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Peculiarities and difficulties of translating euphemisms (based on the BBC news articles)

The media, in particular, the press today is the main source of information about world situation and developments, often including negative news. In order to disguise or conceal negative information or its individual elements in the press journalists tend to use indirect naming, or euphemisms. Euphemization as a complex and dynamic phenomenon is being studied in detail within different approaches: classifications and ways of formation of euphemisms are being developed, spheres of euphamization in different languages are being considered. Despite the fact that the press is abundant in different kinds of euphemisms, scientists rarely focus on a purely applied aim to identify and reproduce such units by using means of a target language. Unless euphemisms are recognized, translators might add negative shade of meaning to a source text, distort the attitude of the writer towards described events, etc. These considerations determine the relevance and the issue of our study, based on the analysis of the corpus, consisting of 50 euphemisms, and its functioning in modern British press (news articles taken from the BBC News website in 2013-2018). The work reveals such peculiarities and difficulties of translation of euphemisms as identification of euphemisms in the text and its interpretation; presence or absence of equivalents in case of similar spheres of euphemization; choosing an adequate dictionary equivalent; translation of terms used as euphemisms. One can face translation difficulties not only on the stage of identification but also while searching for its equivalent. There might be no equivalent euphemism in a target language or (if any) it might be not appropriate in the context, or might refer the function of concealing less explicitly. Words borrowed from professional fields are generally rendered through transcription, transliteration and calque translation. It is important to consider the degree of euphemization of a unit: well-established euphemisms are better be rendered through a well-established politically correct word or phrase.

DOI: 10.18413/2313-8912-2018-4-4-0-10
Number of views: 1271 (view statistics)
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