Common Turkish Translation Challenges
Despite its relatively small population, the demand for Turkish translations is on the rise all over the board. You might believe that Turkish is just a lesser known language to utilize for your site and advertising materials next to major languages like Chinese and Spanish, yet the Turkish industry is one of those which can easily be labeled as a missed opportunity. In fact, more companies are choosing to outsource their translation duties to Turkish speaking sources as a result of the growing Turkish economy. Not only is this beneficial to your business as a whole, but it’s also better for the future of Turkey as a country.
Turkish has three official languages, the standard Turkish language, Turkish Arabic and the Turkish assimilated version of English. The Turkish language is spoken in a separate region of the country along with the country of Turkey itself, while the Turkish Arab dialect is used by the people who live in the area bordering both Turkey and Syria. The Turkish Arabic is used as the official language of much of the Middle East, while the standard Turkish and the Turkish assimilated version of English are used elsewhere in Central and South Asia. These three versions of the Turkish language differ primarily in terms of their agglutinative structures, which have their own unique set of grammatical rules. Although they do sound similar, there are significant differences between the Turkish Arabic and the Turkish standard that can make the translations of these two languages challenging for translators.
For those who are working with Turkish translation, it is imperative that the source language be accurate and the target language be highly expressive. Because of these differences, it can often be difficult for translators to determine which version of the Turkish language should be used and, even when using the Turkish Arabic dialect, it is not always easy to understand the meaning of certain words or phrases within the texts. In some cases, it may even be necessary to change the source language to make the message clearer. Turkish’s highly expressive nature makes it highly impractical to translate texts in this manner.
Before beginning to work on a Turkish translation, you will want to determine whether you will be working in-country or out-of-country. In-country Turkish translation projects require that the translator’s understanding of the Turkish legal system is sufficiently comprehensive to allow them to discern the various elements of Turkish law that impact on the creation of legal documents. For example, a new penal code that goes into effect in Turkey will likely require that the legal text be translated as per the legal amendments that go into effect. However, while this can be a challenge, it is important that the project is completed in an appropriate fashion to ensure that the final document meets all standards and is error free. When translating in-country, it is imperative that the translator fully understands the cultural nuances of the Turkish culture and that the chosen translation style guide conforms to these cultural expectations.
When working outside of Turkey, there are several additional Turkish translation challenges that you may face. One of these is related to the use of cultural norms in both the translation of the text and the interpretation of the same. When dealing with an Arabic interpreter, the culture of the country where the interpreter works will likely play a large role in their interpretation of the source material. The culture of Turkey in particular is known for its liberal stance and there are many examples of Arabic interpreters who have chosen to break with convention and offer interpretations that are more flexible, inclusive, and compatible with the norms of Turkish society.
In cases where you cannot find an Arabic interpreter who is able to work in line with your project, there are a few options that you may consider. In addition to hiring an in-country or out-of-country interpreter, you may be capable of conducting a translation on your own through the use of certain software programs that provide Arabic translation services. There are also a number of online resources that provide you with an array of quality resources that may be required for successful Arabic translation services.
One of the more common Turkish translation challenges is the use of the agglutinative languages in the sources. These are predominantly the Turkish versions of Arabic, Persian, and the like. While the Turkish terminology is largely based on Arabic and Persian, there are significant differences between the two languages, especially when it comes to vocabulary, grammar, and sentence structure. The sources that you end up working with will therefore require that you make sure that your sources utilize the appropriate agglutinative languages for their intended purposes.
When dealing with sources that are based upon either Arabic or Persian, the resources that you choose should also employ the appropriate Turkish style guides. The style guide is essentially a standard of formatting and organization that provides guidelines and instructions for translators to follow in order to create an accurate and properly translated product. While some of these different Turkish translation style guides do not conform to any specific set of rules, many of them adhere to certain standards, and by using the appropriate Turkish style guide, you can ensure that your sources have been correctly formatted and organized to reflect the correct message for which they are intended.