1st Edition

Fuzzy Language in Literature and Translation

By Lu SHAO Copyright 2023
    196 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Bringing a fuzzy logic-based approach into translation studies and drawing on the theory of information entropy, this book discusses the translation of fuzzy language in literary works and advances a new method of measuring text fuzziness between translation and source text.

    Based on illustrative examples from the popular novel The Da Vinci Code and its two translated Chinese versions, the study demonstrates the fuzziness measuring method through an algorithmic process. More specifically, information entropy is applied to measure the uncertainty associated with readers’ understanding of the original and its corresponding target texts. The underlying hypothesis is that the probability distribution in which readers will understand identified fuzzy discourse is measurable. By further explicating the validity of the hypothesis, it seeks to solve translational “fuzzy” problems in the translation process and offers an alternative, novel approach to the study of “fuzzy” literary texts and their translation. Hopefully, the argument of the book that the intrinsic uncertainty of fuzzy language can be evaluated through Shannon’s information entropy will open up a new avenue to the quantitative description of the fuzziness of language and translation.

    This book will be of interest to scholars and students in translation studies, applied linguistics, and literary criticism.

    1. Introduction  2. An Overview of the Evolution of Fuzzy Theories  3. Re-Thinking Translation in Light of Fuzziness Research  4. The Concept and Explication of the Law of Fuzziness in Translation Studies  5. Case Study under the Theoretical Framework of the Law of Fuzziness: A Comparative Analysis of The Da Vinci Code and Its Chinese Versions  6. From Case Study to Philosophical Thinking


    Lu SHAO is Professor of Translation Studies and Director of the Centre for Overseas China Studies at Sun Yat-sen University, China. Her research interests include literary translation and fuzzy language in literature and translation.

    “Fuzzy Language in Literature and Translation provides a novel perspective to translation studies through expounding how fuzzy properties in literature are interpreted. It applies the concept 'information entropy' to discuss related issues and opens up a new avenue for future research in literary translation.”

    Zhang Meifang, Professor, University of Macau, China

    "Translation is best seen as a creative art. Shao Lu draws upon inter-disciplinary principles related to fuzzy linguistics to reveal new approaches to translation theories and their practices. Through studies of The Da Vinci Code, she reveals how the law of fuzziness accounts for and enriches the art of translation."

    Lauren F. PfisterProfessor Emeritus, Hong Kong Baptist University, China and Rector, Hephzibah Mountain Aster Academy, Colorado, USA

    "Fuzziness as one of typical features in literary expression, brings enormous challenges to translators in their practice. From the perspective of product-oriented empirical research, and by applying fuzzy logic and fuzzy linguistics as its theoretical frame, Lu Shao's pioneering work investigated how the Chinese translators of The Da Vinci Code made every endeavor to process fuzziness in order to best present the artistic work to the target readers. It showcased that such a complicated translation issue could still be carefully explored by a descriptive approach, and initiated a new research paradigm for literary translation."

    Binghan Zheng, Professor, Durham University, UK