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AWEJ for Translation & Literary Studies, Volume 2, Number 2, May 2018                                            Pp. 2-16

 Maintaining Cultural Identity in Translated Literary Texts: Strategies of Translating Culture-Specific Items in two Arabic plays

Samar Zahrawi

Department of World Languages and Cultures
College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX, USA.

Abstract:

Abstract PDF

This article focusses on the translator’s task as a cultural mediator who has to transfer the nuances of the literary text faithfully. The translation of culture-specific items, such as proverbs, figurative language, reference to religion, mythology or literature, and stylistics, are at the core of the discussion. This paper discusses generally recommended strategies used in translating culture specific items (CSIs), and further analyses and evaluates such strategies as used in two translated Arabic plays; Sa’dallah Wannous’s The Glass Café (1978/2004) and Mamdouh ‘Udwan’s Reflections of a Garbage Collector (1987/2006). The translation strategies used in these two plays are recognized and rationalized in terms of giving a domesticated or a foreignized effect. Besides transferring meaning, the cultural identity of the text is highlighted as a mainstay of the translation process

Cite as:

Zahrawi, S. (2018). Maintaining Cultural Identity in Translated Literary Texts: Strategies of Translating Culture-Specific Items in two Arabic plays. Arab World English Journal for Translation & Literary Studies, 2 (2).

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Samar Zahrawi (PhD) is an Assistant Professor at Sam Houston State University, College of
Humanities and Social Science, Department of World Languages and Cultures, She is teaching
and coordinating a minor in Middle Eastern studies. Her research interests are modern drama,
Arabic drama, film studies, pedagogy of Arabic language and culture