1st Edition

Intertextuality in the English Translations of San Guo Yan Yi

By Wenqing Peng Copyright 2022
    202 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    San Guo Yan Yi is one of the best-known classic Chinese novels in the English-speaking world. The earliest English translation came out in 1820, while a range of further translations have been produced over the past two hundred years. How do the different versions relate to each other?

    This volume examines the intertextual relations between the English translations of San Guo Yan Yi. Intertextuality refers to the interdependence of texts in relation to one another. Focusing on the perspectives of impact, quotation, parallels and transformation, the author compares a range of the translated versions, including two full-length translations and over twenty excerpted renderings and partial adaptations since the 1820s. She discovers that excerpted translations are selected to fit the translators’ own narrations, and are adapted to many genres, such as poetry, drama, fairytales, and textbooks. Moreover, the original text, translated texts and other related English works are interconnected in one large network, for which intertextuality offers an ideal basis for research.

    Students and scholars of Chinese literature and translation studies will benefit from this book.

    1. Introduction. 2. Impact: Tenuous and implicit relations 3. Quotation: Direct and explicit relations 4. Parallel: Symmetrical and analogous relations 5. Transformation: Remoulding genres and characters 6. Conclusion.


    Wenqing Peng is Associate Professor at Soochow University, China. Her research interest is the translation of ancient Chinese literature into English.