We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By continuing to browse this repository, you give consent for essential cookies to be used. You can read more about our Privacy and Cookie Policy.

Durham e-Theses
You are in:

Lifting the Curtain on Opera Translation and Accessibility: Translating Opera for Audiences with Varying Sensory Ability

EARDLEY-WEAVER, Sarah (2014) Lifting the Curtain on Opera Translation and Accessibility: Translating Opera for Audiences with Varying Sensory Ability. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

PDF - Accepted Version


In the multicultural world of today, as boundaries continue to merge and evolve, issues of accessibility and translation are brought to the forefront of political and social debate. Whilst considerable progress has already been achieved in this domain, the international social and legal recognition of the human right of accessibility to the media and arts demands further advancement in the development of facilities to provide universal access to various art forms including theatre, cinema, and opera. With rapidly developing technology, digitisation and an increasingly socially-aware society, the notion of media accessibility is evolving in response to shifting audience expectations. Performing arts and media, such as opera, are called upon to advance further to embrace all audiences and related audiovisual translation methods are progressing. These include audio description and touch tours for the blind and partially-sighted, as well as sign language interpreting and surtitles for the deaf and the hard-of-hearing. These relatively new translation modalities which are consumer-oriented by nature require an original research design for investigation of the translation processes involved.
This research design follows two fundamental principles: (1) audience reception studies should be an integral part of the investigation into the translation process; and (2) the translation process is regarded as a network. This present work explores the unique translation processes of audio description, touch tours, surtitles and sign language interpreting within the context of live opera, focusing on the UK and from the perspective of actor-network theory. A twofold methodology is employed which brings together a study of the translator’s role and an audience reception survey. The translator’s task is examined through observational methods and dialogue with professional practitioners of the various aforementioned translation modalities. The audience’s perspective is investigated through analysis of data collected in a pioneering audience reception project conducted in May 2011, in collaboration with Opera North at performances of Bizet’s Carmen. The focus is on findings assessing the mutual impact of
the translator’s choices and audience reception on the distinctive process of translating opera for the blind and partially-sighted as well as the deaf and the hard-of-hearing.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:"opera accessibility and translation", "translation process", "audience reception", "audiovisual translation", "media accessibility", "audio description", "touch tour", "sign language interpreting", "surtitles", "actor-network theory", "multisemiotic translation"
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Modern Languages and Cultures, School of
Thesis Date:2014
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:07 May 2014 16:03

Social bookmarking: del.icio.usConnoteaBibSonomyCiteULikeFacebookTwitter