Lexical and Paratextual Differences in Self-Retranslation

A Case Study of Saleh Hosseini’s Works

  • Farzaneh Farahzad Allameh Tabataba’i University
  • Sajjad Tahmasbi Boveiri Allameh Tabataba’i University
Keywords: Retranslation, Berman’s retranslation hypothesis, self-retranslation


Based on Berman’s retranslation hypothesis, the present article aimed at detecting and explaining the differences between the first and second Persian translations of two English novels (Nineteen Eighty-Four and Lord Jim) by the same Persian translator (Saleh Hosseini) over a decade at lexical and paratextual levels. To this end, first the translations and retranslations were compared with each other and both were compared with the source texts. Then, an interview was conducted with the translator in a bid to triangulate the data. The results indicated that the self-retranslations went through substantial changes at both levels. The results demonstrated that both self-retranslations were more target language oriented. Therefore, the results were in contradiction with Berman’s retranslation hypothesis which holds that retranslations are closer to the source texts than first translations. In fact, self-retranslations were found to be more natural, hence more target language oriented, explained by the translator as a result of a new understanding of the source texts intended meaning, target language and target reader. However, the contradiction might be due to the fact that in this article self-retranslation was investigated, and not retranslation in its general sense. So, it can be concluded that self-retranslation may not follow Berman’s hypothesis.

Author Biographies

Farzaneh Farahzad, Allameh Tabataba’i University

Full Professor, Department of English Translation Studies, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran;

Sajjad Tahmasbi Boveiri, Allameh Tabataba’i University

M.A. in Translation Studies, Department of English Translation Studies, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran;


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