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Web of Proceedings - Francis Academic Press

The Aesthetics of Translation

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DOI: 10.25236/ICHCAD.2019.003


Hui Zhang

Corresponding Author

Hui Zhang


With the rapid development of globalization, the relationships among nations are closer while communications become pretty important. To overcome barriers of language, translation is the key. The present study investigates whether translation studies especially principles would be strengthened or weakened when there is great diversity in it, and the significance of the study of translation aesthetics and its reference value for translation principles. Translation is a complex and fascinating activity which involves language and culture contact, etc. Even though translation varies in different culture, in different period, among which some are distinctive, it still can be discovered the universal patterns of translation sometimes. The uniqueness of different countries’ translation works may prompt mutual inspiration, mutual verification and correctives. No matter current trends in translation studies pay more attention to diversity, it’s constant that the functioning of language involves negotiating to arrive at understanding with and between languages. In other words, appropriateness on different occasions is of particular importance, which means contexts in translating play vital role. The real clues to meaning depend on contexts. Moreover, the aesthetics of translation could provide us with a poetic language and promote the communications. On basis of dealing with Lin Yutang’ s concept of “aesthetic translation” and his three principles of translation, namely, faithfulness, smoothness and beautifulness, this paper depicted that beautifulness can be a good solution to translation works in different contexts and not be weakened but strengthened. Besides, it explored the origin and development of translation aesthetics. Lin was the first Chinese translator to put a kind of aestheticism into practice and to provide us with a poetic language, especially in his work Six Chapter of a Floating Life.


Aesthetic translation; Lin Yutang; principles of translation; Six Chapter of a Floating Life