Organizing Social Relationships: Forms of Address in Literary Translation Featured

The first keynote speaker of our 2013 conference is translation scholar and professional translator prof. Christiane Nord. Her speech is entitled "Organizing Social Relationships: Forms of Address in Literary Translation".

Abstract: Reading translated fiction, I often wonder why the characters communicate in so “unnatural” ways. It is obvious that the representation of oral communication in fiction is not just a transcript of real-life communicative interaction, but there seem to be certain literary conventions for dialogues in fiction, which are culture-specific and help us distinguish “natural” from “unnatural” dialogues at least in our own culture. Forms of address seem to be an important culture marker in this respect. Moreover, they mark the social relationship between the communicating parties. In my talk,  I shall first define and classify the forms and functions of addressing in general and then explore some differences with regard to the form, frequency and distribution of addressing behaviour in liteary texts, drawing on a corpus of contemporary Spanish, English and German fiction and their translations.

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