How do you do it anyway?

University dissertation from Stockholm : Acta Universitatis Stockholmiensis

Abstract: This study investigates the translation process of three translator students and their production of translated non-fiction texts. The students are followed from an initial examination task over a period of time of 5 years. The translated texts produced during this period are analysed with selected methods of text analysis, which is compared to their source texts. The text analysis focuses on certain grammatical features that are known to generate problems for translators with the language pair Russian – Swedish.The results of the analysis show that the systematic differences in the languages involved are not as problematic as expected for the participants. Writing skills in the TL, translation principles and initial beliefs as well as the individual’s approach concerning the task of a translator turn out to have the most significant influences on the participants’ performance. In a complementary analysis, introspection data obtained from concurrent verbalisations are analysed according to a model that allows indicating and classifying marked processing in the translations. The role of contrastive language knowledge is especially emphasised in this part of the study.The results are put in relation to each other to obtain a picture of the individual development of the participating translator students. The three case studies show that each participant developed his/her competence during the time of the study. They also show that this development stays within a conceptual frame set by the participants before they started their training as translators.The implications for translator training that can be drawn from this study are mainly concerned with the importance of writing skills in the TL, contrastive language knowledge and the importance of questioning individual beliefs and principles concerning the task of the translator as well as approaches to translating.