Étymologie et Exégèse littéraire dans la lecture et la traduction d’Oliver Twist.

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  • Etymology and literary exegesis are of a special significance as far as reading and translating Oliver Twist is concerned. In the first place, Dickens makes the most of the ressources of the English language by using, as a stylistic device, the various etymological roots of the vocabulary he has at his disposal. So doing, he makes it hard for the French translator to reproduce the play on words which relies on this discrepancy between words from two different origins. In the second place, even though etymology enables the reader to grasp some of the puns of the author, it sometimes appears as a wrong track. Thus, even though etymology is a cornerstone in the interpretation of the text, it also turns out to be a formidable enemy for the translator. In this respect, « etymology » turns out to be a sort of « pharmakon ». On the one hand, it is a blessed remedy for translation, in two respects : it is the means of bridging the gap between the differences between the French and the English languages as well as a way of fully grasping what is at stake in Oliver Twist. On the other hand, it is also the poison which may deceive the translator and prevent him from finding a satisfactory translation.

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    Article (Published)
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    © 2011 L'Harmattan. This version of this article is open access and can be downloaded and shared. The original author(s) and source must be cited.
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  • Citation for previous publication
    • Tarif, J. (2011). Étymologie et Exégèse littéraire dans la lecture et la traduction d’Oliver Twist. (“Etymology and literary exegesis in the reading and in the translation of Oliver Twist”). Cahiers du CIRHiLL, 35, 101-122.