Fantasy in Translation: A Study of Two Chinese Versions of The Lord of the Rings

Hong-man LI


As a great fantasy work, Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings enjoys unprecedented popularity in China. However, translating the trilogy into Chinese is far from an easy job. By comparing two Chinese versions of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy, this paper analyzes the problems and solutions in translating English fantasy literature into Chinese. It is indicated that the translation of fantasy literature is a complicated process regarding the style, the readership, and the culture background, etc. As fantasy is one of the most important criteria in evaluating the translation of fantasy literature, the key issue lies in how to reproduce the fantasy in the target text as much as possible and make the translated version readable and acceptable as well. Key words: Tolkien; The Lord of the Rings; Fantasy Literature; TranslationResumé: En tant qu'une grande œuvre de fantaisie, Le Seigneur des Anneaux de Tolkien jouit d'une popularité sans précédente en Chine. Cependant, la traduction en chinois de la trilogie est loin d'être une tâche facile. En comparant les deux versions chinoises du Seigneur des Anneaux de Tolkien, cet article analyse les problèmes et les solutions dans la traduction de la littérature fantastique anglaise vers le chinois. Il est indiqué que la traduction de la littérature fantastique est un processus complexe en ce qui concerne le style, la lecture, et l'arrière-plan culturel, etc. Comme la fantaisie est l'un des critères les plus importants dans l'évaluation de la traduction de la littérature fantastique, la question clé réside dans la façon de reproduire autant que possible le fantasme dans le texte cible et ainsi de faire la version traduite lisible et acceptable.Mots-clés: Tolkien; Seigneur des Anneaux; littérature fantastique; traduction

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