skopos) of the TT and the essential factor determining the translator’s choices is achieving “a text functioning in a target-culture for target-culture addressees” (Vermeer 1996: 15, 50). The prospective purpose (skopos) that the TT is meant to fulfil in the target context as determined by the translation ‘initiator’ or ‘commissioner’ (cf. endnote 29 of Chap. 1), who can be an individual but also an institution or even the translator, can in fact be different from the communicative purpose that the ST had in the source context. This makes House’s functional equivalence model inadequate to orientate the translator’s strategies, which are instead determined by the skopos of the TT as defined before the onset of the translation process in the translation brief that the translator should receive from the commissioner when accepting the translation task. This is a fundamental notion in specialised translation and is a set of specifications concerning the addressees of the translation, its purpose and the use it will be put to, also setting out requirements and

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guidelines on the style, graphical layout and, ideally, terminology to be used in the TT. From the specific point of view of specialised translation, functionalism has the merits of shifting the focus away from a view of translation as mere ST reproduction, towards viewing translation as a professional activity and the translator as an expert who produces TTs which are meant to be used as autonomous texts in the target culture. However, when the functionalists’ emphasis on the TT is taken to extremes—as in statements regarding the ST as a mere “offer of information” (Vermeer 1986: 33), leaving the TT as pretty much the sole guiding principle for translators and the term ‘equivalence’ meaning only ‘adequacy or appropriateness to a skopos’—the undermining of the importance of the ST in the translation process becomes too much of a radical statement for at least three reasons. The first is practical and concerns the translation brief, which has an excessively central role in this model, whereas in professional practice translators all too often do not in fact receive any extratextual information and have to rely on the sole text to make their decisions. The second reason is more theoretical and relates to the crucial role of the ST in the definition of translation itself. Whilst being on the whole a positive shift, a ‘dethronement’ of the ST from being the exclusive factor determining the structure of the TT risks undermining also the role of the ST in keeping the boundaries between translation and other modes of cross-language communication (as for example adaptation, summary, rewriting etc.). Thirdly, despite the fact that functionalist theories have been judged more applicable to non-literary than literary texts (cf. Schäffner 2011: 120), prototype specialised translation (and sci-tech translation in particular) is usually characterised by a close ST/TT relation content-wise and also by functional invariance (cf. Krüger 2015: 49–50, 58–65, 177). Not to mention that certain areas of professional translation such as the translation of legal documents or technical documentation are based on the underlying (and often explicit) assumption that the TT is indeed a very close reformulation of the ST. The perspective of equivalence in specialised translation adopted in this book is along the lines of the less ideological and more balanced version of functionalism represented by Christiane Nord’s (1991a) “functionality plus loyalty” model, which is useful in guiding specialised

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translators in their professional activity. The model includes the ethical notion of the translator’s ‘loyalty’, i.e. her moral responsibility to produce a functional TT which not only conforms to the requirements of the translation skopos set by the initiator of the translation process and the needs of the users of the translation, but also, crucially, looks after the interests of the ST author, thus restoring the importance of ST-in-­ situation (Nord 1992: 40). I will refer to this dynamic notion of equivalence, where the emphasis is not on the superiority of either the ST or the TT but on the equal importance of the two, as pragmatic equivalence. As shown by the vast majority of LSP translations carried out in everyday professional practice, this type of relationship between the ST and the TT is largely achievable in this macroarea of translation, where ST and TT readers share similar professional objectives and a large amount of common knowledge and the norm is for contexts of use and main communicative purpose(s) usually to match in the ST and TT. This norm is well illustrated by the requirement for professional translators to “at all times maintain the highest level of work, ensuring fidelity of meaning and register, unless demanded otherwise by the client” which can be found in Clause 1.1. of the FIT Europe “Code of Professional Practice”.2 In pragmatic terms, this entails that: (1) the ST communicative (mainly informative) purpose matches both the purpose(s) of the translation as agreed upon by commissioner and translator, and the purpose(s) attributed to the TT by its intended readers; and (2) the background specialised knowledge of the TT prospective readers matches that of the ST readers. The parameters to be considered in order to achieve a pragmatically successful translation are then the following: • the TT’s appropriateness for an intended purpose in its new communicative situation, • the TT’s optimal effectiveness and efficiency considering the expectations of the target readers, • the ST author’s communicative purpose and point of view, • the communicative purpose of the translator, • the communicative purpose of the translation initiator (which can be different from that of the ST author).

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These external (situational) and internal (cognitive) parameters will be mentioned again in the next chapter, when dealing with the pragmatic parameters to be considered by the translator when choosing a translation macrostrategy to guide her in all the decisions to be made during the translation activity (Sect. 3.1.3). This dynamic view of the notion of equivalence is both a useful category for describing specialised translations and a guiding principle of the practising translator’s choices, especially at the local level of individual translation units. This is consistent with Mossop’s (2016) view that the mental stance of most producers in the translation industry is invariance-­ oriented, as in daily working practice translators work mainly on specialised genres (legal, technological, financial, scientific, medical and administrative) calling for such an approach, whereas for the last couple of decades mainstream academic research has been dealing with issues that reflect everyday translation situations only marginally, because the emphasis has consistently been on how translations differ from their sources, rather than on the translator’s quest for sameness between ST and TT (see also Fawcett 1997: 73). A theory of specialised translation should then recognise the subjective importance of equivalence, whereby translators believe in the ST/TT equivalence and their clients accept this belief of equivalence: such “non-relativist and non-linguistic ‘equivalence beliefs’” are indeed seen by Pym (1995) as the very foundations making translation “work as a social practice”. Within specialised translation, equivalence is also a fundamental notion in translation-oriented terminography. The termbases resulting from the compilation and management of domain-specific concepts and the terms that designate them should ideally contain information also about the degree to which one term in a language matches up with, i.e. is equivalent to, one term in another. For example, in order to guide the translator’s terminological choices, in the legal translation-oriented termbase TERMitLEX (Magris 2018: 16–17) each concept has been compared with a similar one in a different language of the termbase and their degree of correspondence has been distinguished in five different types of relations: ‘Full equivalence’, when the two concepts belong to the same legal system (either national or supernational, such as the EU); ‘Substantial equivalence’, when the correspondence between the two

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concepts belonging to different legal systems is characterised by a high degree of overlap; ‘Partial or relative equivalence’, when the degree of overlap is lower; ‘Functional correspondence’, when two terms designating institutions, associations etc. that have similar functions in the two systems can be used by the translator to create in the TL a paraphrase having an explanatory function (explicitation) (e.g. Montecitorio → (the Italian) Westminster) (cf. also Sects. 3.2.1 and 3.2.4); and finally ‘Stipulative correspondence’, which is an ad hoc correspondence between two lexical units (and not two concepts) that is created on a case-by-case basis by the translator during the translation process, with the SL term designating a specific concept of the SL system and the TL term being a translation proposal. Equivalence is also a valuable notion in specialised-translator training, especially for the category of learners that Robinson (2003: 73–75, 104) calls ‘matchers’, for whom the “target text must match the source text as fully as possible” and who “respond most strongly to similarities, consistencies, groupings, belongingness”; unlike the learners whom he calls ‘mismatchers’, who “shun forms of translation in which equivalence is strictly enforced, such as technical, legal, and medical”. An at least intuitive notion of equivalence is also required in empirical-descriptive studies based on parallel corpora—consisting of STs and their TTs—which have to be compiled on the assumption that the texts contained in the corpora are representative of translated (vs. non-translated) language (Malmkjær 2002: 111, 113; Tirkkonen-Condit 2010: 228).

2.2 Descriptivism: Translation Norms The functionalists’ rejection of the supremacy of the ST over the TT, on which the paradigm of equivalence is traditionally based, is also one of the core concepts of the historical-descriptive approach to translation, a theoretical paradigm that is mostly associated with Gideon Toury (1980, 1995). Though Toury and most descriptive theorists focus on literary translation, some theoretical concepts of the descriptive paradigm are indeed useful also for investigating specialised translation. ‘Descriptive Translation Studies’ (or DTS) is a paradigm derived from one of Holmes’

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(1988[1972]: 71–77) three branches (descriptive, theoretical and applied) of the new discipline of Translation Studies and studies the general principles that can explain and predict translation phenomena. Since the beginning of the 1980s, the descriptive approach is one of the dominant paradigms for theoretical activity in the study of translation, contributing to the development of Translation Studies as an academic discipline. The main focus is on the cultural and social factors which condition the selection, production and reception of translation, resulting in the choice of certain strategies instead of others which are equally available in a given social and cultural situation (Toury 1980: 53–57). This focus on the social contextualisation of translation brought about by Descriptive Translation Studies has prompted some scholars to talk of a ‘sociological turn’ of the discipline of Translation Studies in the late 1990s (cf. Snell-­ Hornby 2006; Wolf 2010; Angelelli 2014). For descriptive theorists, equivalence loses its pivotal role in translation theory because they consider it to be a given, a feature of any utterance that is granted translational status, i.e. that is presented or regarded as a translation within the target culture (the so-called notion of ‘assumed translation’). Their claim that research should focus on describing or finding out what translators actually do (rather than what they should do) meant that, for the first time, translations made up a body of literature worth investigating in its own right. The aim of research became investigating translators’ ‘normal’ behaviour by studying a corpus of authentic translations with the aim of identifying ‘typical’ regular patterns in their decision-making process within a given social and cultural situation, and also regularities in the way translated texts are received (Baker 2011b: 190–191; Palumbo 2009: 79). These hypotheses of regular translator behaviour were called ‘norms’, which are social categories because they presuppose their sharedness by the majority of a given community and they change in time (cf. Chesterman and Wagner 2002: 91–93). The descriptive approach is therefore based on the notion of ‘norms’, making translation “a norm governed activity” (Toury 2000: 200). In a theory of translation which is truly ‘empirical’, i.e. studying translation as a communicative and social activity, translation norms are central categories because they provide explanatory hypotheses (Chesterman 1998: 215): adherence to norms is in fact investigated retrospectively as

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the cause of the features making up an acceptable translation (which is instead the effect) (Toury 1999: 10). Acquiring a set of norms for determining what is an appropriate translational behaviour in a given social/ cultural context becomes then the prerequisite for becoming a translator within that context (Toury 1995; Baker 2011b: 190). For translation practitioners (practising translators and translator trainers), it seems therefore natural to use the norms resulting from the study of a corpus of translations also as predictive hypotheses, i.e. to indicate prospectively how translation should be performed (prescriptive function) (cf. Chesterman 1999: 94–95). In specialised translation, the notion of norms is useful to refer to the very standardised and almost rule-like conventions governing LSP genres at all levels of textualisation and having a prescriptive force on the translators’ decisions (i.e. strategies). Examples of norms in professional scientific and technical discourse are the terminological norms set out by international and national standards-setting bodies (for example, the International Organization for Standardization, which defines all ISO standards) (cf. Sect. 1.2.5.1) and also the standardised textual rules to be abided by authors of research articles if they are to be published in international academic journals. With particular reference to specialised-translator training, norms can be used to indicate the strategies that are most frequently used or can be considered to be most appropriate based on the choices made by translators in published translations, which are themselves taken as a translation norm, i.e. the so-called ‘tertium comparationis’ or ‘gold standard’ (cf. Musacchio 2006). Trainers should in fact encourage trainees to research and familiarise themselves with both the texts and the practices that characterise specific specialised domains to learn what translation options to choose in order to produce translations that are accepted as belonging to the specialised domain in the target culture (Olohan 2016: 4). Norms are divided in different categories by different translation scholars. A useful distinction for specialised translation is Andrew Chesterman’s (1993, 2016: 62–68, 170–184) differentiation between product-oriented ‘expectancy norms’, relating to the translation product, and ‘professional norms’, relating to the translation process. Expectancy norms are ethical and established by the expectations of target readers, and they concern

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what that translation should be like and how it should be evaluated (cf. Sect. 4.2). They are governed by the ethical value of ‘clarity’ and determine the extent to which a translation product conforms to existing standard use concerning genre and text-type, register, the appropriate degree of grammaticality, collocations, lexical choice etc. Professional norms emerge from expert professional behaviour and govern the strategies adopted in the translation process to achieve a translation that is optimal or at least acceptable. They can be subdivided into three categories: ‘accountability norms’, governed by the value of ‘trust’, regulating the loyalty of the translator with regard to the other participants in the translation process (original ST author, commissioner of the translation and target readers); ‘communication norms’, governed by the value of ‘understanding’, regulating the way the translator should optimise communication between all the parties involved in order to obtain maximum comprehension of the TT as required by the specific situation; and ‘relation norms’, governed by the ethical value of ‘truth’, determining the appropriate degree of ‘equivalence’ to be established between ST and TT on the basis of purpose of ST author and/or commissioner, text-type and skopos of the TT and target readers. Linked to the ethical norms of accountability and the social norms of communication is the ethical issue of the so-called ‘visibility’ of the translator (cf. Sect. 2.4). The ‘potency’, i.e. the ‘strength’, of norms, is at the basis of the distinction between ‘norms’ and ‘conventions’ (Hermans 1997: 7–8). In the circumstances of a specific translation situation, whilst a convention is a probabilistic expectation offering the translator a given option to be preferred, a norm is binding in that it indicates to the translator an option that must be chosen because it is generally accepted as being the appropriate or ‘correct’ one in those circumstances and, if not followed, could imply sanctions. Depending on the specific translation task, the same translation strategy can be considered as being either a norm or a convention. For example, when translating software documentation from reader-­ oriented American English into writer-oriented Romance languages such as French, Italian and Spanish, along the formality cline there are different expectations in source and target users/consumers who, as pointed out by studies and focus groups at least for Italian readers (Cortelazzo 2004; Comolli 2001), can feel being patronised by the colloquial and

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‘user-friendly’ tone of the ST. The replacement by the translator of the informal register of the ST with a more formal one can be considered to be either a norm or a convention. It is a norm when this adaptation was specifically required in the translation brief and carrying it out or not can make the difference between securing or not the same translation commission in the future, but only a convention when such a register adaptation was not expressly specified in the translation brief and is the result of the translator’s own communicative (linguistic and cultural) competence in the TL. The distinction between norms and conventions is not relevant to functionalist approaches to translation, where only the term ‘convention’ is adopted (cf. Reiss and Vermeer 1991[1984]: 178), possibly because the German term Norm has a more ‘normative’ meaning compared to the English ‘norm’ as used by Toury. Instead of the norm/convention binary, Nord (1991b: 100, 1997: 58–59) makes a distinction between ‘constitutive’ and ‘regulatory’ translation-specific conventions. Whilst the latter concern translation choices at the lower levels of the text (the translation of proper names, culture-specific terms etc.), constitutive conventions concern general issues such as what is or is not accepted as translation, i.e. the nature of translation and its relationship with the ST. Constitutive conventions are then the norms applicable to translation at the time the translation activity is performed, which the translator has the moral responsibility to observe if she is to be ‘loyal’ (Tirkkonen-Condit 2010: 222). The study of norms has effectively replaced the notion of equivalence in investigations on the type of relation between ST and TT (Baker 1998b: 165; Schäffner 1999: 5) and has been—and still is—a very productive and influential research field in Translation Studies. With the advent and widespread use of computers, translation theorists have shifted their focus from the study of individual translations to that of more or less vast collections of texts held in electronic form in one or more languages, the so-called corpora, which are interrogated by means of corpus analysis tools such as monolingual and bilingual concordancers. The empirical research methodology of ‘corpus linguistics’ (or CL) has proved especially apt at investigating socially-conditioned and contextually-­ bound language use such as that of LSPs and has had important

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consequences within Translation Studies (e.g. Baker 1993: 240; Johansson and Oksefjell 1998; Zanettin et al. 2000) and also in specialised translation (Bowker and Pearson 2002), with particular reference to translation norms, because it has made it possible to investigate recurrent features of translations on a scale that had not been possible before. Researchers in ‘corpus-based Translation Studies’ (or CTS) use purpose-built monolingual or bilingual (and multilingual) corpora which can be very broadly either comparable—consisting of subcorpora which are translations in a language A and/or were originally written in language A (‘native’ texts) in the same specialised topic and/or genre—or parallel—consisting of subcorpora which are STs and their TTs in one or more languages. Bilingual (and multilingual) parallel corpora are segmented and ‘aligned’ so that the linguistic units (such as sentences) in one subcorpus in language A correspond to those in language B. In professional specialised translation, parallel corpora are used in terminology management to create termbases and in statistical machine-translation (MT) tools such as Google Translate and Bing Translate (cf. Melby 2012: 7). In LSP corpus-based translation studies, the corpora used to investigate the language patterns of specific LSP domains need not be of great size (cf. Baker 1996; Krein-Kühle 2011: 408), especially in highly specialised domains and when the selection of the documents making up a corpus (the so-called ‘design’ of the corpus) has been strictly dependent on the intended purpose of the study. Parallel corpora are more suited to the systematic investigation of translation norms, i.e. ‘typical’ examples of the strategies that have been regularly chosen by translators to solve specific translation difficulties in given social/cultural contexts and specific LSP domains (cf. Pearson 2003). Instead, comparable corpora can be used by researchers in two main ways. The first is for studying the distribution of the formal traits at the lexical, morphological etc. levels occurring regularly in LSPs and distinguishing them from general language, i.e. the norms and conventions of a specific text genre in a given LSP domain in the SL and TL (e.g. López Rodríguez et al. 2008). The second is for investigating the features of the language of translations which make translational language different from the non-translational language of native texts without being the result of the interference of the SL on the TL (Mauranen 2000; Tirkkonen-Condit 2002). These features can be

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considered as regularities which make translation a ‘third code’ that is different from other types of language production and should be studied as a text genre in its own right (Baker 1993).

2.2.1 Universals and Laws of Translation The linguistic features that are typically found only in translations and are not the result of interference between different language systems have been called ‘universals of translation’ (Baker 1993: 243). Universals are probabilistic tendencies which are more or less inherent in the translation process because they can be found in all TTs, i.e. they seem to be independent of specific language pairs and text genres (Baker 1996; Laviosa Braithwaite 1998; Laviosa 1997, 2002; Olohan 2004). It is important to specify that universals are unconscious tendencies, i.e. they do not result from the specifications provided in the translation brief. Instead, when the same linguistic features are the result of a translator’s conscious wish to conform to specific norms, they are called strategies because they occur in a translation as a result of the translator trying to meet the target readers’ expectations. Another useful distinction is that made by Chesterman (2004, 2016: 46) between ‘S-universals’ (S for source), which should be investigated by comparing translations with their STs, and ‘T-universals’ (T for target), which should be investigated by comparing translations with comparable non-translated texts in the same TL. The first are centred on the translation process and aim at explaining the translator’s behaviour to facilitate the interpretation of the TT by the target readers, whilst the second, which are the universals originally postulated by Baker (1993), are centred on the translation product and aim at describing translational language and the way translations are integrated into the TL system. Based on Laviosa (2011), universals are the realisation in the TT of the abstract categories of simplification, explicitation, normalisation and Unique Item Hypothesis. All four hypotheses aim at making the translated text easier to process than the original. Explicitation concerns the tendency of translators to disambiguate the ST to make the TT clearer and can be either lexical (achieved by adding supplementary information and explanations which were not provided in

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the ST) or syntactic. An example of the latter is the more frequent use in translated texts of the optional ‘that’ in reported speech compared to non-translated texts (Olohan and Baker 2000). Simplification concerns the lower level of redundancy of translations compared to native texts: translated texts have shorter and less complex sentences (stylistic simplification), a lower degree of lexical density, i.e. the proportion of lexical words over grammatical words, and a narrower range of type-token ratio, i.e. the variety of vocabulary used in a text (lexical simplification) (Laviosa 1998a, b, 2002; Olohan and Baker 2000: 181–183). Thus, in translations the proportion of grammatical words is higher than lexical words and the most frequent words are repeated more often. Normalisation (or standardisation) is the tendency for translators to achieve a language which is unmarked at the grammatical and collocational levels by preferring typical rather than unusual collocations and conforming to structures which are typical and conventional in the TL. For example, in the translation of metaphorical expressions the tendency to replace rich images (i.e. more innovative metaphorical expressions, such as chattering neurons) with non-rich images (i.e. less innovative metaphorical expressions, such as communicating neurons) (Shuttleworth 2014: 41). Normalisation is particularly relevant for technical translation and especially software localisation, where the translation process is characterised by a general standardisation of style and terminology that is motivated by very practical concerns in order to improve the usability and effectiveness of the end-product and the efficiency of the process, by saving time and reducing costs. The systematic substitution of lexical and syntactic variations (i.e. the different ways of conveying the same information in the ST) with standardised (invariant), repetitive and simplified formulations in the TT, is cumulatively called by Byrne (2006: 164ff., 2012: 130–131) the strategy of ‘Iconic Linkage’. For example, in technical texts with an instructional function (e.g. software manuals, appliance instructions etc.), terminological consistency across the different components of the products by the same company is of paramount importance because it enables users to go easily from one product to another. Highly standardised and repetitive texts are also ideally suited to CAT (ComputerAssisted Translation) tools and even more MT (Machine Translation)

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tools, especially when the translation project involves the mere update of a previous version of a product, where identical or very similar sentences conveying the same information are very frequent. Finally, the Unique Items Hypothesis concerns the under-­representation in translations of TL-specific elements which do not have equivalents in the SL since “they do not readily suggest themselves as translation equivalents” (Tirkkonen-Condit 2004: 177–178). Examples are clitic particles, which are typical of languages such as Finnish and Italian but have no straightforward equivalents in English and are consequently more frequent in Finnish and Italian native texts than in translations from English into those two languages. The Unique Items Hypothesis is subsumed by Laviosa (2008: 125) as a particular case of negative discourse transfer (i.e. deviation from normal, codified practices of the target system) under Toury’s general law of interference. This is one of two probabilistic ‘laws’ of translational behaviour hypothesised by Toury which relate the linguistic tendencies identified by the universals of translation to specific contexts of production within society, culture or the psychology of the translator. The first is the ‘law of growing standardisation’ (Toury 1995: 267–274), postulating that translations tend to use lexical and grammatical features which are more conventional (i.e. less deviant) than non-translations, especially when they have a less important status within the target culture. In terms of its relation to translation universals, the law of growing standardisation groups together the tendencies of simplification and normalisation. The second law of translational behaviour is the ‘law of interference’3 (Toury 1995: 271–279), postulating the near-inevitability of the transfer of ST phenomena in the TT. As a rule, interference between different language systems is more typical of novice translators, who are generally more reluctant than professionals to adopt a meaning-to-meaning rather than a word-for-word approach (cf. Sect. 3.2.1). The link between interference and translation expertise has been investigated by Mauranen (2000), who found that Finnish translations of popular non-fiction departed more frequently from TL norms than translations of academic prose, possibly because of the higher professional status of translators of academic writing. Such a motivation may also explain the greater extent of interference in technical translation as compared to the translation of scientific

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textbooks, which can be hypothesised to apply to most language combinations. However, when specialised translation is from English, in very specialised domains and genres phenomena of interference—called “shining-through” by Kranich et al. (2012: 326)—from the SL seem to be particularly frequent and, in certain languages, more than tolerated also in professional translations, possibly because of the higher prestige value assigned to the language/culture of the STs in specialised domains (cf. Sect. 1.3). Since Baker’s (1993) seminal article introducing the testing of the hypothesis of universals of translation via corpus-based research, numerous observational and experimental studies analysing both parallel and comparable corpora have been carried out, whilst Toury’s laws of translation have received on the whole less attention on the part of researchers. However, conflicting results in different language combinations, and also the sheer difficulty of verifying the quest for universals of translation in all language pairs and LSP genres, are probably the main reasons why research into universals seems to have slowed down in the last few years. Moreover, criticisms have been levelled against the methodology to search for universals (e.g. Chesterman 2004: 43–44; Bernardini and Zanettin 2004; Saldanha 2008: 20, 29; Pym 2010a: 81) and even against the very notion of ‘universals’ in translation, where the limits of culture-specificity can never be totally escaped (Toury 2004: 29; Snell-Hornby 2006: 151–152, 157–158; House 2008b: 11).

2.3 Translation Problems Translation problems are self-evidently at the heart of a problem-solving activity such as translation: hence Newmark’s (1988: 21) statement that “translation theory broadly consists of, and can be defined as, a large number of generalisations of translation problems” is still valid today. The translator’s identification of translation problems and planning of the strategies to solve them are the two basic features of the translation process (Krings 1986: 266), and, in the preparatory phase of the translation activity, are the elements that distinguish the translator’s first reading of the ST from the reading of the intended readers of that same text (i.e.

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specialised-domain experts) (cf. Sect. 3.1.1). It should then come as no surprise that the ability to identify potential translation problems has been found by Jääskeläinen (1999) to be an indicator of the level of translation competence. However, despite their centrality, both the definition of ‘translation problems’ and an empirically validated classification of problems are far from being unanimous in Translation Studies (Hurtado Albir 2001: 280). At its broadest definition, a translation problem is a ‘critical’ point in the ST that either causes processing problems to the translator because it affects the text’s reception, or makes the translator realise that “s/he is unable to transfer or to transfer adequately a source-language text segment into the target language” (Lörscher 1991: 80). A first distinction should be made between translation problems that are subjective and those that are objective. Nord (1991a, 1997: 64, 2011: 255) thus distinguishes a translation ‘problem’, which is shared and objectively identified, from a translation ‘difficulty’, which is subjective because it arises from the translator’s level of competence or from the specific working conditions in the translation task (e.g. lack of access to the appropriate documentation). Useful as it is, Nord’s distinction should however be seen as non-exclusive, as any textual item can be both a problem and a difficulty, and also as entirely dependent on situational variables (the translator’s expertise and difficulty of the specific ST). A notable attempt to establish reliable predictors of the translation difficulty of a text only in relation to the production stage of the TT is Campbell and Hale’s (2002) ‘Choice Network Analysis’ (CNA). The CNA model correlates the level of difficulty of a ST segment to the number of different ways that it can be translated, based on the principle that the higher the number of translation alternatives, the more difficult the translation of that text and the more effortful the translation of that particular ST segment. Besides complex nominal groups, other areas of potential ‘universal’ translation difficulty particularly relevant to specialised translation that have been identified using the CNA model are abstract constructs, passive (vs. active) verbs and terminology referring to institutions. In Toury’s (2002, 2011) three-way classification of the main senses of ‘translation problem’ in Translation Studies, this methodological approach to the study of translation problems is product-based because it

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considers a translation problem retrospectively by looking at actual factual solutions in the TT and reconstructs the problem that led to each choice, i.e. the translator’s cognitive processes. Thus TT variation is seen as a reliable predictor of translation difficulty, which then finds confirmation in process data. In an alternative methodology, researchers start from a pre-­ conceived type of problem (e.g. the translation of complex nominal groups) or one or more potential problems they have identified in a specific text to be translated, and then analyse how one or more translators have dealt with them. In Toury’s classification, this type of research considers a translation problem prospectively by referring to it as one of the factors determining the texts’ translatability (rather than actual translation). The focus on the features of the ST and the transfer stage makes this a methodology typical of MT research. This second approach can however also be completely product independent, corresponding to Toury’s third perspective, with the focus being entirely process-oriented and TT independent. A translation problem can in fact be reconstructed by observing exclusively the translator’s cognitive processes, and in particular the traces left behind by the translator of his cognitive mechanisms other than the TT, which are recorded via process-­ oriented data-collection methods such as think-aloud protocols (TAPs), keylogs, video recordings etc. Besides these two main approaches to the study of translation problems, a combination of the two can also be adopted (cf. Krings 1986: 266). An example is PACTE’s (Hurtado Albir 2017) process-oriented study based on, on the one hand, a prospective sense of translation problems, with the determination of ‘Rich Points’ in a ST (i.e., points in the text potentially giving rise to translation errors), and, on the other, the retrospective selection of Rich Points resulting from piloting the translation task in order to assess the translator’s decision-making process (PACTE 2017: 72). Based on the two main methodologies above, in this section the term ‘problem’ will be used prospectively to refer to the features of the ST that the translator, in the course of her first reading of the ST in the orientation phase of the translation process, identifies as not readily translatable based on both the pragmatic considerations linked to the translation

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brief and the translation norms she is adhering to. Later in the book (cf. Sect. 4.5.1), however, a ‘translation problem’ will be considered retrospectively in relation to the third and last phase of the translation process (assessment) and used interchangeably with the notion of ‘translation error’. A further distinction is made by Pym (2010b) between ‘high-risk’ and ‘low-risk’ problems, where he defines ‘risk’ as “the possibility of not fulfilling the translation’s purpose” or “the probability that a particular option will lead to success conditions not being obtained” (Pym 2004a: 12). Although in both high-risk problems and rich points there is more than one possible target option available to the translator, with not all being viable ones, high-risk messages should however not to be confused with ‘Rich Points’, as the latter are not always important in attaining success conditions. As Pym notes, translators should be trained to identify high-risk messages and devote particular attention to them, and, conversely, to reduce the effort expended on low-risk messages, for example by using MT tools. Freely adapting Pym’s risk model to specialised translation, high-risk problems are usally of the binary type (only two options: one right, one wrong), as in the case of the dosage quantities on a medical label, whilst low-risk problems are those that, if not solved appropriately by the translator, do not have high-risk consequences, as for example the use of the stringent LSP norms and conventions typifying specialised discourse at all linguistic levels. Crucially, however, a low-risk problem can become high-risk, as in the case of the standardised style guidelines that should be followed by authors wishing to submit an article for publication in a research journal, because not adhering to them could result in the non-acceptance of the article (see ‘binary errors’ in Section 4.5.2). Last but not least, a useful distinction for practising translators is between different types of translation problem. Among the many categorisations that have been devised through the years (e.g. Krings 1986; Göpferich 2010; Hurtado Albir 2017), I will adopt here Nord’s (1991a: 158–160, 1992: 46–47, 1997: 75–77) functionalist classification for its ease of use, assigning translation problems into four categories (pragmatic, cultural, linguistic, text-specific), which I have further collapsed into the following two broader groups: ‘pragmatic and cultural problems’

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and ‘linguistic and text-specific problems’. As in all classifications, these categories are anything but clear-cut and some degree of overlap should be expected among them.

2.3.1 Pragmatic and Cultural Problems The label ‘pragmatic problems’ will be used here as a blanket term to describe those translation problems arising from the variation of the communicative situation between ST and TT which can influence the translator’s choices, whilst the label ‘cultural problems’ will be applied to the specific type of pragmatic problems that are connected to the wider social/cultural context in which the ST and TT are embedded. Besides the external situational context of use, pragmatic problems relate also to internal cognitive factors, such as the text producer’s intention, the communicative purpose of the text and the purpose of the reader (cf. Sect. 1.1.1). It is undeniable that “culture penetrates all areas of life, and therefore cannot be disregarded in any kind of translation” and, with specific reference to specialised translation, “[e]ven within a discourse community there is bound to be a certain dependence on one’s own cultural background, unless the discourse community is very narrow” (Zethsen 2010: 547, 555). Examples of conventional LSP genres which are embedded in their cultural background are medical certificates, tax declarations, school certificates, business letters—such as the letter dealing with the language of retailing analysed by Zethsen (2010)4—balance sheets etc. (Stolze 2009: 131). Cultural differences can even be found among non-English speaking academics in the structure of their presentations (Stolze 2009: 132) or research articles (Carter-Thomas and Rowley-Jolivet 2013: 111–112) in English when compared to those of their native-English colleagues (cf. Sect. 1.3). Nevertheless, it is equally true that, in this macroarea of translation, social and cultural aspects count less than in other translational contexts and the ‘cultural filter’ should be applied by the translator more at the lower levels of the vertical stratification of LSPs along the cline of specialisation (expert-to-semi-expert and expert-to-layperson) (e.g. tourism

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brochures, popular science) than at the level of expert-to-expert communication. Indeed, at this highest level of specialisation, the conceptual systems underlying scientific and technical texts in different languages can be considered to be largely congruent (cf. the concept of ‘cultura franca’ coined by Snell-Hornby 1999) and only relatively constrained by national cultures, which makes invariance of meaning across languages largely achievable (cf. Krüger 2015: 49–50). An illustration is provided by the practice in technical translation to generate documentation in parallel with its versions in other languages and to use culturally neutral formulations avoiding heavy local overloads (‘internationalisation’) in order to make it easier to be translated in different languages. Indeed, in a world of increasing globalisation and internationalisation, it can very well happen that in a specific language it may be difficult to find what Baumgartner (1993: 18) calls an “innocently monolingual text”, i.e. a document which has not been ‘internationalised’ to be culturally ‘neutral’ and ready to be localised in different languages. So, whilst it is certainly the case that specialised translation is inevitably linked to social and cultural variables and that cultural competence is important both in translation practice and in translator training (Kastberg 2007), it can also be safely claimed that in most subdomains of specialised translation the unmarked assumption is that there is cultural compatibility, unless there is evidence to the contrary. Pragmatic and cultural problems in specialised translation may be typically associated with the cross-language and cross-cultural rhetorical differences of the conventions generally accepted in LSP genres in the SL and TL.  Such ‘text orientations’ (cf. Rogers 2015: 35  in Sect. 1.3) are achieved by a number of linguistic features at the textual, syntactic and lexical levels and very broadly hinge on the two parameters of the amount of information that needs to be given in a text and the relationship between author and reader. Katan (2004[1999]: 245ff.) discusses these differences in terms of the variation of behaviour between two languages as a result of differences in ‘contexting’, a term coined by Hall (1989[1976]) to refer to the different priorities languages/cultures have “with regard to how much information [in the text] needs to be made explicit for communication to take place”.

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Contexting takes place at two different levels in communication. The first concerns the trade off between expressed information and shared (background, contextual) information. At this level, all languages/cultures can be put on a cline with a tendency towards giving priority either to the text (Low Context Communication orientation or LCC) or to the context (High Context Communication orientation or HCC). The second level deals with the preferred communication style in the text, which can be termed either a ‘KISS approach’, ‘keep it short and simple’, or a ‘KILC approach’, ‘keep it long and complete’. By way of example, Katan (2004[1999]: 253) gives the German and English language pair and argues that, when the context of situation is transactional communication (used to make a transaction)—as opposed to interactional communication (used to maintain relationships)—on a contexting cline German is much more LCC than English, thus fitting “the stereotype of exacting precision and detailed information”. Regarding the preferred style of communication, German can be considered to have more of a KILC approach, i.e. a style that favours a high information load and completeness, is writer friendly and detailed, as opposed to English, which has instead a KISS approach, i.e. a style that favours a low information load and clarity, is reader friendly and synthetic. Likewise, in the English and Spanish language pair, by positing the ‘expansive’ nature of nominal groups in Spanish as a key indicator of the modus operandi of the two languages, Soler (2011) considers English as a ‘concept-synthesizing’ language, because it effectively captures concepts synthetically, and Spanish as a ‘concept-expanding’ language, because it needs to explicitate the meaning of the concept that is conveyed by a nominal group by adding further structural words. Concerning the German-English combination, but turning specifically to LSP translation, Katan’s observations are in line with those made by other scholars. For example, Rogers (2015: 35) quotes Kreutz and Harres’ (1997: 181) distinction between ‘author-oriented’ German academic writing style and English ‘predominantly co-operative, reader-­ oriented’ style when she observes the higher accessibility of academic texbooks in English even for native-German students. Similar views concerning the different assumptions about writer-reader responsibilities for the success of the communication in these same two languages have been

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expressed also by other researchers (Gerzymisch-Arbogast 1993; Göpferich 1995: 322; Kussmaul 1995: 75). As opposed to English, a much greater writer-reader distance in technical genres can also be assumed in languages such as Italian, Polish and Spanish/Catalan (Hempel 2009: 108; Pietrzak 2015: 328; Cuenca 2003; Cuenca and Bach 2007: 170). The typical rhetorical style in Spanish and Catalan is defined by Cuenca as both ‘reader-responsible’ (because it is the reader’s responsibility to understand what the author wants to communicate) and ‘content-oriented’ because it is characterised by complexity of expression and extensive provision of information associated with authority and also relies on the effort of readers more than on the role of writers in making their message clear. Conversely, the typical rhetorical style in English is defined as both ‘writer-responsible’ (because the person primarily responsible for effective communication is the writer) and ‘formal-­ oriented’, and broadly corresponds to House’s (2008a: 122) ‘interactional’ and addressee-focused style, associated with a direct perspicuous style, i.e. synthetic expression and linear texts. For the English-Italian pair, whilst peer or academic discourse (expert-­ to-­expert) has very similar linguistic features in both languages, there is a different realisation of the two levels of specialisation that suppose a different degree of background knowledge of the specialised topic between the expert writer and his addressees, i.e. when a specialist addresses the general public or interested layperson for educational or instructional purposes and in popular science. Two examples of the higher complexity and formality of Italian LSP discourse as opposed to the more concrete and spontaneous discursive features of LSP English are provided by English academic textbooks, which are more pedagogical and less theoretical/scientific than their Italian counterparts (Evangelisti 1994: 223–224), and by Italian technical manuals, where the register is often high and somewhat bureaucratic, with the fairly impersonal style underlining the distance between writer and reader (Hempel 2009: 115). Likewise, in the localisation of software manuals a translation problem may be the cultural constraint provided by the pragmatic and discursive norm of the user-friendly tone of the American English ST that is associated to a lower social distance between addresser and addressee (direct questions, imperatives, personal pronouns, terms of address). In

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languages like German, French and Italian this informal approach has then to be tailored by translators to the expectations of the target receivers concerning the more formal and detached author-reader relationship of that same genre in the TL (cf. Sect. 2.2). Yet, despite the existence of these cross-language and cross-cultural rhetorical differences, there is also some evidence that the functional and stylistic features of LSP discourse across different languages are gradually converging. For example, online styleguides such as Waddell’s (2015) recommend the avoidance in scientific and technical English of some stylistic features which are in fact typical of LSP discourse and systematically require translators’ intervention to improve the quality of the TT compared to the ST.  Two such features are the clarification of the logical relationships among ideas (explicitation of connectives) and the avoidance of both redundancy and those cliché metaphors that are not specifically “used to illustrate, and thus make clear, abstract ideas”. Moreover, LSPs in writer-oriented languages such as Italian, characterised by complexity of expression and a greater writer-reader distance than English, have been undergoing for some time a general simplification (Dardano 1994: 384–386), especially in ‘hard’ disciplines. So, what once was considered as a ‘transparent’ style (i.e. the unmarked norm) by the intended addressees of the text is changing under the influence of its English counterpart. Indeed, this simplification of the style of LSP texts at all levels of specialisation can be explained by the importation by other cultures of the English discourse of science through ‘calquing’ (Cronin 1998), a process of imitation occurring “when a translator makes no attempt to adapt the source text to target culture norms, but instead reproduces it literally, imposing its categories upon the target language” (Bennett 2011: 197), often leading to inconsistencies of both a grammatical and rhetorical nature in the TL (cf. Sect. 1.3). In LSP translation, the translators resorting to calquing are in fact more often than not subject-field experts rather than professional LSP translators: by imposing SL norms within their expert communities, these improvised translators are not only creating problems for professional translators but are also acting as fully-fledged ‘language planners’ (Montero-Martinez et al. 2001: 693) of their native LSPs. Given this new key role played by experts in non-English LSP discourses, calquing has triggered an internal process of evolution whereby

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today’s generations of specialists reproduce in their native discourses, by spontaneous imitation, linguistic patterns encountered in English which they have acquired directly from English-language documents rather than indirectly from translations (Musacchio 2005: 93). At the lower levels of the text, pragmatic problems related to the different rhetorical styles of ST and TT may be linked to the different realisation of cohesion in different languages. A case in point is terminological variation and the repetition of information that different languages will normally tolerate. For example, in user documentation, French has been found by Rogers (2015: 102) to be more lexically varied (i.e. to use more synonyms and hyperonyms) than German and English, whilst Arabic tolerates a far higher level of lexical repetition than English (cf. Baker 2011a: 219; Hatim and Mason 1990). English LSPs also tolerate a higher level of overspecification than other languages such as Romance languages and German, where a ‘reader-responsible’ and ‘content-oriented’ rhetorical style in academic writing tends to avoid the repetition of lexical items and other types of lexical cohesion which instead are used extensively in the ‘writer-responsible’ and ‘formal-oriented’ rhetorical style typical of English (e.g. Cuenca and Bach 2007 for Spanish and Gerzymisch-Arbogast 1993 for German). Translation problems of a pragmatic nature can also be provided by interactional metadiscursive devices (hedges, self-reference, attitude and engagement markers), which show considerable cross-language variation in overall frequency and are realised via different resources (adverbs, impersonal and reflexive forms, mood etc.) in different languages and genres (cf. Olohan 2016: 157, 160–165). For example, in a study by Lorés Sanz (2006) on research article abstracts in the field of linguistics, the analysis of both self-mentions (first-person pronouns I and exclusive we) and engagement markers (second-person pronouns, inclusive we, imperatives, question forms and asides) showed a stronger and firmer authorial stance of linguists publishing in English at international level when compared to their Spanish peers writing in Spanish journals. Finally, pragmatic and cultural problems are also those linked with the translation of presuppositions, such as references in the ST that involve non-linguistic knowledge which the ST writer assumes the readers to have but the translator assumes is not shared by TT readers. Despite the

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fact that in LSP translation the cultural references that cannot be simply transferred in the TL are presuppositions typically related to the specific technical-professional context of the ST, other translation problems at the word level may be provided by culture-specific (or ‘culture-bound’) items, which have been called variously by translation scholars, e.g. ‘cultural words’ (Newmark 1991), ‘cultural-specific concepts or items’ (Baker 2011a) and ‘culturemes’ (Nord 1997; Katan 2009). With an eye on both the ST and the TT, culture-specific items have been defined by Franco Aixelá 1996: 58) as: those textually actualised items whose functions and connotations in a source text involve a translation problem in their transference to a target text, whenever this problem is a product of the non-existence of the referred item or of its different intertextual status in the cultural system of the readers of the target text.

Typical cultural problems in specialised translation are provided by the translation of institutional terms pertaining to  business administration, education, politics etc. and often not having immediate correspondents in other languages/cultures. Examples are academic titles in the British university system (e.g. Reader and Senior Lecturer) and, in the nonprofit sector (Fusari 2009), the different types of US charitable organisations (e.g. charities, private foundations, community foundations, operating foundations, social welfare organisations etc.) or charitable foundations (e.g. corporate foundation, company sponsored foundation, community foundation etc.). However, languages can conceptualise and name in different ways even everyday objects and events and also technical concepts. For example, the many near-synonyms in English for ‘rain’ (shower, drizzle, Scotch mist, sleet, storm, cloudburst, downpour, plus dialect words such as scud and mizzle) (Hoggart 2000) by no means find a one-to-one equivalent in other languages, just like Inuit are said to have dozens of words for different types of snow. Culturally marked technical terms are often the result of different legislation on production methods and safety rules in different countries, as for example the German Wärmepumpe and the English heat pump, with the first being used in Germany for environment-­friendly

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house heating, whilst the second in the US for heating and/or cooling (Stolze 2009: 127).

2.3.2 Linguistic and Text-specific Problems ‘Linguistic’ problems are connected to the structural differences between the SL and TL systems and are due to the translator’s lack of SL or TL competence, whilst ‘text-specific’ problems are due to the language quality of the specific text to be translated (for example, metaphors and individual word creations) and cannot be classified as pragmatic, cultural or linguistic.

2.3.2.1  Textual Problems At the textual level, linguistic translation problems can relate to cross-­ language differences in thematic structure. Given that marked/unmarked thematic structures are language-specific, different selections can in fact be made in the SL and TL when choosing a clause element as theme (thematic selection). Consequently, the translator should be aware of the level of markedness of a given structure in the SL and also learn to use the devices available in the TL for thematising clause items (Baker 2011a: 143–151). For example, ‘fronting’ or ‘foregrounding’ (i.e. moving into initial position in a clause) a time or place adjunct to make it marked in English is less marked in some languages, such as Spanish and Portuguese (and Italian), and is completely unmarked in German (Baker 2011a: 151). Likewise, fronting an object is less marked in Chinese than in English and is totally unmarked in German (if accompanied by a definite determiner). Translation problems of a textual nature can also be provided by intraand inter-sentential connectives, to organise discourse and help to guide the reader through the text. Indeed, languages vary in both the frequency and the type of the connectives they prefer to use (Baker 2011a: 201, 228). For example, academic texts in Romance languages such as Spanish and Catalan (and Italian) are more ‘conjunctive’ and have a higher

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variety of reformulation markers than English, which instead favours inferred linkage (juxtaposition) over explicit intra- and inter-sentential connectives (Cuenca and Bach 2007). However, different results were found by Mur Dueñas (2007) in research articles in the field of business management written in English and Spanish, where explicit logicalsemantic markers (especially contrastive and consecutive) were found to be more frequent in articles written in English by scholars based at US universities and published in international journals, than in articles written in Spanish by scholars based in Spanish universities and published in national journals. Concerning cross-language differences in the type of conjunctions languages prefer to use, Baker (2011a: 201, 209, 228) suggests a link between the tendency of German to be both a more ‘conjunctive’ language than English and its preference to express relations through subordination and complex structures, probably because conjunctions are “needed to disentangle the relationships between chunks of text embedded in long and complex structures”. The same can also be said for other languages such as French and Italian, which favour the use of more complex syntactical structures and explicit conjunction as opposed to languages such as Dutch (Lamiroy 1994) and English (Hervey and Higgins 1992: 49–50), which prefer to use simpler and shorter structures and present information in relatively small chunks by combining two or more simple sentences merely by juxtaposition (cf. Sect. 3.1.2). Languages can also make a different use of connectives with ostensibly similar semantic and pragmatic functions (Halverson 2004: 562ff.). The English coordinating conjunction and is a case in point. The multitude of functions displayed by and beside the additive one (causal, adversative etc.)5 in English sci-tech texts makes it a ‘passe-partout’ conjunction in terms of informative value but also a translation problem, because the same functional richness is not necessarily displayed by the corresponding conjunction in other languages. A final translation problem of a textual nature is provided by the different norms governing punctuation in the SL and TL. By way of example, Young and Band (2007) mention an additional meaning of the three dots in French, which besides marking ellipsis as in German and English, may also mean ‘etc.’, or the use in German of »« or „“ (Anführungszeichen)

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around titles of books instead of English italics, or even differences between British English and American English, such as placing a period/a comma outside final quotes, which is correct in the first but not in the second.

2.3.2.2  Syntactic Problems At the level of syntax, linguistic problems which are specific of LSP translation can be provided by the following specific features of English scientific and technical discourse: • The preference for relatively short sentences and coordination, as opposed to the complex long sentences and subordination  that are typical of reader-responsible and content-oriented Romance languages such as Spanish and Catalan (Cuenca and Bach 2007) and also Italian. • The implicit semantic relations within complex nominal groups obtained by compounding, which in Romance languages need to be explicitated (cf. Sects. 1.2.4.1 and 1.2.5.2). A connected difficulty is that of distinguishing between a noun complex that is an accepted technical term (industry growth rate), and should therefore be translated only with its accepted equivalent in the TL (Italian tasso di crescita del settore industriale / French taux de croissance de l’industrie), and a noun being simply qualified by other nouns and adjectives. • The dimensions of formality/politeness and familiarity/deference in the person system of Romance languages and also other languages such as Russian (Baker 2011a: 105). The translator’s decisions that have to be made involve the choice of a personal or impersonal verb form, the passive or active voice or, for those languages which have them (e.g. Romance languages), the use of reflexive forms. Examples are the following: (ST personal verb → TT impersonal verb) However much physics you have studied you cannot actually... → per quanto si studino i fenomeni della fisica, non è possibile... / peu importe dans quelle mesure on étudie la physique, il est impossible de...; (ST imperative verb form → TT impersonal verb) Adjust the width and height of

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rows and columns by dragging... → È possibile modificare la larghezza e l’altezza di righe e colonne trascinando... / Il est possible d’ajuster la largeur et la hauteur des rangées et des colonnes en amenant.... • Some of the “additional, more subtle meanings” (Baker 2011a: 110) which can be signalled by the tense system in LSP discourse, such as the tense and aspectual distinctions between the present perfect and the simple tense used in reporting research (Trimble 1985: 123–127) (cf. Sect. 1.2.4.3), which can be lost in translation. • Modality, which in English is realised mainly by modal auxiliaries (can, might, should, will) but in other languages can be expressed in a variety of other ways (cf. Baker 2011a: 119).

2.3.2.3  Terminological Problems In specialised translation, lexical problems are typically (though not exclusively) terminological, i.e. affect lexical items with a precise meaning in a given specialised domain. The existence of more than one term in the SL and/or the TL to designate the same concept can be a real problem for translators (as well as for specialist readers). Terminological variation can be viewed from the two different perspectives of being both a linguistic and a text-specific problem. As argued by Rogers (2015: 101), the decision of whether to attempt to replicate in the TT the terminological variation in the ST or whether to eliminate it by choosing only one term in the TT to translate different ST synonyms calls into question the embedding of terms into whole texts, with the attendant risks of introducing in the TT even greater variation and endangering its cohesion and/or coherence. Typical terminological problems for translators who are not already expert in a specialised domain, and thereby run the risk of translating a concept in the TL imprecisely or even downright incorrectly, can be provided not only by terms specific to a discipline which are normally used only by domain specialists (e.g. lathe, calcium oxide, polymer etc.) but also general-language words that are used with a more restricted meaning (e.g. in physics the adjectives ideal, significant and effective). When there is not a total one-to-one concept/term correspondence in both SL and TL

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(situation of ‘SL monosemy → TL monosemy’), the typical situations of translation difficulty created are the following two: • SL polysemy → TL monosemy: within the same discipline or across different disciplines, in the SL there is only one term expressing different concepts, which however are expressed in the TL by different terms. For example, in the LSP of physics, depending on their context of occurrence the terms torque and moment (referring respectively to the rotation motions of objects and to lever systems) can be both translations of the one Italian term momento. Of course the opposite situation of more than one possible term in the SL to express different concepts, which however are expressed in the TL by only one term (SL monosemy → TL polysemy) is far less problematic for the translator: e.g. force, power, strength, thrust → Kraft (German) and capacity, capacitance → capacité (French) (Newmark 1988: 152). • SL polysemy → TL polysemy: across different disciplines, the network of meanings for the same term existing in both SL and TL do not necessarily correspond in the two languages. For example, in the Italian-­ English direction, the term montante has at least three translation equivalents in English depending on the concept it refers to, i.e. stud (a fundamental vertical element in frame building), column (in the metalmechanics industry) and strut (in aeronautics), whilst in the EnglishItalian direction, stud can be translated as borchia, chiodo, perno, bulletta etc. and strut as puntone (in building) and contropalo (in carpentry). However, once the LSP translator has access to reliable and well-­ maintained terminology resources, either created by herself or provided by the translation commissioner together with the translation brief, terminology is the component of LSP language which should in fact be less problematic (cf. Halliday et al. 1965: 129). Whilst it might be safely assumed that the vast majority of ST terms will have an equivalent TL term, not all SL concepts may in fact be lexicalised in the TL (cf. Baker 2011a: 18–23; Rogers 2015: 110ff.). Terminological problems at the word-level such as these are caused by ‘terminological gaps’, occurring when a SL concept/term does not have

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(yet) a ready-made equivalent in the TL. This is the case of new terminology referring to new developments in science and technology or those words and expressions having a rather fuzzy meaning that suddenly become trendy and are used as a mantra, e.g. figurative expressions of English-American management speak (brand building, getting global, focus, touch base) (cf. Göpferich 2006: 233–238). Alternatively, a SL term may not have a corresponding term in the TL because the two languages make different distinctions in meaning or have a different physical perspective. In the English-Italian language pair, examples are the lack of equivalents for words such as welfare and whistleblower,6 which had both to be imported in Italian as loanwords, or for hyperonyms (or ‘superordinates’) such as facilities (as in the complex nominal group indispensable basic goods and accommodation facilities for displaced people), or the semantic difference between the English terms form (abstract concept) and shape (concrete concept), which does not exist in Italian, where both terms are translated as forma. A special type of terminological gap is the ‘restrictive focus’ that may distinguish various aspects of a process (Godman and Veltman 1990: 207), such as the lack of congruity in Malay (and also Italian) of the gradual semantic restriction in definition of a group of verbs of movement which are typical (though not exclusive) of the English language of science: Move (A general verb describing movement) Remove (To move an object from a place) Replace (To move an object from a place and put another object in its place) Displace (To replace an object by force) Substitute (To replace an object with an inferior object) Exchange (To replace two objects with each other) Interchange (To replace two identical objects with each other).

2.3.2.4  Text-specific Problems Whilst linguistic problems engender translation difficulties specifically in the transfer phase, text-specific problems are cognitive problems that a translator can experience when reading the ST.  They are therefore

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connected to the interpretation, according to text-internal criteria, of those ST segments whose meaning is not known and cannot be derived from the immediate context. Text-specific problems can be associated to those difficulties that Campbell (2000: 38) contends are likely to be due to the cognitive effort made to understand the ST by the translator, who subsequently must decide among the various options available in the TL in order to transfer that specific segment of the ST appropriately. Typically these problems are linked to the translation of metaphors (cf. Sect. 2.3.4.5) and also to the quality of the ST. In Göpferich’s (2006: 233–238) empirical study carried out on the problematic elements of a popular-­ science ST, text-specific problems at the higher level of the text were viewed in terms of flouting the maxims of information clustering (information belonging together but being given instead in different parts of the text) and parallelism (paragraphs on comparable phenomena not having a parallel structure), whilst text-specific problems at the lower levels of the text (lexical and syntactic) were viewed in terms of the flouting of the maxims of correctness, clarity and optimality, including problems caused by: • missing information in the ST; • terms used idiosyncratically or misleadingly by the ST author; • use of abstract terms or an unusual word order leading to unintentional foregrounding of information (cf. also Halliday 1993[1989]: 74); • ST elements whose meaning is not known and cannot be gleaned from the context due to either lack of coherence of the text (e.g. unclear or missing inter-sentential relations, imprecise definitions etc.) or, at the level of terminology, the use of terminological variants or unknown/ unexplained terms in the ST. Concerning the last of these problems, an important sub-category of text-specific problems in specialised translation, especially among novice translators who are not familiar with the subject matter and terminology of the text to be translated, is provided by problems relating to the translator’s knowledge of the specialised subject-domain and specific features of LSP discourse. In the PACTE classification of translation problems (Hurtado Albir 2017: 11), these ‘extralinguistic’ problems are specifically

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called ‘cognitive problems’. However, not all cognitive problems are also translation problems (Lörscher 1991: 85). Indeed it may very well happen that a novice translator produces an acceptable translation of a text segment by opting for a very close translation of the ST, especially if it is highly specialised, even if she has not fully understood it. In other words, the cognitive problems linked to the interpretation of a specialised text by its final intended reader, whatever the level of specialisation of that text, should be kept separate from the cognitive problems posing real difficulties for the translator in the production phase. The difference between the two can be illustrated by going back to the cluster of ‘prototypical syndrome of features’ that Halliday sees as giving rise to a certain number of problems for the non-specialists because of the inherent difficulty in the nature of science itself (cf. Sect. 1.2.2). Looking at the English-Italian examples of translation provided by Musacchio (2017: 44–50, 52) to illustrate the problems posed to translators by Halliday’s features and also the results of an empirical study by Palumbo (2007) based on the Choice Network approach, out of the seven features only three (lexical density, grammatical metaphor and semantic discontinuity) can be considered to have a real practical usefulness in the description of the cognitive problems specific to the scientific translator’s activity. As for the remaining four features, they do not seem to me to provide a better alternative to the ‘traditional’ categories used to identify translation problems. More specifically, the two features of special expressions and technical taxonomies do not add anything new to the more traditional translation problems caused by terminology and phraseology, which already take into account—often explicitly in the “Conceptual relations” field of a termbase—the semantic relationship of a term/concept with other terms/ concepts in the same specialised domain. Likewise, the alleged difficulties associated with the interpretation of interlocking definitions and syntactic ambiguity could more often than not be considered to be caused not so much by the translators’ lack of specific scientific competence as by a more basic lack of translation expertise, and may therefore have equally occurred had a translation been non-specialised.7 In the specific case of the difficulty of translating syntactic ambiguity, a close translation reproducing the apparent ambiguity of the ST may in fact be a perfectly acceptable choice on the part of the translator when a comparable level of

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background knowledge of the specialised topic by ST and TT readerships is envisaged in the translation brief. In this latter case, Lörscher’s (1991: 85) observation might apply that being able, at least occasionally, of not making manifest in the TT problems of ST reception is part and parcel of a translator’s general expertise (as opposed to her specific domain-­ specific competence). By contrast, Halliday’s three features of scientific discourse—grammatical metaphor, lexical density and semantic discontinuity—seem to me to provide a useful insight into the cognitive problems posed by the translation of science. Taking grammatical metaphor first, despite the emphasis traditionally placed by researchers on the role played by terminology in LSP translation difficulty, in Palumbo’s (2007) empirical study a possible link has been established between translation difficulty and the grammatical ‘metaphoricity’ of the ST. The participants’ actual translations revealed that the main source of difficulty was provided by the high nominal density (i.e. number of lexical words per clause) of ST segments, and in particular by the most densely packed nominal groups of the text (the rate of crack growth; the development of a complete model for the kinetics of fracture; and the bond-rupture reaction), which evidently the translators found difficult to ‘unpack’. Concerning the two remaining features of lexical density and semantic discontinuity, as noted by Musacchio (2014: 575–576), these two lexicogrammatical categories are certainly useful in classifying areas of difficulty for the translators who are yet to develop the thematic competence needed to “‘see’ scientific discourse, that is to read, analyse and transfer scientific texts” and consequently “appreciate the distinctive ‘tones’ of science and—in the process—render these tones by doing full justice to them”. Finally, a typical text-specific problem is provided by the translation of metaphor, which has always been considered problematic within the discipline of Translation Studies. As such, it has been studied from several points of view (e.g. prescriptive, descriptive and cognitive) and in relation to different types of discourse. Within traditional equivalence-based approaches considering metaphor as a mere figure of speech, in the Bible or in literary texts linguistic and cultural differences across different languages have been seen as being too great to overcome and therefore

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preventing the translatability of some metaphors (Nida 1964; Dagut 1976), whilst in most other text types metaphors have been viewed as either fully (Reiss 1971; Mason 1982) or only partially translatable (van den Broeck 1981; Newmark 1981, 1988). In much more recent times, in Baker’s (2011a: 67–75) linguistic approach to translation some attention is devoted to the difficulties of translating idioms and fixed expressions (Newmark’s ‘standard’ metaphors or clichés), i.e. collocations that carry meanings that cannot be deduced from their individual components and can be opaque or even misleading to non-native speakers (e.g. the tagline of the ad of a well-known UK car servicing centre Are you ready for cats and dogs?). Baker summarises these translation difficulties as being mainly three and provides ample exemplification for each of them: (1) the ST idiom does not have an equivalent in the TL; (2) the ST idiom has a close counterpart in the TL but different connotations and/or context of use; or (3) the idiom is used in the SL both literally and figuratively at the same time. This third and last difficulty has to do with the convention of using idioms in different text types in the SL and TL, and the example provided by Baker is the title “It’s a funny old world” of an article from a popularscience magazine. Indeed, idioms have become a common feature also in the titles of English articles in peer-to-peer specialised journals, especially in the social sciences and emerging disciplines, with the informative part of the title being preceded by a catchier one to ‘lure’ the reader into reading the text (e.g. “‘Mind the gap’: science and ethics in nanotechnology”). This type of title is assigned by Gerzymisch-Arbogast (1993: 27) to the ‘given/new type’, as it contains some new information, i.e. the informative part, and also some given information, i.e. the author’s attitude to the text (e.g. irony) which is ‘given’ because the reader can identify with it. The greater difficulty of translating metaphors has been also confirmed by researchers using parameters drawn from metaphor studies and cognitive linguistics (Deignan et al. 1997; Kövecses 2005). According to these studies, the problem of translating metaphors is not simply a language problem but is a cognitive problem and the cause of the difficulty is a lack of correlation between the metaphorical conceptual mapping systems used in the SL and TL to express the same concept. A number of corpusbased studies applying to the study of metaphor a cognitive approach have dealt more specifically with the cross-language variation of

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metaphor in LSP discourse (e.g. Temmerman 2010; Marshman and Vandaele 2010; Nicaise 2011; Tercedor Sánches et al. 2012), also from a translation perspective (Shuttleworth 2011, 2014; Schäffner and Shuttleworth (2013: 94). Besides LSP metaphors that are mostly independent of individual languages and cultures (e.g. the mapping HEREDITY IS INFORMATION in molecular genetics), these studies found instances of cross-cultural variation even in metaphorical lexicalisations relating to body-part denominations, which should instead be universal because deeply dependent upon characteristics of the physical body of an agent (Lakoff and Johnson 1980). Examples are the cross-­language discrepancies in metaphorical conceptualisations of the mapping GEOGRAPHICAL FEATURES HAVE BODY PARTS in English (toe, in relation to a slope, dune, margin, bank) and in Spanish (pie ‘foot’), the latter being used also in relation to different geographical features (cordillera ‘range’, muro ‘wall’, ladera ‘mountainside’, duna ‘dune’ etc.) (Tercedor Sánches et al. 2012: 194), and the conceptual shifts of the intensifiers and attenuators that may be applied to the lexical indicators of markers of association in English and French medical texts: e.g. ‘physical proximity’ in English (e.g. close association) vs. ‘width’ in French (e.g. association étroite [narrow association]) (Marshman and Vandaele 2010). The greater cognitive load involved in dealing with metaphors was also found by the translation-oriented empirical studies using both conceptual metaphor theory and process-oriented data-collection methods (TAPs, keystroke logging software, eye tracking etc.) which are presented in an article by Schäffner and Shuttleworth (2013). This finding was illustrated by the fact that translating metaphorical expressions takes more time (longer pauses, longer total length of completing the translation task) and generates more uncertainty, although it is somewhat contradicted by the conclusion drawn by Shuttleworth (2011: 321) in his multingual analysis of metaphorical expressions in the translation of popular science that “on the whole, there is little evidence to suggest that metaphor presents a major problem to translators of popular science texts”. Concerning the discrepancy between the universality of metaphor emphasised by most conceptual-metaphor theorists (e.g. Rojo and Ibarretxe-Antuñano 2013: 22) and the actual variation characterising metaphor use in different languages, such a discrepancy is in fact only

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apparent. Indeed, in Lakoff and Johnson’s cognitive perspective of metaphor, the influence of culture on understanding is acknowledged when they observe that every physical experience arises in a cultural environment with particular presuppositions, behaviours and values through which universal image schemata are activated in each culture: “a culture may be thought of as providing, among other things, a pool of available metaphors for making sense of reality” and “to live by a metaphor is to have your reality structured by that metaphor and to base your perceptions and actions upon that structuring of reality” (Lakoff and Johnson 1980: 12). So, in their experientialist view of cognition, objectivity does not require an absolute, universally valid point of view, but is always relative to a conceptual system and a set of cultural values (1980: 227). By way of an example, Lakoff and Johnson mention the two main methods to understand metaphorically the scientific notion of electricity—one by interpreting it as a fluid, the other as a homogeneous mass of individual electrons—which are both indispensable to the solution of problems of a different nature. In sum, the use of a cognitive approach can indeed shed new insights on the role of metaphorical expressions in LSPs and on their translation. Indeed, translation scholars have only started to tap into the insights and resources provided by the new cognitive turn in metaphor research and the fundamental impact of metaphorical models on both categorisation and naming in LSPs. One example is the use of the cognitive concept of ‘image schemas’ (Johnson 1987: 23ff.; Lakoff 1987: 453ff.) to provide a basis for classifying metaphorical expressions into ‘rich image’ and ‘non-­ rich image’ (cf. Sect. 2.2.1), as carried out by Shuttleworth (2014) in his descriptive corpus-based study of the solutions opted for by translators when translating metaphorical expressions in popular science. Though ‘richness’ is a relative concept, because it involves a degree of subjectivity and is also influenced by pragmatic factors such as discourse variation, it is still highly probable that for most people a metaphorical expression such as chattering neurons has a greater likelihood to be richer than the expression communicating neurons. The interest of Shuttleworth’s distinction of rich vs. non-rich image metaphors lies predominantly in the fact that it is used as a parameter to distinguish between the different

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procedures to translate metaphorical expressions in popular science (cf. Sect. 3.2.4.1).

2.4 Ethical Issues Although there is no consensus on what responsible action on the part of the translator exactly entails (cf. Inghilleri and Maier 2011: 103), nor indeed on how to define the very field of translation ethics (Pym 2001: 130), today translation scholars and practitioners seem at least to agree that the responsible translator plays a central active role in the translation process and has to make ethical decisions in view of quite a complex array of human and cultural factors. In the wake of the ‘sociological turn’ that has taken place in Translation Studies at the end of the 1990s (cf. Sect. 2.2), which was also interested in questions of ethics in translation and issues concerning the translators’ status and working conditions (Wolf 2010), in 2001 there a was a special issue of the journal The Translator entitled significantly “The Return to Ethics”, after at least a decade dominated by the descriptivist paradigm during which “[e]thics was an unhappy word” (Pym 2001: 129). In his Editor’s Introduction, Anthony Pym linked this renewed interest also to an extension of the parameters of translation to include the translator’s ‘agency’, i.e. a view of translators as powerful and influential agents of change making them more than just “text producers, mediators who modify the text such as those who produce abstracts, editors, revisers and translators, commissioners and publishers” (Milton and Bandia 2009: 1–19). Despite the fact that in 2004 a special issue of the journal TTR: Traduction, Terminologie, Rédaction (Fiola 2004) was also dedicated to translation ethics, only two years later Snell-Hornby (2006: 78) wrote that a real ‘ethical turn’ in Translation Studies was still to come, a statement that unfortunately still rings true today, if ethics is taken to include broader issues concerning the translator’s relatively low status in society. Nevertheless, as argued by Pym (2003), the renewed interest towards ethical issues has at least put out of fashion in translation theory a traditional ethics based on the notion of fidelity to the ST and replaced it with a new ethics based exclusively on notions of collective (rather than individual) responsibility for translation

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mistakes (e.g. team-working and ‘authorless’ texts in localisation and at the European Commission’s Translation Service), primacy of purpose (skopos) of the translation (especially, but not exclusively, in functionalist approaches) and human virtues (understanding the text, the client and the end-user; loyalty to people). At the same time, however, Pym also observes that this new ethical notion of ‘fidelity’—now seen by theorists as an essential human, rather than only textual, quality—is in contrast with the increasing importance of translation technologies in today’s translation market, which revert fidelity to a quasi-automatic text replacement reducing “translation to the most primitive sense of fidelity imaginable: fidelity to words, at sentence level, or smaller, with plurality and humanity condemned to shadows”. Another scholar who has extensively studied the professional translator’s responsibility is Andrew Chesterman. His already-mentioned descriptive norm-governed view of translation (cf. Sect. 2.2) has the very objective of promoting four fundamental ‘ethical values’ (clarity, trust, understanding and truth), each underlying one of the main types of translation norms, which should guide the translator’s decisions during both translation process and evaluation. A broader distinction made by Chesterman (2001: 139–143) is between four (partially overlapping) models of translation ethics adopted by scholars through the years. The first is an ‘ethics of representation’, focused on the translator’s interpretation and representation in the TT of the ST author’s intention: this model is typical of all traditional linguistic approaches to translation based on the translator’s fidelity towards the ST. The second model is an ‘ethics of service’, focused on translation as a commercial service and the best practices to fulfil a translation brief agreed with a client: this model is typical of the attempt to enhance the status of the translator by claiming a more active role for her, as first pioneered by Holz-Mänttäri’s (1984) theory of ‘translatorial action’ and the functionalists’ view of the translator as an expert in the communication process (Reiss and Vermeer 1991[1984]; Nord 1997). The third model is an ‘ethics of communication’, focused on translation aiming to foster cross-cultural communication and the translator as a mediator between people and cultures: this model is mainly underlying Pym’s (1992: 169, 2012: 134–163) perspective of ethics that translators have the responsability of both optimising

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cooperation between the parties that participate in a communicative interaction and improving the cross-cultural relations in the immediate context of translation.8 The fourth model is a ‘norm-based ethics’, focused on the idea that ethical behaviour depends on the expectations specific to a particular time in a particular society, and is the model underlying Chesterman’s own norm-governed model of translation. To these four models of ethics, Chesterman adds a fifth, an ‘ethics of professional commitment’, focused on the attempt to being a ‘good’ translator, which he embodies by formulating an ethical code for translation based on the value of ‘commitment’ combining with the other values of loyalty to the profession, understanding, truth, clarity, trust, justice and striving for excellence. This ethics of professional commitment is indeed reflected in the codes of ethics and codes of practice (déontologie) to which translators are professionally and institutionally tied (e.g. UNESCO 1976; FIT 2011) and draws on all four ethical values above (truth, clarity, trust and understanding). It is a conventional delimitation establishing guidelines that distinguish an ‘ethical’ from a ‘non-ethical’ course of action in a given situation along three fundamental dimensions: responsibility towards the client, the text, and the profession (Pym 2012: 1, 76–81). And it is on such a professional ‘deontology’ that this section will focus on, whilst dealing with a second, wider notion of ethics concerned with more universal and abstract principles relating to the translator’s broader ethical rights and responsibilities towards society at large (cf. Cronin 2003, Baker 2006; see also Inghilleri 2009). In professional codes of ethics for translators, at least four of the five models of ethics identified by Chesterman (2001: 139–143) are represented. Besides being the very embodiment of the general obligations and rights of the translator striving to achieve ‘excellence’ and contributing to the recognition of translation as a distinct and autonomous profession (ethics of professional commitment), the codes also contain explicit references to the linguistic and subject-matter competence that the translator must possess and the ‘faithfulness’ of the translation to the original (ethics of representation); the translator’s duty of confidentiality and fair competition, and her rights concerning an equitable remuneration, a written contract and copyright (ethics of service); and the social function of translation in facilitating linguistic, cultural, scientific and

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technical exchanges, spreading culture throughout the world and contributing to a better understanding amongst people (ethics of communication). Accordingly, the specialised translator’s professional responsibilities that will be analysed range from the translator’s loyalty to a ST author and/or TT user, to broader issues concerning the translator’s relations with other translators and clients. By way of convenience, these responsibilities have been organised into two seemingly self-contained sections, the first dealing with the translator’s responsibility with the words on the page (textual responsibility) and the second with her extratextual responsibility with the other parties in the translation act (interpersonal responsibility). These two perspectives are taken to broadly coincide with Chesterman’s (2016: 168) distinction between ‘micro-ethical’ matters, concerning the translator’s individual decisions (“the translator’s action during the translation process itself, questions dealing with specific textual matters, translation strategies and the like”), and ‘macroethical’ matters concerning the relation between the translator and the world (“broad social questions such as the role and rights of translators in society, conditions of work, financial rewards and the client’s profit motive, the general aims of translation as cross-cultural action, power relations between translators and clients”). However, it is important to note that, as in the case of micro- and macro-ethical matters, textual and interpersonal responsibility are not discrete entities but in fact impinge on each other, as the decisions taken by the translator during the translation activity are influenced not only by the translation brief but also by the status of the translator, her relations to the client and any other translators that may be involved. Running through both sections, a third perspective on the moral issue of the translator’s responsibility will emerge, which considers it the result of either an individual or a social activity. In the first case, which is the view taken by professional codes of ethics,9 translation is seen mainly as an individual activity, with the final responsibility of the translation and its factual truth resting solely on the translator. In the second case, which sees translation as a contract among different parties resting on a relationship of trust and fulfilling their commitment, the final responsibility is to be shared with the other actors of the translation process (translator, ST author, commissioner, publisher, target readers, other translators etc.).

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Here the emphasis is not on the text but on the people involved in, and the situation of, the translation activity, and translation is seen mainly as a social activity based on the existence of different actors, all having a crucial mediating influence on the final translation. A further ethical issue closely linked to both the textual and interpersonal responsibility of the translator is that of her ‘visibility’, which in literary translation concerns the translators’s social and political power (cf. Venuti 2008[1995]). Following Koskinen (2000: 99), this can be distinguished into textual visibility (within the text itself ), paratextual visibility (through prefaces, notes, the mentioning of the name of the translator etc.) and extratextual visibility (visibility in the profession). Such a distinction corresponds to the two main ethical commitments of the responsible translator envisaged by Pym (1992: 162ff., 2001) in the light of his premise that to translate is always to attempt improvement. The first is to improve both the intercultural relations with which the translator is concerned and, more down-to-earth, the relevance of the TT for the target readers (textual visibility of the translator), also through prefaces, footnotes etc. (paratextual visibility of the translator). The second commitment is to be loyal to her profession, i.e. to behave ethically with all the other participants in the translation process (extratextual visibility of the translator). The emphasis that the translator should give to each type of visibility will obviously depend on the type of text and socio-­ cultural situation of the translation event.

2.4.1 Textual Responsibility The translator’s textual responsibility broadly concerns the so-called ‘translator’s freedom’ to make the changes she deems appropriate to improve in the TT the quality of the ST, which in specialised translation may very well be low (cf. the ‘mediator principle in Sect. 3.2.1). There is always a difficult compromise to be made between this individual freedom and the deontological guidelines for translators, which is also enshrined in the FIT Translator’s Charter, where Clause 4 (“Every translation shall be faithful and render exactly the idea and form of the original, this fidelity constituting both a moral and legal obligation for the

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translator”, my emphasis) is in fact somewhat contradicted by clause 5 (“A faithful translation, however, should not be confused with a literal translation, the fidelity of a translation not excluding an adaptation to make the form, the atmosphere and deeper meaning of the work felt in another language and country”) (FIT 2011). Indeed, the ethical aim to improve the quality of a badly written ST in the TT is a controversial issue also among theorists. For example, Hervey and Higgins (1992: 171) think that translators are not in principle responsible for ‘improving’ defective STs, even though, in the specific case of ‘technical’ (i.e. LSP) texts, where factual accuracy is a paramount concern, after consultation with the ST author or an expert, translators can eliminate in the TT the segment of the ST containing any accidental ambiguity or obscurity that can be potentially misleading or dangerous. An example of the specialised translator’s actual leeway in making changes to the ST in daily working practice—provided they are agreed with the client by taking into account the end-users’ specific needs (cf. Durban and Melby 2007: 4)—is Durban’s (2014: 4) anecdote of a company in France which “trimmed a 500-page manual by half with the help of an expert translator, who flagged sections that didn’t apply to foreign clients before starting the job”. This example is consistent with a professional ethics—such as the one underlying this book—based on the translator seeing her work as a service and also having the necessary expertise in cross-language and cross-cultural mediation to spare the target readers any unnecessary processing effort (cf. the ‘principle of optimal relevance’ in Sects. 2.1 and 4.2.3). Textual responsibility can be represented in terms of Chesterman’s two fundamental ethical values of truth and clarity, the moral principles governing the relationship between the translator and the text to be translated which determine the translator’s choices (the so-called ‘translation strategies’) and characterise an ethics deeply rooted in translation practice. The value of truth governs the ‘relation norms’, determining the nature of the relationship between ST and TT on the basis of the specific translation situation, whilst clarity governs the ‘expectancy norms’, determining the extent to which the TT conforms to the expectations of target readers (cf. Sect. 2.2).

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Truth has the two different senses of ‘factual truth’ and ‘faithfulness to the ST’. Whilst any translation is inevitably an interpretation of the ST owing to the influence of the translator’s individuality on the translation product, the translator’s responsibility for the factual truth—the objective truth, the message—of her translation is certainly more important in specialised than literary translation, especially if the latter concerns literature with an activist component (cf. Tymoczko 2000). If the specialised translator finds errors, ambiguities or omissions in the ST, her responsibility for factual truth means that she should either alert the commissioner of the translation (and, if at all possible, the author of the ST) or signal such errors within the translation via a comment or a footnote. The value of truth also implicitly entails the translator’s commitment not to accept work that is outside her specialised competence and also to maintain and improve such a competence. The truth-seeking nature and ethical vocation of the translator’s work was paramount for Peter Newmark (e.g. 2004: 173, 2007: 30), who argued that the translator’s responsibility should not be limited to factual truth but should also extend to ‘moral’ truth, i.e. the translator’s personal opinions and beliefs towards the content of the text to be translated. So, according to Newmark, the content of a translation should never affect universal human rights and any racist, classist, sexist etc. content should be denounced as such in the translation. A different, less idealistic, view is expressed by Pym (1992: 166–167), who argues that there is no need for translators to have any personal commitment with what they are translating, as “[t]ranslators’ prime loyalty must be to their profession as an intercultural space”. Such an ethics founded on a view of translation as a professional service rendered to a client is also the one underlying this book. Hence, the translator’s personal opinions and beliefs on issues such as the production and sale of arms, vivisection and pornography should stay outside the professional realm and she should remain detached from the content of what she translates. The second meaning of truth, ‘faithfulness to the ST’, relates to the so-called ‘equivalence’ between ST and TT (cf. Sect. 2.1) and is an ethical value summed up in Newmark’s ‘maxim of accuracy’, which should be the guiding principle of all translations: “You have to translate or transfer or, if not, account for everything, every word, every figure, letter, every

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punctuation mark” (Newmark 1988: 156, emphasis in the original), meaning that the translator should be able to give reasons for any deviation or deletion from the ST. In this case, the truth to be achieved by the translator is what Nord (1997: 123–128, 2001: 185) refers to as the ethical concept of ‘fidelity or equivalence’, a relation between texts which should be distinguished from that of ‘loyalty’, which is the responsibility of the translator not to contradict the ST author’s communicative intentions, i.e. an interpersonal relationship between people (the translator and her communication partners) (cf. Sect. 2.4.2). Besides truth, the other ethical value governing the relationship of the translator with the text is clarity (cf. Sect. 2.2), a general term indicating her compliance with the target readers’ and client’s expectations concerning the linguistic features of the TT to obtain what House (2015: 57) calls a ‘covert’ translation “which enjoys the status of an original source text in the target culture [...] because it is not marked pragmatically as a translation of a source text”. Acting as an ideally invisible mediator equally serving the ST author, the client and the target readers, the translator must be able to capture any social/cultural differences in expectations between the ST and TT readers and conform the final text to the accepted rhetorical conventions (the so-called ‘unmarked norm’) in the TL. In other words, the target users’ attention should not be distracted from the information contents of the TT by not meeting their very specific expectations concerning the formal characteristics of the text, which should be written in a recognisable and familiar form. It is in this latter sense that in professional specialised translation the translator’s textual ‘invisibility’ is to be considered as a positive ethical tactics (cf. also Maia 2010: 442). Translators should in fact “adopt the professional role of the writer and speak with his or her voice” (Sager 1998: 81): in LSP texts the message matters more than the writer, which explains why the name of the translator is often not mentioned, especially in the technical texts, which are also anonymous in their original version. As used here, textual ‘invisibility’ includes also the absence in the TT of any trace of the translator’s personality and attitude concerning the translation task at hand, and also any trace of inconsistencies deriving from an inefficient coordination of the team the translator may be part of. The only exception to this norm is when the translator has become ‘visible’ (‘paratextual

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visibility’) through a preface (nearly exclusively in editorial translation) or the use of footnotes or brief explanations inside the text. This may become necessary when the ST contains a factual error or when the need arises to explain the thought-process involved to arrive at a specific decision in case of an ambiguous section of the ST. Instead, the negative ethical tactics of textual ‘visibility’ can result from either the conscious use of strategies aiming to keep in the TT the linguistic and cultural differences with the ST (which is in fact the norm in literary translation) or from the translator’s own lack of linguistic, social/ cultural and/or specialised competence. In professional specialised translation, visibility at the textual level can even be associated to the translator’s legal liability as a result of ‘breach of professional duty’. An example of a professional indemnity claim of this type is the case of an advertising leaflet translated from English into French which resulted in a claim for the cost of re-translating and re-printing the French translation: the case was made against the translation agency and passed back to the translator because the client complained that “the style of the TT language was too stilted and formal, and not suited to the ‘upbeat’ tone required of its publicity material” (Bradley 2005). By contrast, in perspectives generally associated with post-modern, post-structuralist and post-colonial notions of language, the (literary) translator’s textual visibility is postulated as being inevitable in her work because translation is considered as an “original work of authorship” equated with that by the ST author (cf. Venuti 2008[1995]: 275–276). Consequently, in such approaches the translator’s invisibility at the textual level is to be considered as a negative ethical tactic associated with a ‘serving profession’ (Arrojo 2005: 227). Contrary to this view, in professional specialised translation textual invisibility can in fact be considered as a manifestation of agency, the final result of the invisible improvements made to the ST in the interest of all the parties involved in the translation event and all the parties do not really want to know about (cf. Pym 1992: 164–165). Service to others can then be seen not as something demeaning engendering failure and frustration, but as a source of empowerment and fulfilment, i.e. the active role that the translator should have in the process of mediation between languages/ cultures.

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2.4.2 Interpersonal Responsibility The translator’s interpersonal responsibility concerns the moral principles regulating both her relationship with the other actors participating in the translation process (ST author, commissioner of the translation, publisher, target readers, other translators etc.) and, beyond the narrow limits of individual responsibility, her relationship with the broader society, given her role of mediating between different language barriers and improving social and cultural relations. Interpersonal responsibility can be represented in terms of Chesterman’s two fundamental ethical values of trust and understanding. The value of trust governs the ‘accountability norms’, regulating the loyalty of the translator with regard to the other participants in the translation process, whilst understanding governs the ‘communication norms’, regulating the way the translator should optimise communication between all the parties involved in order to obtain maximum transparency of the TT as required by the specific situation (cf. Sect. 2.2). Included in the translator’s interpersonal responsibility are also broader macro-ethical issues, such as the translator’s role and rights in society, her working conditions, the general aims of translation as cross-cultural action and the power relations between translators and commissioners. Trust—which is really to be understood as the translator’s ‘trustworthiness’—subsumes the moral principles of confidentiality, loyalty and cooperation, which will be discussed in turn in the following paragraphs. Although the principle of ‘confidentiality’ is, at least theoretically, the most straightforward of the three, entailing as it does the ethical translator respecting the secrecy of the ‘privileged information’ (business or personal) acquired professionally, sticking to it may in fact be less straightforward than expected. Typically, a conflict may arise between the translator’s ethical behaviour as a professional and her duties as a citizen should she learn, in the course of her professional activity, of any illegal activities that should be reported to the police. Other classic grey-area scenarios about the confidentiality issue are ensuring that the duty of confidentiality signed by the translator is respected also by colleagues she subcontracted to help/delegate work and, in this age of portable and

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networked computing devices, making sure that the clients’ information and material are kept in a secure place and destroyed once the translation job has been completed (Leschen 2016). The second moral principle of ‘loyalty’ is the translator’s moral responsibility that applies to all the communication partners involved in the translation activity (Nord 1992: 40). The translator’s loyalty should then be equally divided between the interests and aims of the ST author, the requirements of the translation skopos set by the initiator of the translation process and the needs of the target readers of the translation. Indeed, an ideally ethical translation is not simply one which fulfils the brief agreed with the client (“ethics of service”) and is loyal to the ST author’s communicative intentions (“ethics of representation”) but is one requiring a general loyalty on the interpersonal level (“ethics of communication”), whereby the responsibility of the translator should be “taking into account the intentions and expectations of all the partners in the communicative interaction named translation” (Nord 2001: 195). An example is the translation of patient information leaflets, where the translator’s strategies to ensure that all patients are able to understand the TT (explanation of potentially obscure terms, simplification of sentence structure etc.) entail that the translator’s loyalty towards the patient’s safety reflects also her loyalty towards the pharmaceutical industry that developed both the drug and the accompanying information leaflet, and commissioned the translation (Dohnalová 2017). But what happens to this ‘shared’ loyalty of the translator when the different rights, duties and interests of the actors of the translation activity are in conflict? Indeed, to use Pym’s (1992: 152) words, this question encapsulates “[t]he essential problem of translational ethics” in the professional world, namely “not how to translate in any given situation, but who may decide how to translate” (emphasis in the original). Two possible scenarios are: (1) the conflict between the right of the ST author to give his consent to any changes to the ST by the translator in order to improve it, the translator’s duty to be ‘faithful’ to the ST and the right of the target reader to access all the information of the ST; and (2) the conflict of the specific aims of the translation’s commissioner with either the aims of the translator or the interests/rights of the target readers. Different theorists have different perspectives on which actor in the translation

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process should have the final say. Functionalists greatly minimise the responsibility of the translator towards the ST author’s intention and emphasise instead the importance of the target environment and translation as a professional service. However, although the target readers have an important role in influencing the translator’s decisions, when a conflict arises between their interests and those of the translation commissioner, according to Vermeer (1996) the translator’s ultimate responsibility rests first and foremost with the commissioner. It is in fact the translation initiator who is the one to decide the skopos of the translation, which in turn determines the macrostrategy that is to guide the translation process (concerning for example a change of function and/or genre from the TT to the ST), leaving to the translator only the microstrategic decisions on how to best realise linguistically and pragmatically such a macrostrategy. A more mediating position is taken by Byrne (2006: 254–255, 2012: 12–14), who argues that, in everyday professional practice, translators are in fact rarely given by commissioners a translation brief setting out the specific requirements of the translation. Consequently, the ethical, moral and legal obligations of the technical translator should ultimately rest with the target audience, whose interests and needs should act as guidelines when translating. On the other hand, Nord (2001: 185) reinstates the importance also of the ST author in the translator’s shared loyalty (“[i]f the client asks for a translation that would mean being disloyal to either the author or the target readership or both, the translator should argue this point with the client or perhaps even refuse to produce the translation on ethical grounds”). A similar view is expressed by Gile (2009: 33–35, 48): whilst “as a professional, the Translator owes his/her loyalty to the Client first and foremost”, once the translator has taken on board the “environmental constraints” represented by the Client’s brief, her professional loyalty should go however to the ST author, whom the translator represents, because “readers tend to perceive the text they are reading as the author’s, not the translator’s”. Gile’s position is particularly valuable because it explicitly addresses the reality of professional specialised translation, where the ST author’s interests typically coincide with those of the end-users.

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Going beyond the actors in the translation activity identified so far, Pym’s (1992: 166–169) conclusion that “Translators’ prime loyalty must be to their profession as an intercultural space” (emphasis in the original) entails that the collective actor of the translators’ professional category should not only be added but even be given pride of place among the individual actors towards whom the translator’s loyalty should be addressed. Both nationally and internationally, translators’ associations have in fact an important role to play in preventing translators’ unethical behaviour towards the translators’ profession. Examples are to be found in the “FIT Translator’s Charter” (FIT 2011, Clauses 8 and 9). Professional associations are also instrumental in enhancing the translator’s ‘extratextual visibility’, i.e. translators’ status and rights in society, working conditions, the general aims of translation as cross-cultural action and the power relations between translators and commissioners. Proof of the fairly low status of translators in today’s provision of specialised-­translation services are their often far from ideal, and even downright humiliating, working conditions, which make it impossible to achieve the excellency they strive for, such as having to meet an excessively tight deadline or not being given a translation brief by the client before starting their work. As already mentioned (cf. Arrojo 2005, quoted in Sect. 2.4.1), the translator’s profession is also considered to be unattractive because it is not deemed to confer any prestige or power, being as it is the provision of a service rendered near-invisibly to society and constrained by the needs of the other participants in the translation activity. The third moral principle of ‘cooperation’ is the relationship of trust that translators should have with the other participants in the translation process and their attachment to the rules and procedures of their profession. Especially in a market dominated by new communication tools, having no direct contact with the translation commissioner and being engaged in teamwork can sometimes mean that translators working at the same project are never individually responsible for the mistakes they make, creating a situation where individual responsibility gets blurred into a ‘collective’ responsibility (cf. Pym 2003). To prevent this from happening, the responsible translator’s behaviour is to optimise cooperation between the parties that participate in a communicative interaction by ensuring a clear task distribution and distinction of the different roles in

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the translation workflow (first translator, co-translator, reviser, editor etc.). Situations of questionable behaviour within the profession, such as the exploitation by senior translators of junior translators described by Laygues (2001), are still relevant today, and in fact unethical behaviours are far from being restricted to translators only. Changes to the translation without having previously obtained the translator’s permission can be made either by the client or by an ‘in-house reviser’ commissioned by the client, whose role is not always completely clear and at times in apparent conflict with the translator’s own interests, as when commissioning to a translator the revision of a translation task completed by a competitor translator. Finally, besides truth, the translator’s interpersonal responsibility can be represented in terms of the ethical value of understanding, which governs the communication norm and underlies all other values. Understanding is taken to mean both “minimising misunderstanding of the text among included readers” and “minimising the number of potential readers who are excluded from understanding” (Chesterman 2016: 181–184). Consequently, in addition to understanding the ST, the ethical translator should understand what the client wants and what the readers can be expected to understand. Whilst the first refers to the social function of translation, whose ultimate purpose is maximising communication and producing understanding across language barriers, the second refers to the translator’s task of preventing misunderstanding by mediating between different social/cultural contexts. Hence, the great moral responsibility of translators is “to eliminate misunderstandings” (Newmark 1988: 211) and “to improve the intercultural relations with which they are concerned” (Pym 2003: 169).

Notes 1. By way of example of this neglect, at the time of writing the keyword ‘Translation’ is not to be found among the 22 keywords describing the two relevant ERC (European Research Council) panels for peer review evaluation within the research domain of Social Sciences and Humanities: SH4 “The Human Mind and Its Complexity: Cognitive science, psychol-

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ogy, linguistics, education”, and SH5 “Cultures and Cultural Production: Literature and philosophy, visual and performing arts, music, cultural and comparative studies” (Available at https://erc.europa.eu/sites/default/files/ document/file/erc%20peer%20review%20evaluation%20panels.pdf ) (Accessed 15 December 2019). 2. Available at http://translation-ethics.ru/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/ FIT-EUROPE-Code-of-Ethics.pdf (Accessed 2 December 2019). 3. This is the so-called ‘systemic interference’, which is due to the general contact between the SL and TL and not to the specific contact between ST and TT (cf. Sect. 4.5.2). 4. The sender of the specific letter used by Zethsen (2010) to exemplify the cultural elements potentially presenting culture-based problems is the English chocolate manufacturer Thorntons and the culture-specific words isolated for comment are buzzwords of the retailing jargon (high street, multiple grocers, one-stop-shop, experiential shopping, flagship destinations). 5. For example: Project plans are quite different from the sorts of plans that line managers have to produce as part of their work, and [= which is why] even experienced line managers may find that project planning is unfamiliar territory (causal) (Nokes and Greenwood 2003: 65); Opinion is divided about the benefits of ISO 9000 certification; those who have it say that it is vital in avoiding the costs of poor quality, and [= whilst] those who do not have it often say that it is a burdensome administrative cost that should be avoided (adversative) (Nokes and Greenwood 2003: 60). 6. As observed in her blog on terminology by Corbolante (2013), the term whistleblower (‘a person making a disclosure on a person or organization regarded as engaging in an unlawful or immoral activity and who is motivated by the public interest’) has a positive connotation which however is completely unknown in the Italian social/cultural context, where the near-equivalents spia, delatore, talpa, informatore, spifferatore, soffiatore etc. are all solutions which are not acceptable because they all have negative connotations: secrecy and anonymity linked to lack of loyalty and betrayal of mutual trust, generally motivated by personal gain. In 2016 a bill was passed by the Italian Chamber of Deputies stating that, in order to maintain the positive connotation of the term whistleblower without the need to use the loanword, the legal Italian equivalent of the term should be via either of two descriptive translations: autore di segnalazioni di reati / irregolarità [person reporting offences / irregularities].

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7. The point I want to make here is that the non-specialists Halliday specifically refers to—whom he alternatively calls ‘learners’, ‘novices’ and ‘students’—are not translators but students of science in an educational setting who either “have been educated throughout in English medium” or “are taking up English just as a a language for science and technology” (Halliday 1993[1989]: 82). It is against this background that, despite the usefulness for the linguist of Halliday’s approach to the study of the language of science, the lexicogrammatical features of specialised texts that he identified are not automatically suited for describing the specific needs of translators having to materially translate a scientific text. 8. Pym’s model of ethics mirrors very closely some statements in the preamble of the Nairobi “Recommendation on the Legal Protection of Translators and Translations and the Practical Means to improve the Status of Translators” (UNESCO 1976). 9. Cf. Clause 2 of the “FIT Translator’s Charter” (FIT 2011).

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3 Translating Specialised Texts

This long chapter deals with the first and second phases of the translation process. It examines both the mental activity of the translator in carrying out a translation task within the specific communicative situation in which it takes place (translation process), and the translator’s choices resulting in the text from her activity (translation product). The third and final phase of the translation process, i.e. revision, will be dealt with in the next chapter (Sect. 4.4). The first part of this chapter (3.1) will focus on the preparatory phase of the translation task, where the translator identifies the ST translation problems in light of the specific conditions in which the translation activity takes place, and chooses a macrostrategy that will guide her in all the choices at the lower levels of the text. Without going into great material detail (cf. Gouadec 2010: 59–75), I will concentrate firstly on the specific type of pre-reading of the ST which should be performed by the translator (3.1.1), and then on the parameters that are relevant for her choice of a macrostrategy aimed at achieving a pragmatically successful translation. For the sake of simplicity, I have grouped these parameters under the two very general headings of “Intertextuality” (3.1.2) and “Intended use of the translation” (3.1.3). Intertextuality is a textual parameter that refers © The Author(s) 2020 F. Scarpa, Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation, Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting, https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51967-2_3

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to both the text type/genre of the text to be translated and the conventionalised text models in the TL the translator should adhere to (text-­ normative equivalence), whilst the intended use that the translation will be put to in the TL is a pragmatic parameter that refers to the appropriateness of the TT in its new communicative situation. The second and main part of the chapter (3.2) will be devoted to the second phase of the translation process, i.e. the operational phase of the actual production of the translation consisting in the reformulation of the ST into the TL. In this phase, the translator selects the strategies to solve in the TT the translation problems identified in the ST, taking into account the commissioner’s instructions concerning the intended use of the translation. ‘Strategies’ is a general term referring to the translator’s practical choices designed to solve translation problems and produce a translation that is both pragmatically equivalent to the ST and conforms to the professional norms of language use characterising the TT genre. Besides the general translation approach for the whole text which I have called ‘macrostrategy’, I distinguish the lower-level strategies that descend from such a guiding principle into the two main translation methods of ‘literal translation’ and ‘paraphrase’ (3.2.1), and also, with a top-down procedure, make a further distinction between textual strategies (3.2.2), syntactic strategies (3.2.3) and lexical strategies (3.2.4), with a separate subsection on the translation of metaphors (3.2.4.1). Although the emphasis of the chapter is not on research as such, but on the application of the insights of Translation Studies theory to the practical activity of translation, two strands of research will be employed that are usually kept separate, i.e. process- and product-oriented approaches to translation, which instead are going to be conceptualised as a methodological continuum. Empirical data coming from process-­ oriented research will be used to investigate the cognitive and psycholinguistic processes of the translator carrying out her task. Corpora-based data coming from product-oriented research, aimed at both identifying regularities in the translators’ choices in given genres/language pairs and making inferences regarding the decisions taken by the translator, will be used to investigate the strategies chosen by the translator in the TT.

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3.1 Preparing the Translation Activity The first preparatory phase of the translation process is called by Sager (1994: 168) the ‘specification phase’ because it serves the purpose of identifying the translation task and becoming familiar with both the document to be translated and the explicit (or implicit) specifications of the translation project that are contained in the translation brief. Based on the commissioner’s instructions, the translator makes a first general assessment of the text to be translated and pre-reads the ST (3.1.1). It is in this very first pre-translation phase that she identifies translation problems and starts to make hypotheses on how to solve them by searching and reading parallel and comparable documents that are appropriate to the task at hand, opening any online source she may need, underlining or even looking up unknown words and so on. In process-oriented research analysing keystroke logs, this first ‘pre-writing stage’ (Jääskeläinen 1999) before the actual production of a translation is considered as an ‘initial orientation phase’ and indicates, in very material terms, “the time delay between the appearance of the source text on the screen and the typing of the first text production key” (Jakobsen 2002: 192). At the end of this phase the translator should have a clear mental ‘map’ of the features of the ST and the text that she intends to create in the TL (Holmes 1988 [1972]: 96). She will have selected a ‘macrostrategy’ that will guide her in all the local choices at the lower levels of the text during the reformulation of the ST in order to achieve a TT which is pragmatically successful. Knowing how to develop such a macrostrategy and how to use it is of crucial importance for the translator, and in fact it has even been said to be the translator’s central competence from which all the others proceed (Hönig 1995: 51). The translation macrostrategy will be based on a number of linguistic and extralinguistic parameters that the translator has to define in this preparatory stage and take into account during reformulation. The list of these parameters can be very detailed, as in Nord’s (1992: 42) ‘compatibility test’, which counts as many as sixteen factors, eight extra-textual (situational) and eight intra-textual (semantic and syntactic). The factors are formulated as questions that the translator should answer respectively before (who?, what for?, to whom? how? with

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what function? etc.) and during (what?, what not?, in what order?, with what words? etc.) the first reading of the ST. In Gouadec’s (2002) comprehensive model of translation, the many parameters set for each specific translation task are called, by analogy to professional translation, ‘specifications’ that the translator should be provided with before beginning the translation project in order to solve beforehand all the translation problems she will encounter during the translation activity. Investing effort in the pre-translation phase should in fact minimise the risk of both slowing down the timetable for the performance of the translation task and/or reducing the quality level of the final product (cf. Pym 2010b). Taking into account the specifications provided by the client in the translation brief at the beginning of the commission ensures the situational appropriateness of the TT to its new context. These linguistic and extralinguistic specifications concerning the translation’s end-users and use are so important that the term ‘translation brief ’ has also been used as a metonym to refer to the entire first preparatory phase where the translator analyses the ST in light of the commissioner’s specifications (cf. Pritchard 2006: 284). The amount of information contained in the translation brief varies very much from case to case, although in real-life commissions it is all too often nothing like the 21 parameters for a translation project specification that Olohan (2016: 20–21) has adapted from the ISO/TS 11669:2012 standard “Translation Projects—General Guidance” (BSI 2012). In addition to the obvious specifications of the text/s to be translated (author, title, SL genre, number of words/characters, translation type, deadline for completing the translation and agreed payment terms), in a specialised-translation project the basic information the translator must find in the translation brief before starting her work are indications on the TT genre, which may be different from that of the ST and, related to this, on the intended purpose (use) and the addressees of the translation (including publication outlet). At best, it should also contain a set of guidelines concerning the TT’s register and physical appearance (cf. Sect. 2.1), including the degree of formality in addressing end-users (idioms, lexical choices, personal pronouns etc.), norms governing syntax (sentence structure, verb tenses etc.), lexis (terminology, compounds, loanwords, LSP collocations etc.), spelling (for example,

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American/British English or types of accents for languages requiring them), punctuation (capitalisation, hyphen/dash, parentheses etc.), abbreviations, numbers, and titles and headings. However, such a high degree of specification of the translation brief is only to be expected when the translation is commissioned in an institutional setting (public administration, health care, news agencies, publishing companies, NGOs etc.) or by large multinational companies (also from within the language industry), where translators also have to comply with the overall aims of the institution and intra-institutional procedures. In such contexts, the translation brief is typically in the form of a ‘style guide’ for technical writers, editors, translators and revisers as part of a more general institutional communication policy. These style guides can be helpful in guiding professionals in their daily decision-making, thereby increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of the writing/translating process (saving time and money) and, in the case of technical documentation, helping to improve its quality in terms of consistency, usability and readability. ‘Consistency’ refers here to the standardisation of style and terminology in all the different textual components of a product and in those of all the products released by the same organisation. A technical document’s consistency enhances both its ‘usability’, i.e. how well a text works for its context of use, and ‘readability’, i.e. how easy to read a text is in terms of its formal aspects (argumentation pattern, sentence and word length, word choice, proportion of complex words, active vs. passive voice etc.) (Olohan 2016: 52–53; Suojanen et al. 2015: 49ff.) (cf. Sect. 4.2.2). For the sake of simplicity, in this book the parameters to be defined by the translator in the pre-production phase of the translation will be reduced to the two more abstract (but also more manageable) parameters of intertextuality (3.1.2) and the intended use of the translation (3.1.3). Both parameters refer to the broader cognitive and contextual reality of a text and, more relevantly, to the specific communicative situation in which the translation activity takes place. With specific reference to specialised translation, the two parameters hinge on the expectations of the TT addressees in terms of both information contents—including the ST author’s communicative purpose and point of view—and the intertextual connections between texts that TT readers make. By mediating the

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connection between language and social context, such connections take the form of the conventionalised practices (genres, discourses) which are available to text producers and translators in particular social circumstances (cf. Fairclough 1992: 194–195).

3.1.1 Reading of the ST The translator’s first reading of the ST in the preparatory phase of the translation task is an in-depth reading to understand the text’s meaning potential and plan the activity ahead. Unlike general reading-for-­ comprehension and/or to find information, the translator reads the ST also to make a translation-relevant analysis of the ST in order to: (1) identify the features that should be reproduced in the TT (cognitive content, ST author’s communicative purpose and attitude to the ST topic, degree of formality, surface form etc.) and the translation problems linked to its reformulation in the TL, and (2) start planning the best way to solve these problems and adapt the future TT to its new communicative situation. As suggested by Newmark (1997: 87–88), the translator’s unique type of reading of the ST is motivated by the fact that “unlike most readers, she has to read and to account for, if not necessarily to translate, everything she can see and sometimes a great deal more”. Just like the translator’s subject-matter competence is not the same as that of the specialist (cf. Sect. 2.1), her first reading of the ST is therefore different from the reading strategies not only of experts of the ST specialised domain but also of ST readers having interests and aims more similar to the translator’s, such as terminologists and technical communicators. This is why it has been called ‘productive’ reading (Cortese 1996: 238) and, for its level of consciousness and intensity, has been compared to an ‘optical sweeping’ (Troiano et al. 2002: 61). The translator is therefore first of all a ‘privileged reader’ (Hatim and Mason 1990: 224) whose reading, as Macizo and Bajo’s (2006) empirical study has shown, uses up more working memory resources than reading for comprehension and/or repetition. Such resources can be assimilated to Pym’s (2010b: 4) ‘translatorial effort’ being exerted by translators when solving problems, which “will vary according to the problems identified and the strategies selected

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and should ideally correlate with the degree of risk involved (“a low-effort solution to a high-risk problem is more advantageous than a high-effort solution to a low-risk problem”). Besides the quantity of memory resources involved, a number of empirical studies have confirmed the difference of translators’ reading modalities as compared to those by other readers of the same text. In a comparison between the translation process of foreign-language learners with that of professional translators, Barbosa and Neiva (2003: 150) found not only that “FL learners […] neglected to read the text beforehand” but also that “unlike the professionals, they neither made predictions nor examined para-textual material”. Likewise, in Orlando’s (2016) study investigating specialised translation competence in law graduates vs. translation graduates translating the same legal text, one of the reasons why translation graduates appeared to produce more acceptable translations was because law graduates overall did not even look at the ST—not even to assess its length—before embarking on its translation. These results are also in line with the conclusion of Englund Dimitrova’s (2005: 231) study that the translation-relevant analysis of both the ST and the purpose of the translation that was carried out by professionals in the initial planning stage of the translation task proved to be a feature of translation expertise. Moreover, there is a correlation between the level of translation competence of the translator and her processing capacity as a reader, as translators learn to develop a higher level of understanding of the ST and to do so in less time than novice translators (Shreve et  al. 1993; Danks and Griffin 1997). Researchers have in fact shown that, with expert translators, the first reading of the ST requires the least amount of time and can even be nearly non-existent, as the ST reading/ comprehension stage may be simultaneous with TT production (Jakobsen 2002; PACTE 2005). Looking in more detail at the nature of the translator’s reading, the various comprehension strategies activated to analyse both the ST and the whole nature of the translation commission are called ‘inferencing strategies’ by Chesterman (2016: 89). Inferencing strategies come before ‘production strategies’, which are the result of comprehension strategies and will be activated during the reformulation phase. Hence, the translator reads in order to produce, decodes in order to re-encode, and her

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reading of individual segments of text is detailed and global at the same time because it is always directed to the reconstruction of the entire ‘Gestalt’ of the text (Hatim and Mason 1990: 224, 226). It is global, because it is aimed at defining the purpose, text type/genre and main structuring of the ST. It is also detailed and ‘intensive’ because it is aimed at identifying and defining each ST problem, formulating the appropriate problem-solving strategy and finding the information required for applying that strategy in the reformulation phase. Taking two of the four basic translation/interpreting models for processing information listed by Robinson (2003: 68–70), the translator’s reading of the ST should then be at the same time ‘sequential-detailed/linear’ and ‘contextual-global’. In the first processing model, the translator processes information analytically, logically and sequentially, proceeding through the task one step at a time. On the other hand, in the contextual-global processing model, the translator processes information intuitively and inferentially, and reading is aimed at building both a general sense of the whole translation task and “a general overall ‘fit’ or target-cultural appropriateness”, postponing to a later stage the filling in of the details. As a general rule of thumb, however, the more highly complex the ST is, thus requiring a high level of competence in the specialised domain it is written, the more sequential-­ detailed/linear the TT-oriented first reading. The contextual-global model should then be left to the texts with a lower level of specialisation, such as popular science and specialised promotional material.

3.1.2 Intertextuality The translator should be able to recognise the functions and characteristics of conventional text types/genres in the SL and, also based on the translation brief, select the appropriate text model in the TL (which can be different from the ST genre/text type) and the appropriate translation strategies to ensure the acceptability of the TT to its intended addressees. As Halliday (1992: 20) notes, “we would not translate a personal diary as if it were a scientific article”. Indeed, a major difficulty for the sci-tech translator to achieve pragmatic equivalence is in terms of “text-normative equivalence”, i.e. the ability to recognise and use the standardised

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conventions that govern LSP genres at all levels of textualisation. To do this, a useful starting point in the translation activity is categorising texts in types/genres to identify the aspects of the translation to be privileged more than others and also, at a lower level, define translation problems and justify specific strategies to solve them (Baker 2011: 123; Hatim and Munday 2004: 351). Categorising texts according to their subject matter (formal typologies) is indeed a first port of call for professional translators because the borders between different categories are usually sufficiently clear, given their highly standardised nature, especially regarding terminology. This is why specialised domains are commonly used to define both the texts to be translated (medical, economic, legal etc. texts) and the translators’ own professional specialisations (legal, medical etc. translators). Formal taxonomies can also be used pedagogically to distinguish between the characteristics of different text sub-types within the same specialised domain (for example, within legal texts, legislative, judicial and doctrinal texts; contracts etc.) (Guével 2007: 86–88). They are also used to underline the importance of different domains in the documents produced within an international organisation such as the European Union (Cosmai 2007: 94). For example, according to a formal text categorisation of the documents to be translated to be found in the institutional “DGT Translation Quality Guidelines” and based on both the documents’ purpose and the quality-related risks involved in their translation, legal documents are in first position followed, in the order, by policy and administrative documents, information for the public, and input for EU legislation, policy formulation and administration (Strandvik 2018: 58–59). By contrast, functional typologies specifically aimed at translators are based on the pragmatic variables of the communicative function and translation purpose of the text and identify basic text types that are correlated with the criteria that should govern the translation process (e.g. Reiss 1983; Newmark 1981, 1988; Snell-Hornby 1988). Unlike Göpferich’s (1995a) and Krüger’s (2015: 66–76) pragmatic classifications of scientific and technical texts described earlier (cf. Sect. 1.2.3), functional typologies have a more or less explicit prescriptive element in that they all aim to provide easy-to-memorise guidelines of a procedural nature on the translation approach to be chosen by the translator.

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A translation-oriented text typology which is specifically thought for LSP texts is Christopher Taylor’s (2006). His point of departure is that, independently of the specific specialised domain, the language used by LSP writers has a varying degree of creativity, where a text’s linguistic creativity is defined in relation to the frequency of culture-specific terms and standardised rhetorical and linguistic patterns in the text. The basic criterion of the text typology is the degree of creativity required in turn by the translator of a text, i.e. the extent to which a translator is asked to produce a ‘new text’ rather than re-produce the ST, a parameter which has some similarities to the ‘interpretative constraint’ imposed on the reader when decoding the message on which Sabatini’s (1999) text typology is based (cf. Sect. 1.2.3). In Taylor’s typology STs are placed on a cline of four macrotypes based on three parameters: (1) the text’s degree of linguistic creativity, (2) the specific specialised text form which, if needed, can be further specified through translation subcategories based on content (for example, political treatises, judgments etc.), and (3) the specific norms and conventions that govern the addressees’ expectations about the rhetorical and linguistic patterns in the text. The two extremes of the cline are, on the one hand, scientific works of literary merit (Charles Darwin, John Maynard Keynes, Stephen Hawking etc.), characterised by a highly creative language with frequent culture-based references and a low level of intertextual influence, and, on the other, technical manuals and instructional texts aimed at helping users to install or operate technical products. In the latter, no creativity is required on the part of the translator because they are characterised by a highly conventionalised language, which can even be a ‘controlled’ language (CL), i.e. a natural language having stricter rules than general language to make the text more easily comprehensible, readable, intelligible and translatable (cf. O’Brien 2019: 66). Each ST macrotype is then correlated to a translation approach, described in terms of the type of linguistic ‘intervention’ by the translator and also of the possible role played by translation technologies. Four basic translation approaches are envisaged by Taylor: ‘foreignising’, which is the typical approach of literary translation (cf. Sect. 1.5), where readers are deliberately confronted with a TT in which the cultural differences between SL and TL have been left intact; ‘partially localising’, where the

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ST content is, where necessary, adapted to the cultural needs of the TT addressees and translation tools can be used judiciously; ‘heavily localising’, where the use of translation tools is justified because large stretches of the ST can be translated according to pre-established translation norms; and ‘standardising’, which represents the extreme pole of the localising approach because the highly standardised lexical and syntactic structures of the ST are translated using translation memories and other tools. Along the cline of the four text macrotypes—which, as Taylor indicates, in more complex LSP texts can all co-occur in different sections of the same text—the use of translation technologies then becomes, predictably, increasingly necessary as one moves away from the highly creative macrotype and draws closer to the macrotype where no creative skills are required on the part of neither the ST writer nor the translator. Despite being less complex than other general (non-LSP-specific) categorisations (e.g. Newmark 1981, 1988 and Snell-Hornby 1988), Taylor’s text typology has the advantage of being both specifically aimed at LSP texts and more recent, which makes it more suitable to today’s professional world of translation, where translation technologies are an essential part of daily working practice.

3.1.2.1  Text Models in the TL The translator’s intertextual competence involves her capacity not only to assign the ST to conventional text types/genres in the SL to identify the aspects of the translation to be privileged more than others, but also the ability to select an appropriate ‘text model’ in the TL, i.e. the rhetorical and linguistic patterns characterising the pre-existent (comparable) TL genre that meets the specifications of the translation brief. It is this double competence that enables the translator to select and apply the translation norms and conventions that make a ‘legitimate’ translation, i.e. recognised as such within a specific discourse community (Hermans 1997: 10), and determines her ‘loyalty’ towards both the cognitive content of the ST and the discourse community the translation is addressed to (Nord 1997: 125–127). Indeed, a TL text model is immediately

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recognisable to target readers and produces very specific expectations concerning the way they are addressed and who addresses them (cf. Sager 1996: 46; Chesterman 2016: 62). In other words, a specialised translation must ‘talk the language’ of its intended addressees and resemble the texts produced by the same specialised discourse in the TL: to be adequate, translations should then “appear as natural as if they had been the product of the target community in the first place” (Neubert 2010: 320) (cf. Sect. 2.4.1). Text models in the TL can be in the form of one or more documents that are similar to the ST as to genre and topic and are either written directly in the TL (native comparable texts) or documents translated from other languages. Indeed, when LSP documents are the product of societies displaying similar social and economic structures and comparable industrial developments—as in the case of Western societies—normally also LSP genres are shared. As a rule of thumb, the more closely defined is the ST communicative function (for example, a food recipe, a public road sign), the more effectively can comparable native texts represent the ‘model translation’, i.e. can be used as aids in creating a natural and idiomatic translation (Snell-Hornby 1988: 86). However, using comparable texts is certainly more time-consuming than looking for ready-made correspondences in previous translations on the same topic. This is indirectly confirmed by Sager’s (1998: 80–81) claim that specialised translators “usually model their work on previous translations and, [only] where these are not available, they rely on original target language texts with the same function”, whilst doing it the other way round would guarantee a closer correspondence of the translation to the required rhetorical conventions in the TL. It can however happen that in the target culture there is no suitable genre that the translator can follow as a model, in which case the translator has to create a new text model in the TL, which Sager calls “translation-­ specific document type” (1998: 74), to be used only for the purpose of translation. With time, however, this new document type may become incorporated into the target culture and provide not only a suitable model for future translations but also a suitable document type for future native documents, as in the case of software instructions manuals, a genre which in many languages was originally a translation-specific document type

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resulting from translations from American English. On the other hand, some such document types may well maintain their status of translated documents and never be incorporated in the target culture, as in the case of subtitles in films and gist translations commissioned only to give an idea of the content of a document (a business letter, a research article etc.).

3.1.3 Intended Use of the Translation Because of the practical and service nature of sci-tech texts, not only the translator’s interpretation of the ST but also the decisions she will make in the TT will be influenced by the use to which the text will be put in the target culture. Indeed, from the point of view of the translator’s textual choices and compared to intertextual parameters, the pragmatic parameter of use is the one which is most closely related to the translator’s degree of both ‘freedom’ in her interpretation of the ST and ‘deviation’ from the ST in the translation. In specialised translation, the “Never translate blind” principle (Chesterman and Wagner 2002: 44), in reference to the importance of the translation brief, is consequently particularly important, especially for genres with a closely defined communicative function such as instructions for use, where the communicative purpose of the TT is at the centre of the translation process and governs all translator’s choices (Byrne 2007). In ‘prototype’ specialised translation, there is a coincidence between the use of the ST and that of the TP. This implies that there is a coincidence of: (1) the specialised level and expectations of ST and TT readers, (2) the communicative purpose of the ST author, the translation initiator and the translator, and (3) the communicative function of the ST and that of the TT in its new communicative situation. However, when the use to which TT receivers will put the translation is different from that of ST receivers, during the translation activity the ST may undergo structural changes, which may even be substantial. Different user expectations can in fact impact on the completeness of TT content, yielding a translation that can be categorised as full, selective or reduced (Sager 1994: 177–178). In a ‘full’ translation all the ST content is transferred in the TT following the norms and conventions which apply in the specific

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situation. Instead, the users may need a ‘selective’ translation when they only require the partial information contained in one or more portions of the ST. A ‘reduced’ translation may be: (1) ‘synoptic’ (conveying ST content in the form of an abstract), when users want to know in general the content of the ST, or a ‘keyword’ translation (i.e. the extraction of keywords from the ST and their translation in the TL), when they simply want to know if the text contains any information which may be useful to them; (2) ‘diagrammatic’, if TT users want all the factual information in the ST but do not need the way it is presented, which includes also the possible variation of the code and/or physical medium of communication; or (3) ‘gist’, e.g. the oral translation of a written ST or the translation of a ST written to be read into a TT to be delivered orally. Completeness of information is also one of the three parameters based on users’ expectations in Gouadec’s (2002: 11ff.) exhaustive classification of translation quality, the other two being mode of presentation and degree of finish. Each of the three parameters defines different translation types (signaletique, synoptique, selective, integrale), modes (déchiffrée, à priorité documentaire, absolue) and degrees of finished product (brute, livrable, diffusable, révisable) (cf. also Sect. 4.3). An area of specialised translation which is specifically associated with a variation of the physical medium of communication in order to meet the commissioner’s needs in terms of  TT use is the translation of audio-­ medial texts (Snell-Hornby 1997: 283–286), written to be read in public and therefore heard by their audience. For example, the English translation of a paper written originally in German to be delivered at a conference where the official language is English. The translation task will then include the adaptation of typical traits of German academic discourse (both written and spoken)—such as a high frequency of abstract terms and complex syntactic structures—to the greater conciseness, simplicity and precision of English academic discourse, both written and, even more, spoken. Based on the two parameters of completeness of TT content and use of the TT, translated documents can be assigned to three different types, each of which can be related to the translation strategies chosen by the translator to meet the client’s indications and/or target user’s needs in

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the most cost-effective way (Sager 1994: 179–183, 1996: 50–51, 1998: 77–78): 1. ‘Dependent’ documents are ‘complete’ or ‘absolute’ translations, where no changes of communicative purpose were required and all the information of the ST was transferred in the TT in a text model that either matches (i.e. is situationally appropriate to) in the TL the genre of the ST or is a new genre in the TL (i.e. a translation-specific document). However, also in dependent translations there can be a certain amount of deviation from the structure and expression of the ST to make the translation more appropriate to the needs of the TT addressees. 2. ‘Derived’ documents are functional types of translation where purpose and content have been modified following a variation of use of the TT as compared to that of the ST, resulting in a change of genre (for example, abstracts and summaries or the translation of an academic scientific research article to be published in a popular-science journal). This translation type includes ‘selective’ and ‘reduced’ translations. 3. ‘Autonomous’ documents, where the ST purpose is to serve only as a ‘draft’ for the TT: for example, the redrafting of promotional material to adapt it to a different cultural context.

3.2 Production of the TT: Translation Strategies The second phase of the translation process is operational and consists of the actual production of the translation by reformulating the ST into the TL, an activity that has been called ‘conditioned writing’ (Sager 1994: 236) because it involves a production of the TT that is more or less restricted by both the ST and the decisions taken in the first phase of the translation activity. In process-oriented research analysing keystroke logs, this phase is called the ‘drafting phase’ by Jakobsen (2002) and runs from the translator’s first keystroke to the first typing of the full stop at the end

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of the TT. The term ‘drafting’ describes this phase more accurately than either ‘writing stage’ (Jääskeläinen 1999) or ‘text generation’ (Englund Dimitrova 2005), because the translator does not only write or generate the TT but also carries out other activities such as reading, processing and revising. This phase calls upon the cross-language productive skills of the translator, who takes up all the translation problems and applies to the text the appropriate problem-solving strategies in the light of the general macrostrategy which she has identified at the end of the preparatory stage. Indeed, compared to novices, professional translators are able to solve translation problems more efficiently through being aware of both the specific function that a problematic text segment fulfils in the text as a whole and the global function of the TT (cf. Göpferich et  al. 2011: 65–66, 69–70). The production phase can be a long and laborious process: a first sub-­ phase for drafting a TT segment can be followed by a second and even a third, depending on the professional expertise of the translator and the time allowed by the deadline. To illustrate the time and work required for reformulation, a typical example is Newmark’s (1988: 12) iceberg metaphor, where the final translation product is only what is visible on the page, i.e. the tip of the iceberg, whilst the work that the translator had to do to achieve that result is the proper iceberg, which can be ten times as much. Indeed, as any other form of written communication, translating requires a processing effort that, if not made by the translator, is automatically passed on to the final reader, who will have to read the same TT segment more than once in order to interpret its sense. A further consideration, however, apparently points in the opposite direction: following Jiří Levý’s (1967: 1179) ‘minimax strategy’, in order to attain maximum communicative effectiveness professional translators must carry out their translation task by exerting minimal processing effort. This principle underlies in fact both Englund Dimitrova’s (2005: 231) finding that expert translators divide their writing process into fewer and longer TT segments than less expert ones, and Sager’s (1994: 229) observation that expert translators have ready stores of matching expressions which they have built up over time in parallel with their increasing familiarity with the specialised subject. The ‘translatorial effort’ in this phase should also be commensurate with the level of ‘risk’ of the segment to be translated,

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according to Pym’s (2010b: 4) general maxim: “When translating, work hard on the high-risk elements, and do not work too hard on the low-risk elements”. In empirical studies on the process of translation, pauses have been investigated in the production phase either by using think-aloud protocols (e.g. Krings 1986b) or keystroke logging (e.g. Jakobsen 1998), where a pause has been interpreted as “an observable interruption in the natural flow of translation” generally due to a ‘problem nexus’ in the translation, i.e. “the confluence of a given textual property and level […] intersecting with some sort of deficit in the translator’s cognitive resources” (Angelone 2010: 18). Such a definition of a pause implying some cognitive effort by the translator is consistent with both the researchers’ supposition that the slower and more uneven the production of a translation, the more problematic the ST segment (cf. Dragsted 2005: 50), and the finding in a study by Alves (2006: 6) that the ‘cognitive rhythm’ of novice translators is ‘erratic’. Such interruptions, however, do not necessarily signpost moments when conscious problem-solving and/or decision-making takes place in connection to problematic segments of the text to be translated. Indeed, they could also be motivated by the translator simply reading the ST or mentally formulating the TT or they could even be moments of complete mental inactivity, during which the translator is doing something completely unrelated to the translation activity. Establishing a minimum pause length to factor in all these possibilities has proven to be very difficult, and no standard pause cut-off value has been established in research, where the range of a significant pause—i.e. one devoted to planning, formulating and editing the translated segment, as well as solving a problem—is between 1 and 5 or even 10 seconds, a variation that makes it rather difficult to compare results across different studies. Whilst the first pre-translation phase is contingent upon the translator’s ability to identify problems, evaluate their nature and extent, and formulate hypotheses for their solution, the second phase of the reformulation of the ST into the TT is hinged on the translator’s productive competence, i.e. her ability to materially solve translation problems by applying the different translation strategies at her disposal and selecting among the different alternatives available in the TL the most appropriate in the light of her previously chosen macrostrategy. If, as already noted

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(cf. Sect. 1.2.2), technical scientific knowledge creates “a universe of things” (Halliday 1998: 228) which is reflected in the discourse used to talk about it, this same ‘thingness’ (Halliday 1993) should characterise both the general approach to translating an LSP text and the resulting translation product. More specifically, a ‘thing-bound’ translation approach should be such also in the sense meant by Newmark (1988: 156–157, 160), who coined the expression specifically for technical (i.e. informative) translation, which deals with “the writing that is closest to material reality, furthest from the psyche!” and “‘it’ rather than ‘I’ or ‘you’” (Newmark 1983: 160). Such an approach should rephrase the poorly written language often characterising LSP texts when they are written not by professional technical communicators but by specialists and technicians, thus producing a translation that is better than the original. The translator should in fact help the ST writer to get his message or information across without distortion (Newmark 1983: 161) and provide the end-reader with what Pym (2008: 323) calls an “added cognitive assistance (i.e. easier texts)”. With the above general considerations in mind, when dealing with the operational phase of translation production in the professional context, two further preliminary observations should be made. The first refers to the already mentioned (cf. Sect. 1.5) social/cultural differences across languages of conceptualisations and argumentative patterns in LSP discourse, which have in fact only a very limited impact on everyday professional practice. Indeed, the sci-tech translator’s mediating activity is normally required for the rhetorical and pragmatic differences between ST and TT only at the lower structural levels of the text (textuality, syntax and lexis) and not those above the paragraph (cf. 3.2.2). This constraint on the translator’s intervention is due to two sets of factors. On the one hand are factors characterising specialised translation as a category, i.e. the cross-language near-commensurability of the conceptual systems and homologating influence of Anglo-American models on the writing norms in science and technology, the greater rigidity of LSP genres and the higher frequency of new LSP genres introduced via translation. On the other, there are the professional status of the translator and the nature of the translation market, i.e. a lack of clarity of the exact role of the translator, a limited contact with the commissioner, the widespread

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use of translation technologies, very short delivery times of the finished product and exceedingly low tariffs. A second observation concerns the three phases into which the translation activity has been divided in this volume, which to a great extent are arbitrary and motivated by pedagogical needs. In daily working practice, planning, text generation and revision are in fact distributed unevenly during the translation task and it has as yet proved impossible to establish empirically where there is a translation procedure working better than others. For example, professional translators were found to have different cognitive styles of production, some focusing on providing a finished product, one text segment at a time, others postponing terminology research to a revision stage, and still others shifting between producing text and researching terms (Asadi and Séguinot 2005: 539). In another empirical study (Englund Dimitrova 2005: 230–231), however, professional translators not only performed the translation task in less time than novices and made fewer revisions, but they also made them almost exclusively whilst producing the first TT version, thus merging the text generation and revision phases into one. In the same study, the researcher also found that the time allocated to the different phases of the process followed no single pattern and could therefore be assumed to be influenced by the translators’ personal preferences and by factors such as the length of the text, the nature of the task (routine or non-routine) and time pressure. Providing an exhaustive list of all the possible strategies for dealing with the potential translation problems an LSP translator may encounter is beyond the scope of this volume and probably would be of limited use. Such a list would in fact reduce the translator’s productive competence in the TT to a list of automated reformulation routines that have nothing to do with daily working practice where, instead, identifying and solving translation problems depend on countless factors that are independent but at the same time mutually influence each other and impinge on the translator in unique ways in each given translation situation (Kiraly 2000: 27). Yet, in a volume such as this, aimed mainly at students of specialised translation, a list of “well-tried, standard types of solution to a lack of fit between goal and means” (Chesterman 2000: 82), which the translator must learn to access at will, is certainly considered a useful tool to develop

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the student’s productive competence and also her capacity of retrospective reflection on the choices made in the TT. Moreover, all the translation strategies described in the next (very long) section are exclusively those that are suitable for addressing translation problems in specialised translation, by taking into account both the mainly informative nature of the ST and the specialised requirements of the TT audience. In what follows, translation strategies have been organised with a top-­ down procedure from the higher levels of text and discourse (thematic and information structure, connectives etc.) to the lower ones of syntax (sentence, phrase and group, verb voice, modality etc.) and lexis (loanwords, calques etc.). Within lexical strategies, a separate subsection has been devoted to the strategic decisions to be taken to translate metaphors. Like the attribution of the main language features of LSPs to discrete categories in Chap. 1, all the labels for translation strategies have been likewise adopted somewhat arbitrarily and only for the sake of convenience. In fact, as will become clear in the course of the analysis, all strategies are inextricably interrelated and between them there is also a certain degree of overlap. The examples to illustrate a variety of strategies will refer mainly to the English-Italian and English-French pairs, which are largely representative of the broader English-Romance languages pairs. The term ‘strategies’ indicates planned and goal-oriented ways which are governed by rules, the so-called ‘professional norms’ (cf. Sect. 2.2), to solve translation problems that may emerge during the translation process in order to arrive at what a translator regards as the optimal translation within the parameters set by the translation brief (cf. Krings 1986a: 268; Chesterman 2000, 2016: 86–87). In the case of LSP translation, an optimal translation achieves pragmatic equivalence between ST and TT and conforms to the stringent norms of language use characterising the TT genre. Here, I will use the term ‘strategies’ as a blanket term to include: 1. the overall strategy I have called ‘macrostrategy’, which is selected by the translator in the pre-translation phase and serves as an orientation for the translation of the whole text (cf. ‘global strategy’ in Gambier 2010: 416);

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2. the two translation ‘methods’ of literal translation and paraphrase, which are the two basic approaches a translator may take, yielding two different types of textual relationship between the ST and its translation; 3. within paraphrase, the translation ‘techniques’ or ‘procedures’, to be applied to the ways specific translation problems within textual units can be solved, which can also be called ‘solution-types’ to emphasise what is reached as a result of applying a strategy (cf. Zabalbeascoa 2000: 121). All the strategies I will be referring to are ‘productive’ strategies, i.e. practical concepts that “have to do with how the translator manipulates the linguistic material in order to produce an appropriate target text” (Chesterman 2016: 89). Productive strategies should in fact be distinguished from other types of strategies, such as the ‘inferencing’ and ‘use of books’ strategies (Krings 1986a: 270), which were activated by the translator during the preliminary reading phase. The selection of an overall macrostrategy for translating a text at the end of the first reading of the ST is influenced by the parameters of intertextuality and intended use of the translation (translation brief ), and will guide the translator in all her choices at all levels of the text. Though the correlation between text, situation and strategies is best represented dynamically on a spectrum, the global macrostrategy selected by the translator at the end of the first reading of the ST basically determines whether the translation is going to be target-oriented or source-oriented. Attractive as it is, this binary choice is of course a huge simplification: although in LSP translation the most appropriate macrostrategy is normally a target-oriented approach, within the same text some parts may in fact need to be translated by focusing more on the ST author’s intention than on the needs of the TT reader. Indeed, this mix has been duly recognised by all the theorists who have employed a simple dichotomy for the overall orientation strategy of the translator’s choices in a text. For example, whilst suggesting that a ‘communicative’ translation is more appropriate for informative texts, Newmark (1981: 46) also usefully specifies that, within the same LSP text, some sections (e.g. definitions, explanations etc.) may have to be translated ‘semantically’.

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Alternative binary modes besides the two poles of a target- and source-­ oriented approach have been proposed by both House (1977, 1997) and Nord (1991a, 1997), whose respective “overt vs. covert” (cf. Sect. 2.4.1) and “documentary vs. instrumental” distinctions both hinge on whether the TT readers are actually aware that they are interacting with a translation (overt/documentary) or not (covert/instrumental). With particular reference to LSP translation, the concept that an ideal specialised translation should be one which is not recognised as a translation can be traced as far back as the 1960s (Jumpelt 1961: 171 and Finch 1969: 5, both quoted by Olohan 2011: 247). However, whilst it is certainly the case that a successful translated LSP text should ideally read as though it were a text written directly in the TT readers’ own language, in practice in most LSP translations a truly covert/instrumental translation seems to be a difficult target to achieve today, and more often than not also an irrelevant one (cf. Sager 1998: 79). This is mainly for two reasons, both related to the international dimension of science and technology. The first is that, in the great majority of cases, the reader of a translated sci-­ tech text is aware that it is a translation, if only because, in languages which are not English, most LSP communication nowadays is mediated by means of translation. The second is that the use of technologies in all subdomains of LSP translation, and particularly in localisation, is pushing towards the acceptability, and even the appropriateness, of a translated language which, notwithstanding (or, possibly, by the very fact of ) sounding ‘unnatural’, adheres to the conventions of the specialised text model in the TL.  Not to mention the fact that, to achieve pragmatic equivalence, the translation approach is not necessarily the same across specialised disciplines. Indeed, for some specialised texts such as legal documents and patents, covertness is not a desirable feature at all and the most appropriate approach is ‘documentary’ (a translation that is perceived by its reader as such, i.e. a metatext documenting the ST), given that only one language version, usually the original, is considered to be authentic. On the other hand, in the vast majority of sci-tech translations the typical approach is ‘instrumental’ (a translation that is perceived by its reader as an autonomous text fulfilling a communicative function in the TL as if it were a SL/non-translated text).

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With the above consideration in mind, it seems reasonable to suggest that thinking in binary terms of a general translation approach for the whole text (macrostrategy) as a guiding principle from which a whole set of lower-level strategies descend to help the translator in her activity is still a useful concept for translation students, possibly because, as suggested by Pym (2010a: 34), such a dichotomy may be “deeply anchored in Western thought” despite (or maybe because of ) “[t]he practical problems of translating […] are rarely quite so simple”.

3.2.1 Literal Translation vs. Paraphrase Once the overall macrostrategy of a target- or source-oriented approach has been chosen, the translator starts the task of translating by applying to different segments of the text either of two basic translation methods: literal translation and paraphrase (or ‘oblique translation’) (Vinay and Darbelnet 1958). In literal translation the translator’s starting point is the exact ST wording, whilst in paraphrase it is the ST content, which she dissociates from its linguistic form. Both methods can be used to produce a first version that will, if necessary, be reformulated later into a more acceptable TT. Each method has its disadvantages: literal translation is much more conducive to errors of interference of the SL on the TT (‘translationese’), whilst paraphrase is not so easy to apply in the case of texts having a high level of specialisation and high lexical density. Both methods are used prospectively in the pre-translation and production phases (translation as a process) and can also be used retrospectively in the evaluation phase to assess the linguistic interdependence between ST and TT (translation as a product). Literal translation is a fundamental translation method that conveys in the TL the sense of the ST in the most direct way by keeping the same basic constituents of the ST and adapting its syntactic and lexical structures to the lexicogrammatical and stylistic norms of the TL. The requirement that meaning should be “maximally close to the SL form, but nevertheless grammatical” (Chesterman 2016: 91–92) implies that, as defined here, literal translation includes changes in word order (cf. Pym 2016: 211) and is not limited to word-for-word translation, an approach

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that is, in fact, only its extreme version. As defined here, in literal translation the conceptual and functional correspondence between ST and TT can be established at the level of individual words and phrases (opportunistic infection / French1 infection opportuniste; digital envelope / French enveloppe numérique) and also individual sentences (Computer-generated holograms provide a startingly realistic 3-D vision / Les hologrammes généres par ordinateur donnent une image 3D très réaliste). Ultimately, by producing a structurally and semantically close translation of the ST, the translator can attain a maximally effective result in the most efficient way by producing successful TT solutions rapidly and with the minimal processing effort (cf. ‘minimax strategy’ in Sect. 3.2). Indeed, literal translation is by far the most frequent method in all translation types (cf. Garzone 2004), especially for well-written STs and the ‘low-risk’ sections of a ST.  In any case, it is the first option available for the translator (cf. Tirkkonen-Condit 2004: 183, 2005; Klaudy and Karoly 2000: 152) because it is cognitively less demanding:2 “literal translation is correct and must not be avoided, if it secures referential and pragmatic equivalence to the original” (Newmark 1988: 68–69). Indeed, as a general rule, the more technical or specialised the text, the more literal its translation (cf. Troiano et al. 2002: 118, 183). In professional specialised translation, a literal translation can remain virtual in the translator’s mind or even be written down as an intermediate step to the final version. Such a strategic use in the translation process makes literal translation function as a bridge between ST and TT to disambiguate a text segment which is linguistically and/or cognitively complex. Being able to handle literal translations as a strategy to minimise cognitive effort was found by Englund Dimitrova (2005: 31–32) to be an important aspect of professional competence. Nevertheless, in a pedagogical context, a relationship can be established between literal translation and the level of expertise of translators. In particular, there are two contrasting tendencies. In the first, novice translators feel the need to detach themselves at all costs from the exact ST wording, thereby unconsciously obeying to what Hatim and Mason (1997: 32) call a ‘universal rhetorical convention’, i.e. the maxim to “opt for lexical variation unless there is a good reason for doing otherwise”, with the ‘foreign word maxim’ representing a variation (‘when in doubt use a ‘proper’ target-language word rather than a similar-sounding loan

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word’) of such a convention. Both are the result in the decision-making stage of an excessive “fear of interferences” which is typical of the mental make-up of novice translators (Kussmaul 1995: 17–19). In applying them, translators run the risk of introducing an error which would have been avoidable if only they had not been afraid of being too ‘faithful’ to the ST. For example, in the English-Italian translation pair, translating the term progression in the phrase progression of HIV-1 infection as evoluzione instead of the appropriate choice progressione just to avoid lexical interference. In the second tendency, novices opt for the most extreme form of literal translation, i.e. word-for-word translation, as a risk-avoidance strategy for their fear of making a mistake when dealing with a particularly demanding unit of the ST or for a general lack of confidence concerning their translation competence. In such cases, by clinging only to the immediate context of the problematic ST unit and completely forgetting the text as a whole, they unconsciously obey the so-called ‘literalism maxim’ (‘avoid translations that move too far away from the source text’) (Krings 1986a: 273, b: 429–434, quoted by Fawcett 1997: 140–141). This tendency of novice translators has been confirmed also in a study by Danks and Griffin (1997) on the cognitive processes engaged by translators, with more expert translators favouring instead meaning-to-meaning translation at a higher level of processing. When a literal translation is made with little attempt to adapt the ST to the norms of the TL and by imposing instead the SL categories upon the TT, there is a ‘calquing’ process of introducing SL patterns into the TL (Bennett 2011: 197–198), which in specialised translation is generally more acceptable to intended end-users than in other types of translation. As already mentioned (cf. Sects. 1.3 and 2.4), calques and borrowings from English are often introduced in the LSP discourse of European special languages by specialists themselves, rather than translators. Nevertheless, a number of specific texts are indeed the result of a translation process by professional translators placing equal importance on the linguistic and stylistic norms of both SL and TL. These are the so-called ‘hybrid texts’ (Schäffner and Adab 1997), fully accepted in their target cultures despite displaying linguistic features which seem ‘strange’ or ‘out of place’ compared to the norms and conventions of the TL, and despite

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such features not being the result of lack of translational competence. A typical example is provided by the documents belonging to the multilingual genre ‘international treaty’, which have been created by a discourse community in an artificially sovracultural situation. Other ‘translation principles’ guiding novice translators, which in fact should not be followed and can be subsumed under a more general ‘playing-­it-safe’ decision-making strategy, are the following three false imperatives: ‘if all competing potential equivalents turn out to be equally in/appropriate, take the most literal/shortest one’; ‘a given SL unit should always be translated by the same TL word(s)’; and the closely related ‘avoid translating two different SL units with only one item in the TT’ (‘variety maxim’). Paraphrase is a translation method that is used in all cases when literal translation proves to be inadequate to solve a problem related to the translation of a specific ST segment which cannot thus be translated on the basis of an accepted one-to-one correspondence due to the SL and TL contrasting lexical, morphosyntactic or stylistic norms. The translator must then depart from the ST structure, and choose between different reformulation options, i.e. different types of ‘paraphrase’ of the ST. Each option is more or less appropriate depending on the specific macrostrategy governing the translation process that has been chosen in the pre-­ translation phase based on the specific circumstances of the translation activity. All the strategies falling within the very broad translation method of paraphrase imply a ‘rewriting’, i.e. a ‘reworking’ of the ST wording in order to translate its semantic potential in a TL form that is unmarked and meets the expectations of the end-users (cf. Newmark 1988: 159). The translator’s freedom of modifying a text to improve it for its intended readers lies in the fact that specialised translation can be considered as a particular type of text modification activity obeying the so-­ called ‘mediator principle’: Any modification of a text is carried out in the perceived interest of an improvement of the text as part of a specific message. It involves making texts more effective for and in a particular communicative situation. (Sager 1994: 113)3

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Crucially, however, in translation as a professional activity there is often a difficult compromise to be faced between the translator’s freedom to improve the wording of the original and the constraints deriving from the deontological guidelines for translators, which formally limit the possibility to make cuts and changes to the ST in the TT in name of the ethical principle of ‘truth’ (cf. Sect. 2.4.1), unless this has been agreed beforehand with the commissioner in light of the needs of the final users. Another important consideration is that reformulating is always more cognitively demanding (and time-consuming), and involves more exposure to risk, than translating literally, which is why professionals select non-literal translation procedures only when strictly necessary. As in the case of literal translation, also paraphrase is a fundamental translation method that can be used to produce a final version or to draft only a provisional one that can help the translator to interpret the sense of a particularly complex ST segment. To speed up the translation process, a number of non-literal translations which are accepted solutions between a given language pair should be automatised and internalised by the translator (Englund Dimitrova 2005: 233). These solutions are the so-called ‘elementary’ procedures (cf. Wilss 1995: 299) that the expert translator has learnt to process as largely unconscious translation routines in order to have more time left to solve the non-routine translation problems (cf. also Gambier 2010: 417). The ability to switch between a more routinised and automatised mode of translation behaviour and a flexible and cognitively demanding problem-solving mode can be considered to be an important aspect of the translator’s strategic competence (Göpferich et al. 2011: 73). In their empirical study of translation competence acquisition, Göpferich and colleagues found that professional translators used much more frequently ‘routinised’/’stereotype’ decisions, involving a low amount of cognitive investment and occurring when one (or more than one) TT equivalent is retrieved unconsciously and (semi-)automatically by translators, than the students involved in the study, who instead used more frequently ‘reflected’/‘constructed’ decision-making processes (involving some guessing by the translator), which are predominantly conscious and high in cognitive involvement. However, when the researchers evaluated the success rate of all translators’ decision-making processes, they also found that professional translators’ success rate was

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higher in stereotype decisions (50 per cent) but much higher in reflected decisions (72 per cent) as compared to routinised decisions (36 per cent). Their conclusions were that “the more cognitive effort they [professionals] invest, the more successful their decisions become” and also that, even in reflected decisions, professional translators have the ability to deal successfully with creativity-demanding ST units with a relatively low level of cognitive involvement. On the other hand, irrespective of the type of decision-making process used, the students’ success rate was very low (8 per cent) notwithstanding their high cognitive involvement. Based on the seven main categories originally formulated by Vinay and Darbelnet (1958) and taken up by many translation scholars (among others, Pinchuck 1977: 188–203; Newmark 1988: 81–88; Sager 1994: 225–236, Fawcett 1997: 27–50 and Munday 2012a: 86–89), the remaining part of this section will be devoted to the seven main forms of paraphrasing that are most suited to specialised translation: transposition, modulation, adaptation, explicitation, amplification, reduction and omission. The seven categories to which translation procedures (or ‘techniques’ or ‘shifts’) have been allocated could have been replaced easily by other, less traditional, typologies, such as the 30-plus strategies listed by Chesterman (2016: 89–109), or the 18 ‘translation techniques’ proposed by Molina and Hurtado Albir (2002: 509–511) or even the seven ‘solution types’ proposed by Pym (2016: 219ff.),4 the latter aiming to be more usable than Vinay and Darbelnet’s typology in a teaching situation and in other languages outside Europe. However, based on my own experience, the seven categories adopted here seem to work rather well with MA-level students of specialised translation and are so general in scope to be surely adaptable to the cognitive processes going on in the translator’s mind in other languages (cf. Ye and Shi 2009; Chen 2017; Liao 2010). More specific ad hoc strategies will, however, be listed for translating terminology later in the chapter, including Vinay and Darbelnet’s two techniques of ‘borrowing’ and ‘loan translation/calque’ that have not been included in the classification below, and also for translating metaphors and idioms. To all seven modalities of translator intervention the following four general considerations apply:

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1. Among the different procedures there are no clear-cut boundaries, as there is a high degree of overlap and co-occurrence between many of the strategies both at the lexical and syntactic level (though in each procedure one of the two aspects is predominant). 2. Each procedure provides only one of the possible ways to solve a translation problem: their selection by the translator is neither casual nor predetermined but, as noted by Mason (1995: 59–60), is contextually motivated (i.e. norm-related). Thus the procedures are not linked to systemic (grammatical or semantic) differences between SL and TL— as in the vast majority of cases a literal translation would equally be possible—but are only optional, at least for the language pairs of the examples chosen to illustrate them. Their optionality implies that the translator’s decision to use any of them is motivated not by sheer necessity—as in the case of number, gender and person being not even grammatical categories in some Asian and North American languages (Baker 2011: 95ff.)—but by stylistic/usage reasons.5 These motivations can be assimilated to what Nord (1991b: 100) calls ‘regulative’ norms, i.e. optional forms of a translator’s behaviour governing the “generally accepted forms of handling certain translation problems below the text rank” (see also Chesterman 1993). 3. Closely related to their optionality is the fact that the procedures do not provide ready-made solutions to translation problems and the selection of one rather than the other is left to the translator’s own intuition. A taxonomy of the possible procedures is however useful to translators, who can use it as a list of general strategies to help them solve translation problems as they find them in the course of their activity, and also translation trainers and scholars, who can use the relative metalanguage to describe both the process and product of translation. 4. Most of the end-results of all the listed procedures can also be described in terms of the language-independent tendencies in the translation activity which have been called ‘universals’ of translation (cf. Sect. 2.2.1). The procedures aim in fact at disambiguating the ST to make the TT both clearer (explicitation) and more unmarked (standardisation), and to eliminate redundancies (simplification).

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Transposition is an alternative linguistic formulation involving the expression of the ST sense via a grammatical change in the TT affecting: –– parts of speech: Verb → noun (when analysing…/dans l’analyse de… [in the analysis of ], Upon arriving/dès l’arrivée… [upon arrival]); Noun → verb (a summary was made by X…/X a résumé… [X summarised]); –– clause-level constituents: Word → phrase (recessive tendency/tendance à se tourner vers le passé [tendency to turn back to the past]); Nominal group → clause (Small wonder that…/Il n’est pas étonnant que… [It shouldn’t be surprising that]; in the new business/pour fonctionner dans le nouveau milieu des affaires [to work in the new business area]; Clause → nominal group (The assets that remain after the liabilities are taken into account/La valeur de l’actif net [The value of the assets net of any liabilities]) etc.; –– word order (X Company manufactures 1,000 automobiles in May/En mai, la Société X fabrique 1000 automobiles [In May, X Company manufactures 1,000 automobiles]); –– voice of the verb (X investigated/Des recherches ont été effectuées par X… [Research was carried out by X]); –– modality (two coats should be applied/La meilleure solution consiste à appliquer deux couches [The best solution is to apply two coats]); –– mood and tense of the verb (When you release the mouse button, the slides are put in their new places/En relȃchant le bouton de la souris, vous placez les diapositives au bon endroit [By releasing the mouse button, the slides will be placed in the new position]); –– clause syntax: coordination → subordination (The distance x shown is y mm. Compute the wavelength z of the light/Si la distance x indiquée à la figure correspond à y mm, calculer la longueur d’onde z de la lumière [If the distance x shown in the figure is y mm, compute the wavelength z of the light]). Modulation involves the expression of the ST sense in the TT with a change of perspective (and often a change of structure). The most significant mental processes affected by modulation are:

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–– logical derivation: process → tool (acid test/papier tournesol [litmus paper]); tool → result (x-rays/radiographie); effect → cause (shorter working hours/réduction de la semaine de travail [reduction of the working week]) etc.; –– antonymic translation (without difficulty/facilement [easily]; the link has not been entirely broken/les connexions sont encore sous tension [the connection is still live]); –– mechanisms such as: dynamic → static (has been written by/une oeuvre de [a work by]); animate → inanimate (This program helps you to create very effective diagrams/Avec ce programme, il est possible de créer des graphiques très efficaces [With this program, it is possible to create very effective diagrams]); ‘inanimate → animate’ (shift-work sleep disorder/ trouble du sommeil du travailleur par équipes [shift-worker sleep disorder]). At the level of LSP terminology, modulations are mostly fixed expressions, whilst free modulations to create ad hoc translations to solve specific terminological problems are much rarer. Adaptation aims to solve a pragmatic or cultural problem, such as a dissymmetry between SL and TL concerning the degree of formality along the register dimension or a situation in the source culture which does not exist in the target culture. This procedure includes ‘descriptive equivalence’ (back-of-an-envelope explanation / explication simple et synthétique [simple and brief explanation]) and ‘functional equivalence’, both implying a change of ST cognitive content. An example of functional equivalents is the translation of US American football with football (soccer) in Spanish and Italian to express the concept ‘most popular national sport’. Another type of adaptation can involve updating the time reference of events, as in the following example where the translation had to take into account that the technological progress refererred to in the ST took place in Italy much later than in the US: Imagine television in the 1940s. There was almost no programming, the pictures were small and fuzzy, and why «of course» black and white, very few stations were broadcasting, and very few people had sets to view the

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broadcasts. By the late 1950s all this had changed. The Internet today is like television in the 40s. (Curtin et al. 1998: 14) Si provi a immaginare la televisione degli anni Cinquanta: c’erano pochissimi programmi, le immagini, ovviamente in bianco e nero, erano piccole e sfocate e solo pochi possedevano un apparecchio televisivo. Alla fine degli anni Settanta, invece, la situazione era completamente cambiata. Ebbene, Internet allo stato attuale è come la televisione degli anni Cinquanta (Curtin et al. 1999: 14). [Try and imagine television in the 1950s: there was almost no programming, the pictures—of course in black and white—were small and fuzzy, and very few people had sets to view the broadcasts. By the late 1970s, however, this situation had completely changed. Well, the Internet today is like television in the 50s.]

Besides the translation of deictics such as one year ago, recently, in this country etc., adaptation may also be used to translate the visual elements of a text, for example, in the replacement of screenshots in localisation, which also implies changing all the textual parts referring to those elements (including captions of tables, figures etc.). Explicitation (or explanation) is the reformulation as a tentative TT solution of a segment of the ST conveying implicit information which the translator sees as problematic for the end-readers. Following Englund Dimitrova (2005: 236–239), such an ad hoc ‘strategic’ explicitation should be distinguished from the automated ‘norm-governed’ explicitation of implicit logical links within the sentence or between sentences (cf. Sect. 3.2.2). Strategic explicitation can be of different types, all leading to specification of meaning, the most straightforward of which is replacing a pronoun with the noun it refers to or a metaphor with a simile (thereby making the comparison explicit). Explicitation by using a synonym or adding an explanation is used when the ST contains some information that is closely linked to its general or specialised context and needs to be explicitated to facilitate its interpretation by the TT reader. In a pedagogical context, explicitations such as these, where translator interpretation is paramount, are seen by Munday (2012b: 25) as risk-reduction strategies which sometimes yield rather insipid results bordering on ‘translationese’. Examples are the two expressions optimistic promotion

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potential (more general translation) and positive expectations in relation to exploration potential (explicitation) to translate the newly coined communication and business term blue-sky exploration potential. Amplification (or expansion or addition), reduction (or compression) and omission (or elimination) all involve a change in the distribution of the ‘same’ semantic components over, respectively, more items in the TT (addition), fewer items in the TT (reduction) (cf. the ‘distribution change’ strategy in Chesterman 2016: 100–101), or the deletion in the TT of some ST textual elements. Additions are not limited to those having an explanatory function (explicitation). For example, in translating from English into Romance languages there is often a tendency to use more words than in the ST (whilst reduction is typical of translation in the opposite direction): after / French au terme de / Italian in seguito a (instead of the alternatives après and dopo respectively); clearly / French d’une manière claire / Italian in maniera chiara (instead of clairement and chiaramente respectively); infection by a virus / French infection causée par un virus / Italian infezione causata da un virus [infection caused by a virus] (cf. also Newmark 1988: 86–87). Lastly, the procedure of elimination involves the suppression of any ST textual items carrying information which is not relevant to the TL culture and/or is not of any interest to the end-users of the translation. For example, the elimination in the Italian version of the last two sentences in the following paragraph, not only because of the relative lack of relevance of the information provided but also because of the impossibility of translating the assonance between the adjective patchy and the name Apache: The most popular server is Apache, which is a free server developed and distributed by the Apache group. Apache began as the NCSA server, httpd, with some added features. The name Apache has nothing to do with the Native American tribe of the same name. Rather, it came from the nature of its version, which was a patchy version of the httpd server. (Sebesta 2002: 369, my emphasis6)

In editorial translation, entire sections of the ST can be eliminated in the TT by editors and scientific consultants because they are considered irrelevant for TT readers. For example, in a handbook on the technology

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of architecture the editors of the Italian translation decided to eliminate in the TT not only some ST images considered to be too distant from the Italian aesthetic sense (e.g. the image of a huge Corinthian capitel in Las Vegas), but also some quotations by great architects of the past or architecture and design experts, and even to suppress a whole chapter providing an overview of US and Canadian building laws and regulations (Palumbo 1999). In the final three sections of this chapter the strategies to be applied to solve pragmatic and linguistic translation problems have been grouped into textual, syntactical and lexical, mainly to mirror the earlier subdivision of the main language features of LSPs in Chap. 1. As in all classifications, these categories are in fact somewhat arbitrary, as each type of strategy can be linked to register constraints coming into play at all levels of the text which, within the wider contextual and situational dimensions, govern the translator’s choices during the translating activity. Indeed, alternative typologies of strategies could have been adopted instead, such as Chesterman’s (2016), dividing strategies into syntactic, semantic and pragmatic. On the other hand, in my classification pragmatic strategies (adopted by the translator to achieve pragmatic equivalence) are not allocated to a specific category because they are deemed to cut through all the levels of the text. All textual levels are in fact pragmatically related to the communicative context in which the text is produced and the purpose it is designed to achieve, and pragmatic equivalence is created by relating the translation of words and phrases to the higher textual levels of sentence, paragraph and genre conventions.

3.2.2 Textual Strategies At the highest textual level of the rhetorical macrostructure of the text, the norm in specialised translation is to simply reproduce the conventional argumentative pattern of discourse of the ST in the TL, and not adapt it to that of the same genre in the TL (cf. Halliday 1993[1989b]: 125; Musacchio 2007: 102), unless of course changes in text function and/or genre are explicitly specified in the translation brief. For example, in the translation of an academic research article to be published in a

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research journal in the TL, the translator is not going to be asked to rearrange in the translation the ST standardised framework for organising information in rhetorical units, even when the conventional methods of argumentation of the same genre in the TL are different from those of the SL (cf. Pisanski Peterlin 2008). Likewise, the brief for translating a scientific text from English to German will not contain the requirement of adapting the Anglo-American ‘indirect’ way of introducing new concepts by referring to information which is supposed to be already known to the reader to the different norm of German scientific texts of using instead a definition or a ‘direct’ explanation (Gerzymisch-Arbogast 2004: 595). The following is an example drawn from Gerzymisch-Arbogast (1993: 37), where the passage taken from a textbook of economics appears under the subtitle “Transactions Demand” at the beginning of a new chapter: People and firms need money as a transactions medium. Households need money to buy groceries and pay for electricity and fuel bills as well as occasional large consumer durables. Firms need money to pay for materials and labor. These elements constitute the transactions demand for money (…). (Samuelson and Nordhaus 1985: 315)

Although the target reader of the German translation would expect the new concept (transactions demand) to be defined right at the beginning of the paragraph, the published German translation (Samuelson and Nordhaus 1987: 488) reproduces the information sequencing of the English original, where the new concept is in fact introduced only after the general introductory information about people and firms and their need for money. In order to achieve pragmatic equivalence, what will feature instead among the specifications of the translation brief will be the translator’s intervention at the lower levels of discourse, within the individual paragraphs of the text, what Gerzymisch-Arbogast (1993: 31–32) calls ‘information packaging’. The translator’s choices at these lower levels are in fact more influenced by situational factors such as dyssymmetries concerning the degree of formality of LSP register between SL and TL. At the textual level, the translator’s strategies typically aim to address the translation problems relating to the following parameters: the amount

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of information that needs to be given in a text, the sequence of Given/ New information in the thematic and information structure of the text, and the use of intra- and inter-sentential connectives and punctuation. In the following pages, most of the examples will refer to the English-Italian pair, which are languages having: different stylistic norms and conventions concerning the amount of information that needs to be given in the TT (English is a HCC language having a KISS style of communication, whilst Italian is more of a LCC language having a KILC approach) (cf. Sect. 2.3.1); different word-order constraints (though presenting the same basic SVO and information structure); and a different frequency of use of intra- and inter-sentential connective items. Concerning the amount of information that needs to be given in the TT, in keeping with the greater length of Italian TTs compared to their English STs, which is a consequence of systemic differences between the two languages, the normally greater amount of information that needs to be given in the Italian TT entails a further loss of surface conciseness of the TT. The translator’s choice of adding information in the TT can be linked to two main requirements. The first is the higher degree of discourse formality of an author-oriented language like Italian, which is characterised by a higher, more formal register than reader-oriented English, as illustrated in the following example: The problem remains that in a democracy there is always a temptation to lower unemployment at the cost of higher inflation “just this one time”. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 434) Rimane il problema che in una democrazia si è sempre tentati di ridurre la disoccupazione al costo di una inflazione più elevata, dichiarando di volta in volta che si tratta di una misura di carattere straordinario [The problem remains that in a democracy there is always a temptation to lower unemployment at the cost of higher inflation, each time declaring that it is a measure of an extraordinary nature]. (Dornbusch et al. 1999: 530)

Conversely, the requirement of a more formal register in the TT can involve a higher degree of conciseness compared to the ST, which involves eliminating the ST redundancies, as in the following example from an

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introductory textbook in IT, where the three appliances (washing machine, toaster, iron) have been replaced by the superordinate elettrodomestico [electrical appliance]: If these clocks ticked like an old watch, there would be a steady ticking background noise around you whose intensity would pick up as you approached the washing machine or toaster or picked up an iron. (Curtin et al. 1998: 42) Se tutti questi orologi iniziassero a ticchettare, si sentirebbe un continuo rumore di sottofondo, la cui intensità aumenterebbe in prossimità di un elettrodomestico […whose intensity would pick up in the proximity of an electric appliance]. (Curtin et al. 1999: 38)

Incidentally, the example also illustrates the partial arbitrariness of allocating strategies to specific categories, because besides being a textual strategy (reduction of amount of information), the translator’s intervention in this case has also been at the lexical (3 terms → 1 sovraordinate) and syntactic (Clause → Prepositional phrase) levels. Alternatively, the information that is added in the TT is specific of the target culture and has an explanatory purpose, as in the case of the following example, where a whole sentence has been added in the TT: Commercial on-line services […] can also connect you to the Internet. In addition, they also give you access to their own on-line services and e-mail. (Curtin et al. 1998: 9) I provider di servizi commerciali on-line […] oltre a fornire la connessione a Internet offrono anche accesso ai loro servizi on-line come ad esempio un servizio di informazioni personalizzato. Molti provider di connessione italiani stanno aggiungendo dei servizi analoghi per i propri abbonati [Commercial on-line services […] besides providing a connection to the Internet also give access to their own on-line services and e-mail, as for example a customised information service. Many Italian internet providers are adding similar services for their subscribers]. (Curtin et al. 1999: 9)

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Concerning the sequence of Given/New information in the thematic and information structure of the text, when translating LSP texts between subject-prominent (SVO) languages (for example, English, French, Italian and German) the first port of call for translators is to retain the ST word order in the TT. This choice is often entirely appropriate not only because unmarked patterns of thematic progression (linear or parallel) are the preferred option in LSP texts of all SVO languages, but also because retaining the same word order is the least ‘risky’ and cognitively demanding strategy for the translator. However, even among SVO languages, some have more or less stringent word-order constraints than others, which can cause a tension between word order and thematic progression in the TT. A number of strategies for minimising in the TT both linear dislocation and the related skewing of the information flow is suggested by Baker (2011: 176–180), with examples from the Brazilian Portuguese-­ English translation pair, and also by Rogers (1998), with examples from the German-English pair. These strategies include voice change, for example, passivisation (In the next section we discuss… → Italian Nella prossima sezione saranno analizzati… [In the next section will be analysed…]) and nominalisation (Italian È stato studiato il comportamento… [Has been studied the behavior of…] → A study was carried out of the behaviour of…), and will be analysed in their syntactic dimension in the next section (3.2.3). However, as Baker (2011: 180) concedes, such strategies are very rarely chosen by professional translators, who instead seem to favour the syntactic principles of the TL over retaining at all costs the thematic organisation of the SL,7 a choice which in fact does not, in itself, seem to interfere with the information structure of the TT. An example is the following, where the circumstantial information expressed in the English ST at the end of the sentence in end-focus (rhematic) position (from other techniques), has been shifted in the Italian TT to the left in sentence-initial (thematic) position (Rispetto ad altre tecniche): The critical chain method relies on several important differences from other techniques. (Nokes and Greenwood 2003: 25)

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Rispetto ad altre tecniche, il metodo della critical chain presenta numerose differenze di rilievo [Compared to other techinques, the critical chain method has several important differences]. (Nokes and Greenwood 2005: 22)

Although the two languages present the same basic information structure (Subject = Theme in initial position for lower information value; Rest of the clause = Rheme at the end of the sentence in end-focus position for high-information value), they have different word-order constraints on the arrangement of information within the clause. Whilst in Italian circumstantial information (about time, place, purpose etc.) expressed in adverbial phrases, noun groups, adverbs etc. can be freely ordered within a sentence and is often in sentence-initial (thematic) position, in the English unmarked thematic structure circumstantials are at the end of a sentence in rhematic position because thematisation tends to involve the logical subject. Changes of the ST word order in the TT are often motivated in LSP translation by the need to improve the TT, either by making its information flow more effective or normalising a thematic and information structure which is unnecessarily marked in the ST. In the example below, the translator has replaced the marked thematic progression in the ST with a more conventional linear thematic patterning in the TL, with the rheme of the preceding sentence being picked up as the theme of the next one. Thus, the rheme these problems related to duplication of the first sentence has been thematised in the Italian version because referring to information that had already been given in the previous sentence (which also explains the deletion in Italian of the further specification related to duplication): Using a relational database eliminates these problems related to duplication. Each piece of information need be stored only once in a database, because the database management application can combine the data stored in two or more tables. (Curtin et al. 1998: 177) Per ovviare a questi inconvenienti si può ricorrere a un database relazionale, nel quale basta inserire i dati una sola volta perché il programma di gestione provvede automaticamente a collegarli con le altre tabelle [To eliminate

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these problems one can use a relational database, in which it is sufficient to store each piece of information only once because the database management application combines automatically the data stored in two or more tables]. (Curtin et al. 1999: 163)

In the same example, in order to improve the overall information flow of the two sentences in the TT, the new information relational database (rheme) has been dislocated to the right in end-focus position and the rheme in a database of the second sentence has been thematised and substituted by a proform (nel quale) introducing a relative clause in replacement of the independent clause of the ST (Each piece of information…). Text modifications such as these, motivated by the need to improve the translation by making it easier to read and understand for the TT intended reader than the original was for the ST readers, are envisaged in the ‘mediator principle’, which applies not only to the LSP translator’s activity (cf. Sect. 3.2.1) but also, more generally, to writers and editors of the original LSP text (cf. Halliday (1993[1989a]: 164–166). The difference across languages in frequency of use of intra- and inter-­ sentential connective items such as conjunctions (and, or), adverbials (subsequently, first, therefore) and their respective paraphrasing expressions (as a result, on the other hand, needless to say) can be problematic in the translation of LSP texts. Indeed, the lexicogrammatical features of ‘semantic discontinuity’ and ‘syntactic ambiguity’, indicating also the missing logical-semantic relationships between processes in scientific writing which the author assumes that readers can provide themselves (cf. Sect. 1.2.2), vary across languages. In LSP translation this variation normally influences the translator’s choices when the background knowledge that can be assumed in the target reader is lower than that of the reader of the ST, as in popular science. This entails that cohesion has to be (re-)created very carefully in the TT, because it cannot be provided by readers with no or little previous specialised knowledge (Musacchio 2017: 56). However, this variation may occur even when the level of specialisation of the ST and TT can be assumed to be the same, as when translating into languages which are more conjunctive than the SL. In such a case, the strategy of providing the missing logical links in the TT is part and parcel of the translator’s task. The implicit intra- or inter-sential markers

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of the ST are explicitated by the translator by adding the appropriate connective in order to provide the reader with the additional information to decodify the information content of the TT. For example, in a corpus-­ based study on sentence-linking connectives in popular-economics translations from English to Italian, Palumbo and Musacchio (2010) found that the frequency of such devices was higher in the TTs than in the corresponding STs. The same result was found by Englund Dimitrova (2005: 233–234, 236–237) for the Russian-Swedish translation pair, with the explicitation in Swedish of logical links which were left implicit in the Russian ST. Whilst it may be possible that this ‘norm-governed’ explicitation yielding a higher frequency of connectives in the TT may have something to do with the hypothesis of explicitation being an inherent ‘universal’ feature of translation (cf. Mauranen and Kujamäki 2004), it is nevertheless a fact that in certain language pairs where the SL is English, characterised by a KISS-approach, and the TL is a KILC-approach language (for example, Romance languages and German), semantic discontinuity seems to be a feature that is more typical of English. Whilst increasing the TT’s cohesion, the strategy of explicitation also inevitably decreases the TT’s surface conciseness, which is compensated by the text’s greater economy in terms of the processing effort on the part of TT receivers being lower than for the original ST readers. In the following example, the implicit causal link between the second and third sentences has been explicitated by inserting a new connective clause: How fast they run on each should indicate how fast each system is. Unfortunately it doesn’t work as well as expected. Computers perform two basic types of calculations: integer processing and floating point calculations. (Curtin et al. 1998: 59) La velocità di esecuzione del programma in un sistema dovrebbe indicare la velocità del sistema stesso. Purtroppo, però, il metodo non funziona come dovrebbe. Questo dipende dal fatto che i computer effettuano due tipi ­fondamentali di calcolo, l’elaborazione di numeri interi e le operazioni in virgola mobile [How fast programs run on a system should indicate how fast each system is. Unfortunately it doesn’t work as well as expected. This is due to the fact that computers perform two basic types of calculations: integer processing and floating point calculations]. (Curtin et al. 1999: 55)

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With specific reference to LSP translation, the strategy of explicitation has been confirmed by a number of studies. For example, Krüger (2015: 438–439) found that explicitation shifts occurred more frequently in the translation direction English-German than in the opposite one, indicating that German has a higher cohesive and denotational explicitness than English, whilst the distribution of implicitation shifts was far more balanced in the two directions. Still in the English-German translation pair, in an empirical study on the reverbalisation processes to make popular science texts more comprehensible, Göpferich (2006: 237) found that, where text coherence was lacking in the ST, participant translators often used the strategy of inserting in the TT coherence-increasing elements such as punctuation and inter-sentential logical-semantic markers. Likewise, in Englund Dimitrova’s (2005: 233–234, 236–237) empirical study on the features of expertise characterising professional translators in the Russian-Swedish translation pair, one of the researcher’s results was the largely automated ‘norm-governed’ (i.e. frequent, regular and non-­ problematic) explicitation of implicit logical links that was carried out by professional translators early in the translation process, as opposed to novices who, if they explicitated at all connectives linking sentences, did so later on in the process, i.e. in the revision phase. As Englund Dimitrova notes, instead of being dismissed simply as superficial textual similarities, such important processing differences between the two groups of translators could be assumed to be a potential aspect of professional competence and expertise in translation. For the English-Italian translation pair, the explicitation strategy in LSP translation is confirmed by studies analysing both comparable and parallel corpora. Besides the already mentioned study by Palumbo and Musacchio (2010), the same two scholars documented the more extensive use of connectives and other text-organising elements aimed at guiding the attention of readers in Italian translated texts vs. comparable Italian non-translated texts also in other studies (Musacchio and Palumbo 2009; Palumbo and Musacchio 2010; Musacchio 2006: 181, 189, 2007: 108). These results are also in line with the higher frequency of adversative (however, but, in fact / tuttavia, ma, comunque, al contrario etc.) and concessive (while, though, despite / mentre, sebbene, nonostante, pur, anche se) intra- and inter-sentential markers in the TTs found in a parallel

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corpus of English LSP texts and their Italian translations (Scarpa 2006: 161, 168). Explicitation is also a common strategy when translating the English coordinating conjuction and in languages where the corresponding conjunction does not display the same level of multifunctionality (cf. Sect. 2.3.2). For example, in the translation of a scientific article from English into German, as many as one third of all the ST occurrences of and were explicitated in the TT (Doherty 1987: 213). Also in the English-Italian translation pair the implicit logical-semantic links signalled by and more often than not need to be explicitated in the appropriate relation (e.g. adversative, comparative, causal etc.). Likewise, the Russian connective i [and] is multifunctional because it can signal both additive and temporal and/or causal relations, and tends to be explicitated in translation (Englund Dimitrova 2005: 161). Textual strategies are typically adopted also to address the sometimes different norms governing punctuation in the SL and TL. Besides deciding whether punctuation marks or typographical signs such as italics, inverted commas, capitalisation etc. are used in the ST conventionally, idiosyncratically or just carelessly (Newmark 1997: 89), the translator should also adapt ST punctuation to the rules governing punctuation in the TL. The examples below refer to the translation pair English-Italian, where just transferring ST commas and full stops into the TT can be problematic. Typically, in an Italian translation all the following instances of a comma should be deleted: a comma after very short indications of time and place (Within the British context, a ten-tier typology…; In this chapter, we look at…); the so-called ‘serial comma’8 before the conjunctions and/or at the end of a list (Soft management skills such as reliability, responsiveness, empathy, and assurance); and the comma before and joining two complete paratactic clauses (Users can be reached through all the channels we have discussed, and they can be further reached by communications through the service provider). Also, as a general rule, when two or more independent sentences are combined simply by juxtaposition, ST full stops should be substituted by colons or semi-colons in the Italian TT in order to make the missing logical-semantic links between sentences more explicit, as in the following example:

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We wish to emphasize two points here. First, we believe that the values relevant in each specific service will need to reflect local circumstances, and cannot simply be imported from another service without modification. Second, the process of establishing the guiding principles is as important as the content of the principles finally selected. (Reynolds and Thornicroft 2000: 28) E’ necessario sottolineare due punti: anzitutto, che i valori importanti in ogni specifico servizio dovranno rispecchiare le circostanze locali e non potranno semplicemente essere importate da un altro servizio senza alcuna modifica; in secondo luogo, che il processo di determinazione dei principi informatori è altrettanto importante del contenuto dei principi infine selezionati [It is necessary to emphasize two points: first of all, that the values relevant in each specific service will need to reflect local circumstances and cannot simply be imported from another service without modification; second, that the process of establishing the guiding principles is as important as the content of the principles finally selected]. (Reynolds and Thornicroft 2002: 30)

3.2.3 Syntactic Strategies Translation strategies at the level of syntax (or ‘(lexico)grammatical shifts’ or ‘transpositions’) address the pragmatic and linguistic problems relating to cross-language rhetorical differences produced by the syntactic features of the text. In specialised translation as a professional activity, the translator can in fact ‘deviate’ from the exact wording of the ST to improve it for the TT final readers. The guiding principle should of course always be that of providing cohesion and logical-argumentative continuity to the text in order to make the retrieval of information easier and quicker for the TT reader (cf. the ‘mediator principle’ in Sect. 3.2.1). Syntactic translation strategies between KILC and KISS languages, and author-oriented (reader-responsible) vs. reader-oriented (writer-­ responsible) styles, typically involve structural procedures of reduction or addition, depending on the direction of the translation. Examples of typical syntactic procedures in the French-English translation pair provided by Newmark (1988: 158–159) within the sentence—which is seen by him as the unit of translation, where the translator can make any type

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of grammatical shifts to achieve natural language—are the following two: (1) (French) ‘prepositional phrase → by + -ing form’: e.g. par la détection / by detecting; par le dosage / by determining; dans la suppression de / by eliminating; (2) simply rendering (French) ‘empty’ verbs such as posséder, contenir, représenter, faire état de, apparaître by the hold-all English copulas to be and to have: e.g. apparaît d’une manière discontinue / is discontinuous. In the English-Italian translation pair, the typical transposition ‘Preposition → Subordinate clause (relative, time etc.)’, involving a grammatical expansion instead of the equally possible literal translation ‘ST Preposition → TT Preposition’, illustrates well the shift from the economy and simplicity of expression of English (KISS language) to the tendency towards redundancy and complexity of Italian (KILC language), as in the case of the translation of the two prepositions over and between in the following example: Every structure featuring delegated decision making in discrete and differentiated subunits will have drawbacks because of the inherent conflicts that arise in multibusiness corporations over the control of delegated decision making authority and between the differentiation and integration of specialized units. (Collis and Montgomery 1997: 173) Tutte le strutture che prevedono una delega del processo decisionale a sottounità distinte e differenziate saranno inevitabilmente soggette a una serie di inconvenienti dovuti ai conflitti che nascono all’interno di un’azienda multibusiness quando si tratta di decidere a chi spetti il controllo dei processi decisionali delegati o quali siano i rispettivi limiti della differenziazione e dell’integrazione delle unità specializzate [All structures featuring delegated decision making in discrete and differentiated subunits will have drawbacks because of the inherent conflicts that arise in multibusiness corporations when decisions have to be made on who should control the delegated decision making authority and what are the respective limits of the differentiation and integration of specialized units]. (Collis and Montgomery 1999: 177)

The pragmatic problems addressed by syntactic strategies are generelly motivated by register considerations, with author-oriented languages being typically characterised by a higher, more formal register than

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reader-oriented ones. Above the level of the clause, adaptating the sentence patterns of reader-oriented English LSP texts to the way sentences are constructed in writer-oriented languages (e.g. Romance languages and German) involves changing the Anglo-American syntactic model characterised by short and simple sentences based on paratactical coordination (clauses headed by conjunctions like and/or) and simply juxtaposed into a syntactic structure which is characterised by complex and subordinate clauses (cf. Fawcett 1997: 96–97), where coordinating and subordinating conjunctions that had been left implicit in the ST are explicitated and, if necessary, redundancies eliminated: At the onset, it is important to realize that HTML is not a programming language. It cannot be used to describe computations. Its purpose is to describe the general form and layout of documents to be displayed by a browser. (Sebesta 2002: 15) Prima di iniziare, è importante ricordare che HTML non è un linguaggio di programmazione, in quanto non può venire utilizzato per descrivere calcoli, bensì per descrivere la forma generale e il layout di documenti destinati a essere visualizzati da un browser [Before beginning, it is important to realize that HTML is not a programming language because it cannot be used to describe computations but its purpose is to describe…]. (Sebesta 2003: 13)

Especially in popular and didactic-instructional LSP texts, pragmatic considerations are also at issue in the neutralisation of ST rhetorical questions, i.e. interrogative clauses often occurring at the beginning or at the end of a section that have the pragmatic aim of introducing a new topic rather than to elicit information from the reader as in ‘normal’ questions. When this divergence between the ST grammatical form and its pragmatic use gives rise to an implied meaning in the ST that does not find an immediate match in the TT, rhetorical questions may need to be neutralised in the TL by converting the direct interrogative into an indirect interrogative form introduced by a noun group (the problem, the question etc. is…), as in the following example:

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But this raises the question: What are the appropriate boundaries for a particular firm?. (Collis and Montgomery 1997: 99) A questo punto, però, si pone il problema di stabilire quali siano i confini ottimali per un’azienda” [In this regard, however, the problem is raised of determining what are the optimal boundaries for a particular firm]. (Collis and Montgomery 1999: 125)

Other pragmatic problems related to the formality of register that may be addressed by syntactic strategies are associated to the translation of self-reference and engagement markers, which make the author’s presence explicit and explicitly refer to or build a relationship with the reader. Translation strategies from reader-oriented English to author-oriented languages such as Romance languages are characterised by a tendency to depersonalise any ST personal forms referring to the writer and/or the reader, particularly in highly-specialised texts (in English-Italian translation, cf. Scarpa 2008: 180–182). In the following example, taken from the translation of an academic textbook of physics, the ‘reader-including’ we has been substituted by a non-finite verb form (gerund): Now we start at point P and go through point A to point Q to find […]. (Bueche and Hecht 1997: 276) Percorrendo il circuito dal punto P al punto Q passando per A, si trova […] [Following the circuit from Point P to point Q going through point A … is found …]. (Bueche and Hecht 1998: 297)

Besides making the TT more formal and objective, thus increasing the distance between writer and reader, in this particular example a further motivation for the depersonalisation of generalising first-person we— which could also have been translated literally in the TT—may have been provided by the implication expressed by we that the applicability of the information being given was limited to what the writer and/or the readers could actually do in the circumstances, whereas an impersonal form could be better suited to convey the idea of the general validity of that information.

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The depersonalisation of first-person plural pronouns has also been found to occur in the English-Spanish translation of academic textbooks, where they are translated as passive and impersonal reflexives much more frequently than in semi-technical magazines (popular science) (Montero Fleta et al. 2003: 163). Passive and passive reflexives (for languages which have them) are in fact used to express impersonality much more frequently than agentless passives (formed exactly as in English with the verb to be and the past participle) also in other Romance languages, as for example in the case of impersonal pronouns occurring only in subject role, such as French on or Italian si, or the reflexive clitic -se in Portuguese. The use of the passive voice and passive reflexives is also the most frequent strategy to depersonalise in the TT direct and explicit personal references to the reader (you), which in the ST aim to reduce the distance between writer and addressee. For example, in the English-Spanish/Catalan and English-German translation pairs, in both academic textbooks and semi-technical magazines direct references to the reader tend to be translated by using impersonal reflexives: the reflexive se (By now, you’ve recognized that… / Hasta aquí, se puede ver que…) in Spanish/Catalan (Montero Fleta et al. 2003: 160, 162–163) and the impersonal man (You can’t get rich by consulting the stars… / Man kann nicht reich werden…) in German (Gerzymisch-Arbogast 1993: 39–40). In the English-Italian pair, in the following example from an academic textbook the two direct references to the reader are depersonalised by using a passive reflexive (passivising si particle in si studino) in the first case, and an impersonal verb form where the agent is left unspecified (non è possibile) in the second: However much physics you have studied you cannot actually ride a bike or pocket a pool ball unless you have practiced how to do it. (Collis and Montgomery 1997: 107) […] infatti, per quanto si studino i fenomeni della fisica, non è possibile stare in equilibrio sulla bicicletta o tirare una palla in buca se manca l’esperienza pratica [in fact, however much physics one has studied, it does not automatically enable a person to ride a bike or…]. (Collis and Montgomery 1999: 138)

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In writer-oriented languages such as Italian and German, in the translation of American-English technical manuals the more distant communicative situation characterising the TL is reflected in the depersonalisation of the explicit mentions of the reader in procedural/operational passages telling the reader how to operate a product. Indeed, in native-Italian technical manuals direct instructions are preferably expressed by impersonal tenseless infinitives functioning as imperatives, rather than by the other two possible options, i.e. ‘true’ imperative forms or deontic expressions (modal verbs etc.) (Hempel 2009: 108–109). However, the strategy for translating imperatives expressing a weaker obligation is also by means of deontic impersonal expressions such as è possibile (+ infinitive) in the same text genre and via a courtesy form in academic textbooks (e.g. impersonal third-person subjunctive: Recall that… → Si ricordi che…). As regards the Italian-German translation pair, in a parallel corpus compiled by Hempel (2009: 108) for the same study on technical manuals, about half of the ST infinitives were found to have shifted into imperatives in the German translations. As argued by the researcher, this shift might reflect the more reader-oriented style that seems to be on the increase in traditionally writer-oriented German manuals (cf. Göpferich 1995b: 396), possibly under the influence of English. More generally, Italian and other Romance languages such as Spanish and Catalan (Montero Fleta et al. 2003) are characterised by a tendency to depersonalise via the use of the passive voice and impersonal forms not only self-reference and engagement markers but indeed any personal forms of the English ST. In the following example, two personal active forms (they obtain and they realize) of the ST are made impersonal in the TT through passivisation (possono essere ottenute [can be obtained]) and the impersonal pronoun si (si diventa consapevoli [it is realized]): Financial analysts form their opinions about a company partly by studying ratios such as those we have presented. […] They obtain additional information by conversations and visits because they realize that the financial statements tell only part of the story about the company. (Anthony 1997: 149)

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Gli analisti finanziari si formano un’opinione sulla performance di un’azienda non solo sulla base di indicatori quali quelli qui presentati […]. Importanti informazioni possono poi essere ottenute intervistando direttamente i responsabili aziendali. Si diventa in tal modo consapevoli del fatto che i rendiconti finanziari possono raccontare soltanto una parte della storia di un’azienda [Financial analysts form their opinions about a company’s performance not only on the basis of ratios such as those we have presented […]. Important additional information can be obtained by interviewing the company managers. It is thus realized that the financial statements tell only part of the story about the company]. (Anthony 1998: 162)

Besides the strategy of depersonalisation, this example also illustrates the general tendency of translations to be influenced by their STs (cf. Sect. 2.2.1). The personal active form Financial analysts form… has in fact been rendered literally (Gli analisti finanziari si formano…) instead of following the norm of depersonalisation and being converted to an impersonal form (È possibile formarsi un’opinione… [It is possible to form one’s opinion…]). In the English-Italian translation pair such an interference of the ST on the TT in the literal translation of ST personal active forms has also been confirmed by Musacchio (2006: 179, 2007: 102, 105), both indirectly and directly. In the comparable component of a physics corpus, she found that Italian scientists referred to theoretical and experimental physicists much less frequently than their English-speaking colleagues, opting instead for passive or impersonal si forms. However, in the Italian parallel component of the corpus, the scholar found that the occurrence of words designating people involved in research and mentioned in the articles to emphasise their activity as scientists (e.g. fisici, fisici teorici etc.) was much higher than in the comparable Italian component. Likewise, the tendency to translate English passive structures literally into a variety of target languages which either have no passive voice or would normally use it with less frequency has been mentioned by Baker (2011: 112) as an example of the strong influence of English on similar registers in other languages through translation. The syntactic strategies associated with the translation of English passive forms must also address problems of a more structural nature, as the category of voice can have a different function in different languages, so

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that “[t]he idea is not to replace an active form with an active one and a passive form with a passive one” (Baker 2011: 119). For example, whilst in English scientific and technical discourse the pragmatic depersonalising and objectifying tendency to highlight a fact or process and its effects is expressed preferentially by agentless passives, in other languages such as Russian the use of passive structures for projecting the writer as an agent of an objective process in formulaic and semi-fixed expressions is seen as stylistically less acceptable. Hence, in the English-Russian translation pair the norm is for the ST passive to be replaced by active structures (Baker 2011: 113–116). In Romance languages, the substitution of English passive structures with impersonal ones in the TT involves a change in the focus of the message that should be weighed against the benefits of not rendering a passive with a stylistically less acceptable passive structure in the TL (cf. Baker (2011: 113). Indeed, whilst the literal strategy of translating an English agentless passive with a TT agentless passive has no consequences for the information flow of the clause, the strategy of replacing a passive structure in the ST with an impersonal pronoun in the TT involves the inversion of the normal SV word order whereby the verb is placed at the beginning of the clause (‘verbal fronting’), often after an adjunct. In the following example, such a strategy affects the linear arrangement of the clause elements and shifts the information weight (the LM curve…) to the end of the TT sentence: At the same time, the LM curve was believed to be quite flat […]. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 411) […] al tempo stesso si riteneva che la curva LM fosse abbastanza piatta […] [At the same time, it was believed that the LM curve was quite flat]. (Dornbusch et al. 1999: 502)

This procedure seems to be used particularly with verbs expressing mental processes and, more specifically, as argued by Bennett (2011: 203–204) for Portuguese science texts, with statements of aim, metatextual signposting and methodological descriptions. A connected problem of the procedure of verbal fronting is that the TT thematised impersonal form (in the

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example above, si riteneva che… [it was believed that]) highlights the implicit message ‘there is an opinion, a belief etc.’, thereby introducing a human entity. Instead, in the depersonalised version of the English ST (in the example, was believed) it is the concept that is the topic of discourse (the LM curve), i.e. an inanimate entity, which is placed at the beginning of the sentence (cf. Evangelisti 1994: 216–217). In order to maintain the rhetorical effect of the English original without sacrificing its objective tone, Bennett (2011: 204) suggests the strategy of using an impersonal active, whereby an inanimate, abstract entity is personalised (for example, This chapter describes…; This table analyses…). As a matter of fact, the use of Anglophone impersonal actives is becoming an accepted convention not only in LSP translation but also in native LSPs in German, Portuguese and Italian (House 2006: 355; Bennett 2011: 204; Scarpa 2008: 182). Such a procedure has now become commonplace even in cases when an alternative strategy to avoid the reproduction of the grammatical metaphor of the English ST would be readily available (e.g. This chapter introduces… → Italian In questo capitolo introduciamo… [In this chapter we introduce…]). Besides formality of register, other pragmatic problems that can be addressed by syntactic strategies in order to make the TT accessible to its final reader are those associated with the translation of presuppositions, hedges and boosters. In LSP translation, presuppositions are typically related to the amount of subject-matter knowledge that the final TT reader can be assumed to have in order to understand the text. At the highest level of expert-to-expert communication in the vertical stratification along the cline of specialisation of each LSP, both ST and TT should display a high level of technicality and linguistic ‘underdeterminacy’ (degree of implicitness) (Krüger 2015: 46–47, 71–73, 76–79) because a considerable amount of subject-matter competence is presupposed by both the ST producer and the translator in their respective readers to rebuild the implicatures that, not being explicit, can be understood only by experts. It is especially at this highest level that the translator needs to have background knowledge of both subject-matter and genre-specific conventional methods of argumentation and terminology. It is also at this same level that translation novices must resist the temptation of over-­ explicitating because they have lost sight of the intended TT expert readers.

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On the other hand, in more asymmetrical communicative situations (i.e. expert-to-semi-expert and expert-to-layperson), STs display lower levels of technicality and linguistic underdeterminacy, thus requiring a lower amount of background subject-matter knowledge on the part of both intended reader and translator. However, it is precisely in such communicative situations that, in certain translation pairs, the translator’s strategies may well be aimed at re-creating cohesion by inserting in the TT the cohesive ties that were implicit in the ST and cannot be provided by TT readers with no or little previous specialised knowledge (Musacchio 2017: 56). Other pragmatic problems of a presuppositional nature that syntactic translation strategies aim to address are cultural references, which in LSP translation are typically (though not exclusively) related to the specific technical-professional context of the ST and cannot be simply transmitted and incorporated in the TL. In such cases, the sci-tech translator has the liberty of spelling out the missing information in order to bridge the gap between source and target readers by supplying the TT addressees with what is needed to make sense of the ST. In the example that follows, taken from an academic textbook on building construction, the translator transfers in the TT the ST technical information (the method of assembly of a built-up roof membrane) but also provides an explanatory addition to the text informing the Italian reader of the culture-specificity of such a roof system: A built-up roof membrane (BUR) is assembled in place from multiple piles of asphalt-impregnated felt bedded in bitumen. (Allen 1990: 571) Lo strato di tenuta può essere realizzato in opera sovrapponendo teli di feltro bitumato posati su uno strato di bitume; si tratta di un sistema tipicamente americano e scarsamente utilizzato in Italia [The built-up roof membrane can be assembled in place by superimposing multiple piles of asphalt-impregnated felt bedded in bitumen: this is a typically American building system which is hardly ever used in Italy]. (Allen 1997: 341)

It is in instances such as this that taking into account the TT readers’ previous expectations and beliefs—as well as previous knowledge and

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intentions—is paramount for a translation to be accepted and correctly interpreted by its intended receivers. Other translation problems of a pragmatic nature that are addressed by syntactic strategies are those associated to hedges and boosters, signalling the writer’s stance to the content of the text. Although in sci-tech translation the norm is to render ST hedges literally in the TT (cf. Schäffner 1998), across different language systems such interactional metadiscursive devices are realised via different resources and show considerable variation in overall frequency, reflecting different cross-language genre conventions which should be considered as a norm also in translation, calling for different translation strategies to achieve pragmatic equivalence between ST and TT. When a ST hedge is translated via an equivalent marker in the TT expressing the same degree of tentativeness, besides the literal translation of adverbs such as usually, probably etc. or expressions such as to be + likely / advisable / thought etc. (Italian: essere probabile che, poter darsi che etc.), a typical strategy may involve a grammatical shift, as in the following example for the English-Italian translation pair, where the verb with a modal meaning are likely to has been translated via an adverb (presumibilmente [presumably]) whilst a more literal translation using the impersonal forms è probabile che [it is probable that] or potrebbe darsi che [it could be that] would have been equally possible: Other things equal, this implies that people […] are likely to switch some of their spending to goods produced at home. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 275) A parità di ogni altra circostanza, ciò implica il fatto che gli operatori economici […] presumibilmente sposteranno parte della loro spesa sui prodotti nazionali [All other things being equal, this implies that economic operator […] will presumably switch some of their spending to goods produced at home]. (Dornbusch et al. 1999: 338)

On the other hand, the strategies for translating hedges may involve a pragmatic shift of authorial stance towards the content of the text. As shown by studies comparing abstracts in the translation pairs English-­ Spanish and English-Chinese (Perales-Escudero and Swales 2011; Hu and Cao 2011, both quoted in Olohan 2016: 163, 165), the lower

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occurrence of hedges and higher occurrence of boosters (showing lower tentativeness and greater certainty) that were found to typify native Spanish and Chinese abstracts were also reflected in the Spanish and Chinese translations of English abstracts. Indeed, in the translations hedging was found to be less frequent and boosting more common than in the English originals, implying that a number of hedges were either deleted or turned into boosters. Similarly, the analysis of epistemic expressions in German translations of English popular-science texts carried out by Kranich (2009) found that the TTs expressed a higher degree of certainty than the STs. Syntactic strategies in LSP translation also address the pragmatic and linguistic problems associated with the translation of nominal groups. A first specific set of problems is connected to the translation of English complex nominal groups into other languages, such as Romance languages and German. Unlike all the other strategies analysed in this chapter, these problems are merely structural and the shifts involved in explicitating the implicit semantic relations within a ST nominal group are ‘obligatory’ and not optional ones, because the differences to be bridged by the translator are between the SL and TL systems (cf. endnote 5 in this chapter). More specifically, the grammar of languages requiring postmodification (e.g. Romance languages) demands that all qualifying information follow the ‘head’ noun that is being pre- and/or postmodified, whereas in the English complex nominal group it is distributed both before and after the head noun. This entails that the translator must make explicit the logical-semantic relations between the various parts of the modifying information that were left implicit in English. To do this, the first step is to identify the head noun and then establish the order and relative importance of each constituent (adjective, noun, adverb, nominal verb form etc.) (cf. Linder 2002: 266). However, the guidelines for doing this are only very broad. For example, the general recommendation to translate the premodifier closest to the head first and then translate from left to right each element in its order of occurrence (cf. Vázquez-Ayora 1977: 123) works for a nominal group such as standard atmospheric pressure, translated in French as pression atmosphéric standard (incidentally, without any need in this specific case to explicitate any missing logical grammatical relations), but not for many other such groups: for example,

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multiple-line text-gathering box (Sebesta 2002: 179) → Italian casella di raccolta di testo su righe multiple [box for the gathering of text on multiple lines] (Sebesta 2003: 151). The translation of highly complex noun groups thus requires equally complex translation strategies, which are based mainly on the specialised competence of the translator (cf. Soler 2011b), and also results in TL nominal groups which are linguistically less economic than in the SL: for example, econometric policy evaluation critique (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 424) → Italian critica alla valutazione degli effetti delle politiche economiche basata sui modelli econometrici [critique of the evaluation of the effects of economic policies based on econometric models] (Dornbusch et al. 1999: 517). Besides the obligatory strategies above, optional syntactic strategies associated to nominalisation are related to the strong nominalising tendency of certain languages such as Italian, particularly in highly-­specialised LSPs (Cortelazzo 2004). Despite the fact that nominalisation is the resource of grammatical metaphor, a predominant feature of all special languages, Italian has an even stronger tendency to use in LSPs this syntactic device with its associated high degree of lexical density (the proportion of lexical words over grammatical words) and semantically abstract nouns (operazione, azione, fenomeno, condizione etc.) (cf. Hempel 2009: 112). The motivations could be both structural and pragmatic: not only does nominalisation provide a means to avoid further subordination in the already complex syntactic make-up of languages like Italian, but it also raises the degree of formality and author-reader distance characterising its register requirements. In English-Italian specialised translation, this entails that, besides preserving the nominal style of the ST by translating a nominal form by a nominal form, translation strategies typically reflect a tendency to further nominalisation in the TT. By the same token, specialised translation from Italian into languages like English or German, which do not share the strong nominalisation trend of Italian, often entails that ST nouns indicating actions or processes are rendered in the TT via more concrete verbal expressions. For example: Italian una permanenza prolungata d’acqua salata all’interno della vasca di lavaggio può provocare fenomeni di corrosione [an extended presence of salt water in the dishwasher may cause corrosive phenomena] → German bleibt die Salzlösung längere Zeit im Spülraum, kann es zu Korrosion kommen [if the

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salt solution remains for a long time in the dishwasher, there may be corrosion]) (Hempel 2009: 112). The same type of shift has also been mentioned by Göpferich (2006: 236) in her empirical study on the reverbalisation processes to make popular science texts more comprehensible, where hard-to-understand nominal formulations were often transformed by the translators of the study into verbal ones. Nominalising translation strategies typically involve the transformation of a ST verb form indicating a process to a TT nominal form (typically a nominal group) expressing that same process as an abstract entity, as in the following example where the ST finite (can … increase) and the two non-finite verb forms (complicating, producing) are all three presented as nominal groups in the Italian TT (un aumento consistente; maggiori difficoltà): Exploiting scale economies can substantially increase the size of an organization, complicating the administrative functions and producing bureaucratic inefficiencies (Collis and Montgomery 1997: 67) […] lo sfruttamento delle economie di scala può portare a un aumento9 consistente delle dimensioni dell’azienda e, di conseguenza, a maggiori difficoltà di carattere gestionale e burocratico [the exploitation of scale economies can lead to a substantial increase of the size of an organization and, consequentially, to greater difficulties of an administrative and bureaucratic nature]. (Collis and Montgomery 1999: 84)

In the example above, the translator’s choice of nominalising the finite verb can … increase in the TT (instead of translating it literally) has also had positive stylistic implications by making the TT untypically (in English-Italian translation) more compact than the ST.  The two –ing forms complicating and producing were in fact condensed in one nominal group (maggiori difficoltà) which was then linked to the previous nominal group (un aumento consistente) by the coordinating conjunction e, with both nominal groups being governed by the (empty) verb portare a. In the same translation pair, nominalising strategies can even become the norm in the LSPs of certain disciplinary domains or in specific parts of the text. For example, nominalisation is very common in the translation of medical language, involving the use of abstract nouns (assenza /

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esistenza / presenza etc.) as in the following example: The infections recur because… → L’apparizione delle recidive è dovuto al fatto che… [The appearance of infections is due to…]. Nominalisation can also be systematically involved in the translation of captions to images, as in the following example where a sentence expressing a concrete process has been depersonalised by being translated using a verbless abstract nominal group: A carpenter applies V-groove tongue-and-groove redwood siding to an eave soffit, using a pneumatic nail gun. (Allen 1990: 207) Applicazione, mediante una pistola sparachiodi pneumatica, di doghe con scanalatura a V collegate a maschio e femmina per il rivestimento dell’intradosso di un aggetto di gronda [Application, using a pneumatic nail gun, of V-groove tongue-and-groove redwood siding to an eave soffit]. (Allen 1997: 156)

Nominalisation can also be the norm in the translation of titles and headings expressing an action or a process which will be the focus of the paragraph, section or chapter they refer to: for example, Opening a Document / Apertura di un documento; Borrowing money / Accensione di debiti. At the level of register, this strategy makes the TT more static and abstract (more formal) than the alternative option of rendering the –ing form with an infinitive (for example, Aprire un documento), which is a strategy involving interference from the English ST that is becoming increasingly frequent because it makes the TT more dynamic and concrete (more informal). These two alternative procedures can in fact be used in the same document to translate titles and headings at different levels: for example, the -ing form can be nominalised in first-level titles (more general and abstract) but translated as an infinitive in lower-level titles (more specific and concrete). However, in highly advanced scientific titles, the translator often does not need to nominalise because complex nominal groups are already prevalent across different languages (cf. Soler 2011a). In such cases, despite no nominalisation being required on the part of the translator, she still needs to have the relevant disciplinary, conceptual and technical knowledge to understand the ST complex nominal-group title and reformulate it in an equally compact form in the TT.

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Finally, syntactic strategies can aim to solve the translation problems relating to the non-standard uses of modal expressions in LSPs, which may arise in the transfer phase owing to the different ways that languages express modality. In the English-Italian translation pair, the most typical strategies are those associated with the translation of the modal auxiliaries should, may and will. The most recurrent procedure to translate the deontic function of inescapable obligation of should and may in prescriptive LSP texts (for example, indirect instructions and warnings) is that of explicitation, by using the modal verb dovere (deve, si deve, dovrà ecc.) in the indicative mood, instead of the more literal translation using the conditional mood (dovrebbe/ro). Alternative strategies involve using the construction ‘andare (present tense) + past participle’ or a number of impersonal constructions (è necessario, è indispensabile, occorre etc. + infinitive) having the same function of stringent necessity without option. The following example illustrates all three translation procedures: Most masonry units should be laid dry, but to prevent premature drying of mortar, which would weaken it, masonry units that are highly absorptive of water should be dampened before laying. A bonding agent may have to be applied to some types of smooth masonry surfaces to ensure good adhesion of the plaster. (Allen 1990: 262) Gli elementi della muratura vanno posati sul letto di malta perfettamente asciutti, tranne quando siano in un materiale con elevate capacità di assorbimento dell’acqua. In tal caso, per prevenire l’indebolimento della malta causato da una prematura essiccazione, i materiali devono essere convenientemente bagnati prima della posa. In alcuni casi è necessario applicare sulla parete un composto legante che assicuri la perfetta adesione dell’intonaco [Masonry units must be laid perfectly dry into the mortar bed, except when the units are made of a material that is highly absorptive of water. In the latter case, in order to prevent the weakening of mortar caused by its premature drying, the highly absorptive material of units must be dampened before laying. In some cases, it is necessary to apply to some types of smooth masonry surfaces a bonding agent to ensure good adhesion of the plaster]. (Allen 1997: 188)

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Explicitation is also the translation procedure for the rhetorical use of may in argumentative texts to introduce one argument in favour of an initial proposition which will be rejected straight away by one or more counter-arguments relayed in the following sentences. One possible translation strategy can be the explicitation of the critical stance of the writer concerning the validity of the initial proposition right at the beginning of the sentence by reformulating the pseudo-argument as a subordinate concessive clause (for example, This may be true for Europe but not necessarily elsewhere → Anche se ciò è vero per l’Europa, non lo è necessariamente per altre regioni [Even though this is true for Europe, it is not necessarily so elsewhere]). Lastly, the two main syntactic strategies to translate the non-standard epistemic function of the modal verb will in LSP discourse are both related to the high degree of certainty of the writer with respect to the truth value of his statement. So the modal will expressing a high level of probability (though not certainty) that a situation will actually occur in the future may be translated in Italian either with a present indicative (they will vary → si differenziano), i.e. the mood expressing certainty and objective reality, or, as in the interpretative prediction of the example below, via a periphrasis explicitating such a high level of probability (è altamente probabile che + Present Subjunctive): When such assets cannot be redeployed […] they represent a credible commitment that the firm will stay in the market and fight any competitor that attempts to replicate the investment. (Collis and Montgomery 1997: 34) Se questo genere di risorse non possono essere adattate ad altri mercati, è altamente probabile che l’azienda che le possiede lotti in tutti i modi contro eventuali concorrenti per mantenere la sua quota di mercato [If such assets cannot be redeployed in other markets, it is highly probable for the firm owning such assets to fight using all means against any competitor to keep its market share]. (Collis and Montgomery 1999: 43)

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3.2.4 Lexical Strategies The lexical aspects of the ST are the most immediate benchmark for the LSP translator to assess her specialised-language and subject-matter competences and, ultimately, her ability to translate that text. The result of a terminological search is in fact far from being always a one-to-one correspondence between monosemic terms, which is why the ability to search for the appropriate terminology in the SL and TL is a very important aspect of the LSP translator’s activity. Even more complex and time-­ consuming can be searching for the appropriate phraseology. First, the translator must be able to spot a LSP collocation in the ST, and then search for its translation by extracting the equivalent collocation in comparable native texts in the TL. An illustration of the importance of the immediate context of a term in establishing its collocational appropriateness is provided by Musacchio and Palumbo (2008) with the Italian translation of the LSP collocation a new equilibrium in a text on tourism economics. In exploring a comparable corpus of Italian texts in economics, the possible Italian translation processo di riequilibrio dell’economia [process of economic rebalancing] proved to be inappropriate because the term riequilibrio in Italian texts in economics was used only in reference to accounts and debt, i.e. to finance, whilst the ST collocation referred to the fundamental concept of how equilibrium can be reached or maintained in an economy. Further corpus browsing enabled the researchers to come up with the alternative, and this time more appropriate, translation (raggiungere) una nuova posizione di equilibrio [(reach) a new position of equilibrium]. What this example also shows is that, unless the translator is herself an expert in the specialised field she is working in, and therefore able to grasp concepts and use the terminology and phraseology of that specific LSP discourse, the next best thing when searching for terminology is having very good terminographic skills by being able to use multilingual corpus resources and also to manage and store the multilingual terminological data for future reference. Based on Bowker’s (2011: 288–290) and Olohan’s (2016: 26–44) extensive accounts of how to search for terms, as well as on Melby’s (2012: 14–15) considerations on the human role in terminology work, the first

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stage in terminological research is to identify prevalent terms and special expressions in both SL and TL and their patterns of behaviour. To do this, the translator needs to create an ad hoc bilingual specialised corpus on which ad hoc corpus analysis tools can be later used. The corpus is made up of a SL subcorpus containing the ST and also other original texts in the same specialised domain, and a TL subcorpus, consisting of both original (comparable component) and translated (parallel component) texts in that same domain. The corpus should be neither too small, to avoid the risk it does not contain the terms the translator needs, nor too large or varied, to avoid the danger of finding multiple TL terms for a given SL term instead of the only TL equivalent that is appropriate to the specific subdomain and/or conventional situation of use (level of specialisation) of the ST. The second stage of terminology research is the extraction of terms and phraseological units either manually or via term extraction systems and the storing of the terminological data in multilingual termbases. Concerning the unarguable usefulness of automatic term extraction, one word of warning here is that, without human validation, the resulting automatically generated termbases are not going to be free from inaccuracies deriving from errors in the underlying corpus and consequently will not provide a guide for the translator in her choice of the term which is relevant to the specific translation project. In order to qualify as ‘high-­ end’ termbases, terminological entries should in fact be corrected and enriched (i.e. validated) by domain experts, domain-competent translators and/or highly competent terminologists and become ‘term records’, containing information about terms and the concepts they represent. This information is stored in a number of fields in the guise of linguistic metadata (definition, grammatical and usage information, context, foreign language equivalent), the specialised domain of each term and the explicitation of the different types of relations among terminological units or the concepts they denote (for example, generic-specific: cancer and carcinoma; part-whole: nucleus and cell; cause-effect: chemotherapy and hair loss etc.) (Marshman et al. 2012: 30). To manage the personal termbases thus obtained, translators use terminology management systems which are usually integrated with other computer-aided translation tools. Whilst term records were traditionally concept-based

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(onomasiological approach), the increased application of technology to terminographic work has encouraged terminologists and translators to adopt a more semasiological approach (i.e. beginning with the term and working towards the concept). However, one thing is routine terminographic work such as the above-­ mentioned practices, and quite another is filling terminological gaps, i.e. finding solutions that could not be found by checking either terminological resources (lexicographical works such as specialised dictionaries or termbases) or textual resources, both monolingual (general and monographic works such as manuals, research articles, comparable corpora in the TL) and bilingual (aligned parallel corpora). And it is especially in cases such as when closing terminological gaps, when the LSP translator is called on to take risks in interpreting the text and creating new terms in the TL by means of ‘term proposals’, that she needs to be something of a terminologist too (cf. Sect. 1.2.5). Indeed, as we are reminded by Melby (2012: 15), it is not uncommon in new and emerging fields of knowledge for translators to be called upon to coin new terms, which will then make their way from a termbase to being used in actual LSP texts. When this actually happens, understanding LSP translators’ terminological practices to fill terminological gaps gives us, at a sociological level, “some insight into reflected decisions relating to LSP communication, whether taken by original authors of texts or by translators”, thus providing us with “one way in which agency can be studied” (Rogers 2015: 2–4). Yet, although practices such as those can help us understand how LSP translators’ ‘agency’ is exercised, i.e. their constructive role as more visible active actors in political and social contexts (cf. Inghilleri 2005: 126; Pym 1998: ix; Sect. 2.4), a further important point made by Rogers (2015: 115–116) strikes a somewhat more sobering note. This is her reminder that any solution found by a translator to close a lexical gap is always text-based, i.e. appropriate only to the translation task at hand, and will not necessarily become the accepted norm in the TL over time for all the occurrences of the particular SL term creating the lexical gap. On a similar note is Cabré’s (2010: 360) reminder that, when confronted with the decision of whether to choose one of the existing different alternative terms or coin a new term, translators must also consider the chances of the proposed term being actually accepted and used by the expert group in order

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“to avoid the proliferation of terms coined by translators”, because “individual translators are not sources of consolidated terminology”. This last section of the book will deal with the strategies to address the most common lexical and pragmatic problems at the word-level in specialised translation. The first part of the section examines the basic lexical strategies to tackle the problem of terminological gaps in the TL by considering the TL patterns of term-formation in LSPs, whilst at the same time maintaining in the TT the monoreferentiality, transparency and conciseness of LSP terminology. The rest of the section will then go on to examine the lexical (and lexico-grammatical) strategies to address word-­ level pragmatic problems which can be related to differences in register between SL and TL motivated by functional and contextual factors. Special attention will be given to neologisms, culture-specific items and the different internal stratification of SL and TL that is reflected in the variation of terminology according to different situations of use, and especially the dissymmetry between SL and TL concerning the degree of discourse formality. To address the common problems in specialised translation related to new terms in the ST which are not lexicalised yet in the TL (terminological gaps), the two basic strategies for filling terminological gaps that will be considered here are neology (loanwords and loan translations) and ‘lexical and pragmatic paraphrase’ (modulation, adaptation and explicitation) (Newmark 1988: 81–91; Baker 2011: 23–43; Chesterman 2016: 98–108; Pym 2016: 219 ff.; Rogers 2015: 117–134).10 As in all classifications, these strategies to some extent overlap with each other and can also co-occur to deal with a single problem. A case in point is the procedure of ‘using a loanword plus explanation’ (Baker 2011: 33), which Pym (1992: 76) calls ‘double presentation’ and Newmark (1988: 91) calls a ‘couplet’, where both SL and TL versions of the term are included in the TT, so that one acts as a gloss of the other. The first basic strategy to deal with the problem of terminological gaps in the TL is neology. Neologisms (complete new creations such as diseconomies of scale derived from economies of scale) are coined not only via term-formation processes such as derivation, compounding and blending, but also, much more relevantly for translation, via the strategy of borrowing a term from another language, resulting in either direct

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borrowings or loanwords, or adapted borrowings or loan translations/ semantic calques. Normally neologisms are imported into a TL to refer to new products or concepts in an unambiguous way but in many other cases a neologism ends up becoming a terminological variant of an already existing TL term denoting the same concept, thus creating a situation of semantic conflict, which can end with the prevalence of one (usually the loanword) over the other. Examples are the Italian loanwords privacy (personal data protection) and tradeoff (economics), which seem to have finally won out on their respective existing variants (sfera privata, vita privata, privatezza, riservatezza etc. and relazione inversa, compromesso). So although they provide in certain occasions a useful stylistic alternative for the translator trying to avoid lexical repetition in less specialised texts, or even a functional advantage for the subject specialist (cf. the near-­ synonyms Southern blotting, Southern transfer and Southern hybridization in Sect. 1.2.5.1), more often than not synonyms present considerable problems for the specialist and also the translator, who has to decide whether to replicate the ST terminological variant in the TT or eliminate it in the name of consistency. As a translation procedure, direct borrowing is called ‘transference’ by Newmark, ‘copying’ (words or structures) by Pym and ‘exoticization’, ‘foreignization’ or ‘estrangement’ by Chesterman (2016: 104–105), who places it among the pragmatic strategies to address culture-specific terms. Besides the prestige of English as the lingua franca for research publication and dissemination, other pragmatic motivations for importing English loanwords into languages of lesser international diffusion such as Italian are the following: –– the brevity of the loanword compared to the TL existing equivalent: for example, hoverboard / scooter elettrico autobilanciato (motorcycle manufacturing); key escrow / deposito di una copia della chiave (personal data protection); batch record / documentazione relativa alla fabbricazione del lotto (good manufacturing practice for drugs); –– the difficulty of finding an easy translation for the surface form of a term: for example, nouns ending in a preposition (turnover; top-­ down) and nouns ending in –ing (computer profiling; aliasing).

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–– the loanword’s connotations (e.g. the graphic and phonetic symbolism of the loanword big bang): loanwords are in fact far from being totally ‘aseptic’ and are often imported for stylistic reasons to capture the reader’s attention and support the understanding of a new concept.11 Loanwords are imported more massively in the specialised domains characterised by a lack of established terminology and terminological consistency, i.e. the social sciences and emerging disciplines such as IT and marketing, rather than in longer-established domains such as natural sciences, physics, mineralogy and medicine, which instead tend to import more loan translations (Dardano 1994: 550). For example, in the language of the protection of personal information, the Italian terminology of the process of data warehousing and the technology of database interconnection is wide open to English direct borrowings (chip card, front-­ end verification, matching, profiling etc.) and, to a lesser degree, adapted borrowings (matchare, warehousare) and loan translations (scavare nei dati ← data mining). However, such an influence does not extend to terms pertaining to the technology of cryptography, which often have pre-­ existing Latin/Greek-based equivalents in all languages including Italian (steganography / steganografia; encryption / cifratura; decryption / decifratura). This is because the origin of the science of encrypting and decrypting data, which only in relatively recent years has been made more effective (and complex) via informatisation, can be traced back to Julius Caesar. Formally, loanwords can be differentiated into simple loanwords (single words such as scanner, leasing, management), prefixed forms (multitasking), compounds (home video, screen saver, turnover, benchmarking), idioms (WYSIWYG—What you see is what you get) and adapted borrowings (scatterare ← (to) scatter; implementare ← (to) implement; randomizzato ← randomised). Another important type of borrowing in LSPs is the category of ‘mixed’ or ‘hybrid’ loanwords or ‘loanblends’, consisting of partly borrowed and partly native lexical constituents: for example, linfocita T-helper (← T-helper white blood cell) (virology); azienda capital-­ intensive (← capital intensive business), organizzazione non/no profit (← non-profit organization).

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Grammatically, most loanwords tend to be nouns. In languages having a gender dimension such as Italian, the main factors for choosing masculine or feminine for a loanword are the gender of the pre-existing TL term having a similar form and/or meaning (il budget ← il bilancio; il file ← l’archivio; la RAM ← la memoria ad accesso casuale) or the gender of the closest corresponding suffix in the TL: -zione (feminine) ← (t)ion and -ismo (masculine) ← -ism. However, these gender-assigning rules are far from watertight. For example, in the Italian language of IT there are many cases where the same loanword can be either masculine or feminine (il/la mail; la/il datawarehouse) and English loanwords are usually assigned the masculine gender even if the TL equivalent is feminine (il Web but la Ragnatela). A particular type of loanwords are initialisms and acronyms conveying new meanings, which are imported into Italian keeping the English sequence of their lettering: for example, the sequence of initials in the Italian acronym AIDS has not been adapted to the Italian order of the translation of the extended form Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (Sindrome da Immunodeficienza Acquisita), whereas SIDA is the acronym actually used in French and Spanish. In didactic and popular science texts, the first time an initialism/acronym appears in the TT its full form in English is usually provided together with its Italian translation for transparency reasons, even if it is widely recognised and belongs to the universal terminology shared by a specialised community, as in the following example from a textbook introducing IT concepts: In the computer, storage is on memory chips of many kinds which basically, however, fall into two categories: read-only memory (ROM) and random-­access memory (RAM). (Curtin et al. 1998: 62) Esistono diversi chip di memoria, ma fondamentalmente si possono distinguere due categorie: la ROM (Read Only Memory, memoria di sola lettura) e la RAM (Random Access Memory, memoria ad accesso casuale) [There are many kinds of memory chips, but basically they fall into two categories: ROM (Read Only Memory, memoria di sola lettura) and RAM (Random Access Memory, memoria ad accesso casuale). (Curtin et al. 1999: 58)

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As a translation procedure, loan translation or calque is called ‘through-­ translation’ by Newmark (1988: 81, 84) and ‘formal equivalence’ or ‘linguistic equivalence’ by Harvey (2000), and consists of the literal or ‘word-for-word translation’ of a ST term or expression (stadiazione ← staging; convalida concorrente ← concurrent validation). Calques from English are abundant in Romance languages, particularly in specialised fields such as IT, medicine/pharmacology and economics. Such a pervasiveness of loan translation (especially syntactic calquing for rendering complex terms) as a gap-filling strategy for translating terms and phraseological units of the TL has led some scholars to take a globalist view of the role of this strategy as a terminology fertiliser and contributor to the internationalisation of terminologies (Montero-Martinez et  al. 2001: 692). However, in some translation pairs such as English-Italian, loan translation has increasingly been replaced by directly borrowing English terms into the TL without any formal changes, a phenomenon that is now so widespread as to justify a more nationalist view defending the peculiarities and cultural identities of individual languages as well as the transparency rule of communication. Indeed, in the English-Italian language combination, in the last 20 years the guiding principle that disciplines characterised by long-established nomenclatures tend to import more loan translations seems to have become extinct as direct borrowings have now become widespread also in well-established disciplines such as physics and medicine. When they are imported into the TL, loan translations often co-exist either with their non-adapted form (direct borrowing)—which is used more frequently by specialists—or with the pre-existing TL term(s) by becoming a synonym in a specific specialised context. Examples in Italian are: ventilazione (← ventilation) / aerazione and orientazione (← orientation) / orientamento (solar thermal technology); urbanizzazione (← urbanisation) / urbanesimo (human geography). An interesting example of the specialised use of a loan translation is provided by the verb suggerire (← suggest) in Italian medical language. In a study based on comparable corpora of scientific articles on hepatitis C in English and Italian, Gavioli (1999: 341) found that there was a correspondence of use of the verb suggest and the loan translation suggerire only in those cases where the subject of the verb was a symptom or the pattern of the illness. Instead,

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when suggest had other subjects—such as authors, data, reports, findings and the like (Our results suggest that…)—different Italian verbs were used (emergere, deporre, evidenziare), either in the indicative (possiamo dire che…) or the conditional (Questi dati sembrerebbero indicare…).  In today’s Italian LSPs, however, the verb suggerire is used indiscriminately whatever the nature of its subject (I risultati suggeriscono che...). Grammatically, a loan translation that is a compound may necessitate some syntactic re-ordering of its elements in accordance with the structural constraints of the TL grammar (Adjective + Noun → Noun + Adjective: hard disk → Italian disco rigido). In some cases, however, especially when they designate conceptual innovations, compounds are imported from English with no structural modification, for example, with the modifier preceding, instead of following, the head it modifies (HIV positivo ← HIV positive; resistenza razza-specifica ← race-specific resistance). Another example of a change of the normal TL word order in a loan translation is the title Secretary General, which in English follows the French sequence of noun followed by adjective (Sager 1994: 226). Even more particular types of loan translations are those combining a loan with a borrowing and also a calque of the SL word order, such as the German term Check-in-Bereich (← check-in area) (Chesterman 2016: 92), and also those loan translations producing in the TL very compact nominal groups by simply juxtaposing their components (settimana uomo ← man week). Besides neology, the other basic strategy to create ad hoc translations to cover terminological gaps in LSP translation consists of a number of procedures that could be grouped together under the umbrella term ‘lexical and pragmatic paraphrase’ and have been referred to by different names by different authors: ‘functional equivalence’, ‘descriptive equivalence’ and ‘paraphrase’ (Newmark 1988: 83–84, 90); ‘translation by paraphrase using unrelated words’ (Baker 2011: 38–41); ‘circumlocution’ (Rogers 2015: 130–134); and the solution types ‘Perspective Change’, ‘Density Change’ and ‘Text Tailoring’ in the basic category ‘Expression Change’ (Pym 2016, 2018). The three main forms of lexical and pragmatic paraphrasing are the procedures of modulation, adaptation and explicitation (cf. Sect. 3.2.1).

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The two main mechanisms of modulation at the word level in specialised translation are ‘specific → general’ and ‘concrete → abstract’, corresponding respectively to Chesterman’s (2016: 99–100) semantic strategies of ‘abstraction change’ and ‘hyponymy’ (and specifically ‘ST hyponym → TT superordinate’). An example of a ‘concrete → abstract’ modulation is the translation of building blocks (chemistry) as elementi fondamentali in Italian and éléments fondamentaux [basic elements] in French, both languages with a higher level of abstraction and formality than English. An example of a ‘specific → general’ modulation, which is one of the commonest strategies used by professional translators for dealing with non-­ equivalence in the area of propositional meaning (Baker 2011: 23) also known as ‘generalisation’ (cf. Pym 2016), is translating a hyponym with the corresponding superordinate (computer = macchina [machine]). In languages normally tolerating a different level of reiteration of information such as English (a reader-oriented KISS language) and Italian (a writer-oriented KILC language) (cf. Sect. 3.2.2), generalisation can also be used as a procedure for avoiding lexical repetition in the TT in the English-Italian direction, as in the following example, where the repeated item Bryan Company has been translated using the corresponding superordinate azienda [company]: Thus, if a customer sues Bryan Company in 19x1, and it seems reasonably possible that Bryan Company will lose the law suit […]. (Anthony 1997: 66) Così, se nel 19x1 un cliente cita in giudizio la Bryan Company e appare ragionevolmente possibile che l’azienda possa perdere in futuro la causa […] [Thus, if a customer sues Bryan Company in 19x1 and it seems reasonably possible that the company will lose the law suit…]. (Anthony 1998: 71)

Indeed, as a translation procedure the semantic strategy of ‘synonymy’ (Chesterman 2016: 99) is not very appropriate in LSP translation for the already mentioned challenge to the univocity and consistency of terminology that synonyms represent. However, in those TLs where redundancies by reiteration are generally not tolerated, avoiding lexical repetition by using synonyms in the TT can be considered as a form of improvement of the text for its final readers. This is why strategies such as that of ‘Iconic Linkage’—recommended by Byrne (2006: 164ff., 2012: 130–131)

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for technical translation (cf. Sect. 2.2.1)—are in fact not necessarily linked in all languages to an improvement of the effectiveness and usability of the resulting translation. Yet, despite this general consideration, it is also true that in certain translation pairs such as English-Italian, the translator’s tendency to follow norms of ‘good style’ in Italian by avoiding lexical repetition and using greater lexical variety in the TT can give rise to referential ambiguity (Musacchio 2006: 179), affecting the clarity of the text and increasing the amount of cognitive effort needed by the reader in order to understand that text. Besides synonymy, alternative procedures to eliminate ST lexical repetitions in the TT whilst retaining the cohesion of the text involve the use of the lexicogrammatical cohesive devices of reference, conjunction and ellipsis. An example of an ST lexical repetition being substituted in the TT by lexical anaphora is the following, where the demonstrative proform followed by a noun (questi due elementi [these two elements]) summarises and encapsulates the two concepts that had been expressed in the previous sentence (andamento della crescita della moneta e della produzione [money growth and output growth]): Figure 10.2 shows money growth and output growth. There is a strong, but not absolute, link between money growth and output growth. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 212) La Figura 11.2 indica l’andamento della crescita della moneta e della produzione negli Stati Uniti: tra questi due elementi esiste un legame forte, ma non assoluto [Figure 11.2 shows money growth and output growth in the US: between these two elements there is a strong, but not absolute, link]. (Dornbusch et al. 1999: 271)

Finally, the other two forms of lexical and pragmatic paraphrasing for filling terminological gaps are the related procedures of adaptation and explicitation, which are also referred to as ‘Explicitation/Implicitation’ and ‘Multiple Translation’ by Pym (2016, 2018), and ‘explicitness change’ and ‘information change’ by Chesterman (2016: 105). They both entail a structural expansion of the TT having a descriptive/explanatory function. At the word-level, adaptation and explicitation result in ‘descriptive’ terms, which Newmark (1988: 153–154) distinguishes from ‘technical’

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terms: whilst technical terms are standardised and are more precise (i.e. have a narrower semantic range), descriptive terms (non-standardised language) are more general explanatory or descriptive couplets or phrases roughly corresponding to the lexical units that Rogers (2015: 130–134) calls ‘circumlocutions’. As opposed to loanwords and loan translations, which generally are more characteristic of expert-to-expert communication, descriptive terms are more likely to be used to cover terminological gaps at the lower levels of specialisation (popular science and textbooks). An example of adaptation is the translation of the term overbidding in a textbook on corporate strategy as lasciarsi prendere la mano nella corsa al rilancio [to be carried away in the rush to competitive bidding] (Collis and Montgomery 1997: 90, 1999: 117). On the other hand, an example of explicitation is the translation of “harsh” as eccessivamente disomogeneo [excessively heterogeneous], referring to a building mixture in the following sentence: […] a mortar made only with portland cement is «harsh» and does not flow well on the trowel. (Allen 1990: 261) […] se usato da solo [il cemento] può dare un impasto eccessivamente disomogeneo e difficilmente lavorabile con la cazzuola […if used on its own, portland cement can make a mixture excessively heterogeneous and not easily workable with a trowel]. (Allen 1997: 187)

Other terminological gaps that lexical strategies aim to address are those related to culture-specific terms. Within this category, pragmatic problems at the word-level are posed by the translation of institutional terms, which often do not have immediate correspondents in other languages/cultures. The lexical strategies to address the translation of culture-­ specific terms drawn from existing classifications (for example, Newmark 1988: 103; Harvey 2000; Baker 2011: 23–44) can be placed on a continuum ranging from SL-oriented to TL-oriented strategies, which Franco Aixelá (1996) calls respectively ‘conservative’ and ‘substitutive’ strategies, and Kwieciński (2001: 157, quoted in Katan 2009: 79–81) calls ‘exoticising’ and ‘assimilative’ procedures. The main SL-oriented lexical strategies the translator may choose in the translation of institutional terms, i.e. borrowing and loan translation,

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produce a neologism in the TL which can be either with or without an accompanying explanation (cf. Harvey 2000; Baker 2011: 33–36). For example, in Italian the borrowing il British Council and the calque l’Unione europea may also be accompanied by an explanatory description: il British Council, l’ente nazionale per la promozione della lingua inglese e della cultura britannica nel mondo [the British Council, the national organisation responsible for promoting the English language and British culture abroad] and l’Unione europea, un’organizzazione internazionale che comprende 27 paesi membri [the European Union, an international organisation made up of 27 member countries]. Whilst borrowing is a procedure for institutional terms which do not have recognised translations, loan translations are frequently used for the names of international organisations and as such they are accepted standard translations which the translator should know and use (Newmark 1988: 82, 99–101). TL-oriented lexical strategies for translating institutional terms range from a grouping of procedures which Kwieciński (2001, quoted in Katan 2009: 80) calls ‘rich explicatory’ to the most substitutive/assimilative procedure of deletion. Rich explicatory procedures include functional equivalence, descriptive equivalence and cultural equivalence, although the boundaries between these three types of equivalence are rather fuzzy, as illustrated by examples of cultural equivalents provided by Newmark (1988: 82–83) which partly overlap with some examples of functional and descriptive equivalents: baccalauréat → (the French) “A” level; Montecitorio → (the Italian) Westminster. Functional equivalence is achieved by replacing the SL referent with one in the TL having a similar function (e.g. the conversion of a date format). Descriptive equivalence means an approximate translation by using an explanatory description of the meaning of the culture-specific term (baccalauréat → French secondary school leaving exam) (Newmark 1988: 83), often in the form of a circumlocution following the culture-­ bound term translated as a borrowing, as in FAI (Fondo Ambiente Italiano) → FAI, the National Trust for Italy (cf. Rogers 2015: 131–132). Functional and descriptive equivalence broadly correspond to both Baker’s (2011: 38–41) strategy of ‘Translation by paraphrase using unrelated words’, which unpacks the propositional meaning of the source item, and Chesterman’s (2016: 101, 105–106) semantic strategy of Paraphrase (“a

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TT version that can be described as loose, free, in some contexts even undertranslated”) and pragmatic strategy of Information change (“the addition of new (non-inferrable) information which is deemed to be relevant to the TT readership but which is not present in the ST”). The procedure of cultural equivalence means an approximate translation of the SL culture-specific term by a TL culture-specific term and corresponds to the technique that Hervey et al. (1995: 20–22) call ‘cultural transplantation’, whereby the translator reinvents the text in a TL cultural setting. Cultural equivalence also includes the group of procedures that Kwieciński (2001: 157, quoted in Katan 2009: 80) calls ‘recognised exoticism’, i.e. default renditions of well-known geographical and personal names and titles (London → Londres etc.; the Prince of Wales → le Prince de Galles; Michelangelo → Michel-Ange etc.). Examples of cultural equivalence specifically in LSP translation can be found in the translation from American English to Italian of a fundraising manual, where US types of nonprofit organisation having no one-to-one correspondents in Italy have been replaced with roughly corresponding types listed in a report by the Italian National Statistical Institute ISTAT (Fusari 2009: 99–100). Cultural equivalence broadly corresponds to Baker’s (2011: 29–32) strategy of ‘Translation by cultural substitution’, Chesterman’s (2016: 104–105) pragmatic strategy of ‘Cultural filtering’ (also referred to as ‘naturalisation’, ‘domestication’ or ‘adaptation’)— whereby SL culture-specific terms are translated as TL cultural or functional equivalents to conform to TL norms—and to Pym’s (2016, 2018: 42–43) solution type “Cultural Correspondence” (Corresponding Idioms, Corresponding Culture-Specific Items etc.) in the basic category “Expression change”. A final strategy for translating culture-specific items is deletion, when the cultural term is considered to be irrelevant for TT readers, as in the deletion of the ‘Second Name’ field in the localisation from American English of an online subscription or registration procedure into languages/cultures where people are normally known only by their first name and surname. Deletion is called by Baker (2011: 42–43) ‘translation by omission’ and is discussed by Chesterman (2016: 106) within the pragmatic strategy of ‘Information change’ (“the omission of ST

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information deemed to be irrelevant” and ”which cannot be subsequently inferred”) and by Pym (2018: 57) within the solution type ‘Text Tailoring’. The choice of one or another of such procedures for translating culture-­ specific items, and institutional terms in particular, depends primarily on the pragmatic aspects of the wider contextual and situational dimensions of the translation defined by the translation brief (text genre, purpose of the text, addressees of the translation and use it will be put to). As a general translation approach, according to Newmark (1988: 151) the procedure of borrowing (or transcription) with or without an accompanying explanation should not be used in non-specialised texts. So, whilst in official and formal contexts institutional terms should be transferred (RSPCA → RSPCA), in informal contexts they should be “transferred, plus or minus” using a descriptive ‘non-standard’ term (RSPCA → German britischer Tierschutzbund; French société britannique pour la protection des animaux), unless concerned with international organisations, in which case they should always be translated via their official equivalent (WHO—World Health Organization → OMS—Organizzazione Mondiale della sanità / Organisation […] mondiale de la santé). However, besides the pragmatic contextual and situational dimensions, other variables that are important for choosing one specific procedure are intra-textual ones such as the function of the segment of the ST containing the institutional term. Functional-descriptive and cultural equivalence are techniques which are appropriate for the translation of an institutional, or more generally a culture-specific (non-technical), term in highly specialised texts where the denotational accuracy of the non-technical term is less important than the general transparency and clarity of the TT. For example, in the localisation of software manuals, culture-specific terms occurring in non-procedural segments of the text such as examples should be simply adapted to the target system: e.g. the translation of the highly US culture-­ specific office picnic with a more culturally neutral corporate dinner or even birthday party. Finally, lexical strategies aim to address the cross-language differences in register that are reflected in the variation of terminology according to different situations of use. For example, in medical English the many synonyms of the noun scan (i.e. computed tomography, computerized tomography, computerized axial tomography, CT and CAT) are relegated to

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extremely high levels of specialisation, whereas in Italian the highly technical term TAC (i.e. the acronym of the full form tomografia assiale computerizzata) is the only one used even in everyday parlance. A pragmatic problem typically deriving from the different internal stratification of SL and TL terminology on a cline of different types of writer-reader relationship and levels of specialisation is such a dissymmetry between SL and TL concerning the degree of discourse formality. This cross-linguistic different internal stratification of terminology should also be kept in translation. Hence, Newmark’s (1988: 160) observation that, when translating into languages such as English—where the technical term could be rare—from Romance languages and German— where the same concept is often referred to by the same technical term in different situations of use within the same discipline (e.g. the Italian medical term TAC)—the direction is often from a formal to an informal register (Graeco-Latin term → Germanic variant). The main lexical strategy to deal with this pragmatic problem is adaptation, involving the modification of the ST register to make it more suitable to the TT readers’ expectations. This corresponds to Chesterman’s (2016: 106–107) pragmatic strategy of ‘Interpersonal change’, involving a change in the relationship between text/author and reader by altering the formality level of the ST or its degree of emotiveness and involvement. Typically, in the translation from English to other languages such as German and Romance languages, the adaptation goes in the direction of an increase in the formality level of the TT compared to the ST. An example in the English-Italian translation pair is the nominalising strategy ‘Verb → (Empty) verb + Noun group’ (to sell → collocare sul mercato instead of vendere) (cf. endnote 9  in this chapter), which finds a parallel in the French-English translation pair in those lexical shifts involving a reduction of semi-empty words such as répresenter (→ is), résider (→ lies), porter le nom de (→ be called) and dans le cadre de (→ in) (Newmark 1988: 158). Other examples of the greater formality and abstractness of Italian lexis as compared to English are the translations hotels → strutture ricettive di tipo alberghiero (instead of alberghi) and river blindness → oncocercòsi / oncocerchiasi12 (instead of cecità fluviale/dei fiumi). Likewise, for the English-German translation pair, the more formal pattern of German LSP discourse as opposed to English LSP register

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has been found by Gerzymisch-Arbogast (1993: 43–44) in her analysis of the German translation of an English academic textbook of economics, and by Krein-Kühle (2011), in her study of register shifts at the lexical level outside terminology proper in a corpus of research and technical reports in the fields of coal chemistry and climate change. However, especially in didactic and popularising texts, there are cases where the informal language of the ST should not be adapted to the higher formality of the TL and translators “should resist the temptation of translating a descriptive by a technical term for the purpose of showing off [their] knowledge, thereby sacrificing the linguistic force of the ST descriptive term” (Newmark 1988: 153–154). The descriptive term in the ST may in fact serve specific communicative purposes: for example, the translation brief may specifically require that the didactic or popularising main function of the ST should be kept also in the TT. There could also be intra-textual reasons for translating a descriptive term of the ST with a descriptive term in the TT, for example to avoid repetition or make a contrast with another descriptive term within its immediate context. Yet, if the ST descriptive term is being used either because of the ST writer’s ignorance or negligence, or because the appropriate technical term does not exist in the SL, its translation with a technical term in the TT is certainly justified.

3.2.4.1  Strategies for Translating Metaphor Drawing on Göpferich’s (2008: 202–203) hypothetical model of processes for translating metaphor, an ‘analytical phase’—where the translator identifies a metaphor, interprets it and specifies its function in the text (reading phase)—is followed by the synthesis phase. This section will deal with this latter phase of the model, where the translator needs to choose the most appropriate translation procedure and the actual verbalisation of the metaphor in the TT on the basis of the macrostrategy chosen in the preparatory phase of the translation task by taking into account the parameters of level of specialisation of the text and function of the metaphor within the text as a whole. With specific reference to the translation of metaphor in LSP texts, this section also discusses the viability of the

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procedures drawn from theoretical translation approaches having a traditional view of metaphor as a linguistic device as opposed to the procedures resulting from approaches applying cognitive-linguistic categories to the study of the translation of metaphor (cf. Sect. 2.3.2.4). As noted by Schäffner (2012: 251) three main procedures for translating metaphor can repeatedly be found in Translation-Studies literature having a traditional view of metaphor as a linguistic device (the examples are my own): 1. metaphor into same metaphor—direct translation (SL DNA building blocks → TL mattoncini del DNA); 2. metaphor into different metaphor—substitution of the ST image by a TT metaphor with the same or similar sense and/or same or similar associations (SL hardware port → TL porta [door]); 3. metaphor into sense—paraphrase, shift to a non-figurative equivalent (SL crack the code → TL decriptare il codice). A more detailed list of procedures for translating metaphor is that provided by Newmark (1981: 84–96, 1988: 104–113, 2004). The following is an adaptation of the original 1981 list quoted by Schäffner which also takes into account Newmark’s own revisions in 2004: 1. Reproduce the same image in the TT; 2. Replace the ST image with a different standard TT image (not to clash with the TT culture); 3. Reduction to sense; 4. Conversion of metaphor to simile, retaining the image; 5. Conversion of metaphor (or simile) to sense, retaining the image; 6. Deletion of the metaphor. The procedures are arranged by Newmark according to preference, so that deleting a metaphor is only a very last option. A crucial integration of Newmark’s list is his classification of metaphors into at least four types (cf. also Dagut 1976; van den Broeck 1981), which are listed below in order of ‘boldness’, i.e. associations that their

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images can activate in the mind of the reader, and functional significance in the text (the examples are my own): • ‘original’, the most ‘serious’ metaphors (the building blocks of DNA), • ‘standard’ (or ‘stock’), still valid collocations (the first crack in the LC-­PIH wall), • ‘cliché’, overused collocations (gatekeeping functions), • ‘dead’, having an inoperative image (crack the code). For each type of metaphor, Newmark prescriptively suggests the most suitable translation procedures in order of appropriateness (the examples are my own): • original metaphors: Reproduce the same image in the TL (or, retaining SL image, convert to simile or to sense) (briques constitutives de l’ADN or éléments constitutifs de l’ADN); • standard metaphors: Retain or change SL image (or reduce to sense) (une première brèche dans le mur du… or un premier succès); • cliché metaphors: Convert to standard metaphor (or reduce to sense) (fonctions de gardien or fonctions • dead metaphors: Ignore image, as for non-figurative language (décrypter le code). For informative texts, and specifically for French to English medical translation, Newmark (1988: 151–152) suggests that the translator should eliminate features such as emotive language, connotations, sound-­ effects and original metaphors (by converting them into sense) (le triptyque de ce traitement → ‘the three stages of this treatment’). As also remarked by Harvey (1998: 277) concerning the use of creative metaphors in serious journalism, such linguistic and stylistic resources are in fact deemed appropriate in French but not in English, thus concluding that “‘non-literary’ and ‘literary’ as categories might not cross cultural boundaries unproblematically”. Another list of strategies for translating idioms (i.e. Newmark’s standard and cliché metaphors) is Baker’s (2011: 75–86):

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• using an idiom of similar meaning and form (i.e. consists of equivalent lexical items) (TL forcer la main à quelqu’un ← SL force someone’s hand), • using an idiom of similar meaning but dissimilar form (TL bomber le torse ← SL flex one’s muscles; TL aller à vau-l’eau ← SL go down the drain), • borrowing the SL idiom (TL/SL what you see is what you get—WYSIWIG), • translation by paraphrase (TL examiner le potentiel de collaboration ← SL explore avenues for cooperation), • translation by omission of either an entire idiom or a play on idiom (when the idiom has no close match in the TL or its meaning cannot be easily paraphrased or for stylistic reasons): examples are expressions such as to work through a problem and to pick out some things as signposts into a debate, which can indeed pose a translation problem in many languages (cf. Scarpa 2002) and are consequently often neutralised in the TT. Although Baker’s approach is not prescriptive, like Newmark’s her perspective has its starting point in the ST, which is also the translator’s perspective when having to translate a text, and her aim is to provide a theoretical basis for training translators and guiding the decisions they have to make in the course of their activity (Baker 2011: 4). When it comes to listing the strategies for translating idioms, Baker usefully suggests that, for their application, consideration should be given to factors such as the significance in the rest of the ST of the specific lexical items which constitute the idiom and the degree of appropriateness of using idiomatic language in a given register in the TL. However, when translating metaphors in LSP texts, a preliminary consideration is that, based on the distinction between theory-constitutive and exegetical metaphors, Baker’s strategies can in fact be applied only to exegetical metaphors (i.e. having an exemplifying function especially in pedagogical and popularising texts). In fact, given the key role played in scientific theory and meaning construction by theory-constitutive metaphors, the translator should always choose to translate them literally in the TT. For the English-Italian translation pair, examples of Baker’s first strategy (using a TL metaphor of similar meaning and form as the SL

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exegetical metaphor) are the following two, the first from a textbook in macroeconomics and the second from an introductory textbook in IT: However, many argued that further open market operations, leading to further cuts in interest rates, would get the economy moving again. That is, they were arguing that if a given dose of Fed medicine had less effect on bank lending than usual, the dose should be increased. (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 246) Ciò nonostante, molti esperti sostenevano che, grazie a ulteriori operazioni di mercato aperto, che avrebbero comportato altri tagli ai tassi d’interesse, l’economia si sarebbe rimessa in moto: se una determinata dose di ‘medicina’ prescritta dalla Fed aveva un effetto più blando del solito prestito bancario, la dose avrebbe dovuto essere aumentata [Nevertheless, many experts argued that, thanks to further open market operations, leading to further cuts in interest rates, the economy would get moving again: if a given dose of Fed ‘medicine’ had less effect on bank lending than usual, the dose should be increased]. (Dornbusch et al. 1999: 308) The PCI is constantly evolving to meet this challenge. It gets faster in one of two ways: its speed increases or its data path widens. This is like raising the speed limit on a freeway or adding additional lanes. (Curtin et al. 1998: 69) Per ottimizzare le qprestazioni del PCI si può ricorrere a due espedienti: aumentarne la velocità o ampliare la linea di trasmissione dei dati. È un po’ come se, dovendo rendere il traffico più scorrevole su un tratto autostradale, si scegliesse di aumentare il limite di velocità o di aggiungere altre corsie ] [Optimizing the level of performance of the PCI can be achieved in one of two ways: increasing its speed or widening its data path. This is a bit like, having to improve the traffic flow on a freeway, the choice was made of raising the speed limit or adding additional lanes]. (Curtin et al. 1999: 65)

In both instances the translator chose to retain in the TT the same lexical items of the ST metaphors but also to somewhat mitigate their directness, probably because she deemed they would be inappropriate in the TT register. In the first case the quotation marks were used to emphasise the shift of the ST metaphor from standard to original in the TT (dose of Fed medicine → dose di ‘medicina’ prescritta dalla Fed) and in the second the ST was expanded to include an hypothesis (dovendo rendere…) having an explicitating function.

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An example of Baker’s second strategy (using an idiom of similar meaning but dissimilar form) is the following, where the ST standard metaphor has been relexicalised in the TT by using the corresponding TL standard metaphor: You walk through a thick soup of data that flows from point to point. (Curtin et al. 1998: 186) In definitiva, siamo continuamente sommersi in un mare di dati [Summing this up, we are swimming in a sea of data]. (Curtin et al. 1999: 170)

Baker’s strategies of translating a ST metaphor by paraphrase or omission can be applied to those expressions that have no pedagogical or interpretive function and can consequently be demetaphorised or even omitted in the TT without affecting its communicative effectiveness, as the reference to the Looney Tunes “Beep beep” character in the following example: PCs, unlike Macintoshes, have a very simple speaker built into them that can do little more than beep like the road-runner. (Curtin et al. 1998: 71) I PC, a differenza dei Macintosh, hanno un diffusore estremamente semplice con prestazioni molto limitate [PCs, unlike Macintoshes, have a very simple speaker built into them which has a very limited performance]. (Curtin et al. 1999: 67)

Besides these more traditional approaches, lists of translation procedures have also been produced by descriptive studies applying cognitive-­ linguistic categories to the study of the translation of metaphor. In a cognitive perspective, the difficulty of translating metaphor is the result of a lack of correlation between the metaphorical conceptual mapping systems used in the SL and TL to express the same concept. Relative lack of difficulty then corresponds to similar mapping conditions being used in the same conceptual metaphor and an equivalent metaphorical expression in the SL and TL: for example, building blocks of DNA → briques constitutifs (DNA IS A BUILDING). By the same token, lack of correlation between conceptual mappings is manifested in metaphorical expressions in a minimum of two main types of cross-language differences

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between conceptual metaphors and their linguistic variations (Deignan et al. 1997; Mandelblit 1996): 1. same conceptual metaphor but different linguistic expression (similar mapping conditions but different lexical implementation): for example, flex one’s muscles SL → bomber le torse—POWER IS A HUMAN BODY; 2. different conceptual metaphors used in the two languages (different mapping conditions): for example, THE SYMBOL ‘@’ IS AN ANIMAL vs. THE SYMBOL ‘@’ IS A FOOD (e.g. it is called ‘snail’ in Italian and ‘monkey’ in Polish but ‘pickled fish roll’ in Slovak). Despite the reluctance of cognitive researchers studying the translation of metaphor to put the results of their studies to practical uses, the rather long lists of parameters drawn from metaphor theory and cognitive linguistics that can be used to produce taxonomies of procedures alternative to the traditional ones offer much potential for Translation Studies research (Schäffner and Shuttleworth 2013: 95). For example, parameters that have been used are those of mapping, typological class, purpose, level of categorisation, metaphor type, metaphor provenance and conventionality (Shuttleworth 2011). The resulting lists of procedures are very ‘delicate’ in terms of depth of analysis of the metaphors and their realisation in the TL. Not only can they provide new insights into the cognitive processes that lead a translator’s tackling a translation problem such as metaphor in a certain direction rather than another, but they are also “a valuable contribution to the study of metaphors” outside the confines of Translation Studies (Schäffner 2004: 1268). However, the lists resulting from pivotal studies such as Al-Harrasi’s (2001) and Schäffner’s (2004) are, for one thing, ideally suited to analyse political discourse, which can be considered as an LSP only in a very broad sense (cf. Sect. 1.1). For another, these lists are not meant to provide easy-to-use-and-memorise guidelines to practising translators to help them in their decision-making activity during the reformulation phase, because they should only be considered as ‘cases’, merely “observational data, resulting from a comparative analysis of STs and TTs” which are “are not meant to be turned into translation procedures to be offered

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to translators as ready-made solutions, telling them how to translate a specific, in this case conceptual, metaphor in a text” (Schäffner 2004: 1267). Such limitations also emerge in Schäffner and Shuttleworth’s (2013) article on the potential benefits of a closer interaction between metaphor studies and process-oriented empirical studies (think-aloud protocols, keystroke logging software and eye tracking). Indeed, in order to describe their findings, all the authors of the studies investigating cognitive processes in the translation of metaphor which were quoted in Schäffner and Shuttleworth’s article “tended to focus on linguistic expressions and more traditional strategies” (2013: 104), instead of using parameters drawn from metaphor studies and cognitive linguistics. In other words, when faced with the very practical tasks of either translating a metaphor or studying how that metaphor has been translated, both translators and researchers still think in terms of a traditional understanding of metaphor as a word or expression being used ‘non-literally’ to talk (and potentially think) about one thing (‘object’) in terms of another (‘vehicle’). Another problem lies with the emphasis placed by some cognitive-­ descriptive studies on starting their analysis from the translation product (TT) instead of the ST. This means that the resulting list of solutions will not include the two procedures “Reduction to sense” and “Deletion of metaphor” (cf. Schäffner 2004), which were found by Shuttleworth (2011: 321) to be very common in a multilingual study on the translation of metaphor in popular science, where he observed a large number of omissions of both mappings and replacements with non-metaphorical material. On the other hand, in a later study based on the same multilingual LSP corpus, Shuttleworth found some evidence of the far less common movement from ST non-rich image to TT rich-image metaphors (for example, the verb form captured in novel aminoacids ‘captured’ a subset of tRNAs translated in German as kidnappten ‘kidnapped’) (2014: 43). Likewise, in the researcher’s two studies on the translation of metaphor in popular science (Shuttleworth 2011, 2014), there is only one instance of the procedures “Non-metaphor into metaphor” and “Zero into metaphor”, which were identified by Toury (1995) in literary translation (Shuttleworth 2011: 312).

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In his later study (2014), Shuttleworth provides an interesting list of translation procedures of LSP metaphor based on the ‘rich/non-rich image’ and ‘mapping’ parameters. Although being nearly as long as the lists of other cognitive-descriptive studies (nine procedures in total), from the point of view of translation practice Shuttleworth’s procedures have the advantage of providing a link between a conceptual view of metaphor and more traditional translation strategies. In the procedure of ‘retention’, ST rich images and non-rich images remain within their respective category in the TT, although the actual wording may be reduced or increased, or the mapping may change due to cultural differences. Within the main two categories of (1) rich image translated by a non-rich image (which is the greater tendency across all TLs) and (2) non-rich image translated by a rich image, examples of ‘modification’ procedures are the following: 1. use of a word that is more immediate to most people’s experience (TL open canals that connect them ← SL doorways connecting abutting astrocytes) 2. the use of a more abstract word (TL projection/ramification ← SL branch); 3. partial deletion13 of the metaphorical expression (partial removal: TL identified ← SL mapped; partial omission: TL Animals addicted to cocaine have far more spines on their dendrites ← SL But those who become addicted to cocaine sprout additional spines on the branches); 4. replacement of a vivid word with a more neutral one (TL communicate ← SL chatter); 5. generalisation (TL higher ← SL up the evolutionary ladder); 6. use of a vivid, specific image (TL kidnapped ← SL captured); 7. explicitation (TL unexpected gifts—as if nature wanted to reward the push into new territory ← SL a kind of reward from nature); 8. addition or deletion of metaphorical expressions. Compared to traditional procedures for translating metaphor (Newmark, Chesterman and Baker), Shuttleworth’s ‘rich/non-rich image’ parameter in most cases actually adds an extra degree of delicacy to such procedures. So, in the example of Shift 6 (TL the newcomers …

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‘kidnapped’ some tRNAs… ← SL novel aminoacids ‘captured’ a subset of tRNAs), traditional procedures—‘Reproducing the same original image in the TL’, ‘Retaining the ST trope in the TT (the TT trope is of the same type but only semantically related)’ and ‘Using an idiom of similar meaning and form’—are less precise than Shuttleworth’s “non-rich image to rich image: use a vivid, specific image”, which also captures the fact that in the TL the SL original image becomes more specific and even more original. Two findings from Shuttleworth’s analysis (2011, 2014) may prove to be particularly important in providing guidance for the LSP translator’s decisions. The first is that, in all languages, translators intervened less at the macrolevel of mappings and more at the microlevel of individual metaphorical expressions.  Indeed, they tended to “refrain from taking global decisions regarding the acceptability (or otherwise) of a particular mapping in the target context”, whilst individual metaphorical expressions were “lost in translation more frequently” (Shuttleworth 2011: 309, 321). The second finding is that the metaphorical expressions which were “more skeletal, abstract or general” (i.e. non rich) were “more stable in translation”, i.e. more likely to be translated without significant addition or reduction, as compared to those metaphorical expressions that were “more detailed, concrete or specific” (i.e. rich) (Shuttleworth 2014: 41). This finding, Shuttleworth adds, “seems to contradict a well-known longstanding hypothesis to the effect that ‘the bolder and more creative the metaphor, the easier it is to repeat it in other languages’ (Klöpfer 1967: 116)”, an observation which Klöpfer made, however, specifically for the translation of literary texts and not for LSPs. One possible explanation for both of Shuttleworth’s findings may have something to do with the different functions of metaphors in popular science, i.e. the distinction between theory-constitutive and exegetical metaphors (cf. Sect. 1.2.5.3). On the one hand, the very broad mappings that translators in his corpus were reportedly reluctant to intervene on— for example, BRAIN CELLS ARE HUMANS; GENETIC MATERIAL IS TEXT; NEURONS ARE TREES etc., each reflecting relatively large numbers of metaphorical expressions—may be considered to be conceptual theory-constitutive metaphors underlying the specific domain of

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molecular genetics, which in fact translators are expected to master and translate literally in the TT. On the other hand, the more specific and concrete mappings that translators were less reluctant to intervene on (either by modifying or omitting them, or by replacing them with non-­ metaphorical material)—for example, NATURE IS A BLIND DESIGNER and NATURE IS A SOFTWARE DESIGNER—might be considered as exegetical metaphors having the function of helping the reader to interpret new and unfamiliar concepts. It might then be concluded that theory-constitutive metaphors tend to have the same linguistic realisation in different languages and text types, whilst exegetical metaphors (which are furthermore typical of scientific education and popular science) are more likely to have different linguistic realisations in different languages and text types. Finally, Shuttleworth’s conclusion (2011: 321) that “on the whole, there is little evidence to suggest that metaphor presents a major problem to translators of popular science texts” can be seen as encapsulating the general tendencies in LSP translation to translate literally ST metaphors which are functionally significant (constitutive metaphors, technical taxonomies etc.), as well as, increasingly, not to translate them at all, possibly because of the international dimension of scientific and technological research, with English as its language of communication. An example of this latter tendency is provided by Musacchio’s (2017: 82) diachronic analysis of the translation into Italian of the term charm, i.e. a specific type of quark, which was initially translated literally (fascino, incanto/ incantesimo, particelle dotate di incanto), also in hybrid translations such as charm (fascino, incantesimo) and quark incantato, but was eventually adopted as a direct borrowing (charm), with its compounds following Italian (rather than English) word-formation rules (quark charm). Imports such as this are of course much less connotated in Italian than in English, as they have lost much of their metaphorical impact and have been relegated to a specialised use only.

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Notes 1. The French translations of all the examples in this chapter have been taken from the French translation and adaptation by Marco Fiola of my Italian book on specialised translation (Scarpa 2010). 2. Cf. Ivir’s (1981: 58) ‘formal correspondence’ translation hypothesis and Tirkkonen-Condit’s (2005) ‘monitor model’. The correlation between a deviation from an ideal default literal translation and a resulting higher effort on the part of the translator has also been quantified and empirically assessed in a more recent process-oriented study (Schaeffer and Carl 2014) by measuring gazing and translation time: the researchers found that production time was inversely proportional to the literality of the produced translations. 3. However, this principle is not universally accepted by translation scholars, the opposite view being that translators are not in principle responsible for ‘improving’ a defective ST (cf. Hervey and Higgins 1992: 171). 4. Pym’s (2016: 219ff.) proposed typology has three simple categories (Copying, Expression Change and Content Change), each divided into a total of seven ‘solution types’: Copying words (sounds, morphology, script etc.) and Copying structure (prosodic features, fixed phrases, text structure etc.); Perspective change (focus, voice, word-class etc.) etc. The top-­down order in which the solutions are listed represents an increasing translatorial effort, which should ideally correlate with the degree of risk involved: the higher the risk, the greater the effort by the translator to avoid loss of trust or breakdown of communication. 5. Note that, as opposed to ‘obligatory’ strategies, i.e. strategies to address differences between the SL and the TL systems (langue), I am considering as ‘optional’ strategies also what Calzada Pérez (2007: 150) calls ‘preferential’ shifts, i.e. “differences in stylistic preferences between the SL and the TL (parole)”, which are in turn distinguished from ‘optional’ shifts, caused instead by the translation process itself. In other words, I am not distinguishing supposedly unconscious norm-related optional strategies between SL and TL from those optional shifts consciously introduced by the translator. 6. In all the examples the emphasis has been added, unless otherwise specified. 7. Choosing the thematic organisation of the TL, thus prioritising aspects of information structure over syntactic structure, has also been one of

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the results of a later study by Rogers (2006) analysing parallel texts in economics in the German-English translation pair. However, the same study also found evidence of an overwhelming tendency to resolve communicative/syntactic tensions between SL and TL in favour of the linear order of the ST rather than the TT. 8. Also called ‘Oxford comma’, even though it is more typical of the American standard usage (Truss 2003: 84). 9. The nominalising strategy Verb → (Empty) verb + Noun group (modify / effettuare una modifica; finish / portare a compimento is typical of the English-Italian translation direction, and also of the English-French combination (cf. Newmark’s 1988: 159 recommendation of deleting ‘empty’ past participles such as disposé and situé). In other translation pairs, these constructions are translated by one single verb and omission of the noun group. For example, in Italian-German: Quando necessario, eseguire l’operazione di caricamento del sale prima di avviare il programma di lavaggio [When necessary, carry out the operation of adding the salt before starting the washing programme] → Nötigenfalls das Salz vor dem Start des Spülprogramms einfüllen [If necessary, pour in the salt before starting the washing programme] (Hempel 2009:113); in FrenchEnglish: les signes en présence d’un asthmatique attirent vers la notion d’allergie microbienne → the signs suggest that the asthmatic patient has a bacterial allergy (Newmark 1983: 161). 10. A third possible strategy to deal with the problem of terminological gaps in the TL, that is translation by omission, has not been mentioned among lexical strategies at the word-level for its very limited applicability to specialised terminology proper (as opposed to culture-specific terms and metaphor). As far as I can see, the only case when a SL term can be omitted in the TL is when it is used as a synonym in combination with the main term it is a lexical variant of. For example, in “There are other names for the full-employment budget surplus. Among them are the cyclically adjusted (or deficit), the high-employment surplus, the standardized employment surplus and the structural surplus” (Dornbusch et al. 1998: 206), the two terms high-employment surplus and standardized employment surplus are both used in the ST only as two of the four synonyms of the main term full-employment budget surplus and have been omitted in the Italian translation because in the TL the main term avanzo di piena occupazione has only two synonyms and not four as in English: “L’avanzo di piena occupazione viene definito anche in altri modi, fra cui avanzo

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(o ­disavanzo) corretto per il ciclo e avanzo strutturale” [The full-employment budget surplus can also be defined as the cyclically adjusted (or deficit) and the structural surplus] (Dornbusch et al. 1999: 264). 11. However, direct borrowings can also be imported in the TL exactly for their lack of connotations: for example, the loanword mouse (hardware) was imported in Italian precisely because the symbolism associated to the loan translation *topo was considered to be too informal and ludic. 12. In English, of course, this illness can also be called onchocerciasis, that is the same term of Greek origin used in Italian, which however is used only in extremely specialised contexts. 13. The procedure of ‘deletion’ in the TL is further distinguished by Shuttleworth (2014: 36) into two types: (1) removal, “when a metaphorical expression is replaced by identifiable non-metaphorical textual material”, and (2) omission, “when a metaphorical expression is totally missing from the target text”.

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4 Quality in Specialised Translation

The concept of “quality” is central in translation but as difficult to define as it is in interpreting, where “a good interpretation […] has often been referred to as the Loch Ness monster: it is very difficult to spot, but once seen, it is immediately recognisable” (Iglesias Fernández 2010). Yet every day translations are evaluated, and not only formally by examiners grading students or by evaluators in public calls for translators by international organisations and government bodies. Much more frequently, translation quality is evaluated informally and intuitively, but not for this less crucially, by the clients who actually pay for a translation service and, ultimately, the end-users of the translation. Each of the main participants in the translation process—the author of the ST, the translator, the commissioner and the target users—has a specific perception of the quality of the translation product, which can be in conflict with the viewpoint of the other participants, each view deriving from the specific needs and different motivations concerning the same translation (Gile 2009: 37–46). Both the ST author and the client (i.e. the commissioner) nearly always do not have the necessary competences (linguistic, cultural and translational) to evaluate the translation’s quality, and, in any case, a commissioner may be more interested in how quickly the final product is © The Author(s) 2020 F. Scarpa, Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation, Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting, https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51967-2_4

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delivered than its quality. The end-recipients of the TT can assess how well the translation works (that is its functionality) but not always its accuracy against the ST—which usually they do not have access to—and are often interested only in some specific portions of the translation and not the whole TT.  As for the translator, she has the necessary competences to evaluate the quality of her work but usually is less competent in the specialised domain of the translation and its terminology rather than the ST author and the TT end-user. This variety of motivations and needs that can influence the evaluation of the quality of a translation makes quality a relative notion, which is always negotiated among translator, commissioner and end-users. Even ‘universal’ parameters of quality such as accuracy and readability, rooted as they are in Chesterman’s (2016: 170–184) four fundamental ‘ethical values’ (clarity, truth, trust and understanding), are in fact relative, as they should always be contextualised within the different situations where the translation evaluation is actually carried out. The quality of translation as a communication service is then a relative concept as there are different ‘fit for purpose’ quality levels. In the first part of this chapter, after reviewing industry-wide international standards on quality in professional translation (Sect. 4.1) and their emphasis on revision in order to produce a high-quality translation, the parameters for assessing the quality of a translation product will be discussed from the double perspective of specialised translation as an object of study/teaching (theoretical-didactic approach) for translation theorists and trainers, and as an activity of service (professional approach) carried out by professional translators and revisers (Sect. 4.2). Whilst in both approaches the focus of evaluation is on translation as a product, the first approach is mainly text-based and ‘qualitative’, whilst the second approach is mostly based on the TT end-users and ‘quantitative’, and therefore much more process-related than the first (cf. Palumbo 2009: 98). The different emphases between these two general approaches to quality will be taken as exemplary of the still existing ‘yawning gap’ (Chesterman and Wagner 2002: 1) or ‘gulf ’ (Byrne 2007: 2; Drugan 2013: 36, 39) or, less dramatically, ‘divide’ (Drugan 2013: 38) between translation professionals and theorists, which has even been quantified by Williams (2004: xiv–xvii) as ten main areas of disagreement between the two sets. Although Translation Studies scholars are often seen as lacking

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a sufficient knowledge of how translations are assessed in daily working practice, in the last 20 years they have been in fact increasingly involved in the search for measurable evaluative criteria of quality and there is a “substantial convergence” (Hague et al. 2011: 258) among them on the role played in quality by social and situational factors and, even more, the economic aspects of time and cost.1 Given that there is no agreement on any one single model for assessing the quality of a translation either within Translation Studies or indeed the translation industry, the holistic perspective taken in this chapter is nevertheless based on the synergy that should exist between the two different general approaches to quality above. This is why, following Hönig (1998: 15), Lauscher (2000: 164) and, more recently, Hague et al. (2011: 258), I consider quality rather as an area where a collaboration between the ‘theoretical’ and ‘practical’ worlds of translation could be (and, more often than acknowledged, actually is) particularly beneficial to both groups. The end-product of this cooperation can be envisaged to be one or more models for assessing translation quality to be used by evaluators to make judgements which are objective, that is repeatable by the same assessor in the same situation and reproducible by other assessors in different situations, whilst, at the same time, taking into account the complex real-world translation processes.2 After a brief discussion of the possible categorisation of translation quality in different levels relative to time, cost and use of the TT (Sect. 4.3), the second and longest part of the chapter will be devoted to revision (Sect. 4.4), the final stage of the translation process to assess and/or improve the suitability for purpose of the final product. After comparing and contrasting revision with other related activities, even outside translation proper (editing and proofreading) (4.4.1), different revision procedures will be identified depending on whether it is carried out only on the TT or on both ST and TT, how much of the text is being checked, when it is carried out in the translation process, the purpose it aims to fulfil, whether it is performed by a different person or by the translator herself and the types of stylistic interventions by the reviser to improve the text (4.4.2). In the last part of the chapter, quality will be discussed from the more pedagogic perspective of evaluating translation errors (Sect. 4.5). After

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defining errors and identifying their most common causes (4.5.1), a classification of translation errors and an evaluation model will be presented (4.5.2, 4.5.3), both aiming at being of practical use to practitioners. To do this, by drawing also on some parameters used in professional contexts, the often too abstract and unwieldy or, to the contrary, too concise, error categories of scholarly taxonomies will be replaced by categories based on more intuitive and easy-to-use notions, thus allowing prescriptive judgements to be made which are also flexible enough to be adjusted to the actual assessment situation.

4.1 Q  uality of the Translation Process: International Standards Any discussion on translation quality cannot possibly ignore the definition of ‘quality’ in the professional world of translation, where the focus on quality has increasingly intensified following the tighter deadlines and new work-methods brought about by the Internet Age (frequent updates, automation of translation workflows etc.). Besides the dearth of suitable professionals and the lack of financial viability of professional translation, these new developments are in fact all seen by professional translators as factors having negative consequences for translation quality (Drugan 2013: 1, 18, 25, 28). As in the case of any other product or service, translation quality is guaranteed by (inter)nationally agreed standards that govern the processes before, during and after translation. These standards are technical norms defining the quality features of a product or service, especially for certification purposes. The highest certification of quality for an organisation in Europe is that provided by the series of ISO 9000 “International quality management standard”, which has been adopted by CEN as EN 29000 and subsequently published as national standards by individual countries: for example, BS 5750 by the British Standards Institution; DIN ISO 9000 by the Deutsches Institut für Normung; NFX 50 by the Association Française de Normalisation; UNI EN 29000 by the Ente Nazionale Italiano di Unificazione etc. (cf. Sect. 1.2.5.1). Not specific to any one

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industry sector and ideally aimed worldwide, the ISO 9000 series defines quality as “the degree to which a set of inherent characteristics fulfils requirements” (ISO 9004: 2018), where a ‘requirement’ is further defined as a “need or expectation that is stated, generally implied or obligatory”. This definition cannot however be used as a guideline for the very practical purpose of evaluating the quality of a product or service because, by necessarily linking quality to requirements, it makes quality a relative concept, which cannot be established a priori in a vacuum. Indeed, for any type of product and/or service (including translation), there are different levels of quality to meet different customer requirements, which is why, in assessing quality, the contractual relationship between customer and provider of a product or service becomes central, a fact that is reflected in the requirements for Quality Assurance (QA) which are aimed at organisations wishing to develop a quality management (QM) system (ISO 9000: 2015). Conforming to the requirements specified in the ISO standards means getting an organisation ‘certified’ by an independent, external body (the Certification Body) that has audited that organisation’s QM system. Though certification is voluntary, there has been a huge rise in certification (Drugan 2013: 74), presumably because a certified business offers an implicit guarantee to its clients of the effectiveness and efficiency of its operations and, ultimately, is more competitive on the market. However, what emerges from these general ISO standards, which are suited to any sector of industry and type or size of organisation, and also from the standards that are specific to translation services (cf. Sect. 1.1.1), is that they all refer to the processes regulating the contractual relation between client and provider, that is they do not describe the quality of the product itself. In the specific case of translation, examples of such processes are the specification of the equipment and human resources needed, and the identification and description of the different phases of the translation workflow, from the client’s brief to the delivery of the translation. The inference that quality of process equates to or results in quality of product may very well be true in the case of a manufacturing product, but seems somewhat more tenuous in the provision of a non-manufacturing service based on human creativity such as translation. Moreover, given the total lack in such a market of common and harmonised rules,

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the publication of quality standards specific to the so-­called ‘translation service providers’ (from now onwards, TSPs)—a generic term designating both translation companies and freelance translators—has been of great importance. When it came out in 2006, the European standard EN 15038 “Standard for Translation Service Providers”—subsequently published as national standards by individual countries (for example, BS EN 15038 in the UK; DIN EN 15038 in Germany; NF X50-670 in France; UNI EN 15038 in Italy etc.)—was a great improvement on the international and national standards for translators that it replaced. The most innovative and high-value requirement of the standard was the relatively costly one of ‘third-party revision’, carried out by an external reviser, which is the reason why, when it was issued, freelancers and smaller TSPs considered it as a threat ultimately leading to the further strengthening of big multinational language companies. Such a fear is far from being unjustified in a translation industry where, even many years after the publication of the CEN standard, the desire of the majority of customers is for a cheap translation of merely acceptable quality and the extra cost implied by the standard may well end up by driving customers away from more expensive certified TSPs. The requirement of third-party revision has remained, however, also in the more recent international quality standard for the translation industry ISO 17100:2015 “Translation services—Requirements for translation services” (ISO 17100: 2015), which has replaced the CEN standard on which it is based and aims to become a global (that is not only European) reference for TSPs. Other useful features of this ISO standard are Clause 2 “Terms and definitions”, containing as many as 42 terms related to the concepts commonly used in the provision of translation services, and Clause 3.1.4 “Translator qualifications”, specifying the formal qualifications to demonstrate the professional competences of translators that are listed in Clause 3.1.3. The requirements of the standard do not include the output of MT systems, but the post-editing process of MT has gained so much ground in today’s translation industry that a further standard, ISO 18587 “Translation services—Post-editing of machine translation (MT) output and the post-editing process”, was released in the same year as ISO 17100 to certify the specific quality

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processes and requirements which are applicable to human intervention on the output of MT systems.3 Despite, or perhaps because of, the overtly stated viability of MT for translating projects that need to be completed within a very tight timeframe and/or with a reduced budget, the ISO 18587 standard also contains the categorical statement that no machine translation system can replace the work of human translators. Besides these ISO standards, there also other standards for translation service provision that are recognised by professional translators around the world, such as GB/T 19682—2005 “Target text quality requirements for translation services” in China, CAN/CGSB-131.10—2017 “Translation Services” in Canada, and ASTM F2575-14 “Standard Guide for Quality Assurance in Translation” in the United States. Interestingly, both the ASTM and ISO 17100 standards are aimed not only at TSPs and translator-training institutions but at all stakeholders in the field of translation, including commissioners and end-users of translation. Despite not describing the quality parameters that should characterise the translation product based on the translation brief, the industry standards that are specific to translation services are oriented to the processes for providing quality translations and regulating the contractual relation between client and provider. As observed by Prieto Ramos (2015: 17, 26) about the ASTM standard, the standards are then more oriented to ‘translation service management’, that is the implementation of “quality assurance policies […] matching offer and demand in a cost-effective way, […] in order to achieve the highest possible quality with the available material and human resources, and within the relevant timeframe”. However, although it is not possible to equate the quality of the translation process with that of the translation product, it is still the case that the translation process—thereby including the problem-solving strategies adopted by the translator—has a significant impact on the quality of the translation product. Consequently, on the one hand, the transparent definition of the entire translation workflow provided by the standards— from the initial request by the commissioner (Pre-translation stage), through the translation activity proper (Translation stage) down to the activities before and immediately after the final delivery (Post-translation stage)—and, on the other, the TSPs’ compliance to the requirements set out by the standards (for example, the compulsory third-party revision of

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any translation before delivery) can be both considered to a large extent as good predictors of the quality of the resulting translation. This is why it has been claimed (Vuorinen 2011) that a professional approach to translation quality aims at ensuring high quality throughout the various stages of the translation process: • before the translation (for example, drafting, legal revisers, editing of originals); • during the translation (working methods, tools, information sharing); and • after the translation (for example, revision, evaluation, feedback, ex-­ post measures). One final notation concerns the post-translation stage, where quality not only refers to the translation activity in itself but also to the translation service, where the assessment parameters have more to do with the client’s feedback on questions such as the following: Have deadlines been met? How well has the relationship with the client been managed by the TSP? Has the TSP been providing sufficient feedback to the client on work progress? All in all, then, although the standards in themselves do not guarantee the quality of a translation product (cf. Biel 2011), the attempt of these standards to identify a priori the requirements of translation quality may well be considered, as Gouadec (2010b: 272) notes, “a welcome evolution of the translation professions and has undoubtedly contributed greatly to the improvement of the overall competencies of translators and of the overall quality of translations”.

4.2 Q  uality of the Translation Product: The Parameters Given that the assessment of the quality of an actual translation “is obviously and necessarily product-based” (House 2011: 225), the only way to avoid the traditional lack of objectivity in evaluating it is to make

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accessible to the evaluator the same set of guiding parameters that have also been previously used by the translator for her decision-making processes in the production phase. Based on these parameters, an actual TT can be compared to an ‘ideal’ version of the TT serving as a point of reference—a ‘gold standard’ of the TT against which all other possible versions can be compared (cf. Lauscher 2000: 162). The identification of such guiding parameters “should remain traceable between the translation brief and the translation product both in the pre-delivery (self-)revision and in post-delivery assessment” (Prieto Ramos 2015: 17). In specialised translation the parameters to assess the quality of the product may vary according to two different approaches depending on whether the assessment is made: (1) by translation theorists and trainers (‘theoretical-didactic approach’), or (2) in professional translation (‘professional approach’). These two approaches are very broad and are a simplified version of other, more delicate, categorisations of translation quality assessment such as those by Williams (2004), Chesterman (2016: 121–138) and House (1997, 2015). Taking the five different forms of assessment categorised by Chesterman (2016) in relation to his ‘expectancy norms’ (cf. Sect. 2.2), the professional approach focuses more on ‘prospective assessment’, examining the purpose of the text and its effect on its readers, whilst the theoretical-didactic approach focuses more on ‘retrospective assessment’, looking at the relation between TT and ST, and on ‘introspective assessment’, attempting to look into the translator’s mind. As for Chesterman’s remaining two categories of ‘pedagogical assessment’, examining errors, and ‘lateral assessment’, measuring quality by comparing the TT with TL native comparable texts, both forms of assessment can be taken to apply to the same extent to both the theoretical-­ didactic and the professional approaches to assessing the quality of a translation. Broadly speaking, the TT is considered from two different perspectives: –– in the theoretical-didactic approach, the TT is a text derived from the ST, which it should always be compared to in order to evaluate how accurately its contents has been reformulated in the TL;

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–– in the professional approach, the TT is an autonomous text in the TL, which should meet the expectations of its end-users and be as functional and consistent as the ST (presumably) was in the SL. These two perspectives are of course presented as clear-cut extremes only as a measure of convenience and represent different emphases rather than absolute differences. In the two approaches, the guiding parameters for the quality of the TT are respectively those of ‘accuracy’ and ‘readability’ (theoretical-didactic approach), and ‘adequacy’ and ‘acceptability’ (professional approach) (Table 4.1). In this model, the parameters have been deliberately limited to four to avoid the criticism of impracticality that has often been levelled by the industry against academic quality models, which are often seen as too complex for applicability in daily working practice (Drugan 2013: 190). The theoretical-didactic perspective is based on a fundamentally ‘qualitative’ view of translation, where evaluative judgements focus on the ‘ideal’, hence static, parameters of accuracy and readability, which are mainly linguistic and textual. Instead, a professional perspective is mainly based on a fundamentally ‘quantitative’ view of translation, where evaluative judgements focus on the ‘real’, hence dynamic, parameters of adequacy (effectiveness and efficiency of the translation in economic terms) and acceptability (conformity of the translation to the specific norms and conventions of the TL genre). Indeed, assessing the quality of a translation in a professional context inevitably entails taking into account both the client’s specifications in the translation brief and economic Table 4.1  Parameters for assessing quality in specialised translation

Professional approach (focus on end-user)

Theoreticaldidactic approach (focus on text) Accuracy

Adequacy

TT as by-product of ST

Readability

Acceptability

TT as autonomous text

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parameters such as time and cost. In the translation market, then, the ‘ideal’ parameters of accuracy and readability are integrated with, and often entirely replaced by, more dynamic and ‘real’ quality parameters, which are rather orientated to making the translation adequate to the client’s specifications and acceptable to its end-users. The differences in the two perspectives are, however, not limited to the TT but relate also to the translator. When she is a trainee being assessed in a pedagogical context, the purpose of the assessment can be either ‘diagnostic’ (determining areas for improvement at the outset of a course of study) or ‘formative’ (measuring progress and giving feedback during a course of study) or ‘summative’ (measuring the results of learning) (Williams 2009: 4). On the other hand, in a professional context a translator is usually assessed for her ability to translate an X amount of words at a Y level of quality in a Z (usually very limited) amount of time.4 Nevertheless, the divide between ideal and real quality parameters is not as clear-cut as might be supposed, and indeed, when assessing the quality of a specialised translation, it is advisable that there always be some crossover between the two. The ideal parameters of accuracy and readability can therefore be considered to provide a valid reference for assessing a translation also in a professional setting, thus providing the quality ‘norms’ of specialised translation. By the same token, in a theoretical-­didactic setting the quality of a translation should never be considered in a vacuum as an ‘absolute’ notion and a ‘prospective’ type of assessment should also be taken into account integrating into the evaluation pragmatic parameters such as the translation’s aim, use and functionality, which characterise the ‘relative’ quality of translations in daily working practice.

4.2.1 Accuracy It is certainly the case that, in a specialised translation, the parameter of accuracy—the correct, precise, faithful or true reproduction in the TT of all the content and sense of the ST (the ‘message’ of the text)—should be given pride of place among the parameters of translation quality. In

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specialised translation, the semantic match between TT and ST should be taken to mean that “the contents of the translation must be true to the facts and to the interpretation of those facts within the limits of the domain or specialist field concerned” (Gouadec 2010a: 6). As already noted (cf. Sect. 2.4.1), the translator’s responsibility concerning the factual correctness of the TT is of paramount importance and the factual element should therefore be considered much more important than the aesthetic one. To put it in Peter Newmark’s (1987: 302) epigrammatic style, in this macroarea of translation “when the crunch comes, truth will win out on beauty”, where ‘truth’ is to be understood as “the objective truth that is encompassed by the text” (Newmark 1991: 111). Nevertheless, the search for ‘truth’ should not become obsessive and thence dangerously similar to a ‘hypercorrectionism’ of the ST. Any referential errors in the ST should of course be corrected and/or reported to the client but, before modifying in any way the information contained in the original text, the translator should be absolutely certain there is indeed an error. It is not by chance that, as compared to professional translators, it is usually novice translators who tend to presume more often that the ST contains a mistake and thus have a more ‘arrogant’ attitude towards the ST author (cf. Tirkkonen-Condit 1992: 439). The importance of the parameter of accuracy in the assessment of specialised translations is highlighted by the fact that the first ever categorisation specific to technical and scientific translation (Pinchuck 1977: 208) was based exclusively on the degree of completeness of the information contained in the ST. Based on this parameter, translations can in fact be attributed to one of four main categories: (1) conveying a general idea of the original; (2) conveying sufficient information content for action to be taken (for example, a business letter); (3) conveying most of the information (for example, 75%); and (4) conveying virtually all the information. A taxonomy of this kind, however, is only of limited use in translation quality assessment because, even in a very high-quality translation, accuracy does not always mean the same as ‘completeness’ or ‘identity’ of information. The accuracy of a translation should in fact also take into account pragmatic variables such as the communicative aim of the ST author, the relevance of the ST information for the end-users of the translation and any possible difference between the level of specialisation of

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ST and TT readers. Consequently, even at the level of referential content it is usually possible to make Gile’s (2009: 53–74) distinction between, on the one hand, the factual element, the “information that the Sender wants to get across to the Receiver and around which the verbal statement will be constructed”, that is ‘Primary Information’, which should always be translated ‘faithfully’; and, on the other, what is only accessory, that is ‘Secondary Information’, which should instead be adapted or simply eliminated without jeopardising equivalence to the ST. Gile’s different types of secondary information in the ST that should be eliminated in the TT are the following three. First, there is ‘framing information’, introduced by the ST author (consciously or not) to facilitate the comprehension of the message by the ST reader, for example, the over-­ specification “London, England” in a US text to be translated in one of the European languages. Second comes ‘linguistically/culturally induced information’, originating from the rules of the language used and the associated culture, for example, in an academic introductory textbook in IT (Curtin et al. 1998), the title “Data is, data are?” for a text box explaining grammatical issues, which may not be relevant in a TL where such number-related grammatical problem does not exist. And finally there is ‘personal information’, which is associated with personal features of the style of the ST author or the latter’s weak mastery of the SL genre-related features when it is not his L1.

4.2.2 Readability The parameter of readability refers to stylistic factors such as word choice, sentence length, argumentation structure and reader orientation (cf. Sect. 3.1); this includes the concepts of ‘fluency’, ‘smoothness’ (Mossop 2014: 67–72, 142–143), ‘idiomaticity’, ‘transparency’ and ‘naturalness’ of the TT. Readability covers the two criteria of ‘style of writing’ (for example, grammar, register, idiomaticity, terminology, cohesion, coherence, consistency, adherence to TL textual conventions and product specifications) and ‘visual and technical design of text’ (for example, physical layout and organisation, typography, overall page design, TL models), which is also referred to as ‘legibility’ (Suojanen et al. 2015: 50–51). Indeed, together

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with the criterion of ‘sense’ (corresponding to ‘accuracy’), the style and presentation criteria apply to the quality assurance (QA) of the translations produced by the EU’s DGT (Vuorinen 2011). As it is used here, readability also includes the parameter of ‘comprehensibility’ or ‘clarity’ (that is how well readers understand the text), which in fact is usually kept separate because the readable wording of a text does not necessarily entail that its meaning is clear (cf. Mossop 2014: 72–73). In specialised translation, readability entails that producing a translation that does not read like one may well involve producing a text which is not ‘pleasant to read’ but is nonetheless a top-quality translation, because it fulfils its communicative function and the style expectations of the target audience. Indeed, as Robinson (2012: 151) puts it, responding to Pym’s (1992a: 121–125) argument that LSP texts are not more difficult than general texts, the key to successful specialised translation is “first reading and then writing like a member of the social groups that write and talk that way”: for example, in a medical text the translator must write like a doctor (or a nurse or a hospital administrator etc.) in the TL. With the parameter of readability, the emphasis in translation quality assessment shifts then from the relation between ST and TT (what is translated) to the reception of the TT by its end-users (how to translate). To be readable, a specialised translation must have the ‘transparent’ style typical of specialised texts, reflecting the correct and accepted use by the target discourse community it addresses. Going back to Grice’s (1975: 41–58) four cooperative maxims (cf. Sect. 1.1.2), if accuracy can be thought as corresponding to the maxim of quality (make your contribution true), readability covers the other three maxims of quantity (economy), relevance (appropriateness) and manner (clarity) (cf. Sect. 1.2.1). Any deviation from these requirements will impact negatively on the end-user’s amount of effort needed to get the sense of the TT.  A lowquality translation makes difficult reading and is hard to understand, whilst in a specialised translation the reader’s effort should be minimal as far as the formal features of the text are concerned, and maximum for understanding its content. To obtain a truly readable TT, the translator should be able to solve all the linguistic, rhetoric, cultural, pragmatic and

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cognitive problems connected to the translation process, which otherwise would be simply passed on to the end-user to be solved. When defining readability, the definition of ‘naturalness’ is, however, less straightforward, and not only because there are no parameters to measure it (cf. Sect. 3.1.2.1). The problem of naturalness can in fact be considered to be the very essence of translation, concerning as it does the type of relation that, by definition, must exist between a basically non-­ spontaneous (that is ‘unnatural’) TT and a ST which instead was, at least typically, a spontaneous product (cf. Vermeer 1996: 43–44). Defining naturalness gives rise to two contrasting views of translation. On the one hand, a translation can be considered as a genuine communicative event just like an original text because it too has been produced for a communicative aim and “shaped by its own goals, pressures and context of production” (Baker 1996: 175). On the other, from a strictly linguistic point of view, a translation can also be considered as a special kind of text, a ‘third code’ which is different from both the codes of the source (matrix) and the TTs from which it derives (Frawley 2000: 257–258) (cf. Sect. 2.1). In the specific case of specialised translation, the evaluation of ‘naturalness’ should rest not only on a low degree of interference of the SL on the TT (‘translationese’), but also on the adherence of the translation’s register to the specific norms and conventions of the same (sub-)genre and the same discipline in the TL (Musacchio 2007: 97, 113). However, in some specialised genres, the influence of the SL on the TT can be so powerful that it can change the conventions of that genre in the TL over time, going well beyond mere lexical borrowings (cf. ‘calquing’ in Sect. 2.3.1). The assessment of the naturalness and readability of translations belonging to those specialised genres should therefore take into consideration these special conventions. For example, in the case of academic manuals written directly in Italian, translations from English are slowly but subtly influencing the conventions of this genre in Italian as well as the quality parameter of ‘naturalness’ in the assessment of the quality of those translations (Musacchio 2005: 93–94). The following example illustrates the changes made by a reviser to the Italian translation of a paragraph from an English American academic manual on behavioural corporate finance. The reviser’s changes are aimed at re-establishing in the translation the

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simple paratactic syntax of the ST that the translator had in fact adapted to the more formal and complex hypotactical style typical of the TL: As a concept, market efficiency is subtle and involves three different versions: (1) weak-form efficiency, (2) semi-strong form efficiency, and (3) strong-form efficiency. Each form pertains to the extent to which market prices correctly reflect particular information. (Shefrin 2007a) DRAFT VERSION: L’efficienza dei mercati è un concetto complesso che implica tre diverse forme, che corrispondono a tre diversi gradi di analiticità dell’informazione riflessa nel prezzo: (1) debole (weak-form efficiency), (2) semi-forte (semi-­ strong form efficiency), e (3) forte (strong-form efficiency). [Market efficiency is a complex concept that involves three different forms, corresponding to three different degrees of how analytically particular information is reflected in prices: (1) weak (weak-form efficiency), (2) semi-­ strong (semi-strong form efficiency), and (3) strong (strong-form efficiency).] REVISED VERSION: L’efficienza del mercato è un concetto insidioso che implica tre diverse forme: (1) debole, (2) semi-forte e (3) forte. Ciascuna forma corrisponde a un diverso grado con cui i prezzi di mercato riflettono particolari informazioni. [Market efficiency is a tricky concept that involves three different forms: (1) weak, (2) semi-strong and (3) strong. Each form corresponds to a different degree of how market prices correctly reflect particular information.] (Shefrin 2007b: 89)

Summing this up, in a specialised translation, that of ‘naturalness of style’ is a relative concept because it should be referred to the translation’s appropriateness to the conventions of the (sub-)genre the TT belongs to in the TL, which can vary over time and the translator should be able to recognise in the ST as well as reproduce in her translation.

4.2.3 Adequacy and Acceptability The qualitative view of translation quality characterising the theoretical-­ didactic approach (ideal and static parameters of accuracy and readability) should be integrated with the more quantitative perspective of the

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professional world, where there are different levels of quality and cost/ benefit considerations are crucial variables. In a translation market that is not particularly interested in the university-trained translator (Katan 2007) and where downward pressure on rates inevitably has a negative impact on the quality of the translation service, even the aim of the third-­ party revision required by the ISO 17100 standard (cf. Sect. 4.1) is only to ensure that the translation is ‘fit for its purpose’ rather than of excellent quality. However, suitability of purpose and the similar parameters of ‘adequacy to the skopos’ (functionalist theories) and “never below standard quality” (DGT 2012: 14) seem to be even more vague considering that, more often than not, the eventual use of a translation may not be known when it is commissioned and/or a translation may be put to uses unintended by its original commissioner (Drugan 2013: 27). ‘Suitability of purpose’ consequently boils down to pragmatic parameters that are entirely dependent on the specific translation brief. On the other hand, notwithstanding this apparent vagueness, the ‘fit for purpose’ quality standards for translation service provision have also been considered as “the best and safest peg on which to hang a revision policy” (Martin 2007: 59), indicating as they do “a viable way of using translation and revision resources intelligently”, i.e. commensurately to the known purpose of the text and the reliability of the translator. From this point of view the standards reflect the need to rationalise quality management that is taking place also in international organisations such as the European Commission’s DGT (Strandvik 2018: 52–53) as well as OECD (Prioux and Rochard 2007), where the required quality of a translation depends on its destination. So, for example, documents to be published or legal texts require better-quality translations (and thereby more resources) than documents for internal use (cf. Official Journal of the European Union 2006). This classification involves an analysis of the different purposes and levels of ‘risk’ of the documents to be translated (cf. also Pym 2004, 2005a, b, 2010; Sects. 1.5 and 2.2.1) and also the ranking of translators by level of reliability (Hansen 2010). The resulting approach to QA focuses then on producing a translation of a ‘useful’ quality level at least cost. The same correlation between quality, delivery time and cost applies to technical and scientific translation, where it was first made more than 40

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years ago by Isadore Pinchuck (1977: 206) and later corroborated by Kingscott (1996: 138).5 Along the same lines, more recently Gouadec (2010b: 271–272) has pointed out that fulfilling all the quality requirements set out in the standards for translation service provision would be so costly for TSPs and contractors that QA would necessarily give in to economic factors. Rather interestingly, however, such a consideration is not openly acknowledged by the translation industry, as indicated by the results of the EU-wide online survey conducted in 2011 among translators’ (LSPs) employers by the OPTIMALE (Optimising Professional Translator Training in a Multilingual Europe) Erasmus Academic Network, which aimed to identify the competences that employers seek when looking to recruit new staff. According to the results, only 32 per cent of respondents considered the “Ability to translate quickly though quality not 100%” more important than the “Ability to produce 100% quality”, which was rated as “Essential” or “Important” by virtually all respondents (98 per cent) (OPTIMALE 2013: 13).6 Not only do these results indicate that the ‘ideal’ parameters of accuracy and readability can be considered as a standard reference in any given professional translation situation or context, but they also show that in real-life situations these quality norms should always be integrated by parameters inextricably linked to the specific translation task at hand, the most important of which is the speed of delivery, a requirement that goes somewhat against the amount of time that is necessary to produce an accurate and readable translation. Such situational and economic parameters vary according to the specific circumstances and end-users’ requirements, notably those of ‘adequacy’, where the emphasis is on the linguistic and textual aspects of the translation, and ‘acceptability’, where the emphasis is instead on its end-users (cf. Vermeer 1996: 78). The indispensable compromise made by the translator that these two ‘real’ parameters represent has the final aim of an economical translation that, with an ideal cost/benefit ratio, is communicatively effective as well as efficient, meeting as it does the expectations of commissioner, translator and end-user (cf. the “minimax” principle in Sect. 3.2). The parameter of adequacy is assessed in terms of the efficiency between the outcome of the translation process and the resources used to achieve it, and will therefore mean different things for each participant in the

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translation activity. The translator will assess the adequacy of her translation in terms of the relation between its communicative effectiveness and the resources used to achieve it: a translation will be adequate if the amount of time and effort the translator has invested is proportional to the quality objectives required by the task she has accepted to perform. The end-users will assess the translation’s adequacy in terms of the relation between its maximum communicative effectiveness and their minimal processing effort (cf. principle of optimal relevance in Sect. 2.1). Finally, the commissioner will assess the translation’s adequacy in monetary terms by measuring it with very basic methods, such as the amount and gravity of errors found per page. The parameters used to do this will be those of the cost/benefit ratio of the third-party revision of the translation and/or the amount of correct words vs. the total number of words of the translation, and/or the physical presentation and layout of the translation, that is various grades of graphic quality identified by such labels as ‘printer’s copy’, ‘fair copy’, ‘draft’ and ‘rough copy’ (Sager 1994: 242). Finally, the parameter of acceptability in recent years has increasingly been used as a synonym for ‘translation quality’ (for example, Williams 2004; Bergen 2009; PACTE 2017; Castillo 2015) but, more narrowly, refers here to the adherence of the translation to the norms and conventions of the TL genre (cf. Toury 1995: 56–61) in the specific context of the translation brief (for example, the use of language appropriate to an in-house style guide). An acceptable translation then conforms to the target reader’s expectations and is achieved when it reads like a TL native text on the same topic belonging to the same genre. It is in this latter sense that a specialised translation, as noted by Prieto Ramos for legal translation, “leaves little margin to creativity and subjectivity” and rather follows “more normative parameters” of ‘conformity’ (2015: 14). As used here, in technical translation acceptability also includes the parameter of ‘usability’, that is the ease of use of a product in a specified context of use (cf. Suojanen et al. 2015: 15), because it involves ‘tailoring’ the language of the translation “to its readers and to the use they will make of it”, including the translator’s selection of the appropriate degree of formality or technicality (Mossop 2014: 143–144).

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4.3 Different Levels of Quality As we know only too well from our daily experience as translation users, and as pointed out by TSPs themselves, professional translators are often required to work with deadlines which are nearly impossible to stick to, with translation quality being understood more as absence of any major translation errors than as total absence of errors (Marcelli 2003: 76). Given that, in the professional world of translation, quality is a concept relative to time, cost and use of the TT, in an educational setting trainees should then be taught how to translate at different levels of quality, corresponding to different prices in the market. Nevertheless, different quality levels should in no way affect the parameter of accuracy, which in professional translation quality is neither negotiable nor adjustable because it should be applied to any quality level by any translator worth her salt. In all quality levels, then, the translator should guarantee, compatibly with the translation brief, a semantic match between TT and ST. A first rough classification of the different levels of translation quality based on the different price a client is ready to pay is that between ‘for-­ information’ translation, provided by many TSPs as their standard offering, as opposed to ‘for-publication’ work (Durban 2014: 8). Remaining in the professional world of translation, a more delicate categorisation is provided by the following three basic levels of linguistic quality suggested by Troiano et al. (2002: 72–73), based on the criterion of a translation’s acceptability to the end-client: ‘translation quality’, assuring the minimum requirement of a complete transposition of the sense of the ST and a syntactically correct TT; ‘adaptation quality’, achieving total equivalence, textual and also contextual, in terms of the target readership’s expectations; and ‘editing quality’ (the only one which is guaranteed ‘zero-defects’), a ready for press (or for audio-video production) translation, where also aspects such as page and graphic layout, pictures, diagrams etc. are taken into account. A third real-world example of a categorisation of translation quality is based on its use, and is the tripartite classification adopted by the Translation and Minutes Section at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research in Geneva. The three admissible levels are ‘maximum quality’, for top-priority core work,

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high-level/high-visibility and cyclical documents with predictable and agreed deadlines (such as official documents submitted to governing bodies, press releases, the CERN Bulletin and public website, rules and regulations etc.); ‘near-maximum quality’, for intermediate-priority documents, or in specific technical domains with partially plannable, negotiated deadlines, which have both been outsourced to trusted freelancers and undergone in-house revision (such as official correspondence, contracts, financial statements, brochures, video scripts etc.); and ‘unpredictable quality’, for urgent or voluminous documents with tight and non-negotiable deadlines outsourced to trusted freelancers or translation agencies (Pym 2015). In the world of academia, classifications of the different levels of translation quality are much more elaborate, and they take into account many more variables. For example, a very detailed and exhaustive classification is that by Gouadec (2002a: 11–12, 2010a: 77–78, 387–396, b: 272–273), where professional (that is ‘client-centred’) translation quality is based on the three parameters of quantity of content (completeness of information), variety of language of the TT vis-à-vis the ST, and degree of finish or polish of the translation product. Taking the first parameter of quantity of content, as opposed to ‘translation proper’, where all the content of the ST is maintained, a ‘summary’ or ‘synoptic translation’ presents the information as tables, synopses, or summaries (maybe tabular, synthetic, anlytical or itemised), whilst a ‘selective translation’ gives the user access to whatever information has relevance for the client’s purposes (cf. Sect. 3.1.3).7 According to the second parameter of variety of language, the form of a translation can be fully compliant with that of the original or have a more ‘general’ mode of expression because it is aimed at a wider dissemination among non-specialist final users. Based on the third parameter of degree of finish, a translation can be either ‘as translated’, that is rather rough and not checked or revised (a translation ‘for gisting purposes’ designed to give the user ‘a fair idea’ of what the ST is about), or of ‘fair average quality’, that is correct and readable (a ‘plain’ or ‘no-­ frills’ translation, which does not necessarily comply with the original style and register and aims to transfer the original information as clearly as possible), or of ‘top quality’, i.e fluent, efficient, most readable, better-­ quality than the original and fully adapted to the target users (as in

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‘editorial translation’, where a degree of stylistic sophistication and virtuosity are required). Each type of translation identified on the basis of the three parameters above corresponds in turn to various quality grades: ‘rough-­cut’, ‘fit/ready-for-revision’, ‘fit-for-delivery’ (or ‘deliverable’ or ‘ready for dissemination’ or even ‘fit-for-broadcast’ translation), i.e. meeting such quality requirements as normally render revision superfluous, ‘ready for print’ or ‘zero defect’. For the purpose of teaching specialised-translation trainees how to translate at different quality levels and also for the translation market, exhaustive as they may be, classifications such as Gouadec’s seem however just too detailed and yield too many quality levels to be easily applicable. Indeed, as the author himself concedes (Gouadec 2010b: 274), “[i]n a professional setting, no one goes into intricacies” and “trainees should be subjected to the same kind of assessment as professionals”. Thus the two parameters of ‘quantity of content’ and ‘readability’, where the second partly subsumes the intended degree of dissemination and the level of finish of the translation product, seem to be sufficient to distinguish different usable quality levels. Concerning the first, if it is true that the degree of information provided by a translation as compared to the ST cannot be taken as a criterion to assess its quality in the contextual vacuum traditionally provided by a translation class, it is also the case that trainees should be taught two of the three different types of translations identified by Gouadec, that is translation proper and summary translation, because they reflect the most likely specifications by a client commissioning a translation based on the actual end-users’ needs (cfr. Sect. 3.1.2). Based on the second parameter of readability (cf. Sect. 4.2.2), different quality levels may be identified according to how translations will be used by classifying a translation as either ‘deliverable’, or ‘revisable’ or just ‘informative’. The highest quality level is that of a ‘deliverable’ translation, which has already been fully revised both content-wise and in order to ensure that all the adaptations of style and presentation deemed to be necessary to satisfy the needs (also implied) of both the client and the TT end-users have indeed been carried out. This category coincides with the ‘polished’ top-quality level envisaged by Mossop (2014: 155–157), which aims at a degree of perfection that can indeed be either encountered in

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literary translation or required by a very exacting and conscientious specialised-­translation trainer, but may well be very rare in today’s market of professional specialised translation. In the lower ‘revisable’ (Mossop’s ‘informative’) quality level, the semantic match between TT and ST has been checked but the translation is less readable, and hence ready for a final revision. The TT does not contain any errors of terminology, grammar or spelling and meets both the commissioner’s and end-users’ needs in terms of style and function, whilst it could still be improved concerning its presentation and the correct phraseology and style of the corresponding genre conventions in the TL. Lastly, an ‘informative’ (Mossop’s ‘intelligible’) translation is even less readable and intended for internal use only. Terminology is more or less correct, though never misleading; grammar and spelling have been checked automatically using the appropriate terminology tools; and only the minimal stylistic-functional adaptations have been carried out to account for the systemic differences between SL and TL, but with no regard for the phraseology of the special TL. Both revisable and informative translations can be subsumed under Gouadec’s (2010a: 377) broad category of a ‘no-frills translation’, not necessarily complying with the original style and register but purely aiming to transfer the original information as clearly as possible. The criteria to differentiate these three quality levels can of course be integrated with more specific ones depending on the specific translation project. What should be stressed here, however, is that the crucial element to differentiate between these levels is the degree of revision a translation has undergone before its delivery to the client, based on its final purpose as specified in the translation brief.

4.4 Revising the Translated Text Revision is the process taking place during the third and last phase of the translation process. It is devoted to checking the translation product to assess its suitability for purpose and make the necessary changes to achieve it. If the check is carried out by the translator herself, either during or at

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the end of the translation activity, it should be more properly called ‘self-­ revision’ (cf. Sect. 4.4.3). In professional practice, revision is an integral part of the translation service provision to a client, when the translator’s compliance to the requirements set out in the translation brief are checked and, where appropriate, the quality of the translation is improved. It is important to note that, as observed by Martin (2007: 61–62), revision can only improve translation quality, which in no case can be ensured by revision alone, because it needs to be linked to other measures, such as recruitment (or job assignment), training and use of CAT tools. In the case of specialised translation, the specific purposes of revision can be summarised as the following (cf. Sager 1994: 239–240): –– accuracy of terminology/phraseology and completeness (for example, omissions) (ST/TT correspondence); –– language and style correctness (by adherence to TL genre-specific conventions and/or adjustment to a particular house-style); –– harmonisation of the terminology/phraseology and style (especially when a long ST has been shared out among various translators). According to Sager (1994: 174), the amount of time to be allocated to revising a translation should be not more than 10 per cent of the overall time for producing it, whilst work preparatory to translation itself should vary between one to two thirds of the total time spent on a task. However, this distribution of the actual time to be allocated among the stages of the translation process is only a rough estimate because it is necessarily affected by different factors such as the degree of complexity of the document to be translated and the level of translation quality to be achieved. When the revision is carried out by somebody else from the translator, the amount of necessary revision and time to carry it out can add significantly not only to the quality of the translation end-product but also to its cost. This is particularly true when there is a gap that needs to be bridged between what the text should do to fulfil its communicative purpose (and end-users’ expectations) and what it actually does before revision. Indeed, whilst a translation may require a “substantial revision, seeking to improve solutions beyond mere acceptability” (Jakobsen 2003: 88), in a different translation task the revision brief may be only to

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correct typos. Ideally, these two different levels of revision should have different tariffs attached to them. In self-revision, there seems to be no conclusive evidence that the level of competence of the translator affects the time (and the type) of revision required. Whilst in some studies experience in translation seems to correlate with longer delays in the revision phase (and also in the preparatory pre-translation phase) (Jääskeläinen 1999; Jakobsen 2002; Orlando 2016), the results of the study by Englund Dimitrova (2005: 23) indicate that in fact there is no pattern to suggest a correlation between time spent on each phase of the translation activity and translator’s level of expertise. Another finding from the same empirical study, however, is that the two senior professional translators in the study made very few revisions during the post-writing phase, which suggests that they had been able to produce a near-final version of the TT already in the writing phase (Englund Dimitrova 2005: 233). Before the beginning of the 2000s, not much had been written on the professional activity of revision. Following the publication in 1977 of Juliane House’s pioneering volume A Model for Translation Quality Assessment (which has since had two subsequent versions in 1997 and 2015), in those years the interest of scholars had focused rather on ‘translation quality assessment’, an activity that in an academic context refers to the classification and quantification of translation errors made by trainees (cf. Sect. 4.4.3). But in 2000 a special issue of the academic journal The Translator focusing on the theoretical and practical aspects of revision (and evaluation) in translation (Maier 2000), followed in 2001 by Brian Mossop’s volume Revising and Editing for Translators—now in its third edition (Mossop 2014)—were published. Revision has taken centre-­ stage also in professional practice following the introduction of the international standards for QA for translation services wishing to develop a quality management system (cf. Sect. 4.1). Before the publication of the EN 15038:2006 standard, the term ‘revision’ was used ambiguously in the translation industry alongside others (correction, review, editing, checking, reading, proofreading etc.) to mean a checking and correcting activity to improve a text, either monolingual (cf. Sager 1994: 237–240) or translated, by either the translator herself (self-revision) or somebody else as part of the translation process (third-party revision), or by an editor. As we shall see in the following pages, although some terminological

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ambiguity still persists, the ISO 17100:2015 standard—exclusive to translation—makes a fundamental distinction between ‘revision’ and ‘review’, which goes some way toward distinguishing the different tasks involved in the checking and improvement of a translation.

4.4.1 Revision, Editing and Proofreading Within the broad category of ‘quality controllers’, referring to any non-­ translator “who performs a checking and correcting function” such as a proofreader or a subject-matter expert (Mossop 2014: 116), a first differentiation is that between ‘revision’ and ‘editing’, two activities that both entail the amendment and improvement of a text to make it more suitable for its audience. Revision, however, is taken here as being specific to translation, whilst editing is carried out on a text which typically is not a translation (Mossop 2014: 28–31). Thus, in those cases where editing is performed on a translated text, the latter has already been revised and the editor treats it as if it were not a translation. Rewording, revising or altering a text to improve it (‘copyediting’ and ‘stylistic editing’) are all activities that editors have in common with revisers, and both editing and revising should be kept distinct from completely rewriting a text or adapting it to a new audience (Mossop 2014: 33–35). On top of these, editors have further duties such as reorganising the text to achieve a better layout (‘structural editing’), and condensing, deleting, adding and replacing existing text and graphics (‘content editing’). Depending where they are employed, they may also perform other more market-oriented activities, such as dealing with subject-matter experts, scheduling the publication process, and finding writers/translators and co-ordinating their activities. However, this distinction between revision and editing is by no means generally established. For example, in the ASTM F2575-14 standard (cf. Sect. 4.1), the term ‘editing’ refers to a translation-specific activity defined as “[r]evision of the translation with correction of mistranslations, omissions/additions, as well as language errors in the TL. Done by comparing the TT to the ST”. Likewise, ‘edit’ means basically ‘self-revision’ in Robinson’s (2012: 102–103) teaching model of the cycle of translation practice, where it indicates the second stage that follows the ‘translate’

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stage and is in turn followed by the ‘sublimate’ stage, where what has been learned in the previous two stages should be internalised. That of ‘editing’ is a translation-specific activity also in the daily practice of translation in the EU institutions although, unlike revision proper, it is only carried out on the TT to ensure its clarity and consistency (Cosmai 2014: 121). The distinction between editing and revising in today’s translation industry is in fact increasingly blurred. In sectors such as multilingual documentation management, the growing integration of the translation process into that of monolingual documentation production often entails that translators should possess a wider variety of language-related skills including editing and rewriting  when, for example, post-editing the product of machine translation or revising a translation resulting from a badly written ST (cf. ‘monolingual revision’ in Sect. 4.4.2.1). Accordingly, among the competences to be mastered by professional translators at the end of their training that are listed in the European Master’s in Translation framework (EMT 2017), also the following editing-related skill is included in the Translation competence: “Summarise, rephrase, restructure, adapt and shorten rapidly and accurately in at least one TL, using written and/or spoken communication’. A further terminological and conceptual distinction to be made is that between ‘revision’ and ‘proofreading’, with the second being an optional pre-publication check (coming usually after the revision stage) to correct typographical and grammar errors, punctuation, use of initial capitals, bold/italic, layout etc. Like editing, proofreading is an activity that is not specific to translation but is carried out on any monolingual text, that is without reference to a ST.  However, as Mossop (2014: 33) notes, the term ‘proofreading’ is sometimes used by translators to mean ‘copyediting’ or even as a synonym of ‘revision’. Unlike the term ‘editing’, however, the meaning of ‘proofreading’ is kept separate from that of ‘revision’ in all international standards for translation quality provision including the ASTM standard.

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4.4.2 Revision Procedures Because it is a very costly activity, a thorough revision of the entire TT is not always necessary and in the translation services market there are different ways of revising a translation based on different translation tasks. On the whole, theoretical models of translation quality assessment (for example, House 1997, 2015; Al-Qinai 2000; Larose 1994, 1998; Williams 2004; Reiss 1971) do not reflect such a diversity. As Drugan (2013: 53, 56, 59) argues, academic models generally focus more on an overall statement of a translation’s quality than on the process of revision (for example, the different ways it can be performed and/or the different stages when to do it). This is because—rather predictably, given the pedagogical context where these models have been devised—they focus more on the translation product (texts) than the translation process (deadline, workflow, tools etc.) or the client specifications, which instead are paramount in professional revision. To ensure fit-for-purpose translations, different organisations have in fact different revision procedures and guidelines which are incorporated in their QA workflows8 as part of their quality management (QM) systems (cf. Sect. 4.1). These procedures can vary according to different purposes and extratextual constraints (for example, time, resources, reviser’s availability etc.), which is why not even international quality standards for translation make provisions with regard to how revision should take place (for example, how many pages should a reviser revise per day). Like the amount of time to be allocated to it, also the number of operational steps of the revision procedure is affected by different contextual factors and consequently varies on a per-­ project basis. Generally speaking, the main factors to consider when choosing the type of revision for a specific TT include how competent the translator is, how quickly the text was translated, the degree of dissemination and expected life-span of the translation, and how it is going to be used. In the following three sub-sections, different types of revision will be classified from the procedural point of view according to different textual and extratextual parameters.

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4.4.2.1  Bilingual vs. Monolingual Revision One basic distinction is that between ‘bilingual’ (or ‘inter-lingual’ or ‘comparative’) revision, based on a comparison (or ‘cross check’) between ST and TT, and ‘monolingual’ (or ‘intra-lingual’ or ‘unilingual’) revision, carried out only on the TT. In bilingual revision the translation product is considered as a derived text whilst in monolingual revision it is considered as an autonomous text. Bilingual revision is a comparative re-reading with the aim of checking, based on the translation brief, the translation’s accuracy and completeness as well as the conformity of the translator’s choices to the macrostrategy she chose before beginning the actual translation task. In monolingual revision the aim is to check the readability and linguistic accuracy of the TT. The distinction between bilingual and monolingual revision is the basis for the fundamental differentiation between ‘revision’ and ‘review’ to be found in the ISO 17100:2015 standard, which has been adopted also in daily working practice. ‘Revision’ is an inter-lingual check by a second person other than the translator which is compulsory to ensure the translation’s “suitability for the agreed purpose” and increase the objectivity of the reviser’s changes to the text. ‘Review’ is the non-­ compulsory intra-lingual check by a specialist of the subject-domain of the translation “to assess the suitability of the translation output for the agreed purpose and domain, and recommend corrective measures”. Concerning the issue of which of the two types of revision is more effective to amend and improve a translation, there is no agreement among scholars. For Brunette et al. (2005: 43) bilingual revision is more than twice as effective as monolingual revision to check for accuracy and readability, with monolingual revision proving in fact to be “an irrational practice, even less helpful than no revision”. Similar views about monolingual revision have been noted in a study of MT post-editing by Krings (2001: 531, 543–547), who points out that monolingual revision may ultimately lead to worse quality than bilingual revision, the reason being that reading a monolingual text can bring the reviser to identify less serious errors whilst not paying sufficient attention to the more significant ones that involve the inaccurate transfer of the sense of the ST.  By

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contrast, reading a TT and continuously interrupting its revision to make comparative checks with the ST may entail losing track of macrofeatures such as the logical flow of the argument and the idiomaticity of the translation (Mossop 2014: 166–168). Consequently, a good solution, especially in a learning context, is Mossop’s practical advice to carry out two separate checks, the first on the translation alone, possibly marking out any unclear parts to be checked with the ST in a second comparative check. When time is not too much of an issue, the most complete revision procedure for a specialised translation can consist of up to four stages: 1. Monolingual reading of the TT → check content and language/style, including terminology/phraseology, adherence to genre-specific features and/or house-style and physical layout/presentation; 2. Bilingual reading → comparative check to assess the extent to which the translation is pragmatically and semantically equivalent to the ST; 3. Monolingual(/bilingual) reading by the domain specialist; 4. Monolingual reading → final check of the TT layout and presentation, and for any errors introduced in stages (1), (2) and (3). Instead, less complete revision procedures are each of the following, in decreasing order of completeness: –– Complete monolingual and bilingual check (order is not important) + monolingual reading by domain specialist; –– Bilingual check (semantic match, language/style and layout) + monolingual reading by domain specialist; –– Bilingual check (semantic match only) –– Monolingual check (content only, checking the ST only in case of doubt). Reference to the procedure to be followed to assess the quality of a translation can also be found in Reiss’ (1971), House’s (1997) and Williams’ (2004) theoretical models, where the number of steps needed go from a minimum of two in Reiss’ (Analysis of the TT; Comparison of ST and TT) and House’s (Analysis of the ST; Comparison of ST and TT)

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models, to Williams’ three stages (Analysis of the ST, Analysis of the TT; Comparative assessment). However, according to all these models the analysis and comparison procedures should be carried out both above and below the sentence level along a number of linguistic/textual categories which make the practical application of the full range of assessment procedures quite unworkable in the professional context because of the time and effort needed to apply them. The suggested linguistic/textual categories range from the four dimensions (field, tenor, mode and genre) in House’s approach, to the three levels (microstructural, macrostructural and superstructural) in Larose’s (1994, 1998) model, and as many as seven parameters in Al-Qinai’s (2000) (textual typology and tenor; formal correspondence; coherence of thematic structure; cohesion; text-­ pragmatic equivalence; lexical properties; and grammatical/syntactic equivalence) (cf. Sect. 4.5.2).

4.4.2.2  Complete vs. Partial Revision Another way to classify different types of revision is based on different degrees of completeness, that is whether revision is carried out on the whole text or only on one or more specific portions. Particularly useful on this account is Mossop’s (2014: 158–159) revision typology based on how much of the text is being checked. Besides a total reading (‘full revision’), on a cline ranging from more to less complete re-reading, Mossop identifies three different types of partial reading: ‘spot-check’, ‘scan’ and ‘glance’. In each of these three procedures, revision can be either monolingual or bilingual, with bilingual partial revision being performed either systematically or on an ad hoc basis by cross-checking the ST randomly or only in case of doubt. When spot-checking, the portions of the document to be read are the title or the cover page and the first paragraph, then either portions recurring at regular intervals (for example, the first paragraph on every other page) or randomly selected paragraphs or pages spread over the entire text. The methodology for choosing the portions of a document to be revised can also be based on fixed percentages of the total volume and/or more sophisticated virtual sampling, as in the case of the QA model implemented by some translation and localisation service

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providers (Ling et al. 2000). When scanning, the portions of the document to be read are only the title or the cover page and the first paragraph, with the very random reading across each page ‘following one’s finger’ and focusing only on content and/or language and/or typographical errors. Finally, in glancing the portions of the document to be read are only the title or the cover page and the first paragraph. Of course, if a partial reading yields several errors, either a full revision is needed instead, or the translation needs to be sent back to the translator for further self-revision.

4.4.2.3  Pre- and Post-delivery Revision Revision can also be classified on more elusive pragmatic parameters such as the context in which it takes place, the purpose it aims to fulfil and its prospective addressees, which all have an impact on the type of revision procedure that is being selected. For example, revision may have an evaluative purpose and serve either to assess whether a professional translator has met the requirements of a specific translation task, or to examine a translator’s qualification for a particular translation job, or to inform translation trainees about their progress (Hönig 1998). In turn, each of these different contexts determines not only the type of contact between translator and reviser but also, even more significantly, the stage in the translation process when the assessment is performed. Based on whether revision is carried out before or after the delivery of the translation to the client, revision procedures can be classified in the two main groups of ‘pre-delivery’ and ‘post-delivery’ revision (Brunette 2000; Mossop 2014: 128). The revision of an unfinished translation in the pre-delivery stage, that is before it is delivered to a client, can be best thought of as a correction of errors and is either formative or pragmatic. ‘Formative’ (or ‘didactic’) revision can be considered as a training activity having the main aim of developing translation competence in translation trainees or, in a professional context, newly-recruited translators. As part of an economic quality/cost model of revision in translation (Prioux and Rochard 2007), this type of revision is carried out also in the language services of international

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organisations such as the EU institutions, where it is also meant as an ongoing training activity for new generations of translators (Cosmai 2014: 126). In formative revision, the reviser’s position is generally higher up the hierarchy than the translator’s (for example, a more senior translator) and changes suggested by the reviser are not discussed but merely implemented in the translation by the translator, because the final responsibility of the translation lies with the reviser, who comes into direct contact with the translator and is also expected to explain and justify all the changes to the text. When instead reviser and translator are peers, the changes to the translation can be constructively discussed before being finally implemented by the translator, who is responsible for the final product whilst the reviser has only an advisory role. ‘Pragmatic’ (or ‘summative’ in Durieux 1998) revision has the purpose of making sure that the TT meets the client’s requirements and/or end-­ user’s standard: for example checking a translation that has been commissioned to an external company or a freelancer. In pragmatic revision the translator has no contact with the reviser, who consequently is not required to provide any feedback. In industry, this pre-delivery type of revision is called ‘quality control’ (QC), defined as “the part of quality management focused on fulfilling quality requirements, that is the controls to detect quality problems” (ISO 9001:2008). Thus QA and QC are distinct activities (Drugan 2013: 76), as QC is only a contribution to ‘quality assurance’ (QA), which instead is defined as “the part of quality management focused on providing confidence that quality requirements will be fulfilled” (ISO 9001:2008). With specific reference to the stage of the translation process when QC and QA are respectively carried out, following Mossop (2014: 116) QC is the pre-delivery text-oriented activity and a synonym of ‘revision’ when referring to translation (cf. also Gouadec 2010a: 392). This is consistent with the more general meaning that QA has for other translation scholars, according to whom QA is variously the “systems and processes used to help create or maintain quality” (Saldanha and O’Brien 2013: 95), “the full set of procedures applied not just after (…) but also before and during the translation production services, by all members of a translating organisation, to ensure that quality objectives important to clients are met” (Mossop 2014: 129) and the “systems put in place to pre-empt and avoid errors or quality problems at

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any stage of a translation job” (Drugan 2013: 76). The only two researchers who view QC more restrictively are Brunette (2000: 171–173), who considers QC to be a business-oriented term meaning a less-than-full revision ranging from a simple reading of the translation to a “formal language check […] to ensure that the product to be delivered or already delivered complies with the requirements, language norms and established criteria, with the ultimate goal of saving time and resources”; and Williams (2004: 163), who defines QA as “the systematic pre-delivery activity or activities designed to give assurance that a translation meets quality requirements”. On the other hand, the revision of a finished translation after it has been delivered to a client is more of an identification of errors (rather than a correction of errors, as on the unfinished translation) in order to evaluate performance and compliance with the translation contract. Following Mossop (2014: 128), this type of post-delivery revision is called ‘translation quality assessment’ (TQA), which Saldanha and O’Brien (2013: 96) define as a business-oriented term “frequently used in a professional context to describe the step in the translation process that involves the counting and classification of translation errors”. Post-­ delivery TQA is carried out by someone other than the translator “in one or more randomly selected passages of a text in order to determine the degree to which it meets professional standards and the standards of the translating organization” (Mossop 2014: 128), and often entails a quantification of the results, that is a measurement of translation quality. The purpose may be selecting or promoting translators, measuring the productivity of in-house translators or the quality/price ratio of translations, or identifying areas that are weak so that training can be provided. However, for the specific aims of this book, the term ‘translation quality assessment’ is used in the much broader sense of ‘any activity aimed at establishing the quality of a translated text’, and will be used interchangeably with the term ‘evaluation’, although strictly speaking the latter is “a more general term relating to the testing of quality” (Saldanha and O’Brien 2013) and, according to Colina (2008: 43), should be distinguished from ‘assessment’ because ‘evaluation’ introduces a more subjective component.

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4.4.3 The Reviser’s Work Finally, revision can be classified according to its most interpersonal aspect, namely the reviser, who in LSP translation should have experience in revising translations in the specialised domain of the text to be revised. In professional translation, the reviser should always be a person other than the translator (‘third-party revision’), either a different translator or, in the case of ‘review’, a domain expert who also knows the SL or even a different translator highly experienced in the specialised domain of the TT. The term ‘revision’, however, is also used more broadly to include ‘self-revision’ (cf. Mossop 2014: 116), a check that is carried out by the translator herself, possibly after some time from completing the translation in order to acquire the necessary detachment from it (cf. also Englund Dimitrova 2005: 233).9 Self-revision should always be followed by third-­ party revision for a ‘fit-for-purpose’ professional translation (cf. the ISO 17100:2015 standard), despite the fact that, when it is not, there are some advantages to be had apart from an obvious greater competitiveness in the final price of the translation. One such advantage is enhancing in the translator a greater sense of responsibility towards her translation— the opposite of the attitude that has been branded by Martin (2002) as the “Reviser’ll-fix-it effect”. Another is the lack of any interpersonal problems arising between translator and reviser, including—if the translator knows the reviser—a tendency to translate pandering to the reviser’s specific translation and linguistic idiosyncracies. As with other post-translation activities, the terminology relating to self-revision is far from uniform and in the translation services market, besides being called ‘revision’, it is often variously referred to as ‘proofreading’, ‘checking’ and ‘editing’. For example, in the ISO 17100:2015 norm self-revision is called ‘checking’ and distinguished from mere ‘proofreading’, whilst Samuelsson-Brown (2004: 109–110) uses the terms ‘proofreading’ for self-revision but ‘checking’ for revision by a person other than the translator (and ‘spell checking’ as the correction of grammar and typographical errors). To avoid confusion on what the translator is expected to do at the end of the translation activity, the role of the so-called ‘revision brief ’ becomes fundamental. Like the

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translation brief (cf. Sects. 2.1 and 3.1.3) for the translation activity, the revision brief is the specification of the objectives and actual procedure for the revision activity (including, for example, the use of the Track Changes function in MS Word) that the reviser should agree on with the client at the beginning of the translation commission, although it should also be considered as modifiable during the revision activity to take into account any unforeseeable causes of delay of the translation project. The revision brief should also specify whether the final responsibility of the translation is the translator’s or the reviser’s. The reviser and translator can agree on either of the following two options: (1) the reviser decides on the final translation to be delivered and is ultimately responsible for the quality of the final translation; or (2) the reviser only suggests the changes and their implementation will be decided by the translator. Examples of both options can be found in the translation teams operating at the United Nations Headquarters, where the reviser is usually a senior translator who has been trained in-house and typically leads a team of many translators (also doing teleworking). Whilst “[t]he reviser’s role is to check the translation and make its publication ready, and the reviser has the final word” (Lafeber 2018: 74–75), a translation team can alternatively adopt an ‘advisory approach’, whereby the ultimate responsibility of a translation is with the translator and the reviser only makes suggestions which the translator may or may not accept. In what Lafeber calls ‘rush-jobs’, however, within the same team translators also revise each other’s work according to either of the two models ‘translate-swap-­ revise’ (or ‘mutual revision’) and ‘dictate-translation-revise’. Just as there are different ways to translate and revise a text, so there are also different ways to self-revise based on when and how to do the check, the type of amendments to be made and the parameters used to do the checking. For Sager (1994: 237) and Wakabayashi (2003: 73) the procedure should consist in a parallel reading of the entire ST and TT at the end of the translation activity, when the ST is less fresh in the translator’s memory and she has acquired the necessary detachment from the translation to consider it as an autonomous text. However, Wakabayashi makes also a terminological distinction between self-revision proper and a mere ‘accuracy check’, which should instead be performed against the ST immediately after drafting each sentence. The further subcategory of

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‘online revision’ has been identified by Jakobsen (2002: 193) for self-­ revision “undertaken while the first full drafting of the TT has not yet been completed”: the changes to be made during online revision include “the correction of typos, rephrasing of words, phrases and sentences, or with change of word order, etc.” (Carl et al. 2011). In one of the first empirical studies on the process of revision, Hayes et al. (1987) concluded that the different ways self-revision can be carried out and the different phases of the translation process it can be distributed in can be correlated to the translator’s level of expertise, with expert translators seeing it as a whole-text task (see also Shih 2006) whereas trainees as a largely sentence-level task. Likewise, there seem to be differences in the way self-revision is carried out by translators vis-à-vis non-­ translators. In Orlando’s (2016) study on the different translation processes (and products) of non-translators (foreign-language-proficient postgraduates in law) and translators, where both groups were given the same legal text to translate, the amount of online revision actually carried out by non-translators was definitely less than translators. Moreover, during the translation process non-translators only rarely left gaps, underlined or highlighted units in their TTs to be taken up at the end of the first draft, and tended to “translate a text as a continuous operation, working from top to bottom and considering the task done when they reach[ed] the full stop”. The same self-revision behaviour displayed by non-translators was found by Ehrensberger-Dow and Gary (2013: 115) and Barbosa and Neiva (2003:150). By the same token, there seems to be no agreed way on how expert translators self-revise. In an empirical study by Asadi and Séguinot (2005), the authors found that professional translators used two different cognitive approaches to produce the final version of a translation: whilst some tended to make most of their translation decisions and changes mentally before beginning to type (prospective thinking), others tended to spend less time on planning and typed their translation directly on the screen before backtracking, re-reading translated segments and making changes in lexical choice and syntax to reflect their growing comprehension (on-screen translation). Looking now at third-party revision, in ‘internal revision’ the reviser can be either a fellow translator (peer revision) or a senior translator. An example of both options is provided by the different ‘quality assurance

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mechanisms’ adopted by the different language sections of the Translation and Minutes Section at CERN (Pym 2015). In the ‘flat revision’ mechanism operated by the translation team of the French section, all four translators of the team are considered on an equal footing and systematically revise each other’s work according to availability. By contrast, in the ‘pyramidal revision’ mechanism of the English section, all translations are checked/revised by the section’s Leader, whose own output may in turn be re-read (though not necessarily) by other translators. Both mechanisms ensure that more than 95 per cent of the total translation output is re-read/revised by a peer with at least six years’ experience, thus assuring the highest possible quality level. In other contexts outside international organisations, internal revision on the output of translators collaborating either as freelancers or as in-house translators can be carried out by a project manager coordinating the various phases of a translation project for a publishing house, a company, an institution etc. Whether the reviser is a translator or a project manager, it is crucial that she knows the terminology of the specialist domain of the text to be revised. As shown by an experiment carried out by Künzli (2006), professional translators who had been asked to revise a technical translation despite the fact that they did not have the necessary knowledge of its subject-matter made a number of revision errors at the level of terminology. These errors were due to two main reasons: (1) lack of confidence, which had led them to consider any term causing a revision problem in isolation, thus disregarding the fact that the term’s context of occurrence—both the immediate context of the current segment being translated and the context at a textual level, that is beyond the words immediately surrounding the term—could be a useful source of terminological information; and (2) not having received from the translation company acting as an intermediary an adequate revision brief, including also detailed information about the final readers of the translation they were to check, the use it was meant for and the degree of expertise of the translator who had translated it. Concerning the issue of the ethics of the reviser, this is linked to the responsibility of the translator, not least because the reviser often has to carry out the revision of a translation by other translators. An empirical study by Künzli (2007) has shown that the reviser’s loyalty rests not only

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with the ST author, the target reader and the translation commissioner but also, additionally, with the translator and the commissioner of the revision, hence the fundamental importance of providing the reviser with a detailed ‘revision brief ’ right at the beginning of his/her task. In ‘external revision’ (review), the reviser is a domain expert but can also be a specialised translator having translation expertise in the specialist domain of the translation. If not a translator, the domain expert should have at least an appropriate level of competence of both the SL and TL of the translation task. Even though in the ISO 17100:2015 standard for translation service provision this type of specialised revision is not compulsory, when the translator is not an expert in the specialised domain of the text to be translated and does not have the possibility to receive any feedback from the commissioner of the translation and/or the ST author, the review of her translation by a domain specialist becomes in fact a compulsory requirement to avoid a lower-quality final product. Specialist review is normally intra-lingual, with the possibility of going to the original only in cases of doubt. It usually takes place after the text has been translated, though ideally, following Gile’s (1986) suggested work procedure, it should start even before the actual translation stage, with the specialist identifying in the ST any translation problems (difficult terminology/phraseology in the SL and/or TL, complex sentences etc.) and then giving the translator a list of all these problems as well as information on how to solve them. Even though in a professional translation context dominated by budget considerations such a procedure seems nearly impossible to adopt, team-work is undoubtedly the best possible formula, with the specialist-domain competence of the reviewer integrating the translator’s drafting and methodological competences before or during the actual translation task or, as in the overwhelming majority of cases, even after the text has been translated. Indeed, as noted by Troiano et al. (2002: 48), in ‘high-risk’ specialised texts such as, for example, the instructions for pharmaceutical products, a translation can undergo as many as ten different revisions and be re-read not only by domain specialists but also by colleagues, terminologists, project managers, the translation company owner etc. Turning now to the actual work carried out by the reviser, in third-­ party revision the reviser’s work should be limited as much as possible to

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those stylistic changes aiming to adapt a translated text to the TL genre-­ specific conventions (including terminological ones). However, in a less typical work situation when a translator is particularly inexperienced or a text particularly difficult, the reviser’s main task is to check for strategic transfer and content errors (cf. Sect. 4.5.2), to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the TT. A classification of revisions which could prove useful in such cases is Lorenzo’s (2002), assigning the reviser’s interventions to five possible categories: Corrections improving the translation; Unnecessary corrections; Errors not identified by the reviser; Corrections not improving the translation; Errors introduced by the reviser. On the other hand, in a classification based only on the reviser’s ‘stylistic’ interventions, that is deliberately not taking into account transfer and content errors, revisions can be classified into three main types (cf. Rega 1999; Cosmai 2014: 123–126): –– subjective interventions: unnecessary changes which offer only alternatives to the translator’s choices and motivated only by the reviser’s own translation and stylistic habits; –– objectively justifiable interventions: necessary changes which actually improve the TT in terms of greater clarity and economy, and/or adapt the TT to a specific genre or house-style (or established practice) and/ or to the stylistic expectations of end-users; –– specialised interventions: necessary changes which relate to the specialised lexical and terminological levels of the TT and, in most extreme cases, also rectify problems pertaining to a grey area that they share with errors of content. Subjective interventions have their only motivation in a wrong attitude of the reviser, summarised by Mossop (2014: 170–171) in the two questions “Can I improve this?” and “How would I have translated this?” and that has been vividly branded by Troiano and colleagues (2002: 46) as “the exquisite pleasure of wielding a red pen”. By contrast, the expert reviser asks herself: “Do I need to improve it?” and “How can I justify this change?” and is recognisable from the humility of her approach (Troiano et al. 2002: 60) because the expert reviser’s professional goal is to achieve adequacy and not excellence. Subjective interventions include

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‘hyper-­revisions’, that is revisions that do not improve a translation, and ‘over-­revisions’, that is revisions that in fact introduce a new error (of language or even accuracy) in a translation. They are the unmistakable evidence of an inexperienced reviser10 and should at all costs be avoided. Because expert revisers of specialised translations are however in short supply, and also to reduce costs, it is unfortunately nearly impossible to avoid revisers who are ill-qualified to do the job (Lafeber 2015; Pym 2015). It is for this reason that an international organisation such as OECD has adopted for its language services an ‘economic’ quality/cost model of third-party revision matching different degrees of revisers’ intervention to the level of importance of a text and the reliability of a translator (Prioux and Rochard 2007: 33, 38). Objectively justifiable interventions are typically carried out by an expert reviser and are the result of an explicit translation brief from the client, containing information on the final readers of the translation and the use it is meant for, which the reviser should be provided with before the beginning of her task alongside a detailed revision brief. From a cognitive point of view, using Hayes et al.’s (1987) methodology to investigate the relationship between the reviser’s cognitive processes and the quality of the final product, Magris (1999) uncovered not only the lack of linearity and uniformity of the revision process, but also that, even with expert revisers, during the revision task there is an inevitable increase of the reviser’s tolerance for the translator’s version. This tolerance is due to factors such as the reviser’s getting used to specific individual choices by the translator, a progressive automation of the revision process and, in the case of a long document, an understandable desire on the reviser’s part to finish the revision task. As part of the progressive automation of the revisers’ activity, some unconscious tendencies can be hypothesised in their stylistic interventions which, taking stock from the ‘universals of translation’ (and in particular the so-called ‘T-universals’) hypothesis (cf. Sect. 2.2.1), could be called ‘universals of revision’ because they too may be occurring in all translations independently of the specific SL and TL of the task. These tendencies, which all aim at making a translation easier to process than its original, are the following three: (a) a tendency to aim for shorter and less complex sentences and achieve lower lexical density and variety (simplification); (b) a tendency to disambiguate the ST to

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make the TT clearer than the original (explicitation); (c) a tendency to make the language of the TT less marked than the ST at the grammatical, terminological and collocational levels (normalisation/standardisation). The third and final type of the reviser’s stylistic interventions are the changes by a domain-specialist reviewer, which in specialised translation provide an absolutely essential feedback. However, in the translation services market, the domain specialist often has neither access to the ST nor any experience of reviewing a translation. This can lead the reviewer to aim for ‘improvements’ of the TT which are in fact not strictly of a specialised nature and were not included in her revision brief. These more general stylistic changes may even lead to the involuntary introduction in the translation of terminology inconsistencies or misleading omissions of information that could result in a TT of a lower quality than the ST. An attempt to provide an objective quantitative measurement of the quality of revision is the classification of the reviser’s corrections used in the United Nations translation quality management (QM) system (Didaoui 1999). Revisions are classified into the following six categories, each represented by a symbol: Essential corrections made by the reviser (A); Essential corrections not made by the reviser or mistakes introduced at the revision stage (B); Desired corrections (C); Unnecessary corrections (D); Acceptable neologisms and terminology consistency (E); Terminology inconsistency (F).

Revision quality (Q) is then calculated by using the equation Q = (A − B) + (C − D) + (E − F), where each symbol has been substituted with the number of revisions in the corresponding category and the final result has been compared with a pre-set range of values. Three different types of increasingly complete revision (full, intermediate and minimal), each including different categories, are assigned to as many types of texts based on their importance: full revision (categories A, C and E), intermediate revision (categories A and E) and minimal revision (category A). However, besides being mainly based on revisions of only a terminological nature, another problem of this quantitative approach is that it is not entirely

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quantitative, as the subjective element in assigning revisions to a particular category cannot be avoided (for example, the difference between ‘desired’ and ‘unnecessary’ corrections). To assist the reviser make only objective changes to the text, apart from the traditional language resources (bilingual and monolingual dictionaries, thesauri, style guides and manuals etc.), there is a whole series of revision tools designed to spot and correct errors of terminology, grammar and style. These technological resources are called ‘Quality Assurance tools’ and provide an indication of what might potentially be an error: it is then up to the human translator/reviser to decide whether a change is appropriate. These tools perform automatic verification procedures which can be configured to match specific project requirements on the basis of a number of mathematical and linguistic parameters. They are particularly suited for automated and time-consuming checks (ST segments against TT segments to spot gross mismatches in length, inconsistent or repeated translation, punctuation, numbers, terminology etc.) but are of course poor at verifying more complicated issues of the TT such as spotting content-related mismatches or errors of register. This is somehow in keeping with Melby’s (2012: 14–15) conclusions that automatically-­ generated termbases will likely never replace high-end termbases validated by domain experts and/or domain-competent translators and/or highly competent terminologists (cf. Sect. 3.2.4), and that consequently translators should not use technology as a substitute for a deep understanding of a specialised domain. Many translation-memory tools have their own in-built QA checker but on the market there are also several stand-alone tools that can be applied to the bilingual formats generated by the majority of CAT tools (for example, ErrorSpy, ApSIC Xbench, Grammarly). A particularly frustrating scenario from the translator’s point of view is when a translation is revised directly by the client or by someone entrusted by the client, who however is not usually a writing professional and, when the client is a multinational, is typically somebody from the client’s international subsidiaries. In either of these cases, often the makeshift reviser does not have a clue about professional revision (nor translation). To be able to motivate and even defend her choices against the unnecessary (and often downright wrong) changes to the TT made by the client’s

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assessor, Troiano et al. (2002: 65) suggest that, before the translator gives her final signature of approval to the translation, she has an ‘ethical duty’ to provide the client with a list of comments on the work done by the makeshift reviser. These comments should classify the latter’s changes into the three categories of ‘necessary’ (errors of terminology, sense, phraseology), ‘stylistic’ (subjective) and categorically ‘wrong’ (errors of spelling, sense, lexical suitability and style introduced unintentionally by the corrector). To conclude this long section on revision, here are some guiding principles for finding errors and making changes when revising a translation. They are all subject to the overarching principle that, before making changes, the effort should be made to regard the translation as an autonomous text almost exclusively from the end-user’s point of view, that is by adopting the assessment procedure that has been called ‘fresh look’ by Brunette (2000: 172). Bearing in mind that if the number of errors is very high right from the beginning of the revision task, the text needs to be retranslated (by the translator) and not merely revised, and following Mossop’s (2014: 170–172) ‘correcting and improving principles’, changes to the translated text should then be made only if: –– you cannot understand the translation without consulting the ST, –– you have to read a sentence twice to understand it correctly (errors of smoothness or logic), –– the text contains a serious linguistic and/or typographical error. By the same token, corrections should be reduced to a minimum if: –– your aim is to achieve perfection (and not adequacy), –– your aim is to retranslate from scratch a sentence or a whole paragraph, –– your changes may introduce an error of accuracy or language/style. Like translation, from a business point of view revision should always be a ‘minimax’ activity (cf. Sect. 3.2) to be carried out according to the principle of achieving maximum gain with minimum effort. The reviser should ask herself if the text should be improved by correcting any errors it contains, and not if the text can be improved. All other types of

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improvement (cultural adaptation, retranslation etc.) are only an added value, which in any case should be specified in a revision brief right from the start of the revision task. Having looked at revision from the points of view of how and when it is performed, the purpose it aims to fulfil and the person who carries it out, in the final sections of this chapter on quality in specialised translation we will focus on what a reviser looks for during revision, that is translation errors, with an eye to classifying them and also measuring their impact on the final quality of a translation. Not all errors are in fact major ones and there is an inevitable degree of subjectivity in trying to quantify errors, let alone agreeing on the definition of the very term ‘error’.

4.5 Errors in Translation A categorisation of errors lies at the heart of all translation assessment approaches (Williams 2004: 3). It seems then all the more extraordinary that a systematic and transparent method of assessing the quality of a translation based on the quantity of errors it contains and a measurement of their importance has yet to be achieved. Such a rating system would be not only very useful in translation teaching, but also the holy Grail in the professional world of translation, where it could be applied to processes such as the selection of translators, the periodical assessment of their activity and the management of a translation company’s quality system. One of the main criticisms of ISO 17100 and the other standards for translation service provision has been the fact that, despite their aim to strongly support translation industry excellence, there is no attempt to set any quality ‘metrics’, that is error-count methods, including definitions and weighting of error categories.11 Instead, to measure translation quality in commercial environments, what standards do is to stress the importance for client and TSP to agree, before the actual translation project begins, on product specifications (purpose of the translation and needs/ expectations of the end-user) which, though not being a proper metric, could still be used as a basis to define one.

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The subjectivity and relativity that are inherent in the assessment of the quality of a translation, and especially of the seriousness and impact of errors, make it very difficult to devise a coherent model for categorising errors and assigning them different weights (minor, major, critical etc.) that is also objective. As intuitive as the concept of ‘error’ may be, that of ‘translation error’ is also a very good instance of that “academy-industry divide” (Drugan 2013: 38–45) that seems to exist between translation theorists and professionals. Indeed, the often overwhelmingly complex theoretical/descriptive quality parameters and error categorisations devised in the last 30 years by academics seem unable to respond to the practical/prescriptive needs (and time constraints) of translation practitioners. All too often this clash has meant that, in daily working practice, translations are evaluated in an impressionistic way by rating their overall quality without having in place an evaluation system to measure the number and weight of each error. This lack seems all the more surprising given that research on errors has a long tradition in Translation Studies, due to at least two main factors. The first is the traditional focus of translation theory on the translation product, rather than the process, and the second is the long history of Error Analysis (the study of the types and causes of errors) in second language acquisition. The relevance of the analysis of errors in translation quality assessment is linked to the increasing importance in Translation Studies of the acquisition of translation competence, a research area of translation pedagogy where the focus on translation as a process has led some longitudinal empirical studies to develop new classifications and evaluation models of errors (for example, Orozco and Hurtado Albir 2002; Göpferich et al. 2011; Hurtado Albir 2017). In the following pages, translation errors will be discussed with the aim of finding a minimum common denominator between the different perspectives and needs of theorists and practitioners. The starting point will be a definition of ‘error’ and the identification of the possible causes of errors in translation (Sect. 4.5.1). Then I will briefly review some classifications of errors and error-evaluation models developed in both the professional and theoretical-didactic contexts (Sect. 4.5.2). Finally I will provide a classification of errors, mainly based on Mossop’s (2014: 84–88, 90–96) rather straightforward model for quantifying errors in LSP

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translation, which aims to be concrete enough to be useful in a pedagogical context and also meet, at least to a certain degree, the needs of professional translators (Sect. 4.5.3). However, before discussing these issues, let us briefly consider two very preliminary terminological notations concerning the notion of ‘error’. First, though not strictly referring to the same concept, the two terms ‘translation error’ (actual deviation) and ‘translation problem’ (potentially giving rise to a deviation) will be used interchangeably. Second, the term ‘problem’ will be used in a different sense from the meaning of the same term during the translator’s first reading of the ST in the orientation phase of the translation process (cf. Sect. 2.3), where ‘problem’ prospectively referred to the translatability of the ST, thus with no reference to any concrete solution by the translator to be considered. Instead, the term ‘problem’ will be used in the following sections in the second sense of Toury’s (2002) classification of the three main attributes that ‘problem’ has in Translation Studies, where a problem is considered retrospectively, that is by looking first at an actual TT solution (translation product) and then mapping it onto the ST to reconstruct the problem that led the translator to that particular choice (translation process). With its firm focus on the translation product, the approach to translation problems taken here draws from both error analyses of the TT (for example, Krings 1986) and studies of variation in the TT as reliable predictors of translation difficulty (for example, Campbell and Hale 2002).

4.5.1 Definition and Causes of Errors Many are the definitions of ‘error’ devised by translation theorists, mainly based on the notion of an error being a deviation from a norm (for example, Chesterman 2016: 135; Mossop 1989: 56) or a failure to follow the instructions implied in the translation brief (for example, Nord 1997: 75; Hurtado Albir 2001: 289). The broad definition of ‘error’ that I will adopt here is the following, which makes specific reference also to the pragmatic elements of an error’s effect on both the translation’s end-users and the ST content:

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Any factor which affects adversely the communicative effectiveness of the translation, i.e. both the transfer of the source-text author’s communicative intention and the response to the text by its target end-users. (Magris 2005: 15) (my translation)

Because of its communicative perspective, this definition shares much common ground with translation practitioners’ assumptions and views about translation quality in general and errors in particular, although it necessarily does not cover aspects of translation quality assessment which are specific to the translation industry, such as an emphasis on production processes (cf. Drugan 2013: 47). In professional translation, errors have mostly pragmatic consequences, for example, in terms of legal and monetary liability for all involved and damaged reputation for the client (cf. Ansaldi 1999; Byrne 2007). That is why in daily working practice the emphasis is on errors’ effects, that is whether and how seriously they hinder the communicative function of the text. An example of how the gravity of even a serious error affecting the factual correctness of the TT (cf. Sect. 4.2.1) can vary according to pragmatic variables such as genre and TT users’ expectations (cf. also Sect. 4.5.3) is the mistranslation of the term polystyrene (‘a polymer used in a variety of situations, including construction, laboratory equipment and food packaging’) as polyester (‘polyethylene terephthalate: a polymer used as a fabric or textile’) when used in reference to Foamhenge (Centreville, Virginia)—a full-scale replica of Stonehenge (Wiltshire, England).12 Whilst being undoubtedly a critical factual error, this mistranslation has arguably different effects in different situational contexts, for example, less serious in a non-specialised documentary aimed at a very wide audience but more serious in a section of a construction manual aimed at more technologically literate users illustrating the difference between Expanded Polystyrene Foam (EPS) and Styrofoam. On the other hand, in translation theory and pedagogy the emphasis is traditionally on the identification of errors’ causes: in all pedagogical approaches to translation, both traditional (focusing on translation as a product) and communicative (focusing on translation as a process) (cf. Kiraly 1995: 31, 111; Colina 1997), knowing why an error has been made helps the trainer take the most appropriate decisions on the type

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and content of the activities to do in class, with errors being considered as pathways to determine the areas of competence that need to be strengthened during the learning process. If, however, the perspective is broadened and the causes of errors are taken to be the ‘push-factors for errors to be made’, identifying the causes of translation errors can be beneficial not only in translator training but also in the daily working practice of translation. The most obvious causes of errors in specialised translation seem to me to be the following four: –– difficulty of interpreting the meaning of the ST, especially when it has a very technical and/or innovative specialised content; –– difficulty of interpreting the ST because of its low quality,13 possibly due to the hurriedness with which the text was drafted, for example, by one or more drafters who also were not competent writers in the SL; –– time pressure, when (1) delivery deadlines are very short and thus insufficient for either a critical re-reading of what has been written or a thorough search of specialised terminology and phraseology, or (2) a very long text has been divided among different translators and the reviser has carried out an inadequate terminological and stylistic harmonisation of the final draft; –– inadequate communicative competence of the translator in the SL and/or TL in the specific translation situation. A further increasingly common cause of errors applying to working practice is ‘crowdsourcing’ a translation as a cost-saving exercise, that is outsourcing it to volunteer non-professional translators who work for free. This user-based model is becoming increasingly deployed in localisation projects, especially those related to open-source software, although developers of proprietary software are also beginning to embrace it (for example, Facebook and Twitter have used crowdsourcing to translate their websites). These ‘unspecified self-selected individuals’ undertaking so-called ‘user-generated translation (UGT)’ (O’Hagan 2009: 8) may well be proud to be part of a project they feel strongly about (hence the expression ‘fan translation’, used especially for video games) but, more often than not, lack the necessary qualifications to produce quality specialised translations. Consequently, crowdsourcing a translation raises

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issues relating to quality, ethics and, ultimately, the very survival of the translation profession.

4.5.2 Classifying Errors The perspective adopted in this subsection is that categorisations of errors are a useful tool to assess the quality of a translation both in translation pedagogy, where the aim is mostly ‘diagnostic’ (identification of errors), and in professional translation, where the aim is instead mainly ‘therapeutic’ (correction of errors), provided of course these classifications are not too abstract, vague and unwieldy (for example, contain too many categories) to be of immediate use in ‘real life’ evaluations. One case in point is provided by the already-mentioned (cf. Sect. 2.3) classification of ‘prototypical’ translation problems specifically devised by the PACTE Group for researching translation competence and its acquisition (Hurtado Albir 2017: 11), where the categories of translation errors can prove to be too abstract and numerous to be useful in a pedagogical or a professional context. At the other end of the spectrum are taxonomies that are excessively concise to be of any practical use in assessing translations in professional practice, such as the one devised by Pym (1992b), where errors are simply divided into ‘binary’ errors, opposing a wrong answer to the right answer (typically, a language error) and ‘non-binary’ errors, opposing many possible options (some of which are ‘right, but…’ or ‘wrong, but…’) and seen as the result of the translator’s failure to make the most appropriate selection from a range of possible TTs. Also, with specific reference to the application of Pym’s approach to specialised-translation training, his conclusion that the time devoted to correcting binary errors should be limited by the translation trainer, whilst non-binary errors should be given all the time necessary for a detailed discussion, does not take into due account factors such as, for example, the role of terminology and phraseology in specialised translation, where often a term of the ST has only one possible translation equivalent (Palumbo and Ahmad 2004: 484–486). Hence, Palumbo’s and Ahmad’s proposal that Pym’s classification should be adapted to the

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specific needs of specialised translation by taking into account the importance of the translator’s specialised-domain knowledge and the domain’s specific terminology. The category ‘binary errors’ should consequently be extended to include not only ‘binary language errors’ (non domain-­ related) but also ‘binary content and terminology errors’ (domain-­ related). Likewise, also within the category ‘non-binary errors’ a distinction should be made between ‘non domain-related non-binary errors’ and ‘domain-related non-binary errors’ (phraseology, style, cohesion). A classification of translation errors that takes its cue from the concrete needs of professional practice is the tripartite classification used by Marcelli (2003: 78) in the software localisation industry, distinguishing among compliance errors (terminology, cross-references, adherence to a style guide), linguistic errors (spelling mistakes, punctuation, grammar etc.) and accuracy errors (mistranslations, overtranslations, undertranslations, register etc.). The fact that practical assessment procedures such as this one, as well as evaluations of translation trainees (e.g. Bowker 1998), seem to be firmly rooted in the age-old dichotomy ‘content’ (adherence to the ST, accuracy) vs. ‘form’ (TT readability, suitable terminology and style) may indicate that these criteria can be still considered as translation ‘norms’ in professional translation and translator training, possibly because they are intuitive and simple to apply. Accordingly, a theoretical model of errors should be equally easy to apply in order to take into account the inevitable time pressure that professional practitioners actually experience. It should also allow prescriptive judgements to be made, based on a yardstick that is flexible enough to be adjusted by the evaluator (professional revisor or translator trainer) to the actual assessment situation. A classification of errors which succeeds in bridging the gap between scholarly approaches to translation quality assessment and the needs of practical quality evaluation is the taxonomy of revision parameters developed by Mossop (2014: 134–149), possibly because of his double personal experience as both a translator at the Canadian Government’s Translation Bureau and a university teacher of translation theory and practice. Implicitly based on the content/form norm, Mossop’s classification consists of four main groups of problem types—transfer and content

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(content-related) and language and presentation (form-related)—each subsuming two or more parameters out of a total of twelve. These parameters are “the things a reviser checks for” and are partly overlapping to take into account the fundamental uniqueness of each translation task. At first sight this classification appears to be too complex and detailed to be applied in daily working practice (cf. Lee 2006: 417–418), and Mossop (2014: 135) himself warns that it is “for discussion and reflection about revision practices” rather than “for use as a checklist while actually revising in a professional setting (though it might be used as such in a classroom setting)”. However, it has the great merit of being very clear, concrete and adaptable to a variety of revision and marking contexts, including professional revising and specialised-translator training. GROUP A: Transfer errors are objective, translation-specific and can be spotted mainly by comparing the TT to its original. They refer to the transfer of sense from ST to TT, and are divided into accuracy errors and completeness errors. 1. Accuracy errors occur when the translator has not understood correctly the ST or the resulting translation does not reflect her comprehension of the ST. The conceptual inaccuracies which are most difficult to spot by a reviser are those which can ‘make sense’ in the TT despite their being mistranslations. Besides being ‘semantic errors’, as in the “use of words and phrases which do not express the intended meaning either denotatively or connotatively” (Göpferich et al. 2011: 84), accuracy errors can also be ‘pragmatic and cultural’ errors (Nord 1997: 75–76) or ‘text-level errors’ (Hatim and Mason 1997: 164–175; Göpferich et al. 2011: 85) having serious effects on the information value of the ST. An example of a pragmatic error affecting the conceptual content of a whole sentence or even paragraph is the mistranslation of a connective such as in fact, which can have either an elaborative (‘in reality’) or adversative (‘but’) meaning. An example of a cultural error affecting accuracy is the wrong conversion of a measurement from the metric to the imperial system, which can have dire consequences in specific situations (for example, the landing test of a new type of aircraft).

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2. Completeness errors occur when the translator has either not translated all the relevant information of the ST (undertranslation) or, less commonly, added information that is not present in it and is irrelevant (overtranslation). Omissions are most commonly unintentional but can also occasionally be intentional, for example when the translator skips over a portion of the text because she has not understood it. Unintentional additions can take the form of the translator’s personal ideas on the content of the ST seeping into the translation or, specifically in specialised translation, the unnecessary explicitation of what is thought to be obscure for the target reader (but in fact is not), typically occurring when the translator tends to popularise a TT where the translation brief required no change of communicative purpose. GROUP B: Content errors are not necessarily translation-specific and can be spotted even by reading the TT as an autonomous text. These errrors affect the logic and factual truth of the translation and can be either inadvertently introduced by the translator or be already contained in the ST. In the latter case, the translator should identify the error, inform the client about it and, in compliance with the client’s instructions, correct it (cf. Sect. 2.4.1): 1. Logical errors can be assimilated to ‘distortions of meaning’ in a traditional evaluation system (cf. Sager 1989: 100; see also Sager 1994: 240). They can be semantic deviations, omissions of elements of content and reversals of sense which typically make the TT meaningless. 2. Factual errors include conceptual and mathematical errors, and also poor terminological choices affecting the clarity and/or factual truth of the TT.  For example, errors of correctness of the TT figures and symbols. GROUP C: Language and style errors relate only to the TT by affecting its readability and acceptability (cf. Sects. 4.2.2 and 4.2.3). In these errors the subjectivity of the reviser inevitably plays a major role because they merely contribute to the difficulty of processing a TT but do not have serious effects on its information value. These are Mossop’s (2014: 142–148) errors of ‘smoothness’, ‘tailoring’, ‘idiom’ and ‘mechanics’, and

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Göpferich et al.’s (2011: 84–85) ‘grammatical errors’ and errors of ‘collocation’ ‘preposition’ and ‘idiomaticity/genre conventions’. In a traditional evaluation system (cf. Sager 1989: 100; see also Sager 1994: 241), language and style errors can be assimilated to ‘stylistic infelicities’, ‘grammatical and orthographic errors’ and ‘errors of punctuation’. They are due to the translator’s inadequate competence in the general and/or special TL and inability to distance herself from the ST giving rise to the so-­ called ‘translationese’, which makes the translation less ‘natural’, and ultimately more difficult to read. Such errors of interference can be lexical (faux amis, wrong reformulation of acronyms, invented words, collocational violations etc.), morfosyntactical (deviant word order in a nominal group, verb tenses etc.) or textual (violations of the thematic structure, use of connective devices in the TT etc.). However, it should be noted that, in the specific context of translation, errors of interference are only due to the specific contact between ST and TT in the translation situation (‘local interference’) and not to the general contact between SL and TL (‘systemic interference’), an example of the latter being the extensive interference of English on the grammar and vocabulary of many European native languages (cf. Sect. 1.3). In specialised translation, language-­ related errors are also connected to the genre-specific lexical, syntactic and textual conventions of the TL.  A case in point are pragmatic and cultural errors affecting the appropriateness of the TT to the communicative purpose specified in the translation brief: for example, the use of non-standard terminology, an inappropriate degree of formality14 or non-­ adherence to an agreed house-style. GROUP D: Physical presentation and structure errors are mainly related to the TT by affecting its readability. Visual elements of the physical appearance of a translation such as the layout of pages, the formatting of paragraphs and typeface or the numbering of chapters, paragraphs, figures and tables have a very important role in some specialised areas such as technical instructions and annual reports (cf. Tomarenko 2019), because they are all meant to help target users understand how information is organised in the text. These errors can range from inconsistencies in the use of different fonts (bold, italics, underlined etc.) and the typographic appearance of the text, spacing and wording of headings, subheadings, paragraphs and lists, to errors in the numbering of titles, tables,

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figures, footnotes, page numbers etc. They may occasionally be caused by a ST already presenting this type of deficiencies. However, when it is a requirement of the translation brief that the translator should follow the graphic style and organisation of the ST, she should not merely reproduce any such errors in the translation but should signal them to the client and get the latter’s approval before correcting them.

4.5.3 Evaluating Errors Classifying translation errors is only the first step to evaluating and grading their importance as objectively as possible, a need keenly felt not only in translator training but also in professional translation. Reliable metrics for measuring the quality of translation and MT post-editing could in fact lead to a quantification of the trade-off between quality and effort required by using different MT tools. The parameter of effort for assessing the performance of MT tools is, under certain respects, quite similar to the parameter for assessing translation quality proposed by Kiraly (2000: 158) in his communicative approach to translator training (see also Klaudy 1995), which takes into account how much time the trainer/ reviser has to spend making the necessary changes for the translation to become usable (the less time for revising, the better the translation). In daily working practice, content and transfer errors are, rather predictably, the translation errors which are right at the top of an ideal gravity scale, because they mislead the reader about the sense of the ST. For example, in the evaluation grid developed for EU documents by CIEQ (Interinstitutional Committee for the Evaluation of External Translations), incorrect translation is graded as being the most serious of the total eight types of errors envisaged (incorrect translation, omission, terminology, use of reference EU documents, clarity and/or register, grammar, punctuation and spelling). Faithfulness to the sense of the ST is in fact considered to be the most important parameter of translation quality, despite major errors in the use of the TL (even if they do not distort or falsify the sense of the ST) are also considered to be serious (Cosmai 2007: 111–112) in texts which have been graded as ‘important’. Moreover, errors belonging to any of the eight categories envisaged by CIEQ can be more or less

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serious depending on both the importance of the TT and their effect in distorting/falsifying an important element of the information content, thereby putting the reader on the wrong track. Also in the Translation Division at OECD (Prioux and Rochard 2007: 31) the most serious translation errors are those affecting faithfulness of sense followed, in decreasing order of gravity, by errors of grammar, errors of ‘rigour’ (that is affecting accuracy, completeness and consistency) and, at the same level of importance, errors of terminology and style. To achieve a translation of a quality commensurate to the level of importance of a text, various grids have been devised at OECD.  The most important is used to assess the level of risk attached to the delivery of a translation in order to anticipate the degree of revision needed to achieve a translation of the required quality: the two dimensions of this grid are the importance of the document to be translated and the reliability of the translator. The grid is also made available to both translator and reviser before the beginning of the translation activity, serving as a guiding principle on the amount of effort to be invested in their respective tasks based on the parameter of the ‘relevance’ (purpose, visibility and target users) of the text to be translated/revised. Errors are assessed in relative terms also in the evaluation models used outside international organisations in the wider translation services market, where the importance of an error depends not so much on the nature/ type of error but on the error’s effects. These are defined in terms of both the circulation/importance and expected life-span of a document and as the error’s impact on the entire text, that is the extent of the error’s potential for disruptiveness of communication and its visibility in the text (title vs. footnote). In practice, the effects of an error are assessed in terms of how it materially affects the product’s sales and the product’s performance, with the latter including third-party liability and property damage (cf. Sect. 2.4). This explains at least partly why, in specialised translations—but also, as suggested by Garzone (2004), more generally in translations with wide circulation such as commercial fiction, popular science and dubbing—the many instances of syntactic and lexical interference are not sanctioned by the translations’ commissioners. It also ties in rather nicely with Hansen’s (2010) observation, concerning the low quality of many MT translations, that “there is not always a direct

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relationship between the number and gravity of errors, the quality of the TT and the perceived acceptability and usability of the text”. Examples of professional evaluation models can be taken from the technical domain of software localisation, where the importance of an error does not correlate with the linguistic category it belongs to (grammar, accuracy, consistency) but is rather dependent on the extent it affects negatively the functionality of a product and its sales. In the model presented by Marcelli (2003: 79–80) (cf. Sect. 4.5.2), three pragmatic variables are used to evaluate a translation error: (1) the category of users of a translated document, whereby the most serious errors are those occurring in documents aimed at a wider audience of less technologically literate users, who can less easily cope with ambiguities and mistakes in the translated texts; (2) the genre of a translated document, whereby errors in more accessed documents (such as marketing brochures and web pages) are more serious than in less accessed ones (such as instruction manuals); and (3) the visibility of an error (within the same translated document), with some parts of the text being more visible than others. Another, more detailed, QA model is that developed by the now-­ defunct Localisation Industry Standards Association (LISA) (Ling Koo and Kinds 2000), which nonetheless is still influential in localisation. On top of visibility and effects on the product’s functionality, in the LISA model the severity of errors is also related to other factors such as how many times an error is repeated in several locations of the text, the degree of illogicality it introduces, its potential offensiveness and whether it can be connected to the failed implementation of a correction suggested in previous revisions. On the basis of all these parameters, and independently from the category it belongs to (transfer, accuracy, terminology, language, style, localisation, consistency), each translation error can be assigned to a different level of severity. In agreement with the client, these levels of importance are weighted and classified as ‘critical’ (error in a particularly visible part of a document or software; major error repeated in several locations of the same document; localisation error causing an application to crash), ‘major’ (error in a highly visible part of a document or software; error resulting in a misleading statement; a minor error repeated in several locations of the document etc.) and ‘minor’. Each critical error is assigned the maximum number of error points plus one

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(+1), whilst major and minor errors are weighted and counted towards a maximum permissible number, with each major error counting five error points and each minor error counting one error point. It should however be noted that the presence of even only one critical error means that the translation is returned to the translator for reworking with details of the error. Turning to the theoretical-didactic context, the rigid linguistic categories on which traditional typologies of translation errors were based have made way for more flexible communicative models where, drawing on some parameters used in professional contexts, the gravity of an error is correlated to that of its consequences. In the wake of functionalist approaches to the evaluation of translation errors (for example, Kussmaul 1995: 128–141; Hatim and Mason 1997: 165–169), in these communicative approaches errors are considered not as separate and self-contained entities, but as constituents of the broader communicative functions that are realised in both the text and the situational/cultural context in which the text is embedded. When classifying the severity of errors, the ‘substance’ of the TT should then override the ‘correctness’ of individual translation choices, because a translation may well contain many ‘local’ errors but succeed nonetheless in conveying the global sense of the ST (Dancette 1992: 440). However, unlike the professional context, where the weights (and number) of different errors are adjusted to take into account different translation briefs, if the situational context of both the translation activity and the quality assessment of the final translation product is the translation classroom, serious consequences are usually limited to the disruption of communication caused by errors within the text where they occur (sentence, paragraph or whole document), along the lines that “The more far-reaching their negative effect is, the more serious they are” (Kussmaul 1995: 143). Even in ‘collaborative’ and ‘authentic experiential’ learning environments aiming to narrow the gap between professional expertise and translator education (Kiraly 2000, 2013; Way 2009), ‘real-world’ extralinguistic considerations such as negative effects on product’s sales and performance can at best be simulated in error evaluation through role-playing among trainers and trainees (for example, González-Davies 2017). The only exception is provided by experiments where trainees

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produce authentic translations that are assessed and accepted by external clients, such as the curricular pre-professional apprenticeship described by Vandepitte (2009), involving Master’s translation students at University College Ghent setting up their own translation agency. The aim was to teach students other competences besides the usual ones covered in translator-training programmes, such as working against deadlines and from a translation brief, and also entrepreneurial competences such as being able to deal with customers, write invoices and produce a balance sheet. However, setting up a similar training experience outside a country such as Belgium, where it is evidently possible for university students to set up an authentic (vs. a simulated) business, could pose insurmountable administrative and institutional difficulties. There is also another potential problem with setting professional error-evaluation standards in an educational context: in today’s universities, standards such as those set by the LISA model might prove to be far too exacting for assessing trainees’ work and, if adopted by translator trainers, would result in unacceptably low pass-rates (e.g. Williams 1989). The best way to measure the gravity of errors in a teaching context seems then the ‘mixed’ approach suggested by Magris (2005: 93), where predetermined professional criteria can be adopted as guiding principles, provided they are then integrated by training criteria whereby marks and grades are awarded by comparative reference to the ‘norm’ of the performance of the students being assessed. Having reviewed some evaluation models of errors mainly in the professional world of translation, at the end of this final section I will propose a classification of translation errors that aims to be an easy-to-use scale concerning error gravity based on functionalist criteria. The schema is designed to be used for assessing translations in an educational context but can also be adapted on a per-project basis to meet the requirements previously defined in the translation brief of a professional translation. This approach is modeled on two classifications, both developed in the translation industry: Schiaffino and Zearo’s (2005, 2012) Translation Quality Index (TQI), with particular reference to the authors’ suggestion to determine error weights also by looking at the errors’ consequences, and Vollmar’s (2001a, b, c) model for practical QA. Neither of the classications of errors adopted in the previous section (Mossop’s and

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Göpferich’s) contain in fact explicit indications on how to weight the different error categories, with the possible exception of the following specification referring to the assessment for correctness of the TTs produced by the participants in the study which was carried out by “three raters who hold a university degree in Translation Studies” (Göpferich et al. 2011: 65): all errors are weighted following functional principles on a three-level scale (−0.5 / −1 / −1.5) depending on the degree to which they impair the TT’s communicative function.

What the classification presented here does not aim to do is provide a quantitative measurement of translation quality by assigning to each error a numeric score for the calculation of a final weighted total score based on both the number and the severity of the errors in a translation. This is because pre-defined metrics such as these can only be adapted to the varying importance, in each specific translation activity, of the different variables and targets that need to be taken into account, such as the number of errors and its ratio per total number of words; the different weight that different types of errors have in different text types;15 the visibility of an error; the setting and final destination of the translation; the time-pressure put on the translator etc. In the classification, errors are assigned to categories in decreasing order of gravity based on their severity, which is assessed mainly by reference to the extent to which an error impacts standard translation quality parameters such as accuracy (the meaning of the ST and the communicative function of the TT) and readability (the use of language appropriate to the genre), but also on the following three other variables: 1. the visibility of an error, both in the sense of the user’s possibility to spot an error when reading the TT (cf. Nord 1997: 76) and of the location of an error in a more or less prominent part of the text (abstract, title, header/footer, footnote, highlighted word/sentence etc.); 2. the repetition of an error; and, in case of multiple (third-party) revisions of the same translation,

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3. the persistence of an error notwithstanding its correction in a previous revision. (a) Critical errors: errors of accuracy, completeness, factual content, logic, or even consistency and language/style causing serious misunderstandings of the text (contradictions, omissions, misleading additions, conceptual, pragmatic and cultural errors, misleading terminology etc.) that lead to the misinterpretation of a significant portion, if not the whole, of the text and the TT user can in no way spot. Major error that is repeated and/or located in a particularly visible portion of the text. Lack of consideration of the correction of a major error in a previous revision of the translation. In the localisation industry, “critical errors may require the recall of the localised product from the market” (Schiaffino and Zearo 2012). (b) Major errors: errors of accuracy, completeness, factual content, logic or even consistency and language/style causing misunderstandings of the text (contradictions, omissions, misleading additions, conceptual, pragmatic and cultural errors, misleading terminology etc.) that lead to the misinterpretation of a limited portion of the text but that the TT user can easily spot. Error that is repeated and/or located in a particularly visible portion of the text. Lack of consideration of the correction of an error in a previous revision of the translation. In the localisation industry, “major errors may require a correction to the current release of the localised product” (Schiaffino and Zearo 2012). (c) Minor errors: errors of language/style (grammar, orthography, phraseology and terminology, faux friends, interference, tense concordance) that do not affect sense. Errors of formatting and layout that make the text less easily readable (for example, starting a new paragraph at the end of each sentence in a text, when this is not specifically required by the translation brief ). In the l­ ocalisation industry, “minor errors may require a correction for the next release of the localised product” (Schiaffino and Zearo 2012).

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Based on this classification of errors, a translation (300–350 words) can be evaluated according to the following five different levels of translation quality: Excellent: No critical or major errors; only some minor language/style and/or formatting/layout which in no way affect the readability of the text. Acceptable: No critical or major errors; several minor errors of language/ style and/or formatting/layout which however do not affect the readability of the text. Borderline: No critical or major errors; one significant linguistic error or several minor ones of language/style and/or formatting/layout which affect the readability of the text even if the text is still comprehensible. Poor: No critical errors; one major error; more than one significant linguistic error and/or several minor ones of language/style and/or formatting/layout which affect both the readability and comprehensibility of the text. Unacceptable: One or more critical errors and/or more than one major errors.

Notes 1. See, for example, the 2000 Special Issue 6/2 of The Translator on “Evaluation and Translation” (Maier 2000), the emphasis on revision and quality in issue 8/2007 of JosTrans. The Journal of Specialised Translation (Künzli 2007, Martin 2007, Prioux and Rochard 2007) and the 2009 volume Testing and Assessment in Translation and Interpreting Studies: A call for dialogue between research and practice (Angelelli and Jacobson 2009). 2. See Drugan (2013: 35–80) for an extensive and detailed overview of both academic and professional approaches to translation quality and different ways to classify them. 3. At the moment of writing, the standard has been replaced by the updated version ISO 18587:2017.

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4. It should be noted, however, that, rather counter-intuitively, the emphasis of assessment is formative/summative also in the fast-growing field of machine translation (MT). This is presumably because the emphasis of MT research is on pedagogical models to obtain feedback on the causes of errors and possible remedies. 5. Cf. Kingscott’s (1996: 138) somewhat blunt claim that “[a] poor-quality translation, provided it does not positively mislead, which is ready for a businessman on Tuesday before he catches his plane to Tokyo, is far preferable than the accurate + natural idiom translation which is not ready till Friday of the same week; in fact, in such circumstances, the latter translation is worthless”. 6. The employer consultation conducted in partnership with the EUATC (European Union of Associations of Translation Companies) in 2011 was unfortunately not included in a later survey conducted by the EMT Network in 2017 (Rothwell and Svoboda 2019), which focused exclusively on updating and re-running the survey of the training in tools and technologies provided by MA translation programmes across Europe which had been conducted within the OPTIMALE project (Rothwell and Svoboda 2012). 7. It is worth noting that, somewhat counter-intuitively, should these translation types be ordered based on the degree of effort required of the translator to achieve them, the ‘easiest’ would be translation proper whilst the most ‘difficult’ the ‘summary’ or ‘synoptic’ translation. 8. For example, in the following Ten-Step Quality Assurance Process developed by a big language service provider, revising a translation involves as many as five steps out of the total 10 of the translation workflow: (5) Copy Editing; (6) Translator/Client Review; (8) Quality Control/ Proofreading; (9) Final Translator Review; and (10) Final Check/Delivery (http://www.ctslanguagelink.com/translation_process.php). 9. Perhaps interestingly, in Shih’s (2006) study on professional translators’ self-revision procedures, whilst some interviewees claimed to allow at most a night to intervene between finishing their translations and starting revising them, the majority did not allow any time at all because either there was not the time to do it or they did not deem it necessary. 10. As Troiano et al. (2002: 48) rather vividly put it: “amateur revisers inevitably give free rein to their all-conquering ego by rampaging across the pages wielding a sword dripping bloody red ink”.

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11. Examples of existing metrics in the translation services market are the LISA QA Model for localisation projects, SAE J2450 for automotive service information, TAUS Dynamic Quality Framework (O’Brien 2012), LPET (Michael et al. 2011), MQM (Mariana et al. 2015), TQA for the outsourced translations of the DGT of the European Commission, and, for Machine Translation, NIST, BLEU and METEOR. 12. This error was actually spotted in the Italian version of the voice-over of a documentary on West Virginia from the television series Aerial America (in Italian: L’America vista dal cielo) filmed in 2013. 13. Indeed, there is a lack of empirical research on the ways in which either difficulty of interpretation/comprehensibility and/or defective or inadequate features of a specialised ST can influence the translator’s performance by causing translation errors. Examples of such studies focusing on specialised translation are Palumbo and Ahmad (2004), Göpferich (2006a, b), Palumbo (2008) and Bjørge (2007). 14. An example of a formality error is using the everyday variant blackhead instead of the scientific comedone in an article to be published in a dermatology research journal. 15. For example, a formatting error might have much more weight in an instruction manual, where it may also impact negatively on the content of the text by making it less readily accessible to the reader, than in a scientific article, where it can be tolerated more easily. Another example is the greater importance that language and style errors have in specific contexts such as multilingual ones (for example, Canada), where the TL readers of a translation may well consider the unidiomatic use of their language as being far more important than users of the same TL living instead in a non-multilingual context (for example, France).

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Index1

A

Abbreviations, 19, 56, 65–67, 191 Acceptability, 194, 208, 272, 300, 306–310, 314, 343, 347 Accuracy, 160, 161, 261, 292, 300–304, 306, 308, 310, 314, 319, 330, 331, 334, 341, 342, 346, 347, 350, 351 Adaptation, 83, 88, 94n20, 120, 127, 160, 200, 214, 217, 218, 250, 255, 257, 258, 260, 262, 264, 274n1, 312, 313, 335 Adequacy, 120, 300, 306–309, 330, 334

Affixes, 60, 64 Agency translator’s, ix, 155 Amplification, see Expansion Anaphora, 35, 58, 257 Appropriateness, 8, 15, 17, 117, 120, 121, 188, 190, 194, 208, 247, 265, 266, 304, 306, 344 Argumentation, 4, 16, 19, 29, 30, 39, 45, 49, 74, 78, 191, 221, 238, 303 Association Française de Normalisation, 294 Audio Engineering Society (AES), 60

 Note: Page numbers followed by ‘n’ refer to notes.

1

© The Author(s) 2020 F. Scarpa, Research and Professional Practice in Specialised Translation, Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting, https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51967-2

409

410 Index B

Bach, Carme, 36, 139, 141, 144, 145 Baker, Mona, 1, 7, 16, 17, 28, 36, 37, 43, 46, 93n8, 93n10, 111, 113, 124, 125, 127–130, 132, 141–147, 152, 157, 195, 215, 224, 236, 237, 250, 255, 256, 258–260, 265, 266, 268, 271, 305 Bennett, Karen, 15, 18–20, 39, 52, 76, 78, 140, 211, 237, 238 Blendings, 28, 64–66, 250 Boosters, 50, 51, 238, 240, 241 Borrowings, 67, 68, 76, 78, 211, 214, 250–252, 254, 255, 258, 259, 261, 266, 273, 276n11, 305 Bowker, Lynne, 54, 59, 128, 247, 341 British Standards Institution (BSI), 60, 190, 294 Brunette, Louise, 319, 322, 334 BSI, see British Standards Institution Byrne, Jody, 5, 81, 112, 113, 130, 166, 199, 256, 292, 338 C

Cabré, M. Teresa, 54, 249 Calques, 67, 68, 76, 78, 206, 211, 214, 250–252, 254, 255, 258, 259, 276n11 See also Borrowings CAT tools, see Translation memories Catalan, 139, 143, 145, 234, 235 Chesterman, Andrew, ix, 84, 91, 116, 124, 125, 129, 132, 156–158, 160, 164, 168, 193,

198, 199, 205–207, 209, 214, 215, 219, 220, 250, 251, 255–257, 259, 260, 262, 271, 292, 299, 337 Chinese, 143, 241 Circumlocution, 255, 258, 259 See also Paraphrase Clarity, 17, 38–40, 126, 138, 149, 156, 157, 160, 162, 257, 261, 292, 304, 317, 330, 343, 345 Codes of ethics, 157, 158 of practice, 157 Coherence, 17, 35, 146, 149, 228, 303, 321 Cohesion, 10, 17, 35–37, 67, 141, 146, 226, 227, 230, 239, 257, 303, 321, 341 See also Conjunction(s); Ellipsis; Lexical cohesion; Repetition; Substitution Collocations, 15, 20, 21, 37, 56, 57, 65, 126, 130, 150, 152, 190, 247, 248, 265, 313, 314, 320, 329, 334, 339–341, 344, 351 Comité Européen de Normalisation (CEN), 60, 294, 296 Commensurability, 86 Compounds, 41, 42, 65–67, 190, 252, 255, 273 Conjunction(s), 22, 35, 36, 41, 49, 144, 226, 229, 232, 243, 257 Connective ties, 35 Cooperative maxims, 33, 304 Co-reference, 37 See also Anaphora Cosmai, Domenico, 195, 317, 323, 330, 345

 Index 

Creativity, 14, 75, 90, 196, 295, 309 Cronin, Michael, 15, 76, 140, 157 Cuenca, M. Josep, 36, 139, 141, 144, 145 Cultural terms, 260 culture-bound terms, 142, 259 culture-specific items, 142, 250, 260, 261 culture-specific terms, 127, 196, 251, 258–260, 275 D

Darbelnet, Jean Louis, 67, 209, 214 Definitions, 9, 11, 32, 38, 54, 56, 59, 86, 92n7, 114, 117, 120, 133, 148, 149, 203, 207, 221, 248, 294–297, 305, 335–340 interlocking, 20, 21, 37, 150 Derivation, 64, 65, 217, 250 Descriptive terms, 257, 258, 263 Deutsches Institut für Normung, 60, 294 DGT, 80, 81, 195, 304, 307, 354n11 Discourse community, see Specialist community Documentation, 81, 83, 94n25, 120, 126, 133, 137, 141, 191, 317 Drugan, Joanna, 80, 81, 113, 114, 292, 294, 295, 300, 307, 318, 323, 324, 336, 338, 352n2 Dutch, 144

Effectiveness, 17, 18, 63, 94n24, 117, 121, 130, 191, 202, 257, 268, 295, 300, 309, 338 Efficiency, viii, 17, 38, 63, 117, 121, 130, 191, 295, 300, 306, 308 Elimination, see Omission Ellipsis, 35, 144, 257 Englund Dimitrova, Brigitta, 193, 202, 205, 210, 213, 218, 227–229, 315, 325 Ente Nazionale Italiano di Unificazione, 294 Eponymy, 62, 63, 65 Equivalence cultural, 259–261 descriptive, 217, 255, 259 formal, 116, 254 functional, 115, 118, 119, 217, 255, 259 linguistic (see Formality) referential, 117 European Master’s in Translation (EMT), 112, 114, 317 Expansion, 68, 78, 214, 219, 231, 257 Expectations (readers), 3, 6, 8, 12, 75, 88, 116, 118, 121, 125, 126, 129, 140, 157, 160, 162, 165, 191, 196, 198–200, 212, 219, 239, 262, 300, 304, 308–310, 314, 330, 335, 338 Explicitation, 5, 123, 129, 140, 214, 215, 218, 219, 227–229, 245, 246, 250, 255, 257, 258, 271, 332, 343

E

Economy, 17–20, 38, 39, 47, 57, 59, 63, 66, 67, 227, 231, 243, 304 Editorial translation, 80, 163, 219, 312

411

F

Faithfulness, 157, 161, 345, 346 Figures, 13, 32, 46, 70, 82, 151, 161, 218, 343–345

412 Index

Finnish, 75, 131 FIT Translator’s Charter, 159, 167 Formality, 7, 73, 126, 139, 145, 190, 192, 217, 221, 222, 233, 238, 242, 250, 256, 262, 263, 309, 344, 354n14 Freelance, 95n29, 296, 311, 323, 328 French, vii, 33, 44, 60, 61, 65, 67, 68, 78, 83, 94n20, 112, 113, 126, 140, 141, 144, 145, 147, 153, 163, 210, 219, 224, 231, 234, 241, 253, 255, 256, 261, 265, 274n1 Fronting/foregrounding, 33, 143, 149, 237 See also Given/New information Functionalist approaches, 32, 118–120, 123, 127, 135, 156, 166, 348 Functions of language/communication, 3, 7, 8, 10–12, 24, 25, 29, 56, 116, 144, 195, 198, 199, 208, 304, 338, 348, 350 of terminology, 56, 59

Given/New information, 32, 222, 224 See also Thematic progression; Thematic selection/choice; Thematic structure; Word order Glossaries, 54, 88 See also Termbases Göpferich, Susanne, 5, 12, 25, 26, 28, 29, 92n5, 117, 135, 139, 148, 149, 195, 202, 213, 228, 243, 263, 336, 342, 343, 350, 354n13 Gotti, Maurizio, 3, 9, 15, 17, 19, 30, 34, 38, 42–45, 47, 48, 58, 64, 70, 73, 93n11, 112 Gouadec, Daniel, 187, 190, 200, 298, 302, 308, 311–313, 323 Grammatical metaphor, 20, 22, 23, 39, 40, 94n22, 150, 151, 238, 242 Grammatical versus lexical words, 21, 130, 151 Greek, 14, 94n19, 276n12 H

G

Gender, 215, 253 German, 33, 65, 77, 127, 138, 140–144, 147, 200, 221, 224, 227–229, 232, 234, 235, 238, 241, 242, 261–263, 270 Gerzymisch-Arbogast, Heidrun, 33, 139, 141, 152, 221, 234 Gile, Daniel, ix, 166, 291, 303, 329

Halliday, Michael A.K., viii, 4, 5, 19–23, 35, 39–41, 48, 53, 57, 70, 78, 79, 92n6, 94n22, 118, 147, 149–151, 170n7, 194, 204, 220, 226 Harmonisation, 59, 60, 314, 339 Hatim, Basil, 24, 27, 44, 49, 116, 117, 141, 192, 194, 195, 210, 342, 348 Hedges, 50, 51, 141, 238, 240, 241

 Index 

Hempel, Karl G., 139, 235, 242, 243, 275n9 Hervey, Sándor G. J., 144, 160, 260, 274n3 Holmes, James S., viii, 1, 2, 88, 119, 124, 189 House, Juliane, 5, 8, 76, 79, 117–119, 132, 139, 162, 208, 238, 298, 299, 315, 318, 320, 321 House-style, 314, 320, 344 Hurtado Albir, Amparo, 133–135, 149, 214, 336, 337, 340 Hyland, Ken, 20, 36, 43, 44, 50, 51 Hyperonym, see Superordinate Hyponym, 37, 63, 256 I

Idiomaticity, 303, 320, 344 Idiomatic translation, 198 Idioms, 152, 190, 252, 265, 266, 268, 272, 343, 353n5 Impersonal forms, 39, 44, 233, 235–237, 240 Implicature, 16, 17, 39, 238 Implicitness, 9, 238 See also Linguistic underdeterminacy Information structure, 32, 33, 206, 222, 224, 225, 274n7 See also Thematic structure; Thematisation In-house translator, 328 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), 60 Institutional terms, 142, 258, 259, 261

413

Institutional translation, 82 Interference, 77, 128, 129, 131, 132, 209, 211, 236, 244, 305, 344, 346, 351 International Organization for Standardization (ISO), 59, 60, 125, 190, 294–297, 307, 316, 319, 323, 325, 329, 335, 352n3 Internationalisation, 94n19, 137, 254 International standards, 59, 60, 292, 294–298, 315, 317 Intertextuality, 23, 24, 187, 191, 194–199, 207 ISO, see International Organization for Standardization Italian, vii, 25, 33, 44, 61, 62, 64, 65, 68, 75, 77, 94n20, 94n21, 111, 112, 126, 131, 139, 140, 143–145, 147, 148, 169n6, 217, 219, 220, 222, 224, 225, 227–229, 231, 234–236, 238–240, 242, 243, 246, 247, 251–257, 259, 260, 262, 273, 274n1, 275n10, 276n11, 276n12, 305, 354n12 J

Jakobsen, Arnt L., 38, 189, 193, 201, 203, 314, 327 Jakobson, Roman, 10, 11, 25, 86 Johnson, Mark, 71–73, 75, 153, 154 Juxtaposition, 20, 144, 229

414 Index K

Katan, David, x, 114, 137, 138, 142, 258–260, 307 Krings, Hans P., 132, 134, 135, 203, 206, 207, 211, 319, 337 Krüger, Ralph, 9, 25, 26, 87, 113, 120, 137, 195, 228, 238 Kuhn, Thomas S., 13, 21, 73, 75 L

Lakoff, George, 71–73, 86, 95n27, 153, 154 Language for General Purposes (LGP), 3 Language industry, see Translation industry Languages for Special Purposes (LSP) horizontal dimension, 6, 7, 24 relationship to LGP, 7, 8, 13 vertical dimension, 7, 24 Latin, 60, 94n19, 252 Laviosa, Sara, 129–131 Legal