論文翻譯的時候,亞洲作者常見的錯誤

亞洲作者常見的錯誤

米德佳提供中翻英學術論文翻譯,含英文編修。

Common English mistakes made by native Chinese speakers

世界性、具有影響力的期刊,大都是以英文出版,因此在投稿時也要求以「母語程度」的英文(美式或英式)撰寫。這對於亞洲作者而言,無疑是一大挑戰,高標準的英文門檻,不但讓一些優秀的研究人員怯步,也讓一些好的研究成果被埋沒。

首先,英文是大多數亞洲作者的「第二語言」,就算拼寫與文法都能做到一百分,但語感及慣用法等小細節,實在很難像英、美人士應用自如。例如:副詞放在句子後面爲什麼有時候會造成誤會?can not與cannot有什麼差別?到底縮寫能不能用在文章中?moreover與in addition看似同意字,爲什麼使用語氣不同?centre與center到底哪個是英式拼音哪個是美式?

另外,還有像是同義字替換的問題,雖然兩字中文解釋看似相同,但英文使用卻要看場合,有時貿然替換,整個文章原本正經的氣氛可能瞬間瓦解。如果為了安全起見,永遠固定使用自己有把握的單字,不免又讓文章看起來重覆性太高,缺乏變化。

不要一開始就讓語文問題妨礙您寫作時一氣呵成的連貫性,可在文稿完成後,尋求專業英文編輯服務,透過專家們的英語潤飾與英文校正,補足英文論文寫作的缺失。

最後要特別提醒亞洲作者,有些人可能在撰寫畢業論文時,以中文完成寫作,但是要準備投稿期刊時,採用翻譯的方式,把中文翻譯成英文。這裡就會出現問題,因為簡單來講,中文與英文的寫作邏輯其實有所差異,無論多麼精準的翻譯,還是無法表現出「母語程度的英文」。這也就是爲什麼常有人抱怨,明明是請翻譯高手協助翻譯,自己也確認過專業內容的部分,但是交予外籍人士閱讀時,還是會有丈二金剛摸不著腦袋的狀況發生。

因此,最理想的方法,撰寫中文版論文時,請以中文思考模式進行寫作,到了準備投稿英文期刊時,請將大腦轉換為英文模式重新擬稿、編輯,這樣才能表現出理想的英文文章風格、結構與邏輯性。

GENDER CONFUSION

In Chinese, there aren’t separate gender pronouns (e.g., he andshehis and her). Thus, when Chinese speakers learn English, they often forget to use the appropriate gender pronouns. They mostly default to the masculine versions, which can lead to awkwardness when they refer to women using he or his.

SINGULAR/PLURAL NOUN CONFUSION

In Chinese, there aren’t separate singular and plural forms for nouns; the context is used to distinguish between singular and plural. For instance, if someone said “one cat” in Chinese, cat is singular, but if someone said “many cat”cat is plural. There is no separate plural form cats in Chinese. That’s why when Chinese people speak or write English, they tend to forget to make nouns plural, resulting in awkward-sounding phrases like “we have three dog”.

SUBJECT-VERB AGREEMENT CONFUSION

In Chinese, there is no such thing as verb conjugation to match with the corresponding subject. In English, we say “I like cheese”,“he likes cheese”, and “they like cheese”. In Chinese, there aren’t separate forms for like and likes, so one would simply say “he like cheese”, which sounds funny when translated into English.

VERB TENSE CONFUSION

In Chinese, there is no such thing as verb conjugation to denote tenses; the context is used to distinguish between past, present, future, and all the other various tenses. For example, there is a single word in Chinese that means run. If you want to use the present tense, you simply say “I run”. If you want the past tense, you have to say something like “yesterday I run”, whereyesterday provides the requisite context. And if you want the future tense, you have to say something like “tomorrow I run”.

Verb conjugation is one of the most difficult parts of the English language for native Chinese speakers to master, simply because there are so many tenses, and each can only be properly used in select situations. Chinese speakers know not to always use the (default) present tense of English verbs, but oftentimes their attempts at switching up the tenses lead to incorrect and funny-sounding sentences.

OMITTING OR INSERTING ARTICLES

In Chinese, there is no need for articles (aanthe) in front of nouns, so Chinese speakers often forget to place the appropriate article when speaking or writing English. For instance, they might say “I went to store” or “He likes movie”.

Sometimes articles should not be inserted, but Chinese speakers insert them anyways, perhaps because they remember that they should be aware of using articles when speaking or writing English. Thus, we get bloopers like “the God blessed America” or “you gained the weight last month”.

CONFUSING PREPOSITIONS

The correct use of prepositions (e.g., inatontointo) is often difficult for non-native English speakers to master. This part-of-speech is especially problematic for Chinese speakers because there isn’t such a strong distinction between different prepositions in the Chinese language.

To English speakers, “he got a job in Microsoft” sounds a bit off, but “he got a job at Microsoft” seems more natural-sounding. However, in Chinese, there is one word (technically, character) that sometimes means in and other times means at, depending on the context.

MIXING UP FIRST AND LAST NAMES

In Chinese, people’s last (family) names are spoken and written before their first names, the exact reverse of English conventions. Thus, when Chinese speakers mention English names, they sometimes say them backwards (e.g., “Smith Will”).

EXAMPLES OF COMBINING MULTIPLE MISTAKES

Here are some sentences that combine multiple mistakes of the types that I’ve described in this article.

“Yesterday I go to market to buy three duck.”

“Mary like to eat meat; he definitely not vegetarian.”

“He like to go to mall to shop for the clothing.”

“Last week he get good job at big city.”

Notice that the meanings of these sentences are still fairly clear despite the incorrect grammar, which makes them sound strange to native English speakers. The context is enough to disambiguate meaning.

專業修改英文提高您學術英文論文被發表的機會︰英文編修

期刊論文中翻英翻譯服務︰論文翻譯     摘要翻譯     文章翻譯

回去學術英文目錄

亞洲作者常見的錯誤

論文翻譯的善用圖片與圖示

論文翻譯的隨機與系統性誤差

論文翻譯之吸引讀者注意