Toward a Cognitive Taxonomy for Explicitating Shifts in Translation

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Linguistics, University of Tehran

2 Professor, Department of Linguistics, University of Tehran

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Dramotic Art University of Tehran


In this paper, we attempt to present an alternative approach to the concept of translational explicitaion. First, we shortly evaluate the validity of a fundamental presupposition widespread in explicitation research according to which, if converting A to B is an instance of explicitation, then converting B to A cannot have an explicitating effect. Then we introduce explicitation in translation as a pragmatic decision made by the translator to reduce processual effort on the part of target language audience and to provide an easier and faster access to the “meaning” of the text. Then, within the framework of construal operations (Croft Cruse, 2004), we propose a new taxonomy of explicitational mechanisms. These mechanisms change the way in which a construal operation is applied in source text and bring about construals in the target text which provide easier access to what the translator construes as the gist of the usage-event. All four construal operations, i.e., attention, judgment, perspective and constitution can be the locus of these explicitating mechanisms.


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Volume 9, Issue 2
January 2019
Pages 129-150
  • Receive Date: 30 January 2018
  • Revise Date: 11 March 2018
  • Accept Date: 14 April 2018
  • First Publish Date: 22 December 2018