Russian translation

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Why is it difficult to translate Russian language?

Many people believe that Russian translation is an easy thing and all you have to do is to change words from the Russian text into the equivalent words of the English text. However, this is not true since some phrases, if translated literally, would make no sense. Russian translation is a rather complicated process, that’s why it should be performed by experienced native speaking translators.

Russian language is spoken in Russia and in most of the other Former Soviet Union countries (Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan etc.). Total speakers of Russian are estimated to about 285 million people, the majority living in Eastern Europe and Asia. This factor makes it one of the international languages worthwhile translating products in.

Russian translators should understand the terms and phrases which are appropriate for certain translation situations and people. The other main aspect for an English Russian translator is to understand the Russian way of thinking. Russian as well as every other language reflects the world view of the people, their behavior, stereotypes. So, you can't just learn Russian language, and understand the culture. You need to live in Russia in order to "feel" the Russian language.

Every nation has a lot of concepts and key-words to express them. For example, concepts for English culture are "sense of humor," "gentleman," "freedom," "home." For the Russian culture they are "soul," "heart," etc.

So, a professional Russian Translator has to penetrate into the Russian or English language and use those key words. This way the Russian translation will be an adequate translation for Russian or English speaking people.

Let’s point out the essential translation tips:

- Translate meaning not words!

- Rely on your wits and savvy - it can prove to be helpful when translating a difficult text.

- Ask a specialist or a native Russian speaker to proofread your translation so that it sounds natural. The way documents are organized in one country may not be understood in another.

- Never accept a project which you know is not within your abilities.

- Emulate the original style of the author, be it humorous, wordy, with colloquial or scientific language, etc.

Language nuances do matter when making a professional translation. Russian language is very rich in expressions and a good translator knows to take into consideration all this.

PoliLingua Translation Services

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Vlad Hangan

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This article was published on 2012/03/21