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English-Korean Translational Strategies of ‘Be Being + Predicative Adjective’ Constructions: An Analysis of an English-Korean Parallel Corpus

Seung-Ah Lee 1

1이화여자대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

In both English and Korean, state predicates such as be tall and khuta ‘be tall’ generally disallow the progressive aspect. However, in English, but not in Korean, certain cases arise where the be plus predicative adjective combination can occur in progressive constructions. Specifically, whenever the progressive is used with the be plus predicative adjective or noun combination, the goings-on indicated by these types of expressions are always interpreted agentively. That is, the verb be may be used as a dynamic verb when there is a sense in which it is interpreted agentively. For example, He is being stupid may be paraphrased as ‘He is acting in a stupid manner.’The present study examines English-Korean translational strategies of ‘be being + predicative adjective’ constructions, as this is an area where a grammatical mismatch exists between the source and target languages. To this end, a parallel corpus analysis was conducted using the Harry Potter series, which consists of seven fantasy novels. Among the 36 translated sentences analyzed and classified, 22 (61.1%) were regarded as preserving the meaning of the source texts (STs), whereas the remaining 14 (38.9%) were considered to be cases where interventions were made by the translator. Of the 22 meaning-preserving translations, the most prevalent translation strategy turned out to be the substitution of a dynamic verb for the be plus predicative adjective combination (36.4%). Other strategies included the addition of a verb with the meaning ‘to act’ in the target texts (TTs, 22.7%), the addition of a noun with the meaning ‘action’ in the TTs (13.6%), the addition of a time adverbial implying temporary behavior in the TTs (4.5%), and so on. The use of a parallel corpus in the study of translational strategies provides a means of resolving systematic mismatches between languages that present particular difficulties for meaning-preserving translations. It also sheds additional light on the problems translators may face during the actual translation process.

Citation status

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