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Common Difficulties in Translation Process & How to Overcome Them

No profession or job in any industry is facile or smooth sailing. There are certain issues that can only be understood by the one, who is related to the specific sector/ industry/ job. Similar is the case with the language and translation sector. You may not realize, but, translation is one of the most challenging activities that involve whole lot of efforts, expertise and talent for rendering a high quality output. The communication through the translated file must be sharp and concise. This is the reason why translators undergo stringent training in the initial phase of their career. But, what if the training isn’t executed well? What if the communication is hampered? The business, for which the text has been translated, will face severe losses and your reputation in the market would witness a sharp downfall.

Hence, if you are a translator or a translation service provider, you must understand the potential difficulties in translation process that restrict the translator form delivering error-free work. Have a look –

a) Structure of the language

Structure of the language can turn out to be the most disturbing element in the course of translation procedure. Every language has a defined structure. Thus, the source language may not have the same or similar structure as the target language. As a result, the translation can become a messy task for the translator. For example, Farsi has a structure of placing subject, object, and then verb; while, English follows subject, verb, and object structure. To overcome such an issue, you will first of all need to understand the language structure of both the languages and then, accordingly remove, add or rearrange words in the source language. This will help you communicate the right message in the target language.

b) Multiple Meanings

There can be multiple meanings of the same word, you use in a language. Hence, when you translate a specific word (having multiple meanings) into the target language, it becomes a horrifying task to conclude that. Also, the change in the meaning of the word is dependent on its placement and use in the sentence. To put it simple, translating such words is not a kid’s play, as it further gets difficult homonyms and heteronyms.

c) Sarcasm

You must understand that the tone, style and context of every document are different. Hence, no two documents can be handled in the same manner, even if they belong to the same industry. Sarcasm is one of the many types of expressions that are generally seen in source files. Due to its unique style of expressing things, sarcasm is often mistranslated by the translators. The worst part is that sarcasm becomes so disturbing for the translators that they literally start to translate the text word by word.

d) Missing Names or Terms

Another major issue is with the missing terminologies. How can you translate something that has no equivalent for the source word in the target language? The specific word might be the most important word in the document; and if it really does, how will you get a perfectly translated document? Sounds very problematic; Right? Generally, in such cases, experts recommend contacting the client for any assistance. So, you might as well, find a reliable way to come out of this situation.

How to Overcome Translation Issues

Although every problem has a different solution, yet there can be some basic techniques, using which every related issue can be solved. Thus, here are some fruitful methods that can resolve even the worst translation mistakes ever. Have a look –

1. Consultation

Sharing your problems with others, often make you feel less burdened and enlightened towards a great solution. Hence, whenever you are stuck in translation, it is ideal to consult the client or any local experts, who have knowledge regarding the target language or culture. Discussing such things doesn’t make you unfit for the job. It just adds to your experience and helps you learn some new things. Also, it will enable you to come up with the right translation.

2. Back Translation

Most of the translators often feel that back translations are time consuming and useless. They might consume your time. But, they are definitely not useless. Especially in the case of specialized translation or at times when you are lost in translation, these can be of great help. It involves translating the translated document back in the source language. It will help you achieve good results and will also let you detect any semantic errors.

There can be other ways as well. However, these two are the most effective ones. If you want you can either use these methods singularly, or combine the methods just to grab a high quality output.

At last, you must get it straight that no matter what you do, or what type of translations you conduct, there will be certain issues that will obstruct your path towards quality translation. Therefore, the only thing that you must keep in mind in such a situation is positivity and a relaxed thought that your issues will easily find a way, once you apply the right techniques.

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