The Translatability of Palestinian Prisoners’ Terms into English: A Pragmatic Perspective
Rayyan, Iman Ibrahim Yousef
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This study deals with the translation into English of the cryptic terms which Palestinian prisoners have nomenclatured in response to the harsh life conditions in the Israeli jails. These terms were collected through interviews with five newly freed Palestinian prisoners who served long terms in the Israeli jails. The terms cover some aspects of daily life in prison, including security, social, military, and food terms. This study identifies the terms in the pragmatic frame of reference for these terms, and then it provides suitable translations by the researcher into English seeking to capture these pragmatic imports. This study found that these terms have drifted from their original semantic usages and acquired new applications prompted by Palestinian prisonersʼ needs for socializing, maneuvering, and self- and mate-security concerns. In the majority of cases, the translators are advised to identify the precise intended meaning and then use communicative translation in order to faithfully render the pragmatic meaning in the target language.