Cultural Integration Seminar on Chengdu Culture International Communication
On October 30, 2018, Sisyphe Park Books & Up Coffee witnessed the Seminar on Chengdu Culture International Communication themed with "Cultural Integration". Attendees include experts from the College of Foreign Languages and Cultures of Sichuan University (CFLC for short) and Chengdu Translators Association (CTA for short), along with the team of HELLO Chengdu, discussing topics such as the Chengdu Culture International Communication Reference Corpus, and helping spread Chengdu culture internationally.
Background: To further spread the Chengdu culture, HELLO Chengdu cooperated with experts in language and culture from CFLC and CTA, to preliminarily build the Chengdu Culture International Communication Reference Corpus (hereinafter referred to as the Corpus) in 2018. The Corpus is mainly composed of core concepts and key statements related to Chengdu Culture, as well as English and Chinese entries in the aspects of urban planning, infrastructure, urban tourism and life. It will serve as the reference for international communication of Chengdu after being finalized.
Thumbs up: The Corpus Reflects Richness of Chengdu Culture
At the beginning of the Seminar, Liu Jia, Associate Professor at CFLC and Director of MTI Education Center, as the major proofreader, first shared her views. Guests then discussed the first draft of the Corpus. They said that the section division and included entries give full expression to the diversified Chengdu Culture. And Chengdu's ancient poetry, as well as local customs and historical relics, such entries have also embodied the uniqueness and inclusiveness of Chengdu's culture. This seminar mainly focuses on the Corpus.
Experience: Importance of Context in Cross-Cultural Expression
Experts in language and culture gathered together to share their translation experience and ideas. Liu Jia expressed that it is necessary to examine the original text and find out the original meaning before translating texts related to culture. When talking about the application of the Corpus, experts consider that it is insufficient to copy certain entry in different contexts. There should be an appropriate description combined with the context in a real scenario. For instance, when translating names of historical relics, the translator needs to provide an accurate description of the object. However, when illustrations are combined with texts, the translated texts can be simpler, allowing visual representation to do its magic.
Communication: Promote the Charm of Culture
The second round of topics began after the discussion on the Corpus, namely how to better reflect the advantages of Chengdu Culture and overcome cultural differences during the translation process? The experts believe recognizing target audience in communication is priority. Reno Liang, General Secretary of CTA and Chairman of Linguist Translation Services, stated that foreigners will choose to read different English texts according to their understanding of China and to the varied occasions. Therefore, the language style and text can be adjusted based on the communication objectives and specific purposes.
Guests, in the light of their hands-on experience of communicating with foreigners, agree that Chengdu's unique culture, such as the tea culture, has attracted numerous foreigners to visit or settle down here. To better spread Chengdu Culture, they also suggest that experts in related fields take part in the translation team, striving for a professional and precise international communication of Chengdu.
The Corpus is expected to take shape at the end of 2018, and HELLO Chengdu will continue carrying out a series of discussions on the international communication of Chengdu Culture.