Edited By Piotr Pezik
Language and Power in Multimodal Audiovisual Translation: Anna Bączkowska
Language and Power in Multimodal Audiovisual Translation Anna Bączkowska Abstract This paper investigates the problem of how signals of power (both verbal and nonverbal) are translated in feature films. Based on some glimpses from The Proposal (2009, starring Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds), a preliminary analysis is presented of (1) the correlation between verbal expression of power and its gestural-aural encoding in the original version, and (2) the rendition of power in several languages (Polish, Swedish, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and French). This cross-linguistic preliminary research is immersed in the theoretical framework of multimodality (Kress 2010), which enjoys a growing popularity in discourse analysis and recently has gained increasing attention in audiovisual translation. The study demonstrates that depending on the target language, power expressed in subtitles (1) varies in degree (it is either attenuated or augmented relative to the original version) and (2) seems to be dependent on and restricted by distinct language conventions typical of Romance, Germanic and Slavic languages. Keywords Multimodality, audiovisual translation, power, cross-linguistic analysis, subtitles Introduction The aim of the analysis presented in this paper is to investigate the problem of multimodal subtitling of power across several languages. The key words for our research are thus multimodality and power, and the overall field of analysis is a subtype of audiovisual translation. Theoretically, a multimodal approach to communication, initiated over a decade ago by Kress and Leeuwen (1996), is promoted in our research. Multimodality is currently gaining popularity in studies into natural discourse, yet in translation studies...
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