How to Avoid Embarrassing Chinese to English Translation Errors
China, the 2nd largest country in the world, is certainly a fascinating country to visit. Steeped in history, you can experience first as well as exciting modern cities to explore. But the one thing which will leave you confused is the signs with literal translations. Causing laughter, and leaving lasting impressions, they may sometimes make it difficult for you to find your way around the country.
Signs such as:
– Slip and fall down carefully;
– If you’re stolen, call the police at once;
– Do not disturb; tiny grass is dreaming…
Will certainly make you tip-toe your way around!
There are several gaffes in food labelling too:
– The Jew’s Ear Juice;
– Child Shredded Meat;
– Six Roasted Husband…
Are a few which may change your mind about eating in China!
Jokes apart, it is essential to translate correctly and in entirety, rather than going for word-by-word translation. With globalisation and an increasing demand for goods manufactured in China, Chinese translation services play an important role. Chinese to English translation has become increasingly necessary. Chinese is not an easy language to master.
There are several fundamental linguistic differences like:
– A Chinese character has different meanings when combined with other characters.
– Order of words in the Chinese sentences is very different.
– To change tenses, new words are added.
– Several Chinese characters have to be combined to translate one English word.
China has several forms of language; the three main being ‘Mandarin’, ‘Cantonese’ and ‘Simplified or Traditional Chinese’. While the last one is used in writing, Mandarin and Cantonese are used for speaking.
There is also a significant difference in cultures which may lead to confusion during translation. Human experiences and traditions shape and define the language. Something which is considered negative and wrong in one language may be regarded as positive and good in another culture. For example: in English, the phrase, ‘She is behaving like a child’ is used in a derogatory way for a woman, but in Chinese culture, a child-like innocent woman is very desirable. Similarly, Chinese culture emphasises humility and patience while in the Western setting, the first to respond to a challenge is praised, admired and regarded as bold.
As one translates from Chinese to English or vice-versa, one has to keep in mind that language often absorbs the important social and cultural values of its society. A translation service with proficient and professional translators will understand the nuances of such differences and will translate documents with care and precision.
Thus, Chinese Translation Services will translate the nerve wracking Chinese dialects with the right approach and the professionalism to help a company succeed.
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