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LINGUIST List 20.817

Thu Mar 12 2009

Diss: Disc Analysis/Translation: Ish-Shihri: 'A Textuality Based ...'

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        1.    Fatma Ish-Shihri, A Textuality Based Model for the Quality Assessment of Hadith Translations

Message 1: A Textuality Based Model for the Quality Assessment of Hadith Translations
Date: 10-Mar-2009
From: Fatma Ish-Shihri <faf111hotmail.com>
Subject: A Textuality Based Model for the Quality Assessment of Hadith Translations
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Institution: Riyadh University for Women
Program: Linguistics
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2007

Author: Fatma Ali Ish-Shihri

Dissertation Title: A Textuality Based Model for the Quality Assessment of Hadith Translations

Linguistic Field(s): Discourse Analysis
                            Text/Corpus Linguistics

Subject Language(s): Arabic, Standard (arb)
                            English (eng)

Dissertation Director:
Mahmoud Ismail Saleh

Dissertation Abstract:

The present dissertation attempts to develop a model for the analysis,
description, and evaluation of the translations of the Prophetic texts
within a textlinguistics framework. It is a textuality based model adopted
from Beaugrande and Dressler's 1981 model. Some modifications are made on
the basis of a pilot study conducted to test the applicability of their
original model to the evaluation of the translations selected. The
suggested model proposes the following standards as criteria for the
evaluation of the translations of the Prophetic texts: text segmentation,
cohesion, coherence, informativity, intentionality, contextuality,
acceptability, and intertextuality. Under intertextuality, two sub-criteria
are dealt with: textual allusion and textual patterns/types.

All the criteria, except acceptability, help to objectively measure
translation accuracy. Each criterion is examined in each translation in
terms of specific aspects and in comparison with the original text.
Cohesion, for instance, is examined in terms of reference, conjunctions,
lexical associations, ellipsis, substitution, and parallelism.
Acceptability, on the other hand, represents the subjective element in the
model as it measures the readers' responses to the translations. This is
done through a questionnaire given to a number of native speakers who are
supposed to evaluate the translations in terms of intelligibility,
naturalness of style, and appropriateness.

The suggested model is specifically developed for religious texts in
general and Prophetic texts in particular. What makes it particularly
serviceable in analyzing and evaluating these texts is that its constituent
criteria help the translator as well as the translation critic to realize
the important meaningful elements of the translated texts and to spot
problematic areas on the different textual levels. It gives equal
importance to every element in the text starting from the word up to text
level elements such as cohesion relations as long as they have a bearing on
the meaning or communicative values conveyed by the text. It also has the
advantage of taking the readers' responses to the translation into
consideration in the process of evaluation.

The corpus of the study consists of 25 Prophetic texts taken from
Al-Bukhari Hadith collection, which is in Arabic, and four English
translations of these 25 texts by different translators. The assessment of
the translated texts is based on the analysis, description, and comparison
of the STs and TTs. The shifts made in the TTs in terms of the eight
standards mentioned above are identified and represented statistically in
percentages. On the basis of these percentages, the accuracy level for each
translation can be determined also in percentages. The mean number of these
percentages for each translation forms a quality index for that
translation. The result of this study shows that M Khan's translation
scores the highest percentage, which means that it has higher levels of
accuracy and acceptability than those of the other translations.

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