Eine interkulturelle analyse der deutschen übersetzungen von Ngũgĩ wa Thiong‘os Roman ,,the river between“.
The translation of African literature into various languages has played a major role in the advancement of African languages, culture and heritage. However, a lot still needs to be done in order to promote intercultural dialogue through literature. The translation of African written literature (written in English or African languages) into European languages poses a unique challenge especially to non-African translators because of the special way in which African writers manipulate the English language and use it to express their African experiences. The presence of culture specific items is another problem area for translators. Existing translations are not truly adequate, hence there is need to improve these translations. As a contribution to this, the following study focused on the analysis of two German translations: one by Karl Heinrich (1970) and the other by Anita Jörges-Djafari (2014) of the novel The River Between written by Ngugi wa Thiong’o (1974) with special attention given to the way in which culture specific items had been approached. On the one hand, it intended to observe how the cultural references were translated and what difficulties the translator encountered when transferring these cultural specificities into German. On the other hand, this study aimed to discover, through this scientific undertaking, the meaning and value of culture specific items from a given literary work, and to highlight the relationship between the source text and the target text as far as the cultural references were concerned. The study also aimed to investigate alternative translation strategies that can be applied to solve these difficulties. This study was limited to culture specific items which are deeply embedded in the Gikuyu language and culture. This study was conducted on the basis of two major theoretical concepts: the relevance theory proposed by Wilson and Sperber (1995) and its application in translation by Ernst-August Gutt (2000) and the translation strategies of culture specific items proposed by Franco Aixelá (1996).
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