Norms 1991: 94f, cited in Trosborg 1997:

Norms can be, however, described negatively by carrying constraints – restrictions to be challenged or overruled.  Consequently, they can be recognised as an intrusion on the freedom of the translator.  ‘A translator can occasionally thrive by breaking norms or, quite often, suffer by obeying them’ (Morini 2006: 124).  Translation problems will always remain problems, even when a translator has learned to deal with them.  Each culture has its own habits, norms, and conventions.  In any case, solutions to text-specific problems cannot be generalised; the translator must act creatively.

 Translation needs to maintain the message and intention, which both translators achieved.  It is the translator’s task to mediate between the two cultures and mediation cannot mean imposing one’s culture-specific concept on members of another culture’s community.  Similarly, since authors are rarely experts in translation, they are likely to insist on a faithful rendering of the source text’s surface structures (probably the case for Lord of the Flies).  Translators must take expectations into account, even if it is difficult to know what they are.

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  However, this does not mean that translators are obliged to do exactly what the readers expect, yet there is a moral responsibility not to deceive them (Nord 1991: 94f, cited in Trosborg 1997: 48).  Norms are evidently at the forefront of translators’ minds, even if they are subconscious and were once undocumented. This essay demonstrates that the translator decides how to approach translations, yet sometimes choices during the process are taken away from them.  It shows that norms have been used in the translated literary texts, with the main approach being the importance of meaning toward the intended audience.

 Whether the texts lend themselves to literal or free translation, every translation sets its own profile of ‘equivalence priorities’, and it is part of the translator’s job to assess the overall profile that would be appropriate.  Chesterman (1997: 53) states that ‘norms make life easier by regulating behaviour to make it beneficial to all involved.’  This is an advantage of norms, enhancing logical translations and the knowledge of a target culture’s requirements. 


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