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Poll: When translating, how often do you turn one sentence into two, or vice versa?
Trådens avsändare: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
WEBBPLATSPERSONAL
Jul 20

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "When translating, how often do you turn one sentence into two, or vice versa?".

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Alfredo Guerra Fidalgo
 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spanien
Local time: 14:39
Spanska till Engelska
+ ...
Sometimes Jul 20

Whenever I think it's necessary. The same as when I'm proofreading/correcting text for publication.

Teresa Borges
Liena Vijupe
Jocelyne Cuenin
expressisverbis
Philippe Etienne
Christine Andersen
Jennifer_D
 

Aisha Maniar  Identity Verified
Medlem
Arabiska till Engelska
+ ...
field and language Jul 20

I would say this is more a question of the field and language you translate into than style. As a legal translator, some of my source texts (in both my working languages) have sentences that are longer than a page, which is perfectly reasonable in those languages but not in English. Translation is after all more than just words and we have to consider all levels of text, such as punctuation. Thus I'm not sure what value the results of such a poll has or is intended to have.

Marta Szkodzińska
Irving Reyes
Jennifer White
writeaway
Rachel Waddington
Kaisa I
Alexandra Speirs
 

Sundar Gopalakrishnan
Indien
Local time: 19:09
Engelska till Tamil
+ ...
Never Jul 20

I never turn one sentence into two, or vice versa. I am always faithful to the sentence structure of the source texts. But other translators do such things. This means they are not competent.

 

Jennifer White  Identity Verified
Storbritannien
Local time: 13:39
Franska till Engelska
+ ...
"I'm not sure what value the results of such a poll has or is intended to have" Jul 20

Agree, but isn't that the case for most of the polls here? They just seem to give a platform to those who like to massage their own egos IMO

writeaway
Aisha Maniar
Elizabeth Tamblin
Josephine Cassar
Kaisa I
expressisverbis
neilmac
 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 13:39
Medlem (2007)
Engelska till Portugisiska
+ ...
Sometimes Jul 20

If I feel it flows better that way and in any case it’s much more usual for me to turn two sentences into one than the other way around as in Portuguese we tend to use longer sentences than English do. The same rarely happens when I’m translating from French, Spanish or Italian (my source languages) as they tend to use long sentences too…

Ian Keith Jones Williams
neilmac
Mariana Borio
Muriel Vasconcellos
Mario Freitas
Philip Lees
 

Sadek_A  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:39
Engelska till Arabiska
+ ...
2 into 1, 1 into 2 Jul 20

a sure recipe for omissions, mistranslations, twisted meanings, messed-up representations of source ideas and, ultimately, a substandard target content.

The concept could be good for hair products, but not for translation.

All the times I saw it while proofreading others, concerned translator was either incompetent or trying to pull a fast one on the client.


 

Elizabeth Tamblin  Identity Verified
Storbritannien
Local time: 13:39
Medlem (2012)
Franska till Engelska
Often Jul 20

The comma splice is frequently used in the French source texts I translate, so I either use a semicolon or turn it into two sentences.

neilmac
Sandra & Kenneth Grossman
 

Liena Vijupe  Identity Verified
Lettland
Local time: 15:39
Medlem (2014)
Franska till Lettiska
+ ...
talking about the benefit of the doubt Jul 20

Jennifer White wrote:

Agree, but isn't that the case for most of the polls here? They just seem to give a platform to those who like to massage their own egos IMO


Geez, people. Sometimes a question is just a question, simply ignore it if it's irrelevant or not interesting to you.

(I've never submitted a poll, I just find it ridiculous that almost every time somebody takes time to complain about it in the comments).


Kaisa I
Ian Keith Jones Williams
Teresa Borges
Chris S
Philippe Etienne
neilmac
Kevin Clayton, PhD
 

Ian Keith Jones Williams  Identity Verified
Spanien
Local time: 14:39
Medlem
Tyska till Engelska
+ ...
Just a bit of fun or useful information Jul 20

These polls can provide useful information or make you consider aspects of translation that you might not have thought about. Or it can just be a bit of fun. I don't think anyone is massaging their ego. I don't feel the need to have it massaged. You can choose to read the poll discussion or not.

Kaisa I
Teresa Borges
Chris S
Liena Vijupe
Barbara Cochran, MFA
Philippe Etienne
Christine Andersen
 

Kaisa I  Identity Verified
Kanada
Local time: 09:39
Engelska till Finska
+ ...


Posted via
ProZ.com Mobile


Agree with both Jul 20

Liena Vijupe wrote:

Jennifer White wrote:

Agree, but isn't that the case for most of the polls here? They just seem to give a platform to those who like to massage their own egos IMO


Geez, people. Sometimes a question is just a question, simply ignore it if it's irrelevant or not interesting to you.

(I've never submitted a poll, I just find it ridiculous that almost every time somebody takes time to complain about it in the comments).


I often fail to see the point of these polls but end up voting and seeing the results anyway, as I am curious. And that's all it is, a bit of entertainment.


Teresa Borges
Chris S
Liena Vijupe
Philippe Etienne
Alix Paupy
Christine Andersen
Paul van Zijll
 

Chris S  Identity Verified
Storbritannien
Svenska till Engelska
+ ...
Relevant poll... Jul 20

... because of the results.

I join and split sentences all the time.

I would argue that anyone who doesn’t isn’t doing their job properly as a translator.

But clearly the community in general doesn’t agree.

Is this because of Trados et al? Or has it always been that way?


Chiara Foppa Pedretti
Philippe Etienne
Alix Paupy
Giuliana Maltempo
Christine Andersen
Teresa Borges
neilmac
 

Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
USA
Local time: 09:39
Tyska till Engelska
Split, join, rearrange as needed Jul 20

Although the authors of the technical articles I edit or translate may be experts in their respective fields, their writing style is often on a secondary school level. Consequently, 60-word single-phrase paragraphs have to be broken down into more easily understood sentences, or 6-word fragments need to be joined with others to make a complete grammatical construction. I use a CAT tool, thus rearrangement is necessarily performed during a second pass through the document outside the confines of ... See more
Although the authors of the technical articles I edit or translate may be experts in their respective fields, their writing style is often on a secondary school level. Consequently, 60-word single-phrase paragraphs have to be broken down into more easily understood sentences, or 6-word fragments need to be joined with others to make a complete grammatical construction. I use a CAT tool, thus rearrangement is necessarily performed during a second pass through the document outside the confines of the tool which occurs in any event.Collapse


Chiara Foppa Pedretti
Philippe Etienne
Giuliana Maltempo
neilmac
Elizabeth Joy Pitt de Morales
Christine Andersen
Jaime Oriard
 

Barbara Cochran, MFA  Identity Verified
USA
Local time: 09:39
Spanska till Engelska
+ ...
It Depends Jul 20

If I happen to be translating a post-modern novel or memoir (and even if I were translating one from the 20th century), I think it's important to reflect, through the translation, the original author's stream of consciousness and not turn the sentence in question into two or more.

For the translation of other kinds of texts, however, such as history books, I have been known to do it.


Elizabeth Joy Pitt de Morales
Sundar Gopalakrishnan
gad
 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Danmark
Local time: 14:39
Medlem (2003)
Danska till Engelska
+ ...
It depends Jul 20

Sometimes a writer in the source text rambles on, linking sentences with ´and´ or ´but´ (og or men in Danish). After ´but´ has been used two or three times, I have to read the passage several times myself just to work out where the argument is going. It is far better style in English to divide the sentences up.

The Danish equivalent of ´however´ is a conjunction, and it often sounds clumsy to write ´but, however, ...´ There are several solutions, but one is
... See more
Sometimes a writer in the source text rambles on, linking sentences with ´and´ or ´but´ (og or men in Danish). After ´but´ has been used two or three times, I have to read the passage several times myself just to work out where the argument is going. It is far better style in English to divide the sentences up.

The Danish equivalent of ´however´ is a conjunction, and it often sounds clumsy to write ´but, however, ...´ There are several solutions, but one is simply to use a full stop, and start a new sentence with: However, ...

It is perfectly acceptable style in Danish to repeat the name of a person or a company at the start of a series of short sentences, but this does not always work well in English. I regularly join two sentences with a relative pronoun instead of repeating the name.

I may join or break up sentences for other reasons too.

My motto is ´translating the message, not just the words´. To me, that means writing good, natural English, so that the reader is not distracted by source-language style. That is one difference between a human translator and machine translation.

And of course, I use a CAT tool that allows me to split or join sentences as needed!


[Edited at 2020-07-20 16:55 GMT]
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Michele Fauble
Philip Lees
Rachel Waddington
Edwin den Boer
Kay Denney
 
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