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Where English and Chinese don`t match each other


Luoman

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Recently I`ve been thinking a lot about how to translate certain English words into Chinese properly. 1) For example, "martial arts" is usually translated as 武术。But in English "martial arts" is a general term for many kinds of eastern arts of self-defence (wushu,karate,taekwondo and others). When someone says "I`m interested in eastern martial arts", how should we translate that? Did the English word "martial arts" have the same meaning as “武术”in the past and then started to have a broader meaning?

2) Chinese use the word "MTV" for "a videoclip", "a musical video". Is it one of the cases when a former proper name becomes a common one like "diesel" in English? Then how do we say "I saw a clip by *** on the MTV channel"?

3) How do we differentiate "erotic" and "pornography" in Chinese? All words like 黄色,色情,情色 have strong negative meanings. Taiwanese told me that 情色 has no negative meaning in Taiwan, but i know that 色情 and 情色 are synonyms in the mainland. And we certainly cannot use them in the phrases like "an erotical film won the prize" where "erotic" means a kind of art. If we say “性电影”,i think it will sound more like some kind of a medical or a scientific movie. Will “性爱电影” be the best translation? Also how can we translate phrases like "she flirts with someone", "she has success with men". If we translate literally into Chinese,such words will sound very dirty. I can only think of the variant “她很受男生欢迎”。

4)"phraseology" is translated in dictionaries as “成语学”。But when we say "phraseology", it has a much broader meaning. A phraseologist studies all kinds of set phrases, proverbs and idioms - chengyu,yanyu,suyu...

Thanks

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