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English Translations of Shen Congwen’s Stories

A Narrative Perspective

Minhui Xu

This book investigates the English translations of Shen Congwen’s stories. Shen Congwen (1902–1988) is one of the most acclaimed writers in modern Chinese literature. His works have been translated into more than ten languages and his 44 stories count with 70 different English translations. Adopting a case study method within the framework of Descriptive Translation Studies, the author selects and compares the most translated stories, those with three or more translations, totalling fifteen translations from four stories. The analysis of the texts focuses on Shen’s narrative style – his narrative commentaries and his lyrical narrative mode – to see how his style was re-presented in translation. In addition, the translators’ overt narrative intrusions – their added notes – are also examined.
Further, on the basis of Bourdieu’s sociological concepts, especially habitus, this study makes an attempt to interpret the different strategies adopted by different translators, including scholar/non-scholar translators, L1/L2 translators, and translators of the 1930s and 40s and those of the 1980s onwards.

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PETER LANG English Translat ions of Shen Congwen’s Stor ies Minhui Xu A Narrat ive Perspective www.peterlang.com ISBN 978-3-0343-1405-3 M in h u i X u E n glish T ran slatio n s o f Sh en C o n g w en ’s Sto ries This book investigates the English translations of Shen Congwen’s stories. Shen Congwen ( 1902–1988 ) is one of the most acclaimed writers in modern Chinese literature. His works have been translated into more than ten lan- guages and his 44 stories count with 70 different English translations. Adopting a case study method within the framework of Descriptive Trans- lation Studies, the author selects and compares the most translated stories, those with three or more translations, totalling fi fteen translations from four stories. The analysis of the texts focuses on Shen’s narrative style – his nar- rative commentaries and his lyrical narrative mode – to see how his style was re-presented in translation. In addition, the translators’ overt narrative intru- sions – their added notes – are also examined. Further, on the basis of Bourdieu’s sociological concepts, especially habitus, this study makes an attempt to interpret the different strategies adopted by different translators, including scholar / non-scholar translators, L1 / L2 trans- lators, and translators of the 1930s and 40s and those of the 1980s onwards. Minhui Xu is professor of the English Department of Ocean University of China, and is currently working as a postdoctoral fellow at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Her main research interest is Translation...

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