(Re)inventing the genre. The translation of the onē kotoba idiolect in the Japanese-Italian subtitling
Title of edited book
Gender issues. Translating and mediating languages, cultures and societies
Year of publication
In the context of interlinguistic subtitling, gender translation may disclose important clues about the way identity-related issues are perceived in a source and in a target language. Despite this, little has been said about the thorny questions that arise when gender issues emerging from Japanese movies need to be translated for non-English target audiences. In order not to strengthen gender stereotypes, this study focuses on Japanese-Italian subtitling and, in particular, on the rendition of the so-called onē kotoba idiolect which is a MF transgender/transex/crossdresser talk characterized by a sarcastic and crude tone and by the use of sexually connotated words that contributes to frequent diageneric shifts and mix between the masculine-feminine registers. According to recent research in the field of AVT, Japanese sociolinguistics and gender studies, the essentialist woman vs. man dualism (cissexism) should be abandoned and replaced with a constructionist framework which treats gender as a complex and fluid cultural construct. Since subtitlers confer identity to their characters through a creative manipulation of linguistic and non-linguistic resources, this preliminary study seeks to illustrate the main interlinguistic difficulties of the onē kotoba subtitling in Italian.