"Foreignization/Domestication and Yihua/Guihua:
A Contrastive Study
by He Xianbin
Guangdong Polytechnic Normal University, China
Domesticationand foreignization are the terms brought up by an American scholar L. Venuti to describe the two different translation strategies. The former refers to translation in which a transparent, fluent styleis adopted in order to minimize the strangeness of the foreign text for target language readers, while the latter designates the type of translation in which a target text deliberately breaks targetconventions by retaining something of the foreignness of the source text.
he debate over whether translation should be source- or target-oriented has recurred from Cicero to the 21st century and hasagain been a focus of discussions in China in the last decade. This paper attempts to make a comparison between 'foreignizing /domesticating' and yihua/guihua, the two most popular pairs of words fordescribing the translator's divided loyalties in English and Chinese.
1. Different sources for foreignizing/domesticating and yihua/ guihua
Currently, most Chinese scholars use foreignization/domestication as their English renditions for yihua/guihua. Does the Chinese debate originate with Venuti (1995)?
A historical review shows that Lu Xun used the term of guihua (assimilation ordomestication) in talking about translation as early as 1935. And the word yihua is already included in Dictionary of Modern Chinese published in 1978 and reprinted in 1991. This means that the two terms arenot recent loan words from the West. Then what's the English for yihua/guihua when they are used in Chinese translation discussions?
Our search in the three volumes of An Index to the Articles onForeign Language Studies (1949-1989), (1990-1994), (1995-1999) demonstrates that the first Chinese translation research paper with the word yihua in the title was Guo Jianzhong (1998)'s "Cultural...