Translation as discursive import
Global communication is giving rise to unprecedented movements not only of goods, services, capital and people but also cultural facts, which become “common property”. Proper nouns for people and places now rank among the most shared items in the globalizing world. Traditionally, the Latvian language has used phonetic-based transcription as the basic strategy for representing foreign proper nouns. Under the new circumstances, however, transcription is proving to be inadequate. Analysis of the Latvian translations of <i>Dorling Kindersley </i>travel guides shows that a variety of transfer procedures are being used, including non-translation, transcription, calque, semi-calque, deletion, and different combinations of these operations. Translators thus emerge as active agents who have a considerable say about linguistic and cultural processes. At the same time, these translations show traces of post-national, globalized blending and hybridity. As it becomes harder to draw the line between the national and the international, so it becomes more difficult to distinguish between translation and non-translation.