WANG Dongfeng. On the Chinese Translation of English Poetry with Metrical Variations[J]. Journal of Foreign Languages, 2024, 47(3): 89-100.
Citation: WANG Dongfeng. On the Chinese Translation of English Poetry with Metrical Variations[J]. Journal of Foreign Languages, 2024, 47(3): 89-100.

On the Chinese Translation of English Poetry with Metrical Variations

  • Metrical variations are a common phenomenon in English metrical poetry, referring to local changes in poetical lines that differ from the basic metre of a particular poem. They can occur accidentally or intensively in a poem. The accidental ones are often just a few rhythmic changes caused by the poet’s utilization of the game rules of poetry, while the intensive ones are mostly the expressive means carefully designed by the poet to achieve a specific artistic purpose. As far as translation is concerned, the accidental variations can be ignored, but for the intensive ones, there is no reason to avoid them, otherwise the translation will inevitably fail to represent the artistic value loaded in them. However, previous poetry translation and research have paid no attention at all to this issue, so that all English metrical poems with intensive metrical variations have not represented this artistic feature in their Chinese translations. This paper will focus on this issue, and discuss how to handle it properly in poetry translation.
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