Loan word or neologism? Translating modernity into an indigenous language in Taiwan

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsConference Paper (other)

Abstract

In this paper I build on my previous research on the partial translation of the screenplay for the epic feature film Seediq Bale (Wei Te-sheng, 2011) into two dialects of the Seediq Language, Toda and Tgdaya by focusing on the translation of terms for modern institutions like the school and the police and even the tribal chief and modern technology, especially the technology of war. Whereas historically Seediq has kept up with the cultural mobility of modernity by adopting words from Japanese and Chinese, for the film the translators created neologisms, which in some cases they used instead of the corresponding loanwords. This preference for neologisms might be taken as a kind of linguistic and cultural purism, but I prefer to see it in terms of the expansion of the expressive capabilities of the Seediq language. I intend, finally, to put this case study of Seediq Bale in larger contexts. First, the state sponsored “neologism groups” that are inventing terms for the myriad aspects of modern life all around Taiwan to replace the loanwords that are used in daily life and in the media. Second, Indigenous Translation Studies, the subdiscipline that does not yet exist: Rafael and Spivak can represent, respectively, colonial and postcolonial translation theory, but while related their work is not entirely adequate to the predicaments and prospects of indigenous minority translators working on the margins of settler societies.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jul 2018
EventThe 6th International Association for Translation and Intercultural Studies (IATIS) Conference : Translation and Cultural Mobility - Hong Kong Baptist University, Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong
Duration: 3 Jul 20186 Jul 2018
https://www.iatis.org/images/stories/6thIATISConference_BookOfAbstracts.pdf

Conference

ConferenceThe 6th International Association for Translation and Intercultural Studies (IATIS) Conference : Translation and Cultural Mobility
CountryHong Kong
CityKowloon Tong
Period3/07/186/07/18
Internet address

Keywords

  • Indigenous translation studies
  • Seediq Bale
  • Neologisms
  • Loanwords

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Loan word or neologism? Translating modernity into an indigenous language in Taiwan'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    STERK, D. (2018). Loan word or neologism? Translating modernity into an indigenous language in Taiwan. Paper presented at The 6th International Association for Translation and Intercultural Studies (IATIS) Conference : Translation and Cultural Mobility, Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong.