Volume 37, Issue 4
  • ISSN 0521-9744
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9668
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This paper is on metaphors involving verbs such as "Der Himmel weint." (literally, The sky is crying/weeping.") and comprises a comparative translation study.The source material consists of 11 prose works from German post-war literature (authors: Bienek, Boll, Frisch, Grass, Handke, Lenz, Nossack and Walser) and 6 works from Swedish post-war literature (authors: Andersson, Bergman, Delblanc, Gustafsson and Lagerkvist). The empirical investigation builds on a corpus where, for the first time, all the metaphors of a certain type in literary works have been excerpted and treated statistically, totally well over 2800 instances of metaphor. Up to now there has been no study in the field of verb metaphors (and their translation into Swedish) based on a material of a comparable size.One obvious result is that novel verb metaphors constitute a very important and stylistic device in German and Swedish post-war prose. Further, the investigation provides answers to a number of quantitative issues which might be of interest in the fields of literary analysis, translation theory and linguistics. For example, 47.7% of target-language replacements of source language metaphors reveal maximal equivalence, however the continuum lies between 24.9% and 67.7%.The comparative translation study was supplemented with an "inverted analysis", revealing certain tendencies with regard to compensatory mechanisms.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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