Logicality in Text Translation

Xiao-hui LI, Xiao-ya DENG


Similarities and distinctions in logical structures of the Chinese and English languages are due to different but interrelated logical systems of China and the West. We may well say Logics influences translation and monitors the whole process of translation. In order to make translation more suitable to the target language’s logical system, this paper views from the aspect of logic and discusses some practical and feasible logical translation methods by analyzing examples. The paper puts forward some suggestions on logical text translation. 1) When translating texts showing the three universal laws of Logics, i.e. the law of identity, the law of non-contradiction and the law of excluded middle, and the law of space, translators should translate them according to the logical sequence of the source language. Chinese and English are different in leading inferential modes, therefore, translators should reorganize the logical sequence according to the phenomena that Chinese focus on “induction” and English focus on “deduction”. 2) When translating texts showing the law of time and the law of cause and effect, translators should also reorganize the logical sequence according to the target language’s features.
Key words: logical law, text, Chinese translation, English translation
Résumé: Les similarités et les différences dans les structures logiques des langues chinoise et anglaise sont dues aux systèmes logiques différents mais étroitement liés de la Chine et de l’Occident. On peut dire que la logique influence sur la traduction et dirige le processus entier de la traduction. Afin de rendre la traduction plus adaptable sur le système logique de la langue cible, cet essai discute, en analysant des exemples, des méthodes logiques de traduction pratiques et faisables. Il propose des suggestions sur la traduction logique du texte. 1) Quand la traduction présente les trois lois universelles de la logique : loi d’identité, loi de non-contradiction et loi de millieu exclut, loi d’espace, le traducteur doit traduire les textes suivant l’ordre logique de la langue source. Le chinois et l’anglais sont différents en ce qui concerne le mode d’inférence directeur. Ainsi, le traducteur doit réorganiser l’ordre logique selon le fait que le chinois insiste sur l’induction et l’anglais sur la déduction. 2) Quand la traduction présente la loi de temps et la loi de cause et effet, le traducteur doit réorganiser l’ordre logique d’après les caractère de la langue cible.
Mots-Clés: loi logique, texte, traduction chinoise, traduction anglaise

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/j.css.1923669720060202.015


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