Massidda, Serenella (2013) The Italian fansubbing phenomenon. Doctoral Thesis.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the Italian fansubbing phenomenon through an analysis of the beliefs and practices of two online communities: ItaSA and Subsfactory. The present study builds upon prior research related to amateur translation conducted by Bogucki, and found in Díaz-Cintas and Anderman (2009). In the concluding remarks of his paper, “Amateur Subtitling on the Internet”, the author states the lack of feasibility of investigating the work of fansubbers, since the unpredictability of their work and their linguistic incompetence deprive their translations of any potential credibility. He argues, however, that if amateur subtitling were to become near-professional, fansubbed versions should be subjected to a translation quality assessment and, therefore, contrasted with professional subtitling. Thus, since the quality of Italian fansubs has improved over time, being produced under conditions almost comparable with those found in the professional environment, the present research investigating the phenomenon is felt to be appropriate. In the light of the theories formulated by Lewis (1985), Nornes (2004), and Venuti (2008), relevance is given to the various approaches employed by fansubbers, relating to “foreignization” and “target-orientedness” as opposed to “domestication”, the guiding principles of mainstream subtitling. Against this background, a "hybrid proposal‟ relating to future subtitling norms is advanced. The proposal stems from a specific theoretical approach giving prominence to faithfulness in translation, namely a well-balanced blend of the best resources used both by professionals and amateurs in order to develop a set of norms allowing increased freedom to subtitlers.
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