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Dubbing, Film and Performance

Uncanny Encounters


Charlotte Bosseaux

Research on dubbing in audiovisual productions has been prolific in the past few decades, which has helped to expand our understanding of the history and impact of dubbing worldwide. Much of this work, however, has been concerned with the linguistic aspects of audiovisual productions, whereas studies emphasizing the importance of visual and acoustic dimensions are few and far between.
Against this background, Dubbing, Film and Performance attempts to fill a gap in Audiovisual Translation (AVT) research by investigating dubbing from the point of view of film and sound studies. The author argues that dubbing ought to be viewed and analysed holistically in terms of its visual, acoustic and linguistic composition. The ultimate goal is to raise further awareness of the changes dubbing brings about by showing its impact on characterization. To this end, a tripartite model has been devised to investigate how visual, aural and linguistic elements combine to construct characters and their performance in the original productions and how these are deconstructed and reconstructed in translation through dubbing. To test the model, the author analyses extracts of the US television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer and its French dubbed version.
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Chapter 3 Dubbing


← 54 | 55 →CHAPTER 3


3.1 Introduction

Even though ‘very little research has been done’ in audiovisual translation (AVT) (Díaz-Cintas 2004b: 50) in comparison with other translation genres (such as literary translation), the past ten years have nevertheless seen an increase in AVT studies. There now exists a healthy amount of studies on AVT modes, including dubbing, subtitling, voiceover and accessibility practices, as illustrated in Chaume (2012) and Pérez-González’s recent book (2014). Research in AVT and dubbing has been very varied, featuring works on translational norms or conventions in the target culture (e.g. Goris 1993; Karamitroglou 2000), the translation of ideological and cultural elements (e.g. Nedergaard-Larsen 1993; Martínez-Sierra 2009, online; Santamaria 2001; Pedersen 2012; Richart Marset 2012), the translation of humour (e.g. Zabalbeascoa 1993, 1996a, 1996b, 1997, 2005; Vandaele 2002; Chiaro 2006; Martínez-Sierra 2008) or dialects (e.g. Hatim and Mason 1990 and Dore 2009). In recent years, multilingualism has also become a much discussed topic (e.g. Corrius 2008; Díaz-Cintas 2011; Martínez-Sierra et al. 2010 and de Higes Andino et al. 2013; O’Sullivan 2008) as has censorship (e.g. Merino et al. 2005; Ranzato 2011 and 2012). The history of audiovisual translation, including dubbing, has also been discussed at length (e.g. Chaume 2012, Ivarsson 2002, Izard 1992, and Gottlieb 1997). This chapter reviews specific studies related to dubbing in order to contextualize my work on performance and characterization. In the first part, the emphasis is placed on dubbing practices,...

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