عنوان مقاله [English]
The present article studies some notions in Psychoanalysis in the context of Linguistics and Translation Studies (TS), and aims at investigating the relationship between Jacques Lacan’s (1901-1981) ideas and a number of fundamental concepts and notions in the field of TS.
Lacan transformed psychoanalysis from a merely 'therapeutic methodology' into a novel form of science concentrating mainly on the various 'realities' rooted in culture (Pombo Sánchez, 2007, cited in Tristán, 2015: 61). Translation, as a product, can have its own life in the target language (TL) and possess a somehow independent ‘identity’. Since 'identity', as a specialized concept in psychoanalysis, is deeply rooted in 'culture', the study of culture, as a concept narrowly intertwined with ‘language’ and ‘translation’, gains paramount significance (Afrouz, 2017: 41; Afrouz, 2020: 9). But, the important point here is that, while a lot of researchers have worked on issues like ‘culture’, ‘identity’ and ‘translation’, few studies attempted to rigorously take the issue of ‘psychoanalysis’ and its relation to the TS theories into consideration. Therefore, the current study was an attempt just to fill the research gap, or at least, to avoid the expansion of such a gap into becoming a complete breakage.
The American School of comparative literature is the general framework of the paper and principles of conducting interdisciplinary studies introduced by Henry Remak and Steven Tötösy de Zepetnek are the main basis for conducting the present study. In the American School, in contrast to the French School, the scope of literature is so wide that it paves the way for researchers to make their comparison related to various fields of studies, such as linguistics, Translation Studies, art, psychology, psychoanalysis, etc.
As for the corpus of the current study, we had Lacan’s ideas, extracted from his books and articles, analytically compared with a number of fundamental concepts and notions in the field of TS—the concepts were mainly adopted from ideas of some key figures in the field.
Lacan refers to three stages of the growth of an infant, namely the 'Real', the 'Imaginary', and the 'Symbolic' (Evans, 1996: 50). In the Real stage, everything exists in its complete form, with no deficiency. Similarly, in the first stage of translation, there is no imperfection since all that is available is the source text (ST) which just needs to be comprehended by the translator. Here, s/he just needs to ‘absorb’ the ST textual material. In the Imaginary stage, the infant comes to make a distinction between him/her ‘self’ and the ‘other’. In a similar vein, after comprehending the ST, the translator strives to draw distinguishing lines between the ST textual material and the TL equivalents already formed in his mind. Therefore, in the second phase of translation, the translator detects equivalents for the SL imaginary signified entities. The translator assumes them to be the same as the ST. That is exactly where the target text (TT) or ‘translation’ gradually comes to existence. The symbolic stage is similar to the last stage of translation, namely the production phase where the TT becomes ready. At this stage, those signified entities in the mind of the translator become visible (either in the oral or written form) and constitute a unified whole called the TT.
As the ‘other’ has a unique position in psychoanalytical issues, the same can be assumed for the position of the ST in translational issues. While translators do their best to create a uniquely perfect text in the target language and call him/herself its ‘creator’, it would never seem to be so simple to make such a claim, and that is why the act of translating seems to be an everlastingly unfinished task—a task which is sometimes associated by the act of self-revision on the translator him/herself, or is done by others in the form of ‘re-translations’, as a step towards reaching perfection or approaching as close as possible to that ‘ideal form’ in their minds.
The current paper focused on a number of concepts in psychoanalysis through the lens of linguistics and Translation Studies, and aimed at exploring the potential abstract relation between Lacan’s ideas and some primary notions in the discipline of Translation Studies. An analytical comparison was also made between Lacanian Psychoanalytic Theories and that of Sigmund Freud’s.
The process of child’s growth and concepts such as “The Real”, “The Imaginary”, and “The Symbolic” were expounded. Then, Freud’s and Lacan’s ideas on “Self”, “Other”, “unconscious”, “parents”, “Phallus”, “center” and its influence on the whole system were all comparatively analyzed. Finally, the relationship between the two psychoanalysts’ ideas and some notions in Translation Studies was investigated. To accomplish this, a number of key concepts in the field (e.g. text, text-typology, different types of translation, etc.) were initially discussed and then it was attempted to take a look at Lacan’s ideas through the spectacles of the TS.
On balance, the findings, being perfectly in line with that of Afrouz’s (2019) study, revealed the existence of a special abstract relationship between Translation Studies and psychoanalysis.
Prospective researchers are highly recommended to concentrate on the ideas offered by other prominent psychoanalysts and meticulously explore them through the lens of linguistic and TS theories. Furthermore, other comparative studies of such kind can potentially be conducted by competent researchers who are interested in ideas presented in Structuralisms, Post-structuralisms, Modernism, Post-modernism, Marxism, etc. and analytically compare them with theories in the TS and even, Interpreting Studies (IS).