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A Contrastive Study on the C-E Translation of the Verb of Perception zhijian from the Perspective of Subjective Consciousness and Objective Consciousness

  • Huidan, Lu
Review of Educational Theory
Bilingual Publishing Co
Publication Date
Oct 31, 2020
DOI: 10.30564/ret.v3i4.2280
Bilingual Publishing


Verbs of perception include sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch, of which zhijian belongs to sight is very common in literary works, and its semantic meaning also begins to change with the development of time. Based on the original text and two translated versions of the Water Margin, this paper makes a comparative analysis of the translation strategies of zhijian on the basis that Chinese emphasizes subjective consciousness and the mixed consciousness of subjectivity and objectivity, while English stresses objective consciousness with a clear boundary between subjectivity and objectivity. According to previous studies, this paper regroups the appearance of zhijian and divides it into two categories, namely zhijian at the beginning of a sentence and at the beginning of a minor sentence. On the basis of the context and the changing function of zhijian, that is, the function of being a verb and being a discourse marker, it can be concluded that as the meaning of a verb, the real action, the meaning of zhijian is expressed by “seeing”, so translators usually adopt literal translation; while as a discourse marker, it is no longer the main component of sentence structure, but to highlight the following information, translators will adopt deletion, conversion and retaining. It can be seen that translators often need to convert Chinese characterized by subjective consciousness into English dominated by objective consciousness, thus conforming to various meaning of zhijian.

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