The present paper aims to examine the translation of English focus structures into Arabic. The textual data is extracted from Gibran Khalil Gibran's The Prophet, being a good example of creative writing that may instantiate sufficient data of such structures. The extracted data (88 examples) feature four categories of focus structures: fronting (27), fronting plus subject-verb inversion (23), fronting plus subject-auxiliary inversion (28) and It-clefts (10). The findings show that English focus structures constitute a problematic area which requires a high degree of expertise on the translator's part. In addition to accounting for fronting as a major syntactic device for focusing a certain sentence constituent, which is successfully achieved in about two thirds of the examples, inversion and clefting as second-layer emphatic elements are largely missed in Arabic translation. The critical discussion of sample examples shows that such second-layer emphasis can be catered for by the use of both grammatical, e.g. pronouns or lexical, e.g adverbial emphatic markers, which can effectively support fronting and achieve a comparable degree of focus.
|Journal||International Journal of Arabic-English Studies|
|Publication status||Published - 01 Jan 2017|
- Arabic translation
- focus structures