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Translating literature into playability

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From the perspective of Game Localisation (O’Hagan and Mangiron 2013, Bernal-Merino 2015), this paper examines the translation of Dante’s Inferno (Electronic Arts 2010) from English into Italian. Parallel excerpts from in-game dialogues are compared in order to analyse the relationship between the source and the target texts, while exploring the influence Dante’s masterpiece exerts on the Italian localisation. The objective is to show that, when a game is based on the target culture literature, the latter seems to constrain translation to ensure a successful local impact. As findings suggest, by means of quotations together with lexical, syntactic and stylistic choices, the Italian game is more literarily expressive than its English source, thus providing players with a multimedia interactive Dantesque experience.
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Keywords: game localisation; literature; remediation; translation; video games

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2017

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  • Research related with internationalization and localization is new and is more and more solicited by language businesses, software developers, translation agencies, international multilingual organizations, universities, language planning policy makers and standardization institutes. The Journal of Internationalization and Localization (JIAL) aims at establishing a worldwide discussion forum for both professionals and academics in the area of internationalization and localization. The scope of the journal is as broad as possible in order to target all the players in the internationalization and localization profession. The specific aim of the journal is to leverage the full range of information, from academic research results to the floor of today's language industries, and, conversely, to leverage business experiences in order to inform academic research. JIAL addresses an interdisciplinary readership in that it focuses on contributions that generate an impact on the localization and translation industry. A link between professionals and academics is assured by the specific content of the articles and the members of the editorial board. Each issue is reviewed by both academics and professionals.
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