The importance of Style in Translation

The style is meant by all kinds of things. English dictionary “Encarta” contains 11 definitions for the style. The third definition states style as: a way of performing or writing: the way to write or perform something different from the writing or performance content. Lynch provides more or less about the understanding of style in the school time. He gives the broad meaning as style refers to everything about one’s way of presenting him/herself in words, including clarity, grace, and thousands of undefined qualities that differentiate good and bad writing. In other words, style is a term that is different from content in the way of writing and it stresses format or form. Style refers to ‘how’ whereas content means ‘what’.
If style is on second in priority, it stands a very high importance. It is natural that a content in good form is conveyed in the most sufficient and adequate way. In translation, the faithfulness of content is always emphasised as well as treated seriously. On the other hand, faithfulness in style poses many difficulties. According to the literature, use of style is the new choice of words, phrases and the arrangement of those words and phrases in a sentence or paragraph. The style also allows the writer to shape how a reader, experiences in his work. For example, a writer may use simple and straightforward words or sentences, while another writer may use complex and elaborate vocabulary and sentence structures, respectively. If the themes are similar, the difference in the styles makes the experience of reading both works distinct. The capturing of the style is really a very tough job.
Ensuring accurate translation, it is very important to consider style and voice tone. Though, this may not match with the same as the original content. In most situations, it is appropriate to use a different style like what works in a country may not perform that well in another. So, it is important in any translation project and localization to consider “style”.
While working with multilingual projects, the localization may extend to many pages. The guidelines include the preferred use of specific words, but will address the tone as well; whether it is supportive and caring, upbeat and enthusiastic, casual and friendly, informal yet authoritative, formal and professional, etc.
The style that suits a local market:
While operating in the foreign market, one will already have an idea of localisation of translation projects for specific regions. But, while starting out from a new territory, it will be worthwhile to get some insight before working on a translation project.

The team of linguists and localization is able to assess current material and also its suitability for a region or country. Sometimes it is helpful to have other specific material for reference, this may an earlier translated copy, or other marketing material.
It is important to include information regarding terminology in the style guide. Either a sector or any company specific terminology may be used for translations. Though, there may exit some instances where specific terminologies are avoided. Internal communications reflect the terminology that is used within businesses, especially in the region. On the other hand, marketing material may use everyday language.
For a good translation of any project, it is important to consider some thought as well as preparation.

1 Comment

  1. Kelly Quinn says:

    I’ve never even thought about the style in translation before. Great article about the style in translation. As with any work, preparation is important.

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