Strategies of Translating the Concomitant Accusative by Saudi EFL Learners

 Author(s): Intisar Hassan Abdul Magid Mohammad

Abstract: Arabic is a Semitic language and is spoken throughout the Middle East, North Africa and some African countries. Classical Arabic is the language of the Qur’an; a Modern Standard Arabic is used in schools, universities and the mass media. On the other hand, English is a member of the Indo-European languages family. It is originated from Proto-Indo European, a language thought to be spoken about 3000 B. C. Due to the above-mentioned reason there are a lot of grammatical differences which arise between the two languages. Languages across the world have strikingly different syntactic rules when it comes to number, gender, person, tense, aspect, voice and word order. Some of these grammatical devices or systems may be present in one language but absent in another language. With students inclined to literally translate between such languages as in the case of KSA, the change of form can be quite difficult to understand. Teachers of language and translation in KSA are concerned with learning problems that arise due to lexical and grammatical non-equivalence between Arabic and English which often leads to confusion and incorrect output during translation process. The current study aimed at investigating one of the Arabic grammatical structures which has no equivalent in English (Concomitant Accusative). Following analytical methods, the study targeted two objectives: One, testing the learners’ ability to translate the Concomitant Accusative; and two, to gather an understanding of the strategies they adopted in the process. The study is likely to be of great value in a foreign language learning environment as is the case in the KSA. Participants were female undergraduate students (N=35) at Hurimilla College of Science and Humanities, Shaqra University, KSA. The data collected was analysed using SPSSR. The findings showed that this structure is indeed confusing for students as (53.7%) of the students’ translations were literal, while 26.3% were correct or acceptable, and (7.4%) were incorrect. On the other hand, (9.7%) of the students did not give any translations, while the weak translations represented (5.7%).

Keywords:  Concomitant; Classical Arabic; Accusative; grammatical differences; translation
Open Access: This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Copyright: © 2020 Al-Kindi Center for Research and Development