Contemporary Foreign Languages Studies ›› 2023, Vol. 23 ›› Issue (3): 83-89.doi: 10.3969/j.issn.1674-8921.2023.03.010

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The Journey of a Text and Its Regression and Rebirth: The Nature and Value of the Back-Translation of Four Generations in One House

LI Meizhu1,2(), HU Anjiang1()   

  • Online:2023-06-23 Published:2023-07-31


With the discovery of Ida Pruitt’s English version, back-translation of Four Generations in One House has become a hot issue. In fact, its fake original and fake targets have gone through deformation and reduction respectively. The study points out that the purpose of back-translation determines its nature of reductionism, taking the author as the center and the original text as the ontology. Under the rule of seeking equivalence, translator’s subjectivity is faced with restrictions. However, the result is by no means the resurrection of the original base, but the original reborn with the translator’s interpretation in the new spatio-temporal context. It is for this reason that the special phenomenon embodies essential characteristics of anti-postmodern translation studies. Meanwhile, the appreciation, revival, and feedback of culture have been accomplished during the process of seeking original base through fake targets, with the help of fake original.

Key words: Four Generations in One House, Back-Translation, Afterlife, Anti-postmodern

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