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Translating for Children Based on the Dual Coding Theory

Jisun Shin 1

1이화여자대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This paper proposes translating non-concrete verbs into concrete ones in translating children’s literature from Korean into English. ‘Concreteness’ is essential in children’s books in order to give literary pleasure to children and achieve educational purposes of children’s literature. According to Paivio’s much-acclaimed Dual Coding Theory, the mental imagery triggered by concrete words has powerful effects on the readers in terms of comprehension and memory enhancement. Based on the numerous empirical studies which indicate the positive impact of mental imagery on child readers, I suggest that children’s book translators should use concrete words instead of abstract vocabulary. It becomes more vital when it comes to translating Korean verbs into English due to a big discrepancy between the two languages. English has significantly more verbs that depict an action depending on the various elements embedded in the action, while Korean has much fewer verbs that describe the same action. Consequently, when translating for children, it is important for translators to translate non-concrete verbs in Korean text into concrete ones in English text for the purpose of helping young readers create mental images while reading.

Citation status

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