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Changing populations in many parts of Europe and the English-speaking world have given rise to multilingual classrooms, new pedagogies and new learning materials. This paper discusses multilingual resources for children - books in languages other than English as well as dual language books written in both community (or heritage) languages and English. The main emphasis, however, is on dual language books and the challenges which these present for translators. The insensitivity of publishers to the complexities of multilingual resources has often resulted in inadequate translations which greatly diminish the usefulness of dual language books. Various ways of improving the quality of translation are considered.
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Journal of Multilingual and
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Some Status Issues in the
Translation of Children's
Books
Viv Edwards & Sue Walker
Published online: 29 Mar 2010.
To cite this article: Viv Edwards & Sue Walker (1996) Some Status Issues in
the Translation of Children's Books, Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural
Development, 17:5, 339-348, DOI: 10.1080/01434639608666287
To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01434639608666287
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Some
Status
Issues
in
the
Translation
of
Children’s
Books
Viv
Edwards
R e a d in g a n d L a n g u a g e I n f o r m a t i o n C e n t r e , U n i v e rs it y o f R e a d in g , B u lm e r s h e
C o u r t, E a r le y , R e a d in g R G 6 1 H Y
Sue
Walker
D e p a r t m e n t o f T y p o g r a p h y & G r a p h ic C o m m u n ic a t io n , U n i v e r s ity o f R e a d i n g ,
B u l m e r s h e C o u r t, E a r le y , R e a d in g R G 6 1 H Y
Changing populations in many parts of Europe and the English-speaking world have
given rise to multilingual classrooms, new pedagogies and new learning materials.
This paper discusses multilingual resources for children books in languages other
than English as well as dual language books written in both community (or heritage)
languages and English. The main emphasis, however, is on dual language books and
the challenges which these present for translators. The insensitivity of publishers to
the complexities of multilingual resources has often resulted in inadequate translations
which greatly diminish the usefulness of dual language books. Various ways of
improving the quality of translation are considered.
Greatly increased mobility has been a hallmark of the second half of the twentieth
century. The classrooms of Toronto, Melbourne, London and New York were
never homogeneous communities. However, the need for labour in post-war
Britain, together with shifts in immigration policies in other English-speaking
countries, has ensured that multilingual classrooms are the norm in growing
numbers of schools.
Changing populations are reflected not only in the learning experiences but
also in the resources offered to students. Children’s books in a variety of
languages are now a feature of many classrooms. Advocates of multilingual
resources point to the importance of promoting other languages, drawing
attention to the arguments of writers such as Cummins (1996), that various
cognitive and academic skills, including literacy, can be transferred from one
language to another, and that this transfer of skills is most successful when
children have a sound foundation in their first language. They also suggest that
the presence of books in languages other than English has advantages for all
students: such books enhance the status of bilingual children at the same time as
helping to increase their monolingual peers’ ‘knowledge about language’ (DES,
1988).
The UK has an interesting history of publishing in Welsh and Gaelic (Edwards,
1991). However, the arrival of non-indigenous linguistic minorities in the
post-war period has given rise to many other opportunities for publishing,
particularly in Bengali, Chinese, Gujarati, Panjabi and Urdu, the minority
languages with the largest numbers of speakers. For economic and other reasons,
the main reference point for publications of this kind is English. The production,
typography and design of books in other languages raises a wide range of status
3 3 9
0143-4632/96/05 0339-10 $10.00/0 © 1996 V. Edwards & S. Walker
JOURNAL OF MULTILINGUAL AND MULTICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT Vol. 17, No. 5, 1996
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issues which have been explored in detail by the Multilingual Resources Project
(1995). For instance, how do readers react to dual language books when the
English text has been typeset and the other language handwritten, or when the
quantity of text is larger in one language than in the other? This article, however,
focuses on translation, another status issue in the production of multilingual
materials.
Single
Language
Children’s
Books
Two main kinds of multilingual resources have appeared in response to new
demographic trends: single language and dual language children’s books. Single
language books come from a variety of sources. Small numbers have been
produced by mainstream and community publishers, or projects which promote
lesser used languages (MRC, 1995). However, most single language books are
imported from the children’s countries of origin and distributed by specialist
book shops.
Books imported from other countries sometimes raise difficult questions.
There is a consensus that many of these materials deal with experiences
far-removed from readers born outside the home country (see, for instance,
Tsow, 1984). They are also criticised on linguistic grounds. The language level of
children born abroad is usually several years behind the norm for the home
country. As a result, texts within the reach of children overseas are often felt to
be too babyish.
A final problem concerns appearance. Books from Hong Kong are usually of
a production standard similar to those from the English-speaking world and
Western Europe. Books from countries such as India, Pakistan and Bangladesh,
however, often use paper which is thinner and has a different finish either
rough or very glossy. Different printing processes result in either very bright or
very faded colours. Many teachers feel reluctant to use imported books because
they fear the negative status messages communicated by the different levels of
quality associated with books in non-European languages. Many children,
however, do not share these misgivings; some even claim to like ‘the feel’ of books
produced abroad (MRC, 1995).
Dual
Language
Books
Single language books are found most often in the networks of voluntary
schools now common in the UK, North America and Australia which have been
set up to help children learn or maintain the community or heritage language.
Most mainstream schools prefer dual language books in which the community
language appears in conjunction with English (Edwards & Walker, 1994). The
first dual language books in the UK date back to the late 1970s. It is easy to
understand their appeal. Many monolingual teachers felt insecure about giving
children books in languages and scripts which they themselves did not
understand: without a detailed knowledge of other languages and cultures, they
often lacked the confidence to talk to children about what they were reading.
Dual language books thus offered a welcome alternative. The English text
allowed equal access to monolingual and bilingual readers and allowed the
teacher a greater element of involvement.
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Many of the early dual language books were folk tales and myths, selected for
their universal appeal. More recently, for economic reasons, there has been a
move from books specifically designed as dual texts to adaptations of existing
English books. In most cases, these are good quality picture books, selected both
because they have been successful as single language books and because they
have ample space for the addition of a second language.
Dual language books offer designers special challenges. Even in languages
that use the Roman alphabet, there can be visual anomalies. Szanto (1972), for
instance, shows how a typeface which works well in English can have a different
visual effect in other languages, and may even reduce the legibility of the text.
These and other typographic issues increase when Latin and non-Latin fonts are
combined. Size and weight of type, spacing and quantity of text can make one
language seem more important that the other. Given that an important aim of
using dual language books is to enhance the status of minority languages, it is
ironic that questions of this kind have been overlooked so often (MRC, 1995).
Translation
The quality of translation is also critical to the success of a book. Yet this is an
issue which has received very little attention. In the course of the Multilingual
Resources for Children Project, we consulted with approximately fifty bilingual
adults from the main linguistic minority communities in the UK: experienced
teachers who made up the working group that shaped the progress of the project,
teachers in the mainstream schools and community schools which hosted the
fieldwork for the project, and the teachers and translators who took part in the
dissemination of the findings of the project. Our aim was to identify and find
examples of areas of difficulty and, wherever possible, to suggest possible
solutions. Various questions emerged as we started to look closely at translated
books in other languages:
Who
translates?
The arrival of settlers from many parts of the world has created a range of
challenges for publishers. While the community publishing houses are sensitive
to the issues raised by translation, the same level of awareness cannot be assumed
for mainstream publishers. We have anecdotal evidence, for instance, of books
being sent to agencies better geared to commercial than to educational
translation. Those responsible for the translation may well have expertise in the
language of advertising or adult novels, but little or no experience with the
language of children’s books.
It is widely believed that anyone who speaks another language is capable of
translation. The reality, of course, is that good translation is a highly skilled act
of recreation which faithfully mirrors the spirit of the original. Very few people
are equipped to meet these demands. While most people in the UK are familiar
with European languages such as French and German, knowledge of Indian and
Asian languages has traditionally been limited to civil servants wishing to
advance their careers in the colonial service. Inevitably, there is a shortage of
professional translators in non-European languages, particularly translators
with experience of children’s literature.
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What
makes
a
good
translation?
Most teachers whether monolingual or bilingual agree that books in
languages are a useful classroom resource. Monolingual teachers, of course, find
themselves at a serious disadvantage because they cannot judge the quality of
the translation. When we presented native speakers with a wide selection of
translated texts, the consensus was that the quality of translation varied greatly.
Many minority parents and teachers have strong feelings on this subject. They
argue that, while dual texts have a valuable educational role, their usefulness
depends on how faithfully the translation mirrors the original.
The complexities of translation have been challenging writers since the days
of Cicero. The challenge is to transform a text from one language into another,
retaining, as far as possible, the content, tone and functions of the original.
Important choices need to be made between word-for-word or literal translation
and meaning-for-meaning or free translation. As Bell (1991) points out, the
translator cannot win: literal translation is criticised for its ugliness, free
translation for its inaccuracy. There is evidence of the similar tensions around
multilingual resources for children.
Word-for-word
translation
Many people were irritated by obvious departures from the original text. The
Fox and the Crane (Hounslow Bilingual Support Project, 1990), for instance, tells
how the Crane struggles to eat soup from a plate. In the Gujarati translation,
Crane struggles to both eat soup’ and drink soup’ in the course of the same
sentence. On other occasions, the translator has made what appears to be a
careless mistake: the Panjabi version of Soma Goes to Market (Cole, 1986)
translates, He lives with his mother and Daddy and little sister Mina in a big
townas He lives with his mother and Daddy and little sister Mina in a big room’.
Many inaccuracies of this kind can be explained by the fact that the support
structures enjoyed by writers working in English are not always available for
translators. A high quality of proof-reading is essential for any publication,
irrespective of language. However, translated texts present additional chal-
lenges. Monolingual mainstream publishers — like monolingual teachers
often have little sensitivity to multilingual matters. In the absence of an
experienced editor and proof-reader, the translator is likely to be the sole arbiter
of the end product and the only person to check the proofs. Under these
circumstances, it is not surprising that serious errors should occur. Chatterji
(1991: 3) writes about a dual texts with ‘great chunks of text missing in the
translation’.
On some occasions, decisions about translation may be affected by design and
it is difficult to know whether we are dealing with a proof-reading error or
whether the translator had made a deliberate decision to shorten the text to
achieve a visual balance on the page. Figure 1 is from the ChineseEnglish edition
of Do You Believe in Magic? (Pirotta, 1991). The Chinese version rendered into
English reads simply:
Sumed brought a seashell back from his holiday.
This is a magic shell’, he says.
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and makes no reference to finding the shell on the beach at midnight. In most
cases, however, proofreading errors affect individual words rather than longer
stretches of text. Examples such as {
e
} (girl’s name) instead of {
@
} (the
Panjabi word for ‘Mummy’) in The Magic Ink (Robinson, 1986) are fairly
common.
Meaning-for-meaning
translation
A more frequent criticism from native speakers is that, whereas translations
are grammatically correct, they are stylistically flawed. Discussions of translated
texts all too often provoke comments such as, ‘It doesn’t sound good’ or ‘It sounds
disjointed’. Sometimes erudite vocabulary and complex structures are used
which make the translation far more difficult than the corresponding English
text. This problem is often related to the sociolinguistic position of linguistic
minority communities. For instance, many Muslim children speak Panjabi at
home but study Urdu as the language of high culture. Similarly, many Italian
children speak a southern Italian dialect but study standard Italian; and most
Bangladeshi children speak Sylheti but study Bengali. For this reason, it is not
unusual to find that a translator has chosen a word from the standard rather than
the everyday language of the child: the use, for instance, of bhojan for dinner,
rather than the more familiar roti, in the Panjabi translation of School Dinners
(Heaslip, 1978).
In books for beginners, the choice of an occasional word from the standard is
Figure 1
An example of a truncated translation
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not too serious: it can sound very formal and stilted, but is unlikely to interfere
with a child’s understanding of the text, particularly where there are also visual
cues. But, in books designed for more experienced readers, the decision to use
words outside the experience of young bilingual British readers can interrupt the
flow. In Figure 2, taken from Amar’s Last Wish (Akhtar, 1987), there are four
words, expressions or structures in Gujarati which native speakers believe might
give rise to difficulties for British-born children.
The use of highly literary and formal language of this kind makes the Gujarati
translation far more difficult to read than the original English. Many parents
clearly wish their children to learn the standard language, the language of high
culture. However, many community language teachers share the view that a
more realistic educational goal would be to promote the language of the home
as a bridge to the acquisition of the standard or official language (Alladina &
Edwards, 1991).
It is also important to recognise that commercial considerations sometimes
affect decisions about translation. If the target community is, say, Greek Cypriot,
should the book be translated into the conservative Cypriot dialect spoken by
the majority of Hellenophones in Britain, or into modern standard Greek? If
publishers are hoping to reach a British market, it would make sense to
commission a Cypriot Greek translation; but, if they are hoping to reach an
international audience (which might include Greek children learning English in
Greece or Greek Americans), modern standard Greek would be the more suitable
choice.
How
do
translators
deal
with
new
situations?
When translators have to deal with situations, concepts or objects which do
Figure 2 An example of a translation which is more difficult than the English
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not exist in the country of origin, the most frequent solution is to transliterate the
English word. For instance, in A Day at
¼
(Grewel et al., n.d.) ‘number work’ and
‘apparatus are transliterated into Urdu script, while the Panjabi version of Prince
Cinders (Cole, 1993) transliterates chimney into Gurmukhi script. By and large,
this seems to work well as a translation strategy, although unfamiliarity with an
aspect of English language or culture occasionally results in a transliteration
which is not faithful to the original. In the Gujarati version of A Wet Dinner-time
(Fletcher, 1989), for instance, the girl’s name, Ginny, is transliterated as {g
I
ni} and
not {D I ni}. There was also a feeling among the bilingual teachers and parents that
we consulted that this strategy was overused. They pointed to examples such as
the transliteration of hat in the Panjabi translation of Teague’s (1986) Getting
Dressed when topi is a word in everyday use.
Transliteration is very difficult, however, in an ideographic writing system
such as Chinese. In order to transliterate, the translator needs to find a character
which is close to the sound in question, a process which is often problematic.
Take, for instance, the attempt by the translator of Do You Believe in Magic?
(Pirotta, 1991) to transliterate the name Wicks. The character selected, pronounced
as /wik/ in Cantonese, is a technical term for frontier or region. Although the
sound match is a good one, children are unlikely to recognise this character.
This same problem seems to have engaged Chinese translators of Eric Hill’s
ubiquitous Spot books. In early publications, ‘Spotis transliterated as shibode; in
later publications, the transliteration has been replaced with xiao bo Little Bo.
This attempt is far more successful: the use of ‘little’ and two syllables makes it
sound a more authentic Chinese name, and ‘Bo’ does not depart too dramatically
from ‘Spot’.
Cultural
relevance
An increasing number of dual texts are adaptations of original monolingual
English books. Assumptions about what constitutes a suitable story for
children, however, mean that different books make the journey from one
language to another with varying degrees of success. Certain themes appear
to work much better than others. The universality of traditional folk and fairy
tales makes them a particularly popular choice. Animal stories also tend to
travel well, as do stories about everyday experiences. It is important, though,
that these everyday experiences should be common to all readers, monolin-
gual and bilingual. The following extract is from After Dark (Martinez i
Vendrell & Capdevila, 1989):
By now, Anna had curled up contentedly, asleep. But not Martha. She’s
thinking about Mummy and Daddy getting dressed up for a night out. They
look happy. But the night is still scary.
In cultures where children are not excluded from adult social activities, the
notion of Mummy and Daddy getting dressed up for a night out will seem
strange indeed. Nor should we minimise the impact of this strangeness. Bibi and
the Little Bird (Anon., 1984), a moral Chinese tale designed to encourage toilet
training, gives the monolingual English speaker a useful insight into how it feels
to be faced with culturally inappropriate material:
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The birds are singing sweetly on the tree.
Bibi and his friends are playing happily under the tree.
Bibi is too fond of playing and doesn’t go to the toilet when he is eager to
make water.
He is not ashamed of making water freely at any place.
A little bird follows Bibi’s bad example. It flies and loosens the bowels.
The little bird’s bowels fall precisely on Bibi’s face. Take a smell, it is very,
very stinking.
His friend brings a towel and helps Bibi wash his face clean.
Pointing to the bird, the children shout, ‘Little bird, Little bird. Don’t
discharge night soil and urine freely at any place any more’.
Bibi keeps silent. He turns round and steals a glance.
Bibi says to the Little bird gently, Let’s not discharge night soil and urine
freely at any place. OK’.
Closely related to the question of the cultural relevance of the text is the
handling of visual images. Many Chinese readers perceive illustrations in books
on Chinese themes as lacking authenticity, the imperfect European interpretation
of Chinese art. A similar problem can be found in books portraying Indian and
Pakistani families. South Asian readers consulted during the project were in
agreement that the mother’s saree was the only feature which distinguished
Asian characters from whites in Sarah Godsill’s illustrations for Soma Goes to
Market (Cole, 1986); they also objected to the cartoon representation of Asian
children in books like The Magic Ink (Robinson, 1986). Cartoons are caricatures.
While it may be acceptable to use them to represent the dominant group in
society, the fact that they may emphasise negative stereotypes of minority
populations raises many uncomfortable questions.
New
Directions
Publishers, as we have seen, tend to vary in their level of awareness of
multilingual matters. Being a good translator of children’s books is not simply a
matter of speaking another language. It is essential to have first-hand experience
of children who speak the community language in question and a familiarity with
children’s literature in English and the community language. Ideally, the
translation also needs to be tested in cooperation with children and community
language teachers. This kind of consultation will help avoid the pitfalls of
language which is too formal or literary and ensure that the language is at the
same level of difficulty as the original text.
Publishers also have a responsibility to provide the same level of support to
translators as they offer to writers in English. This responsibility will include
access to copy editing and proofreading, processes which are taken for granted
in mainstream publishing but which are not always available to translators,
particularly those working with non-European languages. Publishers also have
a responsibility for choosing wisely the titles which will be translated. Some
themes work much better in some cultural contexts than others.
For the moment, most publishing in community languages involves transla-
tion from English into another language. This pattern may well change. And, as
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confidence within minority communities grows, we may also see a move towards
bilingual writers producing books in both their languages, as is already the case
in multilingual countries such as India where children’s authors like Ira Saxena
write in English and Hindi. Significantly, she describes the task of producing the
second language version as being like writing a new book, with no hint of
mechanical translation. The issues in producing a faithful equivalent are the
same, of course, whoever the translator and whichever the direction of the
translation.
Acknowledgements
Special thanks to Khalida Alvi, Urmi Chana, Shobana Devani, Trilokesh
Mukherjee, Ira Saxena and Amy Thompson for their contributions to the
discussion of translation as part of the working group for the Multilingual
Resources for Children Project.
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Longman.
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Chatterji, M. (1991) Selection criteria for dual language books. Children’s Book Foundation
Spring Newsletter 34.
Cummins, J. (1996) Negotiating identities: Education for empowerment in a diverse society.
Ontario, CA: California Association for Bilingual Education.
Department of Education and Science (DES) (1988) Report of the Committee of Inquiry into
the Teaching of the English Language (The Kingman Report). London: HMSO.
Edwards, V. (1991) The Welsh speech community. In S. Alladina and V. Edwards (eds)
Multilingualism in the British Isles (pp. 10725). Harlow: Longman.
Edwards, V. and Walker, S. (1994) Multilingual resources for children. Language and
Education 8 (3), 14756.
Multilingual Resources for Children Project (MRC) (1995) Building Bridges: Multilingual
Resources for Children. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.
Szanto, T. (1972) Language and readability. Iconographic 3, 18–19.
Tsow, M. (1984) Mother Tongue Maintenance: A Survey of Part-time Chinese Language Classes.
London: CRE.
Children’s
books
referred
to
in
the
text
Akhtar, Parvez (1985) Amars Last Wish. Gujarati translation by Pragna Thaker. London:
Magi.
Anon. (1984) Bibi and the Little Bird. Hong Kong: Arts Publishing Co.
Cole, Anne (1986) Soma Goes to Market. New Malden, Surrey: Suhada Press.
Cole, Babette (1993) Prince Cinders. Panjabi translation by Jaspal Singh Grewal. London:
Magi Publications.
Fletcher, Audrey (1989) A Wet Dinner-time. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press and
Jenny Ingham Associates.
Grewel, Mohinder, Jhawar, Jaswinder, Roosedale, Elaine, Saini, Kanta and Evans, Jan
(n.d.) A day at
¼
(Urdu translation by F. Khan). London: Ealing Education Department.
Heaslip, Peter (1978) School Dinners. Panjabi translation by Jaskanwal Kalra. London:
Methuen.
Hill, Eric. The Spot books. Dual language versions published by Roy Yates Books.
Hounslow Bilingual Support Project (1990) The Fox and the Crane (Gujarati translation by
Kanta Gomez). Hounslow: Hounslow Community Language Service.
Martinez i Vendrell, Maria and Capdevila, Roser (1989) After Dark. London: Magi.
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Pirotta, S. (1991) Do You Believe in Magic? (Chinese translation by Sylvia Denham). London:
Mantra Publishing Ltd.
Robinson, Anna (1986) The Magic Ink. Panjabi translation by S.S. Kang. London: Mantra
Publishing Ltd.
Teague, Kati (1989) Getting Dressed. Panjabi translation by Swaran Chandan. London:
Magi.
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... The bulk of this work has demonstrated that access to texts written in the mother tongue and target language supports young L2 learners' L2 literacy growth through the promotion of cross-linguistic transfer (Koda & Zehler, 2008) and academic achievement (Jiménez, García, & Pearson, 1996). Comparable results have been noted for children learning English as a second language outside the American context as well (Edwards & Walker, 1996;Sneddon, 2009). Edwards and Walker (1996) have also warned about a number of potential issues with dual-language texts that may negatively affect the readers' understanding or perceptions of those texts such as inferior translations or substandard craftsmanship of the materials. ...
... Comparable results have been noted for children learning English as a second language outside the American context as well (Edwards & Walker, 1996;Sneddon, 2009). Edwards and Walker (1996) have also warned about a number of potential issues with dual-language texts that may negatively affect the readers' understanding or perceptions of those texts such as inferior translations or substandard craftsmanship of the materials. In their discussion of translated reading materials, Butzkamm and Caldwell (2009) recommend the use of parallel L1/L2 versions of science texts in tandem to scaffold content. ...
... As for the materials themselves, the simple presence of the L1 in school sanctioned texts can lend legitimacy and respectability to the L1 and its writing system that it might not otherwise have in that context. However, educators need to be careful about how the L1 is incorporated into L2 reading materials because if the L1 is included in a way that makes it appear inferior (e.g., hand written in a published book), it will have a negative impact on learners' perceptions of the L1 (Edwards & Walker, 1996;Sneddon, 2009). Unfortunately, little empirical research has been conducted into post-secondary-level learners' perceptions of dual-language materials. ...
Article
Despite recent recognition of the value of the L1 in the L2 classroom, a previous tacit ban on L1 use has led to limited investigation of questions such as whether translated versions of texts can aid L2 learners’ L2 reading and, if so, what type of translation might be most helpful for them. Accordingly, this study investigated the effect of exposure to two different types of text translations on EFL learners’ reading comprehension and which translation version they preferred. Using a within-subjects design, participants read an L1 only, parallel translation and interlinear translation versions of the same text at the beginning, middle and conclusion of the semester. Participants also completed a reading comprehension assessment with each version and indicated which text type they preferred. Results showed that learners largely comprehended the L1 only version better than either the parallel or interlinear translated versions. Lower level learners in particular experienced difficulty understanding texts with parallel translations more than the interlinear translated text. Somewhat in contrast with previous research findings, learners had no clear preference for either translated text type.
... Along with these benefits of using dual-language texts in the L2 classroom is also the danger that access to full translations can become a crutch for unmotivated learners that ultimately impedes their long-term L2 development (Li, 2018). Edwards and Walker (1996) add that teachers need to be being mindful of differences in the formality of language used or the quality of the materials across translations that can give the learner the wrong impression of one language is better than the other. Likewise, teachers need to carefully consider several other features of the bilingual books they use such as their design, layout of the translations, and production quality (Ernst-Slavit & Mulhern, 2003). ...
... Of course, community influence and the attractiveness of the bilingual materials' have a major influence on learners' perceptions of those materials. If the learners'community denigrates the dual-language materials or if the materials themselves appear to be of low quality, learners will usually view them less favorably (Edwards & Walker, 1996;Sneddon, 2009). ...
Article
Murphy Odo, Dennis. (2021). A comparison of interlinear and parallel translated texts as scaffolds for L2 reading comprehension. Studies in Foreign Language Education, 35(2), 1-19. This research investigates the use of dual-language texts to scaffold second language reading comprehension. These texts hold out the promise of allowing L2 learners to read and enjoy the kinds of materials that are complex and entertaining enough to make them motivated to read more in the target language. A sample of 38 Korean university students participated in the study. A within-subjects quasi-experimental design was used to compare participants' reading performance with access to parallel and interlinear translation versions of the same text. They also indicated which translation type they favored and provided reasons for their preference. Findings were that learners comprehended the two translations at roughly the same level. They felt that the parallel passage was more difficult but they did not look up more words in one text or the other. They did not favor either translation type over the other regardless of their L2 reading proficiency. These results suggest that parallel and interlinear translations are comparable in their comprehensibility and even though learners perceive the parallel passage as being more difficult learners do not prefer one type over the other and they were able identify several advantages and disadvantages for each.
... As Edwards and Walker (1996) as paired reading or book talks could also help them to see the value of using the TL as they read (Sneddon, 2009). Similarly, the teacher could model interacting with these texts through class read alouds. ...
... There are obvious difficulties with initiatives of this kind: parents may feel insecure about both their literacy and computing skills; teachers may fail to recognise that translation is a highly skilled activity and have unrealistic expectations of bilingual parents and children (Edwards & Walker, 1996). Nonetheless, the introduction of word processing in another language encourages teachers to see the multilingual skills of members of minority communities both as a resource for curriculum development and as a means of involving parents in school activities. ...
Article
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This article charts some of the issues which emerged when an Urdu word processing package was introduced into an urban primary school in southern England. Drawing on observation and interviews with teachers, parents and children over a period of 15 months, it maps teachers' initial expectations and what was actually achieved. Benefits for bilingual children included the development of literacy skills in Urdu and enhanced status in the eyes of monolingual peers. Monolingual peers, in turn, showed an unprecedented interest in learning to speak, read and write Urdu. The project allowed teachers to take stock of current use of multilingual resources, as well as computers within the classroom. It also challenged commonly held assumptions: teachers were surprised to find that many more mothers than they expected are literate in Urdu, that initial computer‐phobia can be quickly overcome and that the level of parental involvement in school can be significantly raised. Multilingual word processing offers an opportunity for parents to take a more active role in supporting their children's school learning. There are also benefits for individual parents in the form of training opportunities and access to school facilities for personal and community uses.
Article
Cet article est basé sur ma these de maîtrise, dans lequelle j’ai entrepris une recherche centrée sur les phénomènes de domestication et de transformation étrangère en traduction. Le premièr peut-être considéré une violence ethnocenturique à l’égard du text étrangèr alors que le second va dans le sens d’une pression ethnodéviante envers les valeures culturelles de la langue destinante (Venuti 1995) et constitue une tendance prépondérante au sein de la culture de traduction contemporaine (Pym 1996). Dans le but de verifier la validité de ces tendences en traduction, cet article se concentrera sur l’etude d’un extrait de l’oeuvre de Lewis Carroll Alice au pays des merveilles, ainsi que de sa traduction à la fois en espagnol et en japonais.
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As a branch of multicultural literature, bilingual children’s picture books present a special opportunity for readers to expand their horizons and knowledge of other cultures. The researchers took a closer look at the text quality of 31 English/Chinese bilingual children’s picture books. These bilingual books were examined on the aspects of the English text’s quality, the Chinese text’s quality, and the correspondence between the English text and the Chinese text. The findings suggested that while the English text had no obvious issues, the Chinese text lacked quality. In addition, the researchers noticed that the Chinese text appeared subordinate when comparing the two texts.
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This paper explores the potential for creating online environments for bilingual communities in which minority-language use is supported and actively encouraged. It discusses the language behaviour and attitudes of Welsh–English bilingual users in Pen i Ben, a pilot online community of practice for Head Teachers in Wales. The patterns of language use and the functional roles served by the languages are described. Despite the creation of a bilingual environment and the implementation of specific strategies to encourage Welsh use, the trend indicates increasing use of English. However, it is suggested that a wider set of supporting strategies might be successful in maintaining a truly bilingual online community.
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Full-text available
This article is a response to Grace Feuerverger's contribution in the current issue of Language and Education which describes a multicultural literacy intervention for minority students in Toronto. Whereas the use of multilingual resources is a recent phenomenon in Canada, British schools have been using such materials for over a decade. While agreeing with Grace Feuerverger that they have the potential to empower students and bring about change, we argue diat their uncritical use is unlikely to result in significant improvement. We outline a range of problems around the production and use of multilingual resources, drawing on the conventional wisdom accumulated by teachers over the last ten years and on the early work of the ‘Multilingual Resources for Children’ project which we currently co‐direct. Finally, we point to economic and political reasons for international co‐operation in this area.
Book
Building bridges extends the debate on resources in multilingual classrooms in new directions. It focuses on the languages other than English that are most commonly spoken by British school children– Bengali, Chinese, Gujarati, Panjabi and Urdu; and it looks at ways in which decisions about language, typography, production and design affect both readability and status.
Book
Multilingualism in the English-Speaking World: Pedigree of Nations explores the consequences of English as a global language and multilingualism as a social phenomenon. Written accessibly, it explores the extent of diversity in ‘inner circle’ English speaking countries (the UK, the USA, Canada, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand) and examines language in the home, school, and the wider community. *Considers the perspectives of English as a global language as well as multilingualism as a social phenomenon. * Written in an accessible style that draws on contemporary real life examples. * Examines the everyday realities of people living in 'inner circle' English-speaking countries, such as the UK, USA, Canada, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. * Discusses the theoretical issues that underpin current debates, drawing on research literature on societal multilingualism, language maintenance and shift, language policy, language and power, and language and identity.
Selection criteria for dual language books. Children's Book Foundation Spring Newsletter
  • R Bell
Bell, R. (1991) Translation and Translating: Theory and Practice. Harlow: Longman. Chatterji, M. (1991) Selection criteria for dual language books. Children's Book Foundation Spring Newsletter 3-4.
Mother Tongue Maintenance: A Survey of Part-time Chinese Language Classes
  • M Tsow
Tsow, M. (1984) Mother Tongue Maintenance: A Survey of Part-time Chinese Language Classes. London: CRE.
Amar's Last Wish Gujarati translation by Pragna Thaker. London: Magi. Anon. (1984) Bibi and the Little Bird Prince Cinders. Panjabi translation by Jaspal Singh Grewal A Wet Dinner-time
  • London
London: CRE. Children's books referred to in the text Akhtar, Parvez (1985) Amar's Last Wish. Gujarati translation by Pragna Thaker. London: Magi. Anon. (1984) Bibi and the Little Bird. Hong Kong: Arts Publishing Co. Cole, Anne (1986) Soma Goes to Market. New Malden, Surrey: Suhada Press. Cole, Babette (1993) Prince Cinders. Panjabi translation by Jaspal Singh Grewal. London: Magi Publications. Fletcher, Audrey (1989) A Wet Dinner-time. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press and Jenny Ingham Associates.
The Spot books The Fox and the Crane (Gujarati translation by Kanta Gomez) Hounslow: Hounslow Community Language Service After Dark. London: Magi. Status Issues i n the Translation of Children's Books Pirotta, S. (1991) Do You Believe in Magic? (Chinese translation by Sylvia Denham)
  • Hill
  • Eric
Hill, Eric. The Spot books. Dual language versions published by Roy Yates Books. Hounslow Bilingual Support Project (1990) The Fox and the Crane (Gujarati translation by Kanta Gomez). Hounslow: Hounslow Community Language Service. Martinez i Vendrell, Maria and Capdevila, Roser (1989) After Dark. London: Magi. Status Issues i n the Translation of Children's Books Pirotta, S. (1991) Do You Believe in Magic? (Chinese translation by Sylvia Denham). London: Mantra Publishing Ltd.