Translating (and rewriting) Jane Austen’s food across time and space



Li S, Li Q & Hope W (2022) Translating (and rewriting) Jane Austen’s food across time and space. Asia Pacific Translation and Intercultural Studies.

This study incorporates House’s TQA framework into corpus-based translation studies to evaluate how Jane Austen’s depictions of food have been translated and perceived within Chinese contexts. This study’s dataset includes a Jane Austen corpus in English compiled by Lancaster University and our self-built diachronic corpus of Austen’s translations in Chinese from 1935 onwards. Our study shows that translations of Austen’s references to food require a dynamicity that bridges time and space and which links cultures and languages; the translations create texts that are novel and original to Chinese audiences. Different strategies have been used by translators to connect food culture in Austen’s era to contemporary China. Translations initially recreated and domesticated original textual references within Chinese culture, while later translations were more contemporary and closer to modern day Western dishes and customs. This study also shows that terminological inconsistency, translation loss, and mistranslation have existed in Chinese translations of Austen since 1935. This research outlines how translators have bridged the temporal distance and cultural space between the epochs of 19th century Britain and modern China in the context of literary depictions of food.

Jane Austen; translation quality assessment; food translation; diachronic corpus; food culture

Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online

Asia Pacific Translation and Intercultural Studies

StatusIn Press
Publication date online15/08/2022
Date accepted by journal01/06/2022
PublisherInforma UK Limited

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Dr Saihong Li

Dr Saihong Li

Senior Lecturer in Translation Studies, French