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(Re)visiting Translation

Linguistic and Cultural Issues across Genres

Edited By Paola Attolino, Linda Barone, Mikaela Cordisco and Mariagrazia De Meo

This collection of essays addresses translation as an evolving thread that metaphorically represents the essence of contemporary society. As translation is the main tool for global information flow, the constant necessity of negotiating meanings evokes the complex issues of contact, interaction and change. Starting from a theoretical overview of Translation Studies, the volume explores the development and main changes that have characterized the field in the contemporary world, with a specific focus on the concepts of translation as hybridity, as a basis for sustaining intercultural communication and translation as cultural mediation. The essays provide an updated look at English/Italian translation across genres and cover a wide range of topics including linguistic typology; language appropriation, adaptation, manipulation and rewriting in literature and music; elusiveness and ambiguity in legal texts; humour and culture-bound language in audiovisual translation.
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The fall of the house of Poe: language, style and other issues in the translation of Edgar Allan Poe’s short stories into Italian

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1.   Introduction

My decision to deal with the translation of Edgar Allan Poe’s short stories has a twofold motive, the first being my devotion to the author while the second is related to my first encounter with him, or rather with his translated stories, about 25 years ago. I made Poe’s acquaintance through the filter of translation (Poe 1983) and that was a very unpleasant experience. My first impressions after reading I Racconti were predominantly negative; in particular I encountered difficulties at a syntactic and a lexical level, which made it arduous to understand some parts of the stories. I therefore ended up labeling Poe as an inflated and artificial author until I eventually found myself reading him in the source language which, despite being rich in technical and complex terms and in elaborate wordings, did not present all the difficulties and hurdles I had, paradoxically, encountered in my own language.

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