Reshaping Authorial Presence in Translations of Research Article Abstracts
Keywords:academic discourse, authorial presence, corpus analysis, interview study, translation of abstracts
In multilingual settings, the abstract is the only part of the research article that is regularly translated. Although very brief, abstracts play an important role in academic communication, as they provide immediate access to research findings. Contrastive research has revealed considerable cross-linguistic differences in the rhetorical patterns of abstracts. The present paper focuses on how this variation is bridged in translation, by addressing an important rhetorical dimension of academic discourse, authorial presence. Specifically, it examines how authorial presence is reshaped in translated abstracts. An analysis of a small corpus of 150 Slovene research article abstracts from five disciplines and their English translations reveals several interesting types of recurring translators’ interventions, most notably the tendency to replace personal authorial references with impersonal structures. Data collected in interviews with four experienced translators of academic texts is used to shed light on potential reasons for interventions with authorial presence in translation.
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