Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Linguistic Research
Section Two Insights from translation studies
The poetics of humorous texts in translation Grzegorz Grzegorczyk (University of Gdask) Key words: cognitive, metaphor, conceptualiser, humour, translation Humour can be dissected as a frog can, but the thing dies in the process and the innards are discouraging to any but the pure scientific mind. E.B. White Introduction Despite what E.B. White rightly observes an inquisitive linguist should not ignore humour as it provides one of the most fascinating and extensive objects of study even at the expense of losing its main object, i.e. laughter. The issue is so intriguing due to the fact that (to some extent) everybody experiences hu- mour, (nearly) everybody recognises it but no-one really knows how to define it. As a general notion, which nowadays includes a range of forms of laughter, comedy and ridicule, humour has relatively recently become one of the hottest although still not fully appreciated issues in linguistics. One may see a reason for it: pursuing humour as an object of academic research is like chasing phan- toms: every attempt to formulate a general definition will end in failure as has happened with all theories so far. Every theory occurs either too narrow and un- able to encompass all the phenomena considered as funny or, on the contrary, covers too wide a range of texts among which the non-humorous can be found (Buttler, 2001). The same has to be said about all attempts of answering more detailed ques- tions, such as “what’s inside” and “how is it made?”, which one...
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