The Translation of Dune: An Encounter of Languages
Frank Herbert’s novel, Dune (1965), is special in the science fiction field; the originality of this novel lives not only in its content, but also in its form as the author uses some stylistic effects to make his point, and especially foreign languages. Arabic is greatly represented in the novel and takes on a particular meaning. Dune is a novel in which languages are in contact, and the translation adds another linguistic dimension to the work. Loanwords have two aims in Dune: creating an exotic paradigm inside an unknown alien world while appealing to the reader’s background about those particular languages. However, in a science fiction context the loanwords tend to be more complicated as their meanings do not always refer to their initial and real life meanings, they are fiction words, according to Angenot’s terminology. Frank Herbert uses some foreign terms and changes their meaning according to the context and the color he wants for his fictional world. The French translation of Frank Herbert’s work is thus constrained by the foreign color the author wanted to give his novel and the semantic distortion Herbert gave to the loanwords. A comparative analysis of the loanwords in both the original and French versions of Dune helps to understand how the translator has dealt with the linguistic encounter of the novel and also, in a larger scale, to understand how the particular features of science fiction universe are translated.
KeywordsDune Translation French English Science-fiction Fiction words Loanwords Arabic Frank Herbert
I would like to thank Pr. ABOUDA Lotfi for his help with Arabic words.
- Adams, D. (2005). The Hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy. New York: Del Rey Books.Google Scholar
- Angenot, M. (1979). The absent paradigm: An introduction to the semiotics of science fiction. Science Fiction Studies, 6(17). Retrieved from http://www.depauw.edu/sfs/backissues/17/angenot17.htm.
- Baklava. In Wikipédia. Retrieved from https://fr.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Baklava&oldid=140235976 and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baklava. Accessed 31 August 2017.
- Bedouin. (n.d.). Merriam-Webster. Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bedouin.
- Blish, J. (1971). On science fiction criticism. SF: The other side of realism (pp. 166–170). Bowling Green: Bowling Green University Popular Press.Google Scholar
- Bradbury, R. (1982). Fahrenheint 451. Del Rey.Google Scholar
- Clareson, T. D. (1971). The other side of realism. SF: The other side of realism (pp. 1–28). Bowling Green: Bowling Green University Popular Press.Google Scholar
- Clarity, B. E. (2003). A dictionary of Iraqi Arabic: English-Arabic. Arabic-English: Georgetown University Press.Google Scholar
- Dick, P. K. (1978). How to build a universe that doesn’t fall apart two days later. Retrieved from http://downlode.org/Etext/how_to_build.html.
- Dick, P. K. (2004) . Ubik. London: Gollancz.Google Scholar
- Dune books. (n.d.). [Library catalog]. Retrieved 3 July 2017, from http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=dune&dblist=638&fq=ap%3A%22herbert%2C+frank%22+%3E+fm%3Afic&qt=facet_fm%3A_content#%2528x0%253Abook%2Bx4%253Aprintbook%2529%2C%2528x0%253Abook%2Bx4%253Adigital%2529format.
- Fedayeen. (n.d.). Oxford Dictionaries. Retrieved from https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/fedayeen.
- Gaafar, M., & Wightwick, J. (2004). Arabic compact dictionary: Arabic-English/ English-Arabic. Hippocrene Books.Google Scholar
- Handwerk, B. (2003). What Does ‘Jihad’ Really Mean to Muslims? Retrieved September 27, 2017, from http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2003/10/1023_031023_jihad.html.
- Herbert, F. (1985). Dune. (M. Demuth, Trans.). Paris, France: Éd. France loisirs.Google Scholar
- Herbert, F. (1990a). Dune. New York: Ace Books.Google Scholar
- Herbert, F. (1990b). Terminology of the imperium. Dune (pp. 833–863). New York: Ace Books.Google Scholar
- Herbert, B. (2003). Dreamer of Dune: The biography of Frank Herbert. London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
- Jouette, A. (1993). Dictionnaire d’orthographe et d’expression écrite. Paris: Le Robert.Google Scholar
- Kunzru, H. (2015, July 3). Dune, 50 years on: How a science fiction novel changed the world. The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jul/03/dune-50-years-on-science-fiction-novel-world.
- Le Cycle de «Dune» de Frank HERBERT. (2000). Retrieved September 27, 2017, from http://www.cafardcosmique.com/Le-Cycle-de-Dune-de-Frank-HERBERT.
- Le Guin, U. K. (1992). The left hand of darkness. London: Orbit Books.Google Scholar
- Phillips, T. (2013). The sounds of interstellar space. Retrieved from https://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2013/01nov_ismsounds.
- Picard, S. (2017). C’est officiel, Denis Villeneuve va réaliser Dune, et ce sera une série de films. Retrieved from http://www.premiere.fr/Cinema/News-Cinema/C-est-officiel-Denis-Villeneuve-va-realiser-Dune-et-ce-sera-une-serie-de-films.
- Plante Jourdain, C. (2005). Le vocabulaire étranger dans la réflexion politique de Dune. Cercles, 14, 73–89.Google Scholar
- Toorawa, S. M. (2005). Ibn Abi Tahir Tayfur and Arabic Writerly Culture: A Ninth Century Bookman in Baghdad. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Van Vogt, A. E. (1971). The World of Null-A. London: Sphere Books.Google Scholar