Akofena (Jun 2023)

Culture-specific words in kurukan charter and their translation into English

  • Sekou SISSOKO

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 03, no. 08


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Abstract: Languages spoken in the world are numerous and different. Thanks to translation, communication between people from different linguistic backgrounds becomes possible. However, translation is an activity that can be influenced by cultural factors because of the interplay between language and culture. Translators come across with cultural-bound elements during translation process which are partially translatable. That is why it is commonly known that some of the most problematic and challenging aspects of text rendition are cultural contexts. Thus, the translator must have not only a good knowledge of the foreign language in which a particular text is written but most importantly s/he should be familiar with its cultural coloring. In this paper, we conducted a descriptive qualitative method by applying the translation strategy proposed by Andrew Chesterman (2016). The aim of this study was to identify the culture-specific words in Kurukan Fuga Charter and their translation strategies into English. Data were collected from Kurukan Fuga charter and ten (10) cultural specific words were recorded. The results revealed that loan and calque with explanation is the most used with 50%; followed by literal and explicitness with 20% each; and unavailable 10%. We concluded that in translating cultural specific words in a legal document, the syntactic and pragmatic strategies are the most appropriate. Keywords: Translation, culture, Kurunkan Fuga, the source language, the target language