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Translator in Power Relationships: a Multidisciplinary Analysis of English ‘of’ into Korean

Dhonghui Lim 1

1부산대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Upon the realization of the significance of a thorough academic research on the English word 'of' and its modification structure for the development of a descriptively and explanatorily adequate linguistic theory and the specification of human insights into natural human language, this paper conducts an intralingual, interlingual, and cross-cultural investigation in the field of translation studies. In the thorough, multidisciplinary investigation by which it means a set of integral approaches made at every possible aspect with the linguistic element situated at the core, rather than a pre-destined theoretical manipulation to make the "minor" linguistic elements fit into a mainstream framework of theory, it proposes that multidisciplinary approaches be an optimal research method not only for language and literature studies but also for translation studies, a new interdiscipline or even multidiscipline that calls for its autonomy more than anything to gain ground in the fields of humanities and the cosmopolitan contexts of the twenty-first-century world. Faced with the theoretical and conceptual predicaments regarding the English prepositions and particles, this paper first obtains a hint from O'Dowd (1998) that raises a significant logical question about the categorial status and function of a P-form, a gereric term that refers to prepositions and particles. And in this logic, this study puts forward its objective to describe and explain the linguistic behaviors of the English 'of', using a theoretical approach that, hypothetically and hopefully, works best towards an integrated theory not only in linguistics but also in translation studies. In this study, thereby, the focus of the investigation is put on research methodology as to how an academic explanation could result in a scientific finding and, for the sake of optimality, an open-ended yet integral approach is adopted.: an inter-/multidisciplinary way. For the proceeding, the English word 'of' is chosen so as to observe the linguistic behaviors in scrutiny, and the British novel Frankenstein: The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley is used (in part) to have a particular socio-cultural and historical context of the text in that the word 'of' is freely yet strategically employed. And in order to get the possible principles and variables (and other factors and elements explicitly and implicitly underlying the mental transaction and verbal expression in the work) shed light on and unearthed, the actual translation samples are adopted (rather randomly so as to best minimize any value-driven intervention into the translated work) and cross-examined both intralingually (among the translating data) and interlingually (with the translated data). And by means of the detailed exemplification and explication in a contrastive analysis using the notion of the major-minor forms of language, it shows that at the center of the methodology does translation studies (or translatology) lie (supported by other studies on language, mind, and culture) and that further researches in translation studies, in particular (as a multidisciplinary yet autonomous field of study on translation practices and theories), should help develop other disciplines in humanities and natural sciences, too, including linguistics, literature, cultural studies, psychology, cognitive science, and sociology. This study, subsequently, illustrates and proposes a specific research method as to how a multidisciplinary approach towards an integrated theory in translation studies can help both linguistics-oriented and aesthetics-oriented researches deepen their insights and broaden the perspectives regarding subjects of their own interest. In conclusion, this multidisciplinary investigation into the linguistic property of the English word 'of' and the complex yet very dynamic workings of the translating into Korean shows that every kind of data of actual language use contains both the major forms and minor variables of the particular language and that a good deal of solid empirical evidence for such existence should be revealed in the process of translating, especially when translations are implemented by an aesthetically creative and strategically active translator. In addition, it argues that it is translation studies that can allow such multidisciplinary and integral approach to tackle comlicated theoritical problems concerning human language, mind, and culture, and that the academic field of translation studies should be further promoted and developed not only for the students and researchers in the field but also for the professionals and scholars in other academic disciplines.

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