Ibadan Journal of Humanistic Studies

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Translation Strategies of Proverbs in Selected Yoruba Nollywood Epic Movies

Habibat Fayoke Yusuf, Tayo Lamidi


Translation converts a text semantically, culturally and pragmatically from a language into another. In translating a text, translators face hurdles when confronted with culture-bound expressions such as proverbs, idioms, incantations and riddles in a source language. In subtitle ofYoruba Nollywood epic movies, proverbs are often mistranslated into English and the ideas in the source text are misrepresented in the target text due to cultural differences, thus defeating the aim of the translation. This study, therefore, investigates the strategies employed in translating proverbs in selected Yoruba Nollywood epic movies, to determine their appropriateness in such translations. The study adopts Vermeer's Skopos theory as theoretical framework due to its focus on the purpose, adequacy and function of translation. Twenty-three proverbs that were likely to give the most information required for the study were purposively selected, from twelve randomly sampled Yoruba epic movies. The findings reveal that the translators employed literal translation, modulation, transposition, paraphrasing, and cultural substitution in translating the proverbs in the movies.

Keywords: Skopos theory, translation strategies, Yoruba Nollywood movies, proverbs, fidelity.

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