Chinese discourse and pragmatics in translation

Authored by: Vincent Xian Wang

The Routledge Handbook of Chinese Translation

Print publication date:  October  2017
Online publication date:  October  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138938267
eBook ISBN: 9781315675725
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter examines Chinese translation on the discourse and pragmatics planes, and is built on the belief that a discourse- and pragmatics-based perspective (hereafter, a discourse perspective) is critically important to translators and translation studies (TS) researchers. A discourse perspective views language use in relation to its textual and sociocultural contexts, and is therefore fundamentally important for effective translation and translation studies. Such a perspective is not just a matter of dealing with the linguistic properties of a text at discourse and pragmatics levels – for example, text cohesion and coherence, implicatures and speech acts. Rather, it examines a wide range of factors that interact with or contribute to discourse/s, from those at the micro-linguistic level such as the use of lexical items and syntactic structures (e.g., Chen 1991: 63–70; Pan and Kádár 2013: ch. 2–3) to those at the macro-sociocultural level that relate to ideologies, (institutional) culture, professional practices and power relations.

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