Bridging boundaries between systemic functional linguistics and translation studies

An interview with Erich Steiner (Part II)

Authors

  • Erich Steiner Saarland University
  • Bo Wang Sun Yat-sen University
  • Christian M.I.M. Matthiessen The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
  • Yuanyi Ma Guangdong Polytechnic of Science and Technology

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1558/lhs.19337

Keywords:

systemic functional linguistics, translation studies, functionalist theory, tools for translation, language teaching

Abstract

Erich Steiner, as a leading scholar in systemic functional linguistics (SFL), has been involved in various important strands of research on SFL and translation. This transcript is based on the second part of the interview during his visit to Hong Kong. We continue to discuss the application of SFL to translation, covering topics like SFL and other functionalist theories of translation, the tools for translation contributed by functionally-oriented work, and translation as a method for language teaching. In addition, Steiner summarizes the contributions of SFL to translation, and introduces some possibilities for future research.

Author Biographies

Erich Steiner, Saarland University

Erich Steiner is professor (emeritus from April 2020 onwards) in the Department of Language Science and Technology, Saarland University, Germany. He is a leading scholar in systemic functional linguistics (SFL), and is known for his works on translation studies, register studies as well as language description and comparison.

Bo Wang, Sun Yat-sen University

Bo Wang received his doctoral degree from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University and is currently Associate Research Fellow from School of International Studies, Sun Yat-sen University. He is also an active member of the PolySystemic Research Group. His research interests include systemic functional linguistics, translation studies, discourse analysis, and language description.

Christian M.I.M. Matthiessen, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Christian M.I.M. Matthiessen is Chair Professor of the Department of English, the Faculty of Humanities, at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, where he is a member of the PolySystemic Research Group. He has degrees in linguistics from Lund University (BA) where he also studied Arabic and philosophy, and from University of California, Los Angeles (MA, Ph.D.), and has previously held positions at Sydney University and Macquarie University.

Yuanyi Ma, Guangdong Polytechnic of Science and Technology

Yuanyi Ma received her doctoral degree from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She is currently Lecturer at the School of International Cooperation, Guangdong Polytechnic of Science and Technology. She is a member of the PolySystemic Research Group, and her research interests include systemic functional linguistics, translation studies, discourse analysis, and language description.

References

Alves, F., Pagano, A., Neumann, S., Steiner, E., and Hansen-Schirra, S. (2010). Translation units and grammatical shifts: Towards an integration of product- and process-based research. In G. Shreve and E. Angelone (Eds) Translation and cognition, 109–142. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/ata.xv.07alv

Baker, M. (1992). In other words: A coursebook on translation. London and New York: Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203133590

Bell, R. (1991). Translation and translating: Theory and practice. London and New York: Longman.

Bernstein, B. (1971). Class, codes, and control (Volume 1): Theoretical studies towards a sociology of language. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

Bernstein, B. (Ed) (1973). Class, codes, and control (Volume 2): Applied studies towards a sociology of language. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

Billiani, F. (Ed) (2007). Modes of censorship and translation: National contexts and diverse media. Manchester: St Jerome.

Bourdieu, P. (1984). Distinction: A social critique of the judgement of taste (R. Nice, Trans.). London: Routledge.

Bühler, K. (1934). Sprachtheorie: Die Darstellungsfunktion der Sprache. Stuttgart: Gustav Fischer.

Byrnes, H. (2009). Systemic-functional reflections on instructed foreign language acquisition as meaning-making: An introduction. Linguistics and education 20: 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.linged.2009.01.002

Byrnes, H. (2013). Systemic functional linguistics in the round: Imagining foreign language education for a global world. In Y. Fang and J. J. Webster (Eds) Developing systemic functional linguistics: Theory and application, 322–343. London: Equinox.

Catford, J. C. (1965). A linguistic theory of translation. London: Oxford University Press.

de Souza, L. M. F. (2010). Interlingual re-instantiation: A model for a new and more comprehensive systemic functional perspective on translation. Ph.D. thesis, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Floriano?polis, Brazil.

de Souza, L. M. F. (2013). Interlingual re-instantiation: A new systemic functional perspective on translation. Text & talk 33(4–5): 575–594. https://doi.org/10.1515/text-2013-0026

Dik, S. C. (1997a). Hengeveld, K. (Ed.) The theory of functional grammar: Part 1, Structure of the clause. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

Dik, S. C. (1997b). Hengeveld, K. (Ed.) The theory of functional grammar: Part 2, Complex and derived constructions. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110218374

Firth, J. R. (1957). Ethnographic analysis and language with reference to Malinowski’s views. In R. W. Firth (Ed) Man and culture: An evaluation of the work of Bronislaw Malinowski, 93–118. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul. Reprinted in J. R. Firth (1968). F. R. Palmer (Ed) Selected papers of J. R. Firth 1952–59, 137–167. London and Harlow: Longmans.

Firth, J. R. (1968a). Linguistic analysis and translation. In F. R. Palmer (Ed.) Selected papers of J. R. Firth 1952–59, 74–83. London and Harlow: Longmans.

Firth, J. R. (1968b). Linguistics and translation. In F. R. Palmer (Ed.) Selected papers of J. R. Firth 1952–59, 84–95. London and Harlow: Longmans.

Fontaine, L., Bartlett, T., and O’Grady, G. (Eds) (2014). Systemic functional linguistics: Exploring choice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139583077

Halliday, M. A. K. (1956). The linguistic basis of a mechanical thesaurus, and its application to English preposition classification. Mechanical translation 3: 81–88. Reprinted in M. A. K. Halliday (2005). J. J. Webster (Ed.) Computational and quantitative studies. Volume 6 in the Collected works of M. A. K. Halliday, 6–19. London and New York: Continuum.

Halliday, M. A. K. (1962). Linguistics and machine translation. Zeitschrift für Phonetik, Sprachwissenschaft und Kommunikationsforschung 15: 145–158. Reprinted in M. A. K. Halliday (2005). J. J. Webster (Ed) Computational and quantitative studies. Volume 6 in the Collected works of M. A. K. Halliday, 20–36. London and New York: Continuum.

Halliday, M. A. K. (1967). Grammar, society and the noun. London: H. K. Lewis (for University College London). Reprinted in M. A. K. Halliday (2003). J. J. Webster (Ed.) On language and linguistics. Volume 3 in the Collected works of M. A. K. Halliday, 50–73. London and New York: Continuum.

Halliday, M. A. K. (1984). Grammatical metaphor in English and Chinese. In B. Hong (Ed.) New papers in Chinese language use, 9–18. Canberra: Contemporary China Centre, Australian National University.

Halliday, M. A. K., and Hasan, R. (1976). Cohesion in English. London: Longman.

Halliday, M. A. K., and Hasan, R. (1985). Language, context and text: A social semiotic perspective. Victoria: Deakin University Press.

Halliday, M. A. K., McIntosh, A., and Strevens, P. (1964). The Linguistic sciences and language teaching. London: Longman.

Halliday M. A. K., and Matthiessen C. M. I. M. (1999). Construing experience through meaning: A language-based approach to cognition. London: Continuum (new edition 2006).

Hansen-Schirra, S., Neumann, S., and Steiner, E. (2012). Cross-linguistic corpora for the study of translations: Insights from the language pair English-German. Berlin and New York: Mouton de Gruyter. https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110260328

Hasan, R. (1999). Speaking with reference to context. In M. Ghadessy (Ed) Text and context in functional linguistics, 219–328. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/cilt.169.11has

Hasan, R. (2016). J. J. Webster (Ed) Context in the system and process of language: The collected works of Ruqaiya Hasan (Volume 4). Sheffield: Equinox.

Hatim, B., and Mason, I. (1990). Discourse and the translator. London: Routledge.

Heilmann, A., Serbina, T., Couto, D., and Neumann, S. (2019). Shorter than a text, longer than a sentence: Source text length for ecologically valid translation experiments. Target 31(1): 98–124. https://doi.org/10.1075/target.17122.hei

Holmes, J. S. (1988). Translated! Papers on literary translation and translation studies. Amsterdam: Rodopi.

House, J. (1977). A model for translation quality assessment. Tübingen: Gunter Narr.

House, J. (1997). Translation quality assessment: A model revisited. Tübingen: Gunter Narr.

House, J. (2015). Translation quality assessment: Past, present and future. Abingdon and New York: Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315752839

Jakobson, R. (1959). On linguistic aspects of translation. In R. A. Brower (Ed) On translation, 232–239. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. https://doi.org/10.4159/harvard.9780674731615.c18

Kunz, K., Degaetano-Ortlieb, S., Lapshinova-Koltunski, E., Menzel, K., and Steiner, E. (2017). English-German contrasts in cohesion and implications for translation. In G. de Sutter, M. Lefer and I. Delaere (Eds) Empirical translation studies: New methodological and theoretical traditions, 265–311. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110459586-010

Malinowski, B. (1923). The problem of meaning in primitive languages. In C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards (Eds) The Meaning of meaning, 1–84. London: Kegan Paul.

Malinowski, B. (1935). Coral gardens and their magic: A study of the methods of tilling the soil and of agricultural rites in the Trobriand Islands: Volume 2: The language of magic and gardening. New York: American Book Company.

Martin, J. R. (2008a). Tenderness: Realisation and instantiation in a Botswanan town. In N. Nørgaard (Ed.) Systemic functional linguistics in use, 30–62. Odense: Odense working papers in language and communication 29.

Martin, J. R. (2008b). Innocence: Realisation, instantiation and individuation in a Botswanan town. In N. Knight and A. Mahboob (Eds) Questioning linguistics, 27–54. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Martin, J. R. (2009). Realisation, instantiation and individuation: Some thoughts on identity in youth justice conferencing. D.E.L.T.A. 25: 549–583. https://doi.org/10.1590/S0102-44502009000300002

Matthiessen, C. M. I. M. (2001). The environments of translation. In E. Steiner and C. Yallop (Eds) Exploring translation and multilingual text production: Beyond content, 41–124. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

Matthiessen, C. M. I. M. (2004). Descriptive motifs and generalizations. In A. Caffarel, J. R. Martin and C. M. I. M. Matthiessen (Eds) Language typology: A functional perspective, 537–674. Amsterdam: John Benjamin. https://doi.org/10.1075/cilt.253.12mat

Matthiessen, C. M. I. M. (2014). Choice in translation: Metafunctional considerations. In K. Kunz, E. Teich, S. Hansen-Schirra, S. Neumann and Peggy Daut (Eds) Caught in the middle – Language use and translation: A festschrift for Erich Steiner on the occasion of his 60th birthday, 271–333. Saarbrücken: Saarland University Press.

Matthiessen, C. M. I. M., Wang, B., and Ma, Y. (2018). Interview with Christian M. I. M. Matthiessen: On translation studies (part III). Linguistics and the human sciences 14(1): 94–106. https://doi.org/10.1558/lhs.37424

Munday, J. (2012). Evaluation in translation: Critical points of translator decision-making. Abingdon and New York: Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203117743

Newmark, P. (1987). The use of systemic linguistics in translation analysis and criticism. In R. Steele and T. Threadgold (Eds) Language topics: Essays in honour of Michael Halliday (Vol. 1), 293–303. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/z.lt1.27new

Newmark, P. (1988). A textbook of translation. Oxford and New York: Prentice Hall.

Newmark, P. (1991). About translation. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.

Nida, E. (1964). Towards a science of translation: With special reference to principles and procedures involved in Bible translating. Leiden: Brill.

Nida, E. A., and Taber, C. R. (1969). The theory and practice of translation. Leiden: Brill. https://doi.org/10.2307/411434

Nord, C. (1991). Text analysis in translation. Amsterdam and Atlanta: Rodopi.

Nord, C. (1997). Translating as a purposeful activity: Functionalist approaches explained. Manchester: St Jerome.

Reiss, K. (1971). Translation criticism – the potential and limitations: Categories and criteria for translation quality assessment (E. F. Rhodes, Trans.). Manchester: St. Jerome.

Reiss, K., and Vermeer, H. J. (1984). Grundlegung einer allgemeinen Translationstheorie. Tübingen: Niemeyer. https://doi.org/10.1515/9783111351919

Seruya, T., and Moniz, M. L. (Eds) (2008). Translation and censorship in different times and landscapes. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Steiner, E. (1983). Die Entwicklung des Britischen Kontextualismus. Heidelberg: Groos.

Steiner, E. (2004). Translated texts: Properties, variants, evaluations. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang.

Steiner, E. (2005). Halliday and translation theory – enhancing the options, broadening the range, and keeping the ground. In R. Hasan, C. M. I. M. Matthiessen and J. J. Webster (Eds) Continuing discourse on language: A functional perspective (Volume 1), 481–500. London: Equinox.

Steiner, E. (2015a). Halliday’s contribution to a theory of translation. In J. J. Webster (Ed.) The Bloomsbury companion to M. A. K. Halliday, 412–426. London and New York: Bloomsbury.

Steiner, E. (2015b). Choice as a category of human activity – and some of its contextual constraints. Linguistics and the human sciences 11(2–3): 158–177. https://doi.org/10.1558/lhs.33903

Steiner, E. (2017). The role of understanding in linguistic perspectives on translation: Some thoughts on a philosophical debate about belief and knowledge. In L. Cercel, M. Agnetta and M. T. A. Lozano (Eds) Kreativität und Hermeneutik in der Translation, 359–384. Tübingen: Gunter Narr Verlag.

Steiner, E. (2019). Theorizing and modelling translation. In G. Thompson, W. L. Bowcher, L. Fontaine and D. Scho?nthal (Eds) The Cambridge handbook of systemic functional linguistics, 739–766. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/9781316337936.030

Steiner, E. (forthcoming). Textual instantiation, the notion of ‘readings of texts’, and translational agency. In M. Kim, J. Munday, P. Wang and Z. Wang (Eds) Systemic functional linguistics in translation studies. London: Bloomsbury.

Steiner, E., and Yallop, C. (Eds) (2001). Exploring translation and multilingual text production: Beyond content. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110866193

Steiner, E., Wang, B., Matthiessen, C. M. I. M., and Ma, Y. (2019). Bridging boundaries between systemic functional linguistics and translation studies: An interview with Erich Steiner (part I). Linguistics and the human sciences 14(3): 1–18. https://doi.org/10.1558/lhs.40024

Toury, G. (1980). In search of a theory of translation. Tel Aviv: The Porter Institute.

Toury, G. (1985). A rationale for descriptive translation studies. In T. Hermans (Ed.) The manipulation of literature, 23–39. New York: St. Martin’s Press.

Toury, G. (1995). Descriptive translation studies and beyond. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/btl.4

Toury, G. (2004). Probabilistic explanations in translation studies: Welcome as they are, would they qualify as universals? In A. Mauranen and P. Kujamäki (Eds) Translation universals: Do they exist?, 15–32. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/btl.48.03tou

Vinay, J. P., and Darbelnet. J. (1958). Stylistique compare du francais et de l’anglais. Paris: Les Éditions Didier.

Wilss, W. (1982). The science of translation. Problems and methods. Tübingen: Gunter Narr (German original in 1977).

Wong, M. (2018). Censorship and translation in mainland China: General practice and a case study. In C. Shei and Z. Gao (Eds) The Routledge handbook of Chinese translation, 221–243. Abingdon & New York: Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315675725-13

Published

2021-03-26

How to Cite

Steiner, E., Wang, B., Matthiessen, C. M., & Ma, Y. (2021). Bridging boundaries between systemic functional linguistics and translation studies: An interview with Erich Steiner (Part II). Linguistics and the Human Sciences, 14(3), 218–236. https://doi.org/10.1558/lhs.19337

Issue

Section

Articles