Article : Jokes’ Resistance To Translation And The Complicated Task Of Translator


Jokes’ Resistance To Translation And The Complicated Task Of Translator


Hassan Arefi, Ahmadreza Mohebbi

 Humor translation has long been a stumbling block to those engaged in the translation profession, even to the professional interpreters. The present study aims to explore whether or not it is possible to effectively render jokes from English into Persian and the other way around, and also probe what translation strategies are utilized all the way through. To this end, Employing Vinay and Darbelnet’s direct literal and oblique adaptation strategies of translation and Vermeer’s Skopos theory of translation, some English and Persian jokes were culled to undergo a meticulous translational analysis. These procedures were followed to analyze the efficiency of each translation strategy and examine whether or not the outcome of each procedure maintained its Skopos in the target language.  The findings of the study indicated that the transference of jokes from English into Persian and vice versa likewise rendering other types of written/oral text genres between the two afore-mentioned language partners is doable, however due to the uniqueness of language structures, culture repertoire and humor system, there is no direct path in this endeavor and translation-resistant laugh-provoking short texts lend themselves solely to procedures that firstly determine the values of the elements to be transferred, and then due to receiving society, its language, culture, shared values and needs, adaptively manipulates them. Therefore the foremost factor a joke translator ought to take into account is the cultural differences between the original and target contexts. Keywords:  Joke, Culture, Skopos, Literal Strategy, Adaptation, Resistance

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