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Cultural Challenges in Translating for Museums From English into Arabic

Chaghari, Salam
A Master of Arts Thesis in Translation and Interpreting (English / Arabic / English) by Salam Chaghari Entitled, "Cultural Challenges in Translating for Museums From English into Arabic," October 2008. Available are both Hard and Soft Copies of the Thesis.
Museums assert that they can work alongside other cultural institutions, such as schools and universities, to contribute to social development. In that sense museums can be considered as educational and cultural platforms which offer information alongside entertainment. It is widely assumed that any one with two languages is a bilingual, and that bilinguals are necessarily bicultural. However, this simplistic equation is challenged by the fact that many daunting cultural and ideological challenges arise during the process of transferring from one language to another especially in translating for museums. This is because different languages represent different societies, different mentalities and different cultures. This sometimes puts the translator in difficult situations particularly when decisions have to do with cultural sensitivity to social norms, religious conventions, ethical standards and other features of language in social life. To this end a number of texts taken from tourist guides and brochures, translated from English into Arabic are examined and analyzed. This thesis will focus on the importance of applying the notion of cultural and ideological shifts (and not only linguistic shifts) in moving from source text (ST) to target text (TT).
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