Revisiting Translation Strategies and Techniques

Ngoran Constantine Tardzenyuy


Many translation researchers, scholars and students or trainees have the tendency to use the terms ‘translation strategy’,’ translation technique’  ‘translation method’ and ‘translation procedure’ invariably, and sometimes with varying shades of meaning This paper attempts to define, distinguish and clarify these terms in a bid to give the study of translation the scientific basis it deserves, given that scientific terminology is bound to be clear and unequivocal. Employing the qualitative research method and secondary or documentary sources, the paper provides elaborate explanations of the terms using sourced and invented examples. The paper concludes that the term ‘translation strategy’ should be used strictly to refer to a global or general decision a translator takes before engaging  in the translation of any text. Such a general decision could concern the issue of whether the translation would be literal, foreignized or source-text oriented; or whether it would be free, oblique, domesticated or target-text-oriented. On the other hand, the paper conclusively contends that all the other terms, that is to say, ‘translation technique, ‘translation procedure’ and ‘translation method’ should be used to refer to tools or operational measures deployed   by the translator in the course of actual translation. In other words, they should be used as mechanisms for effecting general or globalizing translation strategies.

Keywords: Translation, Strategy, Translation, Technique, Foreignization, Domestication.

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