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Íkala, Revista de Lenguaje y Cultura

versão impressa ISSN 0123-3432

Íkala v.13 n.20 Medellín jul./dez. 2008




A Comparative Study of Turkish and Spanish Translations of The Crucible*1


Estudio comparativo de las traducciones al turco y al español de Las Brujas de Salem


Ph D. Mª Pilar González Vera **; Ph D. Filiz Yalcin Tilfarlioglu ***
** Mª Pilar González Vera is a junior lecturer at the Department of English and German Philology of the University of Zaragoza, where she graduated in English. She received her Bachelor Honours degree in Combined Studies from the University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK, where she graduated with upper second class honours. She taught Spanish at the Department of Languages of the University of Central Lancashire and subsequently continued her doctoral studies at the University of Zaragoza, where she presented her M.A. Dissertations in 2005. She has presented several papers at both national and international conferences and is currently teaching ''English language'' in the Faculty of Education at the University of Zaragoza. Email: pilargv@unizar.
es Dr. Filiz

*** Yalcin Tilfarlioglu graduated from the University of Istanbul in 1990. She received her M.A. in ELT from Gaziantep University in 1993, and her Ph.D. from Cukurova University, Turkey, in 1996. She has several national and international articles and has presented several papers at both national and international conferences. Email:




This text demonstrates how power and gender relationships affect the translation process of a literary text. More specifically, we will focus on the translation of linguistic politeness and politic behavior in Arthur Miller's The Crucible. While there is only one Turkish translation (1962) of the play, for the analysis of the Spanish translations we have chosen two from different eras, one from 1955 and another from 1997, with the intention of demonstrating how these translations have become a reflection of the socio-cultural situation of the target country at the moment they were written.

Key words: linguistic politeness, politic behaviour, power, gender, translation


Este texto demuestra cómo los cambios que han sucedido en las relaciones de género y poder afectan el proceso de traducción de un texto literario. Concretamente, nos centramos en la traducción de las formas de cortesía y del comportamiento político en la obra El Crisol de Arthur Miller. Mientras sólo hay una traducción al turco (1962), para el análisis de las traducciones españolas se han seleccionado dos de distintos períodos: una de 1955 y la otra de 1997. El objetivo, en últimas, es señalar cómo las traducciones se convierten en un reflejo de la situación socio-cultural del país meta, en el momento en que se producen.

Palabras clave: cortesía lingüística, comportamiento político, género, poder, traducción


La présente analyse essaie de montrer la façon dont les relations de pouvoir et de genre ont un impact sur le processus de traduction d'un texte littéraire. Nous nous concentrerons plus spécifiquement sur la traduction de politesse linguistique et du comportement politique dans Les sorcières de Salem de Miller. Alors qu'il n'existe qu'une traduction en turque de la pièce, (1962) pour l'analyse des versions espagnoles, nous avons choisi deux périodes différentes, une de 1950 et l'autre de 1997, avec l'intention de montrer comment ces textes cibles sont devenus une réflexion du processus de changement dans les relations interpersonnelles au sein de la société.

Mots-clés: politesse linguistique, comportement politique, genre, pouvoir, traduction appliquée




Gender issues have always been present in translation. They appeared as issues of translation criticism in the 1970s when feminist approaches to linguistics and literary criticism, as well as cultural and translation studies, promoted the study of gendered influence in writing and rewriting. Lefevere supported the idea that translation could be considered a form of rewriting. According to him, translation was an act carried out under the influence of particular categories and norms constituent to systems in a society. The most important of these are patronage, ideology, poetics and ''the universe of discourse'' (Lefevere 1992a:13, Leuven-Zwart and Naaijkens 1991, Jakobson 2000). This relationship between translation and culture is also identified by Alvarez-Vidal (1996:1-7), who suggests that approaching a culture implies beginning a process of translation. Translation reveals the power that one culture can exert over another. It is not merely the production of a text equivalent to the source text, but rather a complex process of rewriting which runs parallel both to the overall view of the language, and to the influences and balance of power that exist between one culture and another. Moreover, Tilfarlioglu (1996) not only refers to the relationship between culture and translation but also to the relationship between gender and translation when she states that translation has been used in literature classes at university level in order to highlight gender differences and discriminations in meaning. Gender differences are also perceived in linguistic politeness, thus politeness theory has been chosen as the theoretical approach for the subsequent analysis.

Politeness theory states that some speech acts threaten others'face. The concept of ''face'' was first introduced by Goffman (1967) and refers to a speaker's sense of linguistic and social identity. According to this, being polite consists of attempting to save someone's public self image for another, while being impolite consists of attempting to threaten someone's face, in other words, the speaker does not make any attempt to soften the threat. Sociolinguists Brown and Levinson (1987) supported the idea that language changes depending on the hearer, and the imbalance between what is 'said' and what is 'implicated' may be attributed to politeness. Politeness theory adopted their proposal of the concepts of 'face' and 'FTA' (Face Threatening Act) in relation to speaker (S) and hearer (H) relationships. They divided face into positive face and negative face depending on whether face is approved, damaged, maintained or enhanced in interaction with others. Brown and Levinson (1987:61-62) define positive face as ''the positive consistent self-image or 'personality'(crucially including the desire that this self-image be appreciated and approved of) claimed by interactants'' and add that it is ''the want of every member that his wants be desirable to at least some others''. Therefore, positive politeness involves closeness affiliation and being complimentary and gracious to the addressee. Negative face, in turn, involves distance and formality and is defined as ''the want of every 'competent adult member' that his actions be unimpeded by others'' (Brown and Levinson 1987:61). Positive and negative politeness are thus attempts to satisfy the addressee's positive or negative face wants.

Another important aspect for the analysis of the Spanish and Turkish translations of The Crucible is the relationship between gender identity and linguistic politeness. Cross-cultural differences in language use contemplate gender differences in relation to culture. The cultural background is responsible for setting the rules of gender relationships. Language usage presents characteristic patterns of members of non-powerful groups. Gender relationships are one of the factors determining power relationships. Therefore, the influence of power in translation will be studied under Watts' (1992) view of power and its relationship with linguistic politeness and politic behaviour in translation. In this regard, and as Brown and Levinson (1987) point out, much research on the relationship of linguistic and politic behaviour has been carried out. These studies focus on the language use of non-powerful or disadvantaged groups, women and ethnic minorities for instance, as well as on the structure of conversation as a manifestation of power and gender relationships.

Source texts set a particular political framework and defend a particular ideology. That ideology supports a power system within that particular culture. When the text is translated into another language a process of change takes place. Target texts may show signs of domestication or foreignization (Schäffner and Kelly-Holmes, 1995). Therefore, target texts become vehicles of ideologies and power relationships. The role of power in society is transmitted through linguistic politeness and politic behaviour. As will be seen, women's powerful or non-powerful position in society is manifested through linguistics. Men and women's relationships and the transference of them to another culture through translation will be shown, taking into account Mills' (2004) ideas of feminist belief in the correlation between male gender and power and female gender and powerless, and Watts' (1992) notion of politic verbal behaviour.

Translators and translations are constrained in many ways: by their own ideology and by their ideas of superiority and inferiority, i.e. of power. The translation of politeness is influenced by the power relationships in the target culture. In the past, translations were subjected to a social censorship. Consequently, certain terms were omitted and words and expressions which were considered rude, excessively colloquial or obscene were softened or removed. Regarding obscene language, Toledano Buendía (2003:67) underlines that: ''Lo obsceno no lo es de manera intemporal; de hecho, un mismo comportamiento puede ser considerado obsceno en una época y en otra no''. This temporal character will be significant for this analysis of the translations. Translations belong to different periods of time and imply a shift in translation practice: omitting words which were regarded as obscene and which later are frequently used in everyday conversation.

Moreover, power is linked with political systems. In an attempt to introduce their ideologies in other cultures, political systems are responsible for some changes in the target texts. Therefore, the hegemonic relationships and their relationship with gender aspects are transmitted. In order to keep the status quo, translations are used as a means of reflecting the ideology and the socio-political order. As regards this issue, Edgar and Sedgwick (1999:164) define the term ''hegemony'' as the concept of leadership and dominant class, that is to say, the ruler class. They also suggest that the class that holds the hegemony, the power, has to 'elaborate' and propagate their created ideology that justifies its position in the social scale in order to keep control. Taking ideology and hegemonic position into account, it should be stressed that men have traditionally been the dominant group in Spanish and Turkish cultures (Target Cultures) and this situation is reflected in the translations (Target Texts) under analysis. Depending on the decade, men and women are represented differently in the translations.According to Fiske (2001), Cantor (1986), Goldman (1992) and Gunter (1995), some years ago, women had a restricted role in society and were supposed to be limited to the domestic sphere, whereas men played a more outstanding role within the public sphere. Nevertheless, in the last few years there has been a change and, as Mills (2004) proposes, feminists' ideas had to do with that change. Women have irrupted in a man's world. They started to work outside the home and their aim to be equal to men has led them to behave like men. Then, feminist assumptions broke out and the relationships between gender and power began to formulate. The metamorphosis in women's attitudes has also affected the way that women talk. Women began to use words which were associated with men, an alteration in conventions which was recorded by translations.

The relationship between politeness and politic behaviour is determined by the social dimension. Politeness is a form of social behaviour that encompasses both linguistic and non-linguistic activity. Politeness refers to those forms of behaviour which have been ''developed in societies in order to reduce friction in personal interaction'' (Watts 1992:45). Linguistic politeness is considered as a marked extension of politic verbal behaviour, as a premeditated selection of linguistic forms which are taken as an attempt of ego to strengthen his/her public status. Forms of linguistic politeness include terms of address for instance. Among them, there are free terms of address whose purpose may be mandatory. Examples of those free terms are T (title) and TLN (title + last name). Their usage sets social distance and dominance among the participants or adds formal nuances to the conversation.

Politic behaviour is defined by Watts (1992:50) as ''socio-culturally determined behaviour directed towards the goal of establishing and/or maintaining in a state of equilibrium the personal relationships between the individuals of a social group, whether open or closed, during the ongoing process of interaction''. Like politeness, politic behaviour may be verbal or nonverbal. Watts (1992:43) interprets ''politic verbal behaviour'' as the maintenance of the equilibrium of interpersonal relationships within the social group. Verbal politic behaviour should be evaluated in accordance with five factors. Watts (1992:51) puts forward these aspects:

  1. the type of social activity in which the participants to the interaction are engaged (e.g., setting, communicative ends, institutionalised social relationships between the participants, degree of ratified membership in a social group, the open or closed character of the interpersonal network developed through the interaction, etc.);

  2. the speech events engaged in within that activity;

  3. the degree to which the participants share a common set of cultural expectations with respect to the social activity and the speech events making up part of that activity;

  4. the degree to which the participants share a common set of assumptions with respect to the information state [...];

  5. the social distance and dominance relationships in force between the participants prior to the interaction.

Polite behaviour is subject to the features of the interaction which are socioculturally marked by the speech community beyond what is regarded as political behaviour. Thus, Brown and Levinson's strategies of positive and negative politeness are interpreted as socio-culturally determined politic behaviour. Likewise, it will have to pay attention to whether examples of linguistic politeness such as terms of address, honorifics, ritualised expressions and speech events, and indirect speech acts are polite forms or whether they are used normally as socio-culturally constrained forms of politic behaviour (Watts, 1992:51). Therefore, politic behaviour is just a socially appropriated behaviour and terms of address are realisations of politic behaviour.



The Crucible is a play that was written by Arthur Miller in 1952. It is based on the events surrounding the 1692 witch trials of Salem, Massachusetts. Miller wrote about the event as an allegory for McCarthyism and the Red Scare, which occurred in the United States in the 1950s. Miller was himself questioned by the House Committee on Un-American Activities in 1956. When Arthur Miller wrote The Crucible, not only did he explore the madness of the Salem witch trials, but he also portrayed people from a community which were marked by the differences in their relationships.

The dates of the translations of The Crucible are very significant for the analysis. In the 50s, Spanish culture was quite traditional and conservative in comparison with the source culture, North American, which was more progressive and not as constrained as the target culture. The earlier Spanish translation is set within a period of time where censorship was at work. At that time, the target culture, Spanish, was characterised by the strong influence of religion and a consolidated patriarchal system. In accordance with those ways of thinking, translations were subordinated to a social censorship that did not accept ideas which opposed theirs. In order to avoid conflict, translators had to soften or omit those features which could alter the established situation and characters' profiles, depending on the socio-political framework. However, after four decades, the 1997 translation is framed within a modified society. This new society does not seem to be as religious and, for instance, is more used to marital infidelities. People are more conscious of the role of women in society. Women are actively working outside the home and have invaded a man's world. This reality is shown in the translation. Men are allowed to show their feelings, but they are still in the dominant position and they have to demonstrate their power in relation to others. Furthermore, ill-treatment towards women becomes an increasingly commented issue in the 90s. The situation of women is taken more seriously, and this is shown in the more recent translation.

Turkey, like Spain in the 1960s, was more traditional than the United States and the Turkish government enforced censorship. Censorship in translation in Turkey was introduced in the 1930s by Ataturk, the founder and first president of the Turkish Republic. Not only was he responsible for the modernisation and westernisation of the country, but he also led a full-scale translation initiative. Therefore, the Ministry of National Education was in charge of organizing the process, from the selection of the works to be translated to the establishment of the guidelines in the translation process that would encompass the ethos behind the whole initiative. However, it was also Ataturk who improved the status of Turkish women and played a pivotal role in their integration into society. For example, in 1934, women were given the right to vote and to get rid of their veils and since the 1950s, their participation in the labour market has increased steadily, albeit unevenly. On account of this, the traditional view of gender roles and relationships has persisted in tandem with changes in the status of women, as will be seen in the corpus analysis.



Lefevere's view of translation as rewriting and subsequently as ''the adaptation of a work of literature to a different audience, with the intention of influencing the way in which that audience reads the work'' is essential for the analysis of the corpus. Translation has to be regarded as a field of study for the manifestation of interpersonal relationships, which are determined by genderand power relationships. The aim of the comparison between the Englishversion and the SpanishandTurkish translations is to show how politeness and impoliteness strategies work in these texts and to see how the last decades' changes in power and gender relationships between cultures seem to affect the process of translation.

This corpus of the analysis was selected for the following reasons. Firstly, The Crucible is a famous play with a wide repercussion. Secondly, the main issue dealt with in the play is the establishment, maintenance and modification of personal relationships and the ways in which these are made or not made explicit in language. Consequently, interpersonal pragmatics is the key point for the analysis of politeness and impoliteness. In third place, the play is full of passages in which characters seek to impose their will or have their ''face'' approved by others. These face threatening acts materialise in demonstrations of politeness and impoliteness.

In order to explore the power and gender relationships and their linguistic expression in sample cases of politeness and impoliteness, there will be a comparison between men and women's discourses. This division is based on initial feminism theories which set up a binary opposition between men and women. Nevertheless, feminism theories developed and these two groups sometimes merged, as will be shown in the examples. Therefore, The Crucible presents two big groups of characters with some internal divisions in relation to power distribution within Puritan society. The peak in the pyramidal structure is occupied by the religious authorities (Parris and Hale); on a second level, the public sphere is controlled by men; and the base of the pyramid is formed by women and lastly by servants/slaves.

For this research the only translation into Turkish, called TTT for the purposes of analysis, and two into Spanish, TT1 and TT2, have been used as target texts. The Turkish version of The Crucible, translated as Cadi kazani, was translated by Sabahattin Eyüboglu and Vedat Günyol and published in 1962. In contrast, there are several translations into Spanish. Among these, we have selected two from different historical periods. The earlier Spanish translation, TT1, was carried out by Jacobo and Mario Muchnik and published by Compañía General Fabril Editora during the Franco dictatorship. The title was translated as Las brujas de Salem. Drama en cuatro actos. The later translation, TT2, was done by José Luis López Muñoz in 1997, when democracy was established in Spain. The title in this case is Las brujas de Salem. Drama, y El crisol. Guión cinematográfico basado en la obra de teatro and the translation was published by Tusquets Editores (Madrid).



Comparison of the original form and Spanish-Turkish translations of the text

4.1 Elizabeth's versus John Proctor's discourse

The starting point for the study of the translations of The Crucible will be the analysis of Elizabeth. Elizabeth's behaviour towards religious authority contrasts with her behaviour towards her husband, John Proctor. Her performance in intimacy is different to her performance in the public sphere. This change is closely related to contextual situations which determine the type of discourse. From a sociolinguistic approach and focusing on Joos' (1967) classification of conversations, Elizabeth and John conversations belong to the category of ''intimate'', which means that participants are not tied up to formality constraints. The lack of restrictions allows Elizabeth to show her determination and superiority in her relationship with her husband.

Example 1

ST (2000:60) Elizabeth (to John Proctor): Then go and tell her she's a whore.

TTT (1962:72) Elizabeth: Oyleyse git, orospu de yuzune karsi.

TT1 (1955:84) Elizabeth: iVe, entonces, y dile que es una ramera!

TT2 (1997:75) Elizabeth: Entonces ve a decirle que es una ramera.

The communication of emotion in marriage is crucial. Marriage is a context where men and women are involved in close interpersonal relationships, but where gender is a highly important factor. Politeness and impoliteness factors play a significant role in the communication of emotions. Elizabeth and John's close relationship is marked by conflict. The love affair between Abigail and John Proctor creates a tense relationship between John and Elizabeth in their marital life, as in this example. From the impoliteness devices set out by Culpeper (1999) a case of positive impoliteness is found in the example. The positive impoliteness resource is the use of taboo words: whore in the source text and ramera in both target texts. Elizabeth is referring toAbigail when she describes her as a prostitute since Abigail had a love affair with her husband. Women, who constituted a kind of threat to men, were accused of sexual promiscuity because it meant a way of subordinating men. This is the reason why the Puritans did not like any sign of women's sexual power.

The term used in the original is a swear word and is especially inappropriate in women's speech, but not so much in men's discourse. Despite that, her usage of the word brings Elizabeth closer to men's behaviour and consequently to power. Furthermore, Elizabeth's purpose is to offend and insult Abigail, and impoliteness functions as a tool of offence as Holmes (1995:4) states: '''politeness' describes behaviour which is somewhat formal and distancing, where the intention is not to intrude or impose [...] Being polite means expressing respect towards the person you are talking to and avoiding offending them''. On the other hand, the translation as ramera is a softened version of whore in the original. Whereas in the 1955 translation it would be admissible because of the social perception of women, this option does not have the same effect in the 90s. Nevertheless, the choice relies on a question of gender, as can be seen when John Proctor uses the same word to insult Abigail.

In English, the word whore is used to refer to Abigail, who is the bad character of the play. The word is very suitable for the context of the play as it reflects the characteristic of language used in that time. Today, the word whore is not used frequently because it is considered an old-fashioned word. By contrast, the Turkish translation opts for translating the word whore as orospu. The word used in the Turkish version is still used very frequently in Turkish and it cannot be considered to be an old-fashioned word. The Turkish translation of the text reflects the translator's own style. The sentence ''Then go and tell her she's a whore'' could be translated as ''O zaman git ve ona orospu oldugunu soyle''. However, the Turkish target translation is: ''Oyleyse git, orospu de yuzune karsi'' that is ''Then go and tell her that she is a whore to her face''. The use of the idiom ''yuzune karsi'' (to her face) strengthens the meaning of the source text and highlights Elizabeth's power position in relation to her husband. The original translation of the sentence is done in an inverted way and this characteristic gives evidence of the translator's style and the language used in that time in Turkey.

In example 2, the same swearword, whore, from example 1 comes into play, but on this occasion it is uttered by a man.

ST (2000:97-98) Proctor (to Abigail): How do you call Heaven! Whore! Whore! [...] My wife is innocent, except she knew a whore when she saw one!

TTT (1962:126-128) Proctor: Sen Allah'in adini nasil agzina alirsin! Ne suratla! Kaltak! Orospu! [...] Karim masumdur, tek kusuru bir kahpenin kahpeligini fark etmis olmaktir.

TT1 (1955:144-146): iCómo te atreves a clamar al Cielo! iRamera! iRamera! [...] iMi mujer es inocente, solo que reconocía a una ramera cuando la veía!

TT2 (1997:121-122): iCómo te atreves a clamar al cielo! iPuta, más que puta! [...]iMi esposa es inocente, toda su culpa fue reconocer a una puta cuando la vio!

In this example of impoliteness John Proctor attacks Abigail's promiscuity when he calls her a whore and he also sets a comparison between his wife and Abigail. While Abigail is described as a whore, Elizabeth, John's wife, is innocent, as he states.

The Turkish translation shows a first choice for the translation of the word Heaven. Although the Turkish word for Heaven is Cennet, the translator has preferred Allah, which means God. By means of the choice of Allah the target text achieves a more powerful effect in speech. Besides this, ''Allah'in adini nasil agzina alirsin'' reminds readers of the traditional Turkish expression ''Allah'in adini agzina almak'', which means in Turkish ''To say the word God''. Moreover, the translator adds the Turkish interjection ''Ne suratla!'', that is to say ''How dare you!'', with the aim to promote orality in the discourse. The swearword whore has been translated into Turkish as orospu in examples 1 and 2, but the synonym kahpe has been reserved for example 2. In example 2, the translator prefers to introduce the word kahpe due to the context. As the discourse takes place in a court, the translator opts for kahpe, a term considered to be more polite than orospu.

By contrast, the word whore is translated in two ways in the Spanish translations: ramera in 1955 and puta in 1997. Rude language tended to be softened in Spain in the 50s, but in the 90s, naturalism was in fashion. Writers tended to show daily life accurately without disguising any detail in spite of the fact that images were too tough. In this aim to reflect reality, swearwords were not censored as they were present in everyday language. Besides this, it is noteworthy that the same word used by Elizabeth to insult Abigail, as seen in example 1, was translated differently in example 2. The translation of the word whore differs depending on the gender of the speaker. Although both examples 1 and 2 have resorted to the same word in the source text to insult the same woman, Abigail, it has been translated differently. The translation changes depending on who utters it. John, as a man, is allowed to refer to Abigail in such terms. On the contrary, Elizabeth, as a woman, is restricted in the way that she can express herself. In 1955, there is no difference in the translation of whore in John and Elizabeth's interventions due to reasons of censorship; and the old form ramera is shared by male and female speakers. In that decade, Spanish translations were submitted to censorship and a swearword such as puta, which would be more appropriate, was not easily accepted, so a euphemism had to be used (ramera). Nevertheless, in 1997 there is no censorship and different translations are still found in the target texts. In the 1997 target text whore is translated as ramera in example 1 and as puta in example 2. The choice relies on the gender of the speaker. Puta, the swearword with all its power and harshness, is uttered by a man (Proctor), whereas ramera, the old-fashion word which softens its original meaning, is uttered by a woman. Women, there, do not have enough power to use such a term as puta, but men are allowed to use it.

4.2 Abigail's discourse

With regard toAbigail's discourse, attention must first be paid to Hymes'(1972) sociolinguistic notion of scene. Abigail is localised in a Puritan background. She belongs to a community, which implies the adoption of certain standards, as Mills (2004:2) points out, quoting Eckert and McConnell-Ginet (1998:490):

''A community of practice is an aggregate of people who come together around mutual engagement in some common endeavour. Ways of doing, ways of talking, beliefs, values, power relations – in short, practices – emerge in the course of their joint activity around that endeavour.''

According to Mills and Eckert and McConnell-Ginet, members of a community accept a mutual engagement in which they undertake to follow a set of specific rules of behaviour. This compromise works as a contract and one of the terms deals with conversational precepts. Conversational-contract constrains the behaviour of the participants in a verbal interaction. Regarding this contract, Watts (1992:59) states that ''if both (or all) participants abide by the rules of that contract, they are said to be acting ''politely''. Violation of those rules results in impolite behaviour (Fraser and Nolen 1981:96)''. A distinctive feature of Abigail's character is her continuous effort to impose her own will. By nature, Abigail belongs to the female group and should follow femalespeech patterns. However, she breaks the law and she does not behave as she was supposed to. She is considered a kind of revolutionary in the light of feminism theories. In that sense and following Fraser and Nolen (1981), since Abigail violates the rules, her behaviour is consequently found impolite.

Holmes (1995) suggests that distribution of power in societies is one of the three agents for explaining men and women's interaction. Power obeys to a binary distribution in The Crucible, that is, members who move in the public sphere, and those from the domestic sphere. However, Abigail tries to cross the boundary between them. The leap from one group (the female) to the other (the male) is shown by her use of male-speech resources.

An example of transgression is found in her way of dealing with sexual matters and referring to her body with no embarrassment:

ST (2000:29) Abigail (to John Proctor): I know how you clutched my back behind your house and sweated like a stallion whenever I come near! Or did I dream that? It is she put me out, you cannot pretend it were you. I saw your face when she put me out.

TTT (1962:27) Abigail: Evinin arkasinda pesimden kosup beni sikistirdigini da bilirim ama. Yanina sokulur sokulmaz nasil aygirlar gibi terledigini de bilirim. Yoksa ruyamda mi gordum bunlari? Beni kapi disari eden karindi, ben kovdum diyemezsin ya? Yuzunun ne hale geldigini gormustum cikarken.

TT1 (1955:37): Lo que sé es cómo me estrechabas en los fondos de tu casa, y sudabas como un caballo cada vez que me acercaba. ¿O es que lo he soñado? Quien me echó fue ella, no puedes simular que fuiste tú. Te vi el rostro cuando ella me echó.

TT2 (1997:36): iSé que me abrazaste por la espalda detrás de tu casa y que sudabas como un semental cada vez que me acercaba! ¿O es que eso lo he soñado? Fue ella quien me puso de patitas en la calle, no finjas que fuiste tú. Vi la cara que pusiste cuando me echó.

First of all, it is remarkable that the Turkish translation promotes orality once more. The sentence ''[...] she put me out [...]'' is translated into Turkish as ''Beni

kapi disari eden [...]''. In this case the translator has opted for using a frequent Turkish idiom, ''Kapi disari etmek''. Although the meaning of this sentence should be ''beni disari koyan [...]'', the translator has preferred to provide the source text with verisimilitude and orality and therefore the Turkish text becomes more understandable for the target readers.

Furthermore, in this example, the use of the word stallion indicates gender discrimination. The meaning of the word is ''a male horse'' and also ''a male horse kept for breeding''. The job of the animal is only to breed and it means that there is no other use for it. A resemblance is made by Abigail between a stallion and the man. She sees him as a stallion because there has been no relationship between them other than a sexual one.

Example 3 shows Abigail's description of her sexual relationship with John Proctor. The way in which she relates the facts is more typical of men than of women. She talks like a man and this cross-gender attitude is regarded as impolite. In respect to this, Mills (2004:5), referring to Walsh (2000), states that ''women often use styles of speech in their interventions in the public sphere which are coded as masculine, but they run the risk of being judged as transgressive or abnormal for engaging in them''.

Two points emphasise this ''male speech'': the image of John Proctor as a stallion and the commentary on who put her out. Regarding the first issue, there are two versions for stallion:''caballo'' – horse – in TT1, and ''semental'' – stallion – in the 1997 target text. In the first case there has been a loosening of the source term, stallion, and a neutral form has been preferred. This choice avoids the sexual connotation found in the source text, whereas the 1997 target text keeps the essence of the word. Stallions are stud horses, those which are destined for breeding. John Proctor behaves sexually as an animal withAbigail, in accordance with her depiction of the scene, and that behaviour loses strength in the 1955 translation, where the neutral word horse is used. In that sense, TT1 is an example of negative impoliteness. By contrast, TT2 prefers a literal translation of the term and thus an explicit association of John Proctor with a negative aspect (behaving as an animal) is made. Consequently, TT2 opts for positive impoliteness, since the sexual connotations of stallion are not ''disguised'' and the inappropriate identity marker from the original is maintained.

Secondly, Abigail is open to John about the fact that it was John's wife and not he who put her out.Abigail uses the negative impoliteness device of frightening as a weapon to attack John's face. She ridicules (another case of negative impoliteness) John because he is less powerful than his wife. She is the one who makes decisions and the one who is indeed in power. This accusation makes John lose his face. The effect is achieved in both translations, but the way of putting it is different. In TT1, the statement is a literal translation of the source text, while TT2 enriches the source text. The latter translation provides a colloquial nuance which explicitly portrays Abigail as a woman who tackles man's power through insolent and discourteous manners.

Moreover, those women who do not follow the femininity patterns are identified as evil and even violent. The Crucible contains a great quantity of examples where Abigail, or teenagers who support her, turn to violence like example 4 and 5:

Example 4

ST (2000:26) Abigail (to the rest of the girls): Betty? Now, Betty, dear, wake up now. It's Abigail. I'll beat you, Betty!

TTT (1962:22) Abigail: Betty! Haydi uyan, Betty'cigim. Bak, Abigail yaninda. Betty, doverim seni.

TT1 (1955:33): Betty. Vamos querida, Betty, despierta ya. Es Abigail. iBetty, voy a pegarte!

TT2 (1997:33): ¿Betty? Vamos, Betty, cariño, despiértate ya. iTe voy a dar una paliza!

Example 5

ST (2000:27) Abigail (to the authorities): [....] I saw Indians smash my dear parents' heads on the pillow next to mine, and I have seen some reddish work done at night.

TTT (1962:23) Abigail: Kizilderililer gozlerimin onunde anamin babamin basini ezdiler, ne kanli seyler gormusum ben gece yarilari.

ST (1953:26)Abigail: [...] I saw Indians smash my dear parents'heads on the pillow next to mine, and I have seen some reddish work done at night.

TT1 (1955:34): [...] He visto cómo, sobre la almohada junto a la mía, los indios destrozaban las cabezas de mis pobres padres, y he visto algunas otras sangrientas faenas realizadas en la noche,

TT2 (1997:32): [...] Vi cómo los indios aplastaban la cabeza de mis padres sobre la almohada, a mi lado, y también he visto otros horrores nocturnos con mucha sangre;

In example 4, Abigail threatens to hurt Betty physically. Physical mistreatment is more commonly associated to men than to women, but Abigail resorts to force as men would do. Regardless the harshness reflected in the source text about Abigail's violent reaction, there is a great contrast between the 1955 translation and the 1997 one. In TT1 Abigail's conduct is handled as if it were a sample of childish behaviour. In order to elude female brutality, the expression ''I'll beat you'' is strengthened. By contrast, it has to be noticed that in the 90s people were already extremely concerned with gender violence and physical ill-treatment. Woman battering becomes an everyday topic in twentieth century social conversations; hence, the translator opts for loosening the source expression into ''te voy a dar una paliza'', an expression already used in the translations of Dickens.

Likewise, in example 5, Abigail includes cruel references such as the image of seeing ''smash my dear parents' heads''. The verb ''smash'' is strengthened in the 1955 translation, as the word ''destrozar'' is harsher than ''aplastar'', according to the Diccionario de la Real Academia. In the 1997 translation, the term is loosened whilst keeping the barbarity and inhumanity of the action. The reason for this is again a question regarding the social concern in the 90s for violent acts.

With regard to the Turkish version, the word parents, in example 5, is translated into Turkish as ana baba. However, the literal translation for parents should be ebeveyn, a frequently used term in Turkish. The choice of both anne (''mother'') and baba (''father'') is due to the fact that the term ebeveyn was not widespread

at the time when the play was translated into Turkish, and the target language relied on the use of ''mother'' and ''father''. Nevertheless, it is remarkable that the translator opts for anam babam instead of annem babam. The reason for this choice, which means ''my dear parents'', is that the translator wants to highlight Abigail's choice of sympathetic language in her situation in front of the jury. The adjective ''dear'' expresses Abigail's love towards her parents and also her pity because of the violent act that causes their death. This feeling is thus reflected into Turkish thanks to anam babam. The word ana instead of anne implies more sincerity in Turkish. On account of this, anam babam transfers sincerity to Abigail's feelings in her discourse, rather than sevgili ebeveynlerim, which does not convey any type of feeling.

4.3 Authorities' discourse

Finally, with reference to authorities, a distinctive feature in The Crucible is that Miller unfolds the plot within a Puritan community. This sets an obvious distance between religious leaders and the rest of the community. Distribution of power may be understood as man's physical strength but also as man's superiority in issues such as social prestige or economic matters.

In the following example, those men to whom the community has to give a deferential treatment deal with mature women with no mark of deference, as if they were girls or teenagers. Although information about hierarchical social dimension is encoded indirectly, Brown and Levinson (1987), Haas (1944) and Dixon (1972) say that a direct encoding of social category with reference to gender is perceived in the next example:

Example 6

ST (2000:66) Hale (to Elizabeth): And you, woman?

TTT (1962:81) Hale: Ya, siz Elizabeth?

TT1 (1955:93) Hale: Y tu, mujer?,

TT2 (1997:83) Hale: Y usted, señora?.

It is remarkable that the Turkish translation is the only one that opts for translating woman as ''Elizabeth'', a proper noun. While the source text uses the term woman to address a specific woman, the name of the woman, Elizabeth, is used in the Turkish target text. An accurate translation of ''And you, woman?'' into Turkish would be ''ve sen(siz), bayan?''. However, the resultant effect would be a ruder expression. The translator has taken into account that in this episode Elizabeth is tried for witchcraft by the authorities, embodied in Hale; therefore, he has considered that Hale's speech should incorporate negative politeness features. Hence the translator has opted for the combination of siz and the proper name ''Elizabeth'', which provides the text with politeness nuances.

By contrast, in the Spanish texts, Hale, one of the men in power within the community, addresses Elizabeth with no sign of deference but the word woman. That term is very vague and can be used for any kind of woman without alluding to her social class or age group. It may be regarded as a contemptuous manifestation of Hale towards Elizabeth because of her gender. TT1 preserves this effect; not only does it keep a literal translation of woman for mujer, but it also translates you as . The personal pronoun for the second person, , does not imply deference, but closeness or superiority of Speaker (S) in relation with Hearer (H). By contrast, the 1997 translation prefers señora for woman and usted for you. Firstly, señora implies distance between S and H. It is a negative politeness strategy and it suggests formality. Moreover, usted is the V form for addressing the H showing formality and consideration for her; so this translation is not as accurate as the first one to the source text.



After the analysis of the three translations, we can see how translations are subordinated to culture and the current ideology. Besides this, there is a temporal dependence. Gender relationships and politeness are not static but change with time. Therefore, the use of politeness strategies, as well as the translation of those strategies, differs due to temporal reasons among other factors.

With regard to social changes, it can be seen that 50s society is based on a binary distribution between men and women. This duality comes from the natural differentiation that gender provides, but also from man-made causes: the distribution of social power. This dual situation is also reflected in literature as Cantor (1986:69) points out:

We contend that no genre is ''realistic''. Rather, through stories, a fictionalised representation of our social structure and social relations are presented. These fictionalised representations provide a mirror of the world, showing how power is allocated in society and how dominance and submission are idealized

This distribution of power, where men hold the control and power in society and women are subordinated to men, is noticed in the earlier translations (1955). There, the hegemonic position in society is held by men and, consequently, women tend to use deference address terms, honorifics and the V pronoun to address men, whereas men do not usually refer to women by means of titles or through negative politeness and impoliteness devices. Men use the T pronoun form to speak to women, irrespective of the woman's age. Therefore, the choice of linguist politeness strategies relies on gender relationships (Cheng 2003, Boxer 2002). In the 90s, however, after the 60s'spread of feminist ideas, the distribution of power on the basis of gender becomes blurred. It is in the 1997 translation where impoliteness becomes significant. The importance of impoliteness for the analysis is linked to its relationship with gender and the frequency with which it was applied, especially in this TT2. In comparison with recent translations, the earlier ones did not present any properly impolite features. Moreover, if rudeness or impoliteness have been found towards another participant in the 1955 target text, there are two reasons which may explain its use:

a) the speaker is a man addressing women; or

b) all the participants are men, but the man who addresses the others impolitely is the one who holds the authority in the group.

The language of the 1955 target text becomes artificial in comparison with the one from the 90s, which is up-to-date language. Similarly, in the translation of those terms which make reference to Abigail and her relationship with John Proctor, TT2 keep the hardness from the source text, whereas the 1955 target text prefers to soften this.

Furthermore, examples of positive and negative linguistic politeness are found throughout the play. Positive politeness is used for minimising the distance between participants and is preferred among women who are friends. By contrast, negative politeness is preferred to address men, which is remarkable since negative politeness is used to avoid intruding and emphasising the social distance between people. Nevertheless, due to social and cultural reasons, English seems to prefer negative politeness devices whilst Spanish translations tend to use more positive politeness devices, as has been observed.

It is also noteworthy that in the 1997 translation violence references are softened in the majority of examples. In our view, the reason for this softening may be that the society of the 90s was becoming aware of gender violence. In sum, gender dominates the choice of politeness strategies and any change that a society suffers is reflected in the language use. All in all, it can be said that the analysis of 1955 and 1997 translations has demonstrated that translation becomes a vivid and dynamic manifestation of the structure and functioning of the society in which it is produced.

Moreover, for the analysis of the Turkish target text one has to take into account that in Turkey translated literature in the 1940s and 1950s not only became a source of literary inspiration, but was also circulated freely by the state throughout all cities, towns and villages, in public libraries, schools and village institutions. Efforts to create a cultural renaissance in the early years of the Turkish Republic, when national Turkish literature was still in its infancy after the domination of the Ottoman Empire's court literature for so many centuries, coincided with the initiatives taken towards westernisation and modernisation in all fields of the country as a state ideology and policy which is aptly described by one of the leading figures in translation activities in the statement below:

We were now both the conquerors and the conquered [...] We shaped this soil [Anatolia], but This soil also shaped us. For this reason, whatever existed on this soil in the past and exists in the present is ours. The history of our nation is the history of Anatolia. Once we were Shamanistic, then we became Christians, and then we turned to Islam. This nation built the temples, the churches, and the mosques. We filled the amphitheatres and we filled the caravanserais. Countless states and civilizations were born and perished here. We spoke many languages before choosing Turkish (Sabahattin Eyuboglu qtd. in Dino, 1978:104)

From the comparative analysis of the translations of The Crucible one can conclude that the most useful concept of linguistic politeness applied in translation studies must be a general one, which on the one hand covers those concepts of linguistic politeness regarded as relevant for translation, and on the other, takes into account a broader perspective of language functions, specifically the interpersonal. Besides this, it has also been proved that the function of a text can be seen in a wider social context, that is, how a text manifests the structure and functioning of a particular society. Similarly, translations may also have effects in the target culture. Such effects may result from the portrayal of the source culture that translation presents to the target readers. Furthermore, if the target text is translated after a period of time in which society has suffered many changes, translations may become a vehicle for showing the development of society.



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* Recibido: 04-10-2007
Aceptado: 04-08-2008




1 The article starts from a Mª Pilar González Vera's research project presented at the University of Zaragoza as part of her DEA (Masters Diploma of Advanced Studies).

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