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IS NIDA’S PRINCIPLE OF FORMAL EQUIVALENCE APPLICABLE TO TRANSLATING CHILDREN DICTIONARIES?
Article from Proceeding
TransCon 2012: Linguistic and Translation, Jakarta: Unika Atma Jaya, June 7, 2012
(115-121) Translating Children Dictionary - Suhartini.pdf
Translating children dictionaries may be presumed to be uncomplicated based on the reason that children dictionaries only consists of short definitions written in simple language. That would go with another hypothesis: Nida’s principle of formal equivalence should be the sole appropriate principle to be adopted since it is the most fundamental law in translation studies. This paper is meant to affirm whether such hypothesis has its validity. This analysis is made by comparing some entries of an English Science Dictionary for elementary school students with their equivalent entries of the Indonesian translated version, Kamus Sains Dasar. The result indicates that the translator, besides having to be faithful to the text, should pay attention to the different culture between English and Indonesian (which is reflected in the sentence structure), and to their role in recomposing the text, so that the message conveyed can be understood by the target readers. It concludes that it is not sufficient to make use of only one method of translation for children dictionary. The adoption of Nida’s formal equivalence to render text for children should be supported by other principles as well in order to produce an excellent piece of translation work. This finding thus can become the basic principle when dealing with more complex text such as poems, academic texts, cultural texts, legal texts etc.
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