image of The translation of extralinguistic cultural references in subtitling
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There has been substantial scholarly interest in extralinguistic cultural references (ECRs) in translation, especially in audiovisual translation (AVT). However, most scholars have investigated subtitling from English into other languages. Although China has a long tradition of film production, few studies have investigated the subtitling of ECRs from Chinese into English. This article attempts to remedy this by investigating the translation strategies, translation strategy distribution, and fidelity indexes of six subtitled versions of Chinese-language films. We compare our results with results on Danish subtitles, and find that both Chinese and Danish subtitlers hold a target-oriented attitude. We then investigate the share of the strategies in the subtitling of ECRs across different Chinese films and determine that this varies by genre and that the difference in the fidelity index among films of different genres is substantial. The translation of epic films appears to be highly faithful, whereas that of crime and gangster films is much less faithful.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keywords: subtitling ; fidelity ; Chinese–English ; extralinguistic cultural references (ECRs)
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