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    Vassar College
   
 
  Oct 23, 2017
 
 
    
Catalogue 2017-2018
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ITAL 389 - The Impossible Task of Translating: An Introduction of Literary Translation from Italian to English

Semester Offered: Fall
1 unit(s)
Whether translation between two languages is at all possible is a question as old as translating itself, but no matter how many answers have been given, the truth of the matter remains that we have always translated and we will continue to do so. Translation studies have flourished in the last few years and literary translation is more and more considered a creative undertaking rather than an unoriginal and quite tedious activity. Given the intrinsic bilingualism of the foreign literature classroom, translation is particularly intertwined with teaching and learning and becomes an integral part of the course. As a result, many students choose to complete their B.A. in Italian with a literary translation. Translating is above all a decision process– careful interpretation and intelligent notation– and as such it requires passion, accuracy, careful attention to details, together with a knowledge and understanding of both the source and the target language and culture. This course aims to give students of Italian some insight into the field –historical and theoretical–as well as a solid grasp of the tools required to be a literary translator. While analyzing different translation strategies and doing practical exercises, such as contrasting and comparing different versions of the same source text, students devote time to studying not only Italian grammar but also English. By the end of the semester, they produce a final original translation, accompanied by a “translation diary,” a metatextual description of the problems encountered during their work. Our theoretical background is Umberto Eco’s considerations on translating, both as a writer and as a translator. Roberta Antognini.

Prerequisite(s): ITAL 220 , ITAL 222 ; or ITAL 217 , ITAL 218  with permission of the instructor.

Not offered 2017/18.

Two 75-minute periods.



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