Wie und warum der Kitt gekaut wird
Überlegungen zur Kulturgebundenheit zweier Ausdrücke
Keywords:translation, literary translation, culture, culture-specific, culture-bound, movie adaptation, translatability, translation difficulty, connotation, cultural embedding, figurative sense, literal sense
The novel by Ferenc Molnár, one of the most important Hungarian writers and journalists, "A Pál utcai fiúk" was first published in 1906 and has been one of the most widely read and popular novels in Hungary ever since. Since the work is compulsory reading in elementary school, students are familiar with the words used at the turn of the century, such as grund, einstand and gittegylet. The terms gittegylet (literally translatable as 'putty club') as well as rágja a gittet (with the former meaning: 'to chew the putty'), which will be investigated in this paper, are still used today, but in a figurative rather than a literal sense.
The book has been translated into numerous languages (and filmed seven times) with great success. However, there were certain circumstances that had to be considered during the translation, including the fact that the meaning of the two terms has changed since then, even in Hungarian. Fortunately, since the word putty is used in German not only in its literal meaning but also in its abstract meaning, it does not require too much explanation for the target language readers. The paper sets itself the goal, on the one hand, to present the cultural embedding of two culture-specific elements in the source language, and, on the other hand, to investigate the ways in which this cultural embedding can be brought closer to the readers of the target language.