Macquarie University
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Rendering of cultural references: a case study of the films 300 and Gladiator : a thesis in audiovisual translation

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posted on 2022-03-28, 09:17 authored by Hayyan Hamed A. Alrosan
Language and culture have always been two sides of the same coin. In the field of translation, many studies have been conducted to illustrate the complex relationship between language and culture, as they bond tightly together and are deemed inseparable. However, with the proliferation of advanced technology such as the Internet, mass media, DVDs and satellite channels, people have become more exposed to other cultures. Therefore, it has become evident that Audiovisual Translation (AVT) is essential to bridge the communication gap between cultures. Subtitling is one of the dominant modes of AVT in the Middle East, yet only a few studies have been conducted in this domain. The main aims of this thesis are to identify the most common cultural references that occur in two American feature films, namely 300 and Gladiator; to detect the most dominant translation strategies applied by subtitlers in rendering these cultural references from English into Arabic; to determine the orientation of translation towards foreignisation or domestication in terms of loyalty to the source or target culture; and to verify the main factors which motivated subtitlers to opt for a certain strategy over another. The findings indicate that source language (SL)-oriented translation strategies are most common, and borrowing and direct translation are the most used strategies among other translation strategies. The genre of period dramas, and in particular sword-and-sandal films, transculturality and co-text have been the chief factors in the decision to favour one strategy over another. Finally, the selection of solutions in tackling cultural references has not been motivated by agency, but has been left to the arbitrary choices of subtitlers.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Introduction -- Chapter 2. Review of related literature -- Chapter 3. Methodology and proposed translation strategies for cultural references -- Chapter 4. Data analysis, discussion and findings -- Chapter 5. Conclusions -- References.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 70-74

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Linguistics

Department, Centre or School

Department of Linguistics

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Jan-Louis Kruger


Copyright Hayyan Hamed A. Alrosan 2017. Copyright disclaimer:




1 online resource (xi, 74 pages)

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