Lecture: « La traduction technique » de Claude Bédard


Ce manuel propose une réflexion avancée sur la pratique de la traduction technique.
L’ouvrage se limite à l’étude de la traduction technique. Toutefois, presque tous les principes dégagés peuvent s’appliquer à l’ensemble des domaines de traduction spécialisée.
La première partie, Traduction technique et vocabulaire, montre que la traduction technique est avant tout un acte d’intelligence et de communication. Le vocabulaire est la plaque tournante par laquelle passent la plupart des problèmes de traduction technique et c’est par rapport à lui que se forge l’attitude globale du traducteur technique face à son activité. La deuxième partie, Comprendre, porte sur les problèmes de compréhension et sur l’acquisition d’un bagage de « connaissances pour comprendre ». La troisième partie, Les moyens de réexpression, revient sur le vocabulaire et sur la langue techniques, non pas en situation de traduction comme précédemment, mais en tant que bagage que le traducteur doit acquérir et garder disponible pour la réexpression du message. La quatrième partie, Communiquer, se tourne vers la réexpression efficace du message. Le succès de cette réexpression tient à la volonté de faire comprendre.
À la fin de chaque chapitre sont proposés des sujets de recherche ou de discussion, des exercices et des suggestions de lectures. Bibliographie, glossaire et index complètent l’ouvrage.
La traduction technique peut s’avérer utile à un vaste public : étudiants et enseignants en traduction technique, traducteurs techniques et autres traducteurs spécialisés, terminologues, théoriciens de la traduction et rédacteurs techniques.

Some interesting facts about translation history – 2

The word “translation”comes from a Latin term meaning « to bring or carry across ». The Ancient Greek term is ‘metaphrasis’ (« to speak across ») and this gives us the term ‘metaphrase’ (a « literal or word-for-word translation ») – as contrasted with ‘paraphrase’ (« a saying in other words »).  The first known translations are those of the Sumerian epic Gilgamesh into Asian languages from the second millennium BC. Later Buddhist monks translated Indian sutras into Chinese and Roman poets adapted Greek texts.

Translation undertaken by Arabs could be said to have kept Greek wisdom and learning alive. Having conquered the Greek world, they made Arabic versions of its philosophical and scientific works. During the Middle Ages, translations of these Arabic versions were made into Latin – mainly at the school in Spain. These Latin translations of Greek and original Arab works of learning helped underpin Renaissance scholarship. Religious texts have played a great role in the history of translation. One of the first recorded instances of translation in the West was the rendering of the Old Testament into Greek in the 3rd century BC.  Saint Jerome, the patron saint of translation, produced a Latin Bible in the 4th century AD that was the preferred text for the Roman Catholic Church for many years to come. Martin Luther himself is credited with being the first European to propose that one translates satisfactorily only toward his own language: a statement that is just as true in modern translation theory.

Translation today

In the modern world, translation is as important – if not more so – as it was several millennia ago. Officially, there are about 6,800 languages spoken around the world, of which a significant portion have unique scripts and many have shared scripts based on the origins of the language in question. These challenges are compounded by the fact that nearly every culture in the world has interactions with every other culture. This means that there are an incalculable number of translation requirements every second of every minute of every day around the world. It’s no wonder, then, that translation is a dominant part of intercultural interaction.

The slow speed of manual translation has led to technology stepping in. Thus, machine translation (MT) was born. With the dawn of the technological age, the application of software to the field of translation became an interesting subject that was, and continues to be. Although more fallible than purely human translation, machine translation is a useful tool that has found several applications. For example, MT is regularly used for weather reports and other speciality areas where linguistic variables are limited. It is sometimes used for written government or legal communication, too, albeit with a modicum of human intervention. Though currently limited in application, it is a useful tool in the repertoire of any professional translator – if only to make the job a little bit easier or quicker. In its most advanced form, MT may give satisfactory output for unrestricted texts, but it is still best used when domains and variables (such as disambiguation or named entities) are controlled in some way. There is no doubt that the need for human translators will remain, and that even the best MT software can only go so far where sensitive or specialised translation is required. For results of the highest quality and integrity with respect to the source and target material, there is still no adequate substitute for human translator.

Some interesting facts about translation history – 1

The history of translation (as distinct from oral interpreting) must have started soon after the development of writing, the expression of language with letters or other marks. The earliest records of writing dates to Egyptian glyphs from about 3400 CE. However, the earliest records of translation do not appear until nearly a thousand years later, as bilingual or even trilingual inscriptions. The earliest of these date back to about 2500 CE in the form of bilingual vocabularies in Sumerian . Some of the tablets recorded financial data, while another group contained ritual and literary texts. A later example is a bilingual Greek-Aramaic inscription from the third century CE with a version of some of Ashoka’s edicts that was found in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

Perhaps the best known example of these multilingual inscriptions is the Rosette Stone, which bears a decree issued in 196 BC in three scripts: Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, Demotic (Egyptian) script and Ancient Greek. The text of the decree is essentially the same in all three scripts, and although slightly earlier bilingual and trilingual inscriptions have been found- The Rosetta Stone was the key to our current understanding of ancient Egyptian culture. It is now held by the British Museum in London.

Lecture – « La notion de fidélité en traduction »

Albir Hurtado « La notion de fidélité en traduction »

« Ce livre, le 5e de la collection « traductologie », s’attaque à un problème fondamental. La notion de la fidélité en traduction est une sorte de mise en carré de l’épineuse question de l’expression de la pensée humaine par le langage à cause du double circuit de la traduction qui va de l’emetteur au destinataire de la traduction en passant par le traducteur lui-même. »