TRANSLATING CULTURE - SPECIFIC METAPHORIC EXPRESSIONS
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According to OED (1995: 384) metaphors are figures of speech “in which a name or descriptive term is transferred to some object different from, but analogous to, that in which it is properly applicable. “ I.A. Richards (1965:89) quoting form Aristotle’s The Poetics said that “the greatest thing by far is to have a command of metaphor” and he defined it as “a shift carrying over a word from its normal use to a new one. In a sense metaphor, the shift of a word, is occasioned and justified by a similarity or analogy between the object it is usually applied to and the new object.
Culture, on the other hand, has been defined as a “design for living” and as the “shared understandings that people use to co-ordinate their activities” (R. J. Gelles and A. Levine 1995:80). Members of a society must share certain basic ideas about the world works, what is important in life, how technology is used, and what their artefacts and their actions mean. Whereas “social structure” refers to the practical/ instrumental aspects of the social relations, “culture” refers to the “symbolic/expressive aspects of social relations” (Ibidem).
Culture, as Coşeriu (1993:173) puts it, “is the historical objectivity of the spirit in shapes that last, in shapes that turn into traditions, that become historic shapes describing man’s own world, man’s own universe. The spirit is nothing else than activity capable of creation, it is creativity itself, not something that creates but the creative activity as such, energéia, that activity which is anterior to the concept of any dynamism, of any learned or experimented technique. And man creates culture, he is a creator, he is endowed with energéia to the extend to which it goes beyond what man has learnt, beyond what he has gained through experience (…) language, art, religion, myth, science, and philosophy. This sum of forms is what we call culture in so far as they are achieved at in history as products of man’s creative activity”.
Ortega y Gasset stated that a translator must be in possession of not only a genius of a language but of two. When referring to language and translation he said that “if compared to any other, each language has its own linguistic style or what Humboldt called . He (apud Graur 1970:63) pointed out that “more languages mean more perspectives upon the world (Weltansichen)”.
He also demonstrated that language determines thought as well as a particular vision upon the universe. “Any linguistic system comprises within itself an analyses of the exterior world, an analyses which is its own and which is different from that of the other languages or from the other stages known by that particular language”. (Ibidem)
This is why it is a utopia to imagine that two words from two different languages presented in the dictionary as the translation of the other one refer to exactly the same things. Every language was formed within a definite landscape and depending on a distinct and non-repeatable experience. It is a fallacy to assume, for example, that the English expression “to call a spade a spade” (OED 1995:159) is to be rendered as such into Romanian, that is by “a numi cãzmaua lopatã”. We need to take into account the fact that when trying to translate, we should preserve the semantic as well as the stylistic equivalencies of what has been expressed in the source text. Therefore, a more appropriate translation would be “a spune lucrurilor pe nume”(DEX 1984:510) as this is the Romanian expression that renders the exact same message.
1. An Overview of Culture-Specific Metaphoric Expressions
The need for a more dramatic rendering of thought led to the creation of expressions that represent the way in which we usually think or act. They are linguistic instances of conceptual metaphors. However, as Johnson and Lakoff (1982) put it, they are so ordinary “that we do not recognize their metaphorical character.”
According to Avãdanei (1994:16) metaphor is present in “absolutely all perceived dimensions of human existence” being not a matter of words but conceptual in nature. It is the main mechanism through which we comprehend abstract concepts and perform abstract reasoning. Metaphors, as noticed by Lakoff (1993: 245) “allow us to understand a relatively abstract or inherently unstructured subject matter in terms of a more concrete or at least more highly structured subject matter.”
The situations in which metaphor facilitates the understanding of new fields or dimensions of experience which are difficult to comprehend in conceptual terms are difficult to comprehend in any language. One example lies in comprehending the abstract notion of life by way of a metaphorical expression, i.e. a fi/ se afla la rãscruce – to be at crossroads. In the following examples that render anger emotions which are equalled to temperature by way of verbal idioms: a fi/ a se face foc şi parã, a fierbe sângele în cineva, a se face foc şi catran, a fierbe de mânie – to get steamed up, to blow one’s tops.
Steamed out of a nation’s customs and traditions they are the expression of the imagination as well as emotional response to the environment of, as I. Iordan(1977: 265) calls them, anonymous creators (folk metaphors) or known authors (cultivated metaphors- a poet’s figure of style). They are characterized by longevity as well as ubiquity and depending on their linguistic realization they are universal or culture specific. Furthermore, as the locus of metaphor is thought not language these metaphorical expressions are “a major and indispensable part of our ordinary conventional way of conceptualising the world” and “our everyday behaviour reflects our metaphorical understanding of experience.” (Lakoff 1993:204)
Every person is a part of culture and at the same time, contributes to its development. Moreover, culture is made for everybody, for all the people in the world although we find it – in the same way as we find language, moulded into historical shapes that are specific to certain communities.
Culture is not seen as just the things or tools man fashions to make himself more efficient in coping with his day-by-day, year-by-year problems, but as all of his attitudes, assumptions, beliefs, and values – the products of his head and heart as well as of his hands . Human cultures are all alike in furnishing sets of systematized answers to the universal problems of human existence, but the answers are all different answers, and each culture is therefore unique.
Moreover, each language is a vast system of structures, different from that of others in which the individual not only communicates but also analyses nature, grasps, or neglects a given phenomenon or relation, in which he moulds his manner of thinking and by means of which he builds up the entire edifice of his knowledge of the world .
What makes a language different from the others is not the way it expresses ideas but the way it analyses experience. Thus there are series of expressions that are similar in several languages : tap ispãşitor, scape goat, fr. bouc emisaire; a- şi pierde capul, to lose one’s head, fr. perder la tête, sp. perder la cabeza, germ. den kopf verbieren; a avea stofã de- to be cut for, fr. avoir l’étoffe de, sp. tener talento para; a vorbi pe ocolite, to beat around the bush, tourner autour du pot, andarse con rodeo.
Due to the fact that they reflect the attitude towards the world in general and the life of the community in particular metaphors have a wide circulation in the active language and they may have an explicit Romanian or English character. Thus, as spotted out by Lakoff and Johnson (1982) “a culture may be thought of as providing, among other things, a pool of available metaphors for making sense of reality”; “to live by a metaphor is to have your reality structured by that metaphor and to base your perceptions and actions upon that structuring of reality.”
However, as Chitoran (1973:69-70) puts it, “the differences in environment, climate, cultural development, etc., among various communities may be extremely significant, but basically, human societies are linked by a common biological history. The objective reality in which they live is definitely not identical but it is by and large similar.” Furthermore, the universe we are living in is made up of things, and we are constantly confronted with them, obliged to communicate about them, to define ourselves in relation to them. This is a characteristic of all human societies and due to this fact, various language systems are not untranslatable.
The fact itself that different cultures conceptualise reality in varying ways leads to metaphors to be characterized by culture specificity. T. Vianu (1975:518) speaks about a national style “with metaphors, expressions and play-upon-words that suit that specific nation only and that are totally inappropriate when translated as such.” The historical experience of the Romanians, a nation of farmers, shepherds, fishermen, bee-keepers, handicraftsmen led to the creation of linguistic expressions that are characteristic to this particular geographical region as well as the people inhabiting it.
2. Examples of Romanian Culture-Specific Metaphorical Expressions
As noted by Maleej (2002) metaphor is culture – specific due to the fact that different cultures conceptualise reality in different ways. Even more than that, Lakoff and Johnson (1980:3) state that metaphor is “pervasive in everyday life, not just in thought and actions” and “our ordinary conceptual system is fundamentally metaphorical in nature.”
We shall first mention some metaphoric expressions mirror the way the Romanian peasants perceived reality in different professions and they are constituted with the help of some technical words whose meaning is not obvious to the common Romanian speaker, i.e. bezmetic, vârşã, tânjalã, meliţã (apud Dumistrãcel 1980:188) . These words used to be part of farmers’, shepherds’, bee-keeepers’ or fishermen’s active vocabulary. They belong to the class of dead metaphors as P. Newmark calls them.
Thus, bezmetic used in the expression stup bezmetic had, in bee-keepers terminology, the meaning of stup fãrã matcã (a beehive without a queen). Hence the meaning of brainless, giddy that the respective term has today in the expression a umbla bezmetic – in this case the metaphor involves understanding one domain of experience, human behaviour, in terms of a very different domain of experience, bee-keeping. The metaphor can be understood as a mapping from a source domain (in this case, bee-keeping) to a target domain (in this case, human behaviour). We cannot possibly translate it by “to fly about like bees without a queen” which is its literal meaning but we may choose between to feel confused which render only the meaning or to wander about giddy-headed.
However, it is not of rare occurrence for different professional terminologies to enrich the vocabulary not only with words that came to be used metaphorically but with expressions as well. This is the case of s-a dat la brazdã, an expression which is used when we want to say that someone managed to adapt to a new environment or has made things right (ADAPTING IS PLOUGHING). However frequently this expression may be used today we need to take into account the fact that in its origin it was nothing else but a simple combination of words used to characterize the situation of an young animal, be it a horse or an ox, that finally managed to keep the same furrow while ploughing. A simple translation of this expression would be to see one’s way through but much of its metaphoricity has been lost. If we want to render the meaning of a se obişnui we may have to chose between to get accustomed to or to rub off corners (the 2nd version is metaphorical, ADAPTING IS CLEANING) ); whereas with the second meaning which is a se face de treabã we are at a dead end if we intend to preserve the metaphor as we should chose between to set to work or to leave off bad habits.
Other expressions that are formed with the help of a technical term and came to be used metaphorically are a se lãsa pe tânjalã – to rest/lie in one’s oars, to grow lazy, to aquire idle habits, to idle/laze away one’s life (Dicţionar frazeologic 1993:148); a-i merge gura ca o meliţã – to talk nineteen to the dozen, to have a glib tongue/ one’s tongue hung in the middle and wags at both ends (Dicţionar frazeologic 1993:168) , râde vârşa de baltã şi-i putrezeşte coada – the pot calls the kettle back, the raven chides blackness, the raven said to the rook “stand away, black coat” (Dicţionar frazeologic 1993:244) .
Due to the fact that agriculture played an extremely important role in the life of the community many expressions came to be used metaphorically losing thus their character of being professional terms. When speaking about the stylistic means of the language T. Vianu (1975:314) noticed that “there is a quality which is unique for each language, there are forms and expressive constructions which are its own, metaphors and similes that are rooted in its historical background.” Furthermore, “ the Romanian people with their old customs and traditions originated in the countryside and agriculture, created countless expressions with an undeniable stylistic value”. All these expressions are facts of language that are the work not of a sole person but of an entire nation. We shall furthermore give examples of metaphorical expression illustrating the live of the community as they speak about the experience of a certain community.
Dumistrãcel (1980:136-137) classifies them into those that are “mirror of reality” and those that are “imaginary” .
The examples that we shall give are classified according to domains of activity and they are some of the most illustrative “mirrors of reality”:
Agriculture : - “a nu face nici cât o ceapã degeratã” (DEX 1984:135) – “not to be worth a straw” , meaning ‘to have no value at all’
- “a ajunge cu funia la par” (Dumistrãcel 1980:187) – “to be at the end of one’s tether” ( Seidl 1988:26), meaning ‘to be in a position where one has no more patience’
E.g. “Children ill, husband out of work, mother in hospital – poor Annie’s at the end of her tether.”
Cattle breeding and farming: - “a cãlca pe ouã” (DEX 1984:135) – “to lay upon eggs” (Webster 1994:456), meaning “to walk, behave very carefully”
Cattle breeding mainly provide phrases indicating a position of inferiority or superiority: - “a sta ca viţelul la poartã nouã” [literally: ‘to stand like the calf in front of a new gate’], meaning ‘to gape, to have as much idea as a donkey has of Sunday’.
E.g. “- Ce stai ca viţelul la poartã nouã?”
“What are you gaping at?”
- “a pune şaua pe cineva” [literally: ‘to saddle someone’], meaning ‘to have somebody under control, to ride somebody’ (Dumistrãcel 1980:259)
Fishing: - “a bea ca un peşte” (DEX 1984:683) – “to drink like a fish” (Seidl 1988:239, Webster 1994:536), meaning ‘to drink large quantities of alcohol, especially beer’.
E.g. “If you’ve ever been in a pub with Harry, you’ll know that he drinks like a fish.”
- “a pescui în apã tulbure” (DEX 1984:682) – “to fish in trouble/muddy waters” (Webster 1994:536), meaning ‘to take advantage of troubled or uncertain conditions for personal profit’
Dumistrãcel (1980:198-199) made an analogy with a trick that some fishermen from Moldavia use when the rivers drain in order to explain how the above expression got its meaning. Fishermen start with a sui-generis game troubling the mud at the bottom of the river with a stick until the water acquires a thick consistence. Thus, the fish can no longer stay where it is hidden and it is forced to get to the surface for it has no more air to breathe. Fishermen are left with only one task now: to gather the fish seeking for air at the surface of the muddy water. We do believe that the French linguists have found a similar explanation for their expression and so did the Spanish linguists; and this is not the only expression to have correspondent in more than one European language. This is a clear proof for the fact that there is no such thing as a single culture but as many cultures as there are groups (modelling themselves around the same values and myths even though they have not yet settled on a certain geographical area, within the borders of a political state) speaking different languages.
The human body: - “a arunca praf în ochii cuiva” (DEX 1984:730) – “to throw dust in someone’s eyes” (Webster 1994:443), meaning ‘to mislead, to deceive’.
- “a-şi muşca buzele” (DEX 1984:107) – “to bite one’s lips” (Webster 1994:836), meaning ‘to repress one’s anger or other emotions’.
- “a-şi bãga nasul in..” (DEX 1984:77) – “to poke one’s nose into” (Oxford 1995:789) or “to be a Paul Pry” or “to poke and pry” (Dicţionar frazeologic 1993:28)
E.g. “These journalists are paid to poke and pry into the affairs of the Royal family.”
All these examples reflect scenes from the daily life of the people working in agriculture, of the fishermen and so on. Today, no one is thinking at the danger that the act of taking the bull by its horns presupposes but at the fact that one has to deal with an unpleasant situation.
The “imaginary”, “illogical” or “fantastic” metaphorical linguistic expressions (as Dumistrãcel calls them) are significantly expressive. The special connotation of these idioms is the product of a sui-generis association between some terms and some individual connotation that by no means expresses their actual meaning. Here are some of the most illustrative “imaginary” metaphoric constructions:
• “a spune verzi şi uscate” (DEX 1984:1014) – “to talk through one’s hat” (Webster 1994:649), meaning ‘to speak without knowing the facts, make unsupported statements’.
E.g. “He is a very shallow person so he enjoys the company of those that like talking through their hats.”
• “a scrie pe mucul lumânãrii” (Dumistrãcel 1980:237) – “to burn the candle at both ends” (Webster 1994:216), meaning ‘to overtax one’s strenght or capacity by undertaking too many activities’.
E.g. “Her success is due to the fact that she is used to burn the candle at both ends.”
Some of these constructions express a paradox, something unusual:
• “a prinde cu mâţa în sac” (Dumistrãcel 1980:238) which in English is “to let the cat out of the bag” (Webster 1994:231), meaning ‘to divulge a secret’
E.g. “I wanted my mother’s present to be a secret, but my sister let the cat out of the bag.”
Some others are increasingly expressive and they are the result of an exaggeration:
• “a-l prinde pe Dumnezeu de picior”, “a fi în al şaptelea cer” – “to be in the seventh haven”, “to tread/walk upon air”
E.g. “She was in the seventh haven when he kissed her.”
The following examples are old phrases that are made up of words from the basic stock and that reflect the life of the community as a whole. They all refer to customs that are related only to the geographic area of the Romanian people. They can be included in Dumistrãcel’s mirrors of reality category but it is rather difficult to translate them as equivalence can be achieved only at the semantic level.
• “a lua la vale” (Dumistrãcel 1980:186) [literally: ‘to take down the valley’], meaning “to mock at”, “to pull one’s leg” (Seidl 1988:72); this phrase remind us of an ancient agricultural ritual of fertility and purification, which was denied by Christianity; hence only the ridiculous aspect of the person lowered into the water has been preserved (‘vale’ – “valley’ means ‘river’, ’stream’ in this context.
• “a (în)cresta în grindã” (Dumistrãcel:170) [literally: ‘to make a mark in the wooden beam supporting the roof of a peasant house], meaning “to keep in mind a significant event” (Seidl 1988:253)
• “ai carte, ai parte” (DEX 1984:115) [literally: ‘you have a book, you have a share’], initially meant ‘he who can prove to be right with papers wins the trial’; later on the meaning of the phrase evolved, owing to polysemy of the word ‘carte’, to ‘if you have schooling, you will get by in live’ or “knowledge is treasure” (Seidl 1988:43).
• “a-i tãia cuiva din nas” (DEX 1984:5830) [literally: ‘to cut off somebody’s nose’], meaning “to put somebody down” (Seidl 1988:175); the phrase originated in an old Turkish (and the Romanian medieval) custom of cutting off the nose of those claiming the throne or of prisoners of war.
• “a-şi aprinde paie în cap” [DEX 1984:644) [literally: ‘to light straw on one’s head], with the figurative meaning of “getting into trouble” “to get into a scrape/mess; to bring one’s hornet’s nest about one’s ears; to catch a Tartar” (Dicţionar frazeologic 199348).
• “a da sfoarã în tarã” (Dumistrãcel 1980:181-182) [literally: ‘to unwind rope in the country], meaning “to spread news” (Oxford 1995:813), “to set a rumour afloat”(Ibidem: 521); this expression is an example of folk etymology; the original word “sfarã” meaning ‘stifling smoke resulting from the burning of a fat’, became ‘sfoarã’ that is ‘rope’; initially, the phrase referred to the methods of signalling at long distance by means of tall columns of smoke.
All these idioms are culture-specific, as they sent to old customs and traditions specific to the evolution and live of the Romanian people.
Furthermore, some specific idioms bear the mark of the age when they came into being. These constructions either preserve the old meaning of the words they contain, or even the word itself (archaism). They illustrate events in the life of the community. Here are some very interesting examples:
• aman: “a ajunge la aman” (DEX 1984:28), meaning ‘to get into difficulty’; “Aman!” was a Turkish interjection meaning “Mercy!”
• iama: “a da iama”(DEX 1984:410), meaning ‘to squander’; this is a phrase in which the social aspect shifted into the limited domestic one.
• paià: “a da paièle” (Dumistrãcel 1980:224-227), meaning ‘to flatter’; in this phrase the plural “paièle”, coming from the Turkish “paià”, was interpreted as a Romanian plural “paiele” – “straws” and consequently the phrase came to mean “a pune pàiele pe foc” – “to pour oil on fire”.
Similar cases are to be found in English. The archaism ‘fettle’ in the idiom “to be in the fettle” (Webster 1994:526) which is translated into Romanian by “a fi în formã, a fi sãnãtos”, dissapeared a long time ago and its meaning is of ‘belt’ is no longer known to us.
E.g. “The team are in excellent fettle.”
Avãdanei (2000:131) gives the example of the idiomatic construction “to leave in the lurch”, meaning ‘to leave in an uptime of trouble’ (rendered in Romanian as “a lãsa pe cineva la nevoie”) that preserves the archaism “lurch” which was a distorted form of the French word “lourche”.
2. The strategies used for translating the previously mentioned culture-specific metaphors
As we have already said metaphor is culture specific due to the fact that different cultures conceptualise experience in varying ways. According to Dagut (1976:32) “there no simplistic general rule for translation of metaphor, but the translatability of any given SL metaphor depends on (1) the particular cultural experiences and semantic associations exploited by it, and (2) the extend to which these can, or not, be reproduced non-anomalously in TL, depending on the degree of overlap in each particular case.”
Moreover, he says that (Idem:28) “what determines the translatability of a SL metaphor is not its ‘boldness’ or ‘originality’, but rather the extend to which the cultural experience and semantic associations on which it draws are shared by speakers of the particular TL.”
The procedure to adopt in translating a metaphoric expression is inherent to the purpose of translation. If the effect of the translation on the target audience is not the same as that on the source audience, it is because experiential and cognitive models are often used differently in different linguistic and cultural communities.
Furthermore, Dagut ( 1987: 81apud Maalej 2002) explains that the untranslatability of a metaphor is due to the absence of the cultural refernce of a SL metaphor in the TL as well as the cultural and lexical specifics of the SL.
Translation in general (and the translation of metaphor in particular) is not dissociated from the experiential reality of both Sc and TC. Thus, the extend to which a text is translatable varies according to the degree to which it is rooted in its own specific culture and to the distance that separates the cultural background of St and target audience in terms of time and place.
If we are to take Newmark’s strategies as a model for translating metaphoric expressions we shall see that only three procedure were employed when rendering the above culture – specific constructions as follows:
(1) Reproducing the same image in the TL on the condition that the image has comparable frequency and currency in the appropriate register. This type of transfer is dependant on cultural overlap or on universal experience or what are usually called by anthropologists ‘culture universals’.
This strategy is appropriate only for the metaphoric expressions included in the first category, i.e. mirrors to reality related to various activities in the rural area.
-“a bea ca un peşte” (DEX 1984:683) – “to drink like a fish” (Seidl 1988:239, Webster 1994:536); - “a pescui în apã tulbure” (DEX 1984:682) – “to fish in trouble/muddy waters” (Webster 1994:536)
- “a arunca praf în ochii cuiva” (DEX 1984:730) – “to throw dust in someone’s eyes” (Webster 1994:443); - “a-şi muşca buzele” (DEX 1984:107) – “to bite one’s lips” (Webster 1994:83); - “a-şi bãga nasul in..” (DEX 1984:77) – “to poke one’s nose into” (Oxford 1995:789)
(2) The translator may replace the image in the SL with a standard TL image that does not clash with the TL culture.
This is the case with mirrors to reality that instantiated in old phrases reflecting the life of the community as a whole.
-“a lua la vale” (Dumistrãcel 1980:186) meaning “to mock at”, “to pull one’s leg” (Seidl 1988:72); - “a (în)cresta în grindã” (Dumistrãcel:170) meaning “to keep in mind a significant event” (Seidl 1988:253)
-“ai carte, ai parte” (DEX 1984:115) “knowledge is treasure” (Seidl 1988:43); - “a-i tãia cuiva din nas” (DEX 1984:5830) “to put somebody down” (Seidl 1988:175); - “a-şi aprinde paie în cap” [DEX 1984:644) “to get into a scrape/mess; to bring one’s hornet’s nest about one’s ears; to catch a Tartar” (Dicţionar frazeologic 199348) ; -“a da sfoarã în tarã” (Dumistrãcel 1980:181-182) [literally: ‘to unwind rope in the country], meaning “to spread news” (Oxford 1995:813), “to set a rumour afloat”(Ibidem: 521)
The imaginary, illogical or fantastic linguistic expressions may also be translated taking into account Newmark’s second procedure.
-“a spune verzi şi uscate” (DEX 1984:1014) – “to talk through one’s hat” (Webster 1994:649); - “a scrie pe mucul lumânãrii” (Dumistrãcel 1980:237) – “to burn the candle at both ends” (Webster 1994:216)
-“a prinde cu mâţa în sac” (Dumistrãcel 1980:238) which in English is “to let the cat out of the bag” (Webster 1994:231); “a-l prinde pe Dumnezeu de picior”, “a fi în al şaptelea cer” – “to be in the seventh haven”, “to tread/walk upon air”
(3) Conversion of metaphor to sense (procedure number 5). Depending on the type of text this strategy is to be preferred to any replacement of an SL by a TL image which is too wide off the sense or the register.
This procedure is to be employed with temporarily marked phrases containing archaisms, e.g. “a ajunge la aman” (DEX 1984:28), meaning ‘to get into difficulty’; “a da iama”(DEX 1984:410), meaning ‘to squander’; “a da paièle” (Dumistrãcel 1980:224-227), meaning ‘to flatter’; “a pune pàiele pe foc” – “to pour oil on fire”.
Dobrynska(1995:598 apud Maalej) states that the interpretation of metaphor is strongly culturally conditioned and proposes three strategies for translating metaphors. These strategies may also be employed with rendering into English the above mentioned metaphoric constructions:
1. a metaphor- to - metaphor procedure when an exact equivalent of the original metaphor is found (M- M); most of mirror to reality related to the rural area apply.
2. a metaphor-to-metaphor procedure when another metaphoric phrase which would express a similar sense (M1-M2); most of mirror to reality reflecting the life of the community as a whole and the imaginary metaphorical linguistic expressions apply.
3. a metaphor- to paraphrase procedure where an untranslatable metaphor is replaced by a literal phrase (M-P); the metaphorical linguistic expressions containing a technical term and the temporarily marked phrases containing archaisms.
To conclude with we feel bound to remark that:
- Any language bears the mark of a particular vision upon the world, of a different mentality and of a certain way of feeling.
- The need for a more dramatic rendering of thought led to the creation of expressions that represent the way in which we usually think or act; metaphor is present in “absolutely all perceived dimensions of human existence” being not a matter of words but conceptual in nature.
- Language organises world into meanings. It lays upon the entire world a network of meanings to be able to speak about it and to operate with it.
- Due to the fact that they reflect the attitude towards the world in general and the life of the community in particular metaphors have a wide circulation in the active language and they may have an explicit Romanian or English character.
- The historical experience of the Romanians, a nation of farmers, shepherds, fishermen, beekeepers, handicraftsmen led to the creation of linguistic expressions that are characteristic to this particular geographical region as well as the people inhabiting it.
- The Romanian people with their old customs and traditions originated in the countryside and agriculture, created countless expressions with an undeniable stylistic value.
- What determines the translatability of a SL metaphor is not its ‘boldness’ or ‘originality’, but rather the extend to which the cultural experience and semantic associations on which it draws are shared by speakers of the particular TL
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