AWEJ Special Issue on Translation No. (2) 2013                                                           Pp. 224-232

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The Cultural Problems in Translating a Novel from Arabic to English Language
A Case Study: the Algerian Novel

Fatiha Guessabi
Faculté des lettres et science humaine
Département des langues – traduction
Université de Béchar. Algérie

A lot of translations of many novels are resulting in books different from the original. We see a plot begins to go in a different direction, and the main character is developing into a whole different person. When we say translating, some people thought it is a word for word, others say it is a creative work done without following the original text; and this work gives the target text a life of its own. But to describe the same thought in a different language seems to give it a whole different life that is richer and more creative. How can we translate novels correctly ? Word for word or meaning to meaning? How far can the translator go before we can call this translation an original? And can we? In this paper, we are going to investigate the translating of an Algerian Novel from Arabic language into English language. The focus of the study is twofold: What are the cultural problems the translator can face in his/her translation? How can he/she domesticate the target text? And is the foreignisation a solution in translation?
Keywords: Language, culture, cultural problems, translation, Algerian novel.


FATIHA GUESSABI is a teacher of English language at the University of Bechar in Algeria.
She holds an MA in translation, and she is preparing a PhD in Translation. Her areas of interest
include translation theory, teaching the English language for Arab students, culture and