Translator's Invisibility Analysis

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Chapter 2

Review of the Literature

Chapter 2
Review of the Literature

2.1. Overview

Translator’s visibility, one of the most prominent issues in translation and indeed a keyword of 1990’s (Bassnett, 1998), is a controversial and at the same time recognized concept in Translation Studies. Different scholars have dealt with this issue in terms of the strategies employed inside or in the margins of the text by the translators to make their presence felt or the extratextual status of translators in the society. Considering the focus of this study which is, in the first place, translator’s visibility and then translator’s preface, this section is going to elaborate first on how translator’s invisibility is defined
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The ideal invisible translation is like a pane of glass which is only noticed "that it’s there when there are little imperfections – scratches, bubbles. Ideally, there shouldn't be any. It should never call attention to itself" (Shapiro in Venuti, 1995, p. 1). Along with Venuti, many other translation scholars oppose the said trend in Translation Studies and believe that translators should leave the marginalized position and gain a higher status by using different strategies. For instance, according to Hönig, “because of the nature of language and of communications and because of cultural difference, a translator must be visible in a translation, there is no other way” (in Koskinen, 2000, p. 98). Hermans (2000) believes that the illusion of equivalence is what makes translators invisible, though they might have worked very hard on creating such an…show more content…
In his 1986 essay “The Translator’s Invisibility”, Venuti stated that, along with “the increasingly sophisticated literature on translation”, the urgently needed task of demystifying the process “had been initiated by the prefaces that translators themselves have occasionally appended to their work” where they describe the “labor of transformation” of the text (1986: 181).
Venuti’s introduction in 1992 to Rethinking Translation: Discourse, Subjectivity, Ideology gave the impression that he was not as optimistic about translators’ prefaces and their contribution to the struggle to make translation a visible activity. He believed translators were so busy moving from text to text that they had no time for methodological reflection.
Translators are always hard at work, but they are producing translations, not translation commentary, criticism, or theory; they appear as aesthetically sensitive amateurs or talented craftsmen, but not critically self-conscious writers who develop an acute awareness of the cultural and social conditions of their

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