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Translating The Tale of Khun Chang Khun Phaen: representations of culture, gender and Buddhism

Rattanakantadilok, Gritiya (2016) Translating The Tale of Khun Chang Khun Phaen: representations of culture, gender and Buddhism. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Abstract

A recent major work on Thai-English poetry translation is The Tale of Khun Chang Khun Phaen (2010/2012), the only complete translation into any language of the Thai-language epic poem Sepha rueang Khun Chang Khun Phaen (KCKP). Chris Baker and Pasuk Phongpaichit, the translators, mainly render their translation of the epic verse into prose. Their translation is an English version of the standard accounts as edited by Prince Damrong Rajanubhap in 1917–1918 with a slight revision in 1925 and older manuscripts, notably the Wat Ko edition. Baker and Pasuk’s intervention manifests itself at textual level for they restored a great number of passages excised by Damrong. The reinstated segments include censored female sexuality, monk clowning and the less violent account of the creation of Goldchild (กุมารทอง). In the standard edition, Damrong did not allow Siamese women to be sexually expressive and Buddhist monks to be clowns in the national literature he helped shape. The violent account of the Goldchild creation Damrong chose for his standard edition vilifies the leading male character, Khun Phaen. To identify approaches to translating a Thai epic poem into English, twenty-four segments rendered into verse passages, twenty key culturally specific items (CSIs) and four paratextual elements, which also represent the text as a whole, are analysed. This interdisciplinary study takes into account the socio-cultural contexts and aesthetic norms prevalent in the periods in which the source texts were written. The sociological approach in which the method of interview is employed is also adopted in this study. The translated text, paratext and responses from the interviews are analysed to identify translation strategies and procedures and whether the translators conformed to the ‘textual system’ of their time so that their translation of an unrecognised national literature would be admitted to the fellowship of world literature.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: poetry translation, prose translation, verse translation, translation of epic poem, gender in translation, Buddhism in translation, paratext in translation
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of Languages Cultures and Societies (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of Languages Cultures and Societies (Leeds) > East Asian Studies (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of Languages Cultures and Societies (Leeds) > Linguistics & Phonetics (Leeds)
Depositing User: Miss Gritiya Rattanakantadilok
Date Deposited: 30 Jan 2017 12:45
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2017 12:45
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/16114

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