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The Frontiers of Society, Science and Technology, 2021, 3(6); doi: 10.25236/FSST.2021.030608.

On Goldblatt’s Translation of Address Forms in Frog—Based on the Functional Equivalence Theory


Li Liping, Song Xueying

Corresponding Author:
Li Liping

The School of Foreign languages Southwest Petroleum University, Chengdu, 610500, Sichuan, China


In Frog, Mo Yan draws a vivid picture on the family planning policy carried forward in a Chinese village. There are various address forms and rich communicative contexts in the novel. Based on the Functional Equivalence Theory, this paper makes a comparative analysis on address forms varying with the context in Goldblatt's translation, aiming to explore the translator’s ways to translate certain kinds of address forms and reproduce the original message and communicative backgrounds. It is found that Goldblatt’s version features flexibility and suitability of wording in translating address forms. He tries to convey the cultural connotations and identity information implied to readers of the target language. Hence, misunderstandings that easily arise from studies on the Functional Equivalence Theory and translation practice are cleared up. First, formal equivalence is a contrast to functional equivalence rather an opposing pair, sometimes even facilitating the latter. Second, although there are conventional translation methods for specific texts such as names, the translations are not invariable. The translator should give priority to readers’ reactions and deal with the target language flexibly, so as to achieve the text function as possible. But it’s also revealed that some errors are caused by the translator’s misunderstandings of Chinese culture. Hence, a translator is expected to keep learning the non-native working language and its inherent culture. 


Functional Equivalence, Frog, Goldblatt’s translation, address forms

Cite This Paper

Li Liping, Song Xueying. On Goldblatt’s Translation of Address Forms in Frog—Based on the Functional Equivalence Theory. The Frontiers of Society, Science and Technology (2021) Vol. 3, Issue 6: 50-56. https://doi.org/10.25236/FSST.2021.030608.


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