Child literary translation

When it comes to child literary translation it is easy to fall into the error of thinking that the difficulty of translating literature for children is less than that of the intended for adults, a false opinion that part of the supposed simplicity of the genre.

The translation of children’s literature presents different linguistic features compared to the literature for adults: rhymes, invented words, proper names, representations of animal sounds, sonority and rhythm.They are all elements that are mixed with non-linguistic as images or illustrations items. The task of the translator specializing in children’s literature is not at all simple.

There are many factors affecting this kind of translation:

1) the audience to which the text. The child is the goal. It should take into account the level of understanding of the reader, reading level, or their knowledge of the world. You have to be able, during the translation, respecting the rhythm and the sound of the source text.

(2) the child is not the only receiver, since it starts reading through the parents. The parents who, even if they have literary tastes different, more developed with regard to their children, will decide the type of work that will read your child.

(3) the synchronization between text and illustrations. Illustrations are used to compensate for the absence of any descriptive passage. That the translator must have the ability to learn to translate the two codes: the visual and the linguistic.

(4) children’s literature is not aimed at entertainment, is a powerful educational tool and, therefore, when it comes to translate must take exceptional care to treat some principles such as political, ethical and religious ideologies, etc.

These are just a few of the factors that influence the translation of children’s literature, transforming it into one of the most unique work within the world of translation.

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