The Translation of Compliments in Spoken Jordanian Arabic into English

Mohd Nour Al Salem, Essa Salem


This paper examines the difficulties involved in translating culture-bound compliments from spoken Jordanian Arabic into English in different cultural interactions. The study specifically looks into a number of compliments in Arabic and discusses their translation into English. To achieve this goal, a test was designed by the researchers to examine the translation of 10 compliments that are not familiar to the English language and culture, and these translations were examined with the help of a few native English-speaking colleagues to check their acceptability in stylistic terms. The sample of subjects included 20 female BA students at the University of Jordan; all of them are in their third year. The findings reveal that the participants adopted the techniques of literal translation, paraphrase, addition, and omission when translating culture-bound compliments. They also encountered difficulties relating to grammar, lexical choice, and collocation.

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