East European Journal of Psycholinguistics               ISSN 2313-2116 
Home » Journal papers » Volume 3, Number 2, 2016 » Zasiekin, S., Zasiekina, D.

Gender Cognitive and Behavioral Asymmetry in Translating
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Abstract. The present paper outlines results of a psycholinguistic study of gender cognitive and behavioral tendencies reflected in a specially compiled bilingual corpus of translated and original texts of fiction.  The authors attempt to show how gender can affect translator’s choices in English - Ukrainian literary translation.  A special focus is on S-universals (Chesterman, 2011), since their study gives a direct access to translators' mental operations. Explication, simplification on the lexical and syntactic levels, the use of more frequent lexis in the target texts, lack of repetitions, avoidance of culture-bound terms, standardizing, and convergence belong to a group of  the main gender-dependent translation S-universals. Among the most typical findings of the research are women’s better flexibility in the translation viewed as a metacognitive universal of their “global” thinking, i.e. a synthetic cognitive style. Female translators have shown higher indices of target text lexical density, explicitation and nominalization. By contrast, male translators tend to avoid nominalizations, being more accurate when reproducing certain source text units, thereby opting for a semantic method (Newmark, 1988) of translation. This universal strategy manifests their analytical cognitive style. When  translating  the status-asymmetrical conversations in the source text, where fictional characters perform socially marked or blurred roles, men aim at retaining negative politeness in their target language versions.   . 

Key words: gender, male translator, female translator, cognitive and behavioral asymmetry, psycholinguistics, translation universal.

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