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Multilingual Films in Translation

A Sociolinguistic and Intercultural Study of Diasporic Films


Micòl Beseghi

A contribution to the ever-growing field of audiovisual translation studies, this volume investigates the processes involved in the translation of multilingual films, a media genre where language, culture and identity are closely interwoven. To explore the relationships that get established between audiovisual translation, linguistic diversity and identity, the book analyses a corpus of immigrant films portraying the South Asian diaspora, with the aim of determining how diasporic identity is then reconstructed for the Italian audience through dubbing and subtitling. A sociolinguistic analysis model is proposed that covers all linguistic levels, including the use of ethnolects and some fundamental discourse strategies, such as code-switching and code-mixing, thus illustrating how linguistic choices and language variation are socio-culturally symbolic.

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Chapter 5: Translating South Asian diasporic films


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Translating South Asian diasporic films

In my observation, translation is not only a finite linguistic act but an ongoing cultural one. It is the continuous struggle, on my parents behalf, to preserve what it means for them to be first and forever Indian, to keep afloat certain familial and communal traditions in a foreign and at times indifferent world. Unlike my parents, whether I write as an American or an Indian, about things American or Indian or otherwise, one thing remains constant: I translate, therefore I am.

— LAHIRI (2002)

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