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Main concepts and limits of Interpretive Theory of Translation

LEE Hyang 1

1고려대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The Interpretive Theory, developed to identify the cognitive processes involved in translation as a communicative act, has played a significant role in the history of Translation Studies. But the fact that this theory was originally formulated to elucidate the processes involved in oral interpreting by professional interpreters, is too often neglected. Instead, the theory is too often valued, without solid theoretical foundation, as a ‘global theory of translation’, which can explain not only oral interpreting but also pragmatic and literal translation processes. This paper analyses the main concepts and arguments offered by Interpretive theorists and examines its general applicability to literary translation. It also calls into question the validity of their ambition to explain all forms of translation within one theoretical framework and warns against the dangers of such a ‘universalist’ approach. It finally reaches to the conclusion that, for a better understanding of peculiarities of each field of translation (oral interpreting, pragmatic translation, literary translation etc), more considerations should be given to the ‘differences and uniqueness’ in various types of translating acts.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.