Approaches to transferring South African culture-bound elements into German: Zazah Khuzwayo’s Never Been At Home (2004)

Breuer, Kerstin
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This study examines various approaches to the translation of a South African culturally bound novel, Never Been At Home (2004) by Zazah Khuzwayo. The purpose of this research is to combine theoretical concepts with a practical translation and make a valid contribution to the research that has been undertaken so far with regard to the translation of the South African postcolonial novel into German. In order to contextualise the current situation of the translation business, the status of translators as defined by copyright law as well as the increasing trend towards the commoditisation of translation is clarified. The concept of invisibility/visibility of the translator plays n important role in this research. Various models for understanding culture including the domesticating and the foreignising translation strategies are presented and emphasis is put on the role of the translator as a cultural mediator. The notion of postcolonial texts, also referred to as ‘hybrids’ or ‘métisses’, are explicated and the space ‘in-between’ of postcolonial authors is analysed. Aspects of Nord’ Skopostheorie, Hewson and Martin’s Variational Approach, Chesterman’s Memetics and Baker’s theories about equivalence in translation serve as a fundamental basis for the theoretical framework of this study. The findings include challenges in translating this postcolonial text, as well as a presentation of the translation solutions. The conclusion investigates the overall approach applied in the translation of the text and finally discusses aspects of this particular field in Translation Studies that would be worth addressing in future projects.
Student Number : 0002424T - MA research report - School of Literature and Language Studies - Faculty of Humanities
translation, culture, South Africa, Germany, Skopostheorie