Chapter 16 | Pragmatics and Audiovisual Translation


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Publication date: 13 September 2018
Copyright date 2019
Hardback ISBN: 9781138859524
E-book ISBN 9781315717166
You can order this volume on the Routledge website







This chapter provides an overview of three salient pragmatic phenomena, i.e. speech acts, politeness and implicature, teasing out their significant role in the construal, translation and reception of audiovisual texts. An attempt is also made to familiarize readers with some key studies on the pragmatics of AVT and highlight future trajectories in under-researched modalities and practices. The very fact that AVT allows for the opportunity to tamper with pragmatic meaning as intended by the filmmakers (e.g. through spelling implicatures out in the subtitles or changing a direct request into a indirect one in the dubbed text) renders pragmatic phenomena particularly worthy of investigation in this multimodal context. Indeed, it is demonstrated that the double-layeredness of film communication per se necessitates the careful relay of pragmatic meaning across cultures as any mishandlings may affect character perception, plot development and/or viewer enjoyment. Ultimately, this chapter aspires to sensitize readers to the pragmatics of audiovisual texts and, hopefully, inspire some of them to come up with new research ideas in this fascinating area.



Louisa Desilla is Assistant Professor of Translation and Intercultural Studies at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece. Her research interests reside in the pragmatics of intercultural communication and audiovisual translation, and in the reception of subtitled/dubbed films. She was Co-investigator on the AHRC funded networking project ‘Tapping the Power of Foreign Films: Audiovisual Translation as Cross-cultural Mediation’. She has published in international journals in the fields of linguistics and translation.



The Routledge Handbook of Audiovisual Translation Studies provides an authoritative and straightforward overview of the field through thirty-two specially commissioned chapters written by leading scholars in the field.

This state-of-the-art reference work is divided in four sections. The first part focuses on established and emerging audiovisual translation modalities, explores the changing contexts in which they have been and continue to be used, and examine how cultural and technological changes are directing their future trajectories. The second part explores the interface between audiovisual translation and a range of theoretical models that have proved particularly productive in steering research in audiovisual translation studies. Some of these models are associated with disciplines that have long intersected with audiovisual translation, while others are drawn from areas of knowledge that are only now beginning to make their presence felt in the audiovisual translation literature. The third part surveys a range of methodological approaches supporting traditional and innovative ways of interrogating audiovisual translation data. The final part addresses a range of themes pertaining to the place of audiovisual translation in society: these include the institutionalization, academization and technologization of audiovisual translation, as well as its role as a force for social change, both within and outside the industry. This Handbook gives audiovisual translation studies the voice it needs to make its presence felt within the Humanities research landscape.


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