AWEJ for Translation & Literary Studies, Volume 7, Number 1. February  2023                                Pp.261-283

Contrastive Analysis of English and Arabic Versions of Coelho’s Novel Eleven Minutes

Department of English Language and Translation, College of Arabic Language and Social
Studies, Qassim University, Buraydah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,

Ghada Abdulhamid

English language and literature,
Faculty of Letters and Humanities, Lebanese University
Beirut, Lebanon


This exploratory research investigates linguistic and cultural challenges in English and Arabic translations of Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho’s novel, Eleven Minutes, which was originally written in Portuguese. This study raises the following questions: (1) How does the functional-pragmatic model of House prove to be advantageous to the contrastive analysis of translations of Eleven Minutes? (2) To what extent are the translators whose work is examined in the current research faithful to the ST? (3) How intensely are linguistic-textual elements prioritized over cultural aspects in the conveyance of the ST message in either translation? This work employs Juliane House’s model of translation quality assessment to make a comparative analysis of the source text with both translations and to highlight the relationship of linguistic components with the relevant communication process. Furthermore, the techniques adopted in both translations are examined through excerpts taken from each of the three versions of the book. The registers of the source text and those of the target texts are analyzed and compared based on the register analysis of House’s model. Consequently, the study demonstrates how the conceptual and interpersonal functions of language are affected in the target texts. The outcome of this qualitative analysis leads to the identification of the methods adopted by the translators, mainly referring to overt and covert translation methods. Overall, it is concluded that the English translation is significantly linked to the source text by pragmatic equivalence, in contrast, the Arabic translation is connected to the source text by significant functional equivalence that highlights the cultural filter used in the text.

Cite as:

Abalkheel, A., & Abdulhamid, G. (2023). Contrastive Analysis of English and Arabic Versions of Coelho’s
Novel Eleven Minutes .  Arab World English Journal for Translation & Literary Studies 7 (1): 261-283.
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awejtls/vol7no1.20


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Albatool Abalkheel is an Associate Professor of Linguistics at the Department of English and Translation, College of Arabic Language and Social Studies, Buraydah, Qassim University, Saudi Arabia. She received her MA degree in English from Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO., USA. She then received her Ph.D. from Tulane University, New Orleans, LA, USA. She published several papers related to linguistics and presented some papers at conferences. ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1802-4361

Ghada Abdulhamid is a multilingual translator of English, French, Portuguese and Arabic languages, particularly a specialist in Portuguese translation. She holds an MA in English literature and a BA in Translation from the Lebanese University. She constantly explores various disciplines in Linguistics and Translation to develop her ideas and skills in both areas.