Original scientific article
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Where is the catch? The problems of translating military terminology in Heller’s Catch-22

Jasna Poljak-Rehlicki
E-mail: jpoljak@ffos.hr
Filozofski fakultet Osijek

Goran Schmidt
Filozofski fakultet Osijek

Jezikoslovlje.16.021.Poljak_Rehlicki_-_Schmidt.pdf [ 0.54 MB - Croatian]
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Abstract: Translating war literature from Croatian or into it is often accompanied with additional chal-lenges even for excellent translators because it requires a thorough knowledge of military ter-minology, which itself is prone to frequent changes, revisions and amendments. The novel Catch-22 by the American novelist Joseph Heller has seen three Croatian reprints (1969, 1987 and 2007), all three of them translated by Zlatko Crnković. The first two translations were published at the time of the former Yugoslavia, which is reflected in the translation of the mili-tary terms in the novel. However, the analysis of the latest translation shows that the military terminology has seen only slight changes. Taking into account the specificity of the military jargon as well as the fact that the average reader is seldom familiar with the military hierarchy and all the details of the military terminology, we wanted to examine whether the readers are put off by such an outdated, imprecise and inaccurate translation. Our survey shows that the respondents are indeed to a great extent annoyed and confused by the outdated military ter-minology, which makes them think that the translation is thirty years old or more. We con-clude, on the basis of the survey, that there is a need for retranslation of the military terminol-ogy so that it conforms to the contemporary Croatian standard.
translation, war literature, military terminology, Crnković, Catch-22,
Article data in other languages: Croatian