Formal Aspects in Verse Translation from a Functionalist Approach

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1. Introduction This project essay seeks to analyse, from a functionalist approach, the role that form plays in verse translation, reviving old dichotomies such as the opposition between form and content. According to functionalist theories, Skopostheorie being the most significant representation of modern functionalism, the process of translation is marked by both prospective and retrospective aspects. Prospective aspects are response-related and focus on the purpose for which the translation has been created, therefore concentrating on the profile of the target reader and the objectives to be met. In contrast, retrospective aspects focus on the intentions of the author, the characteristics of the source text and the context in which the translation has been created. Even though functionalism usually gives priority to prospective aspects, authors like Christiane Nord, whose work is going to be central to the theoretical framework of this project essay, advocate the respect of both prospective and retrospective aspects in the process of translation. This project essay will take Federico García Lorca’s Romancero gitano as a case study. Lorca is one of the most renowned poets of Spanish literature. Born in Andalusia, which is one of the most traditional Spanish regions, Federico García Lorca stamped his creations with a marked Spanish flavour. For his Romancero gitano, Lorca chose the ballad verse form, which uses a very characteristic and defined pattern that gives the text a lively style with a nearly musical nature, proper of Spanish folklore. Focusing on the already mentioned prospective and retrospective aspects of functionalism, this project essay will analyse the role that form plays in the case of Romancero gitano. Even though several translations of Romancero gitano exist, this project essay will focus on the translations by Robert G. Havard and Carl

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