Translation of humour with special reference to the cartoons in 'Leman' and other popular weekly humour magazines of Turkey
In this dissertation, the various strategies of humour translation have been analysed by taking various cartoons with speech bubbles from the popular Turkish humour weekly magazine Leman and other similar publications. Generally considered as an extremely problematic, sometimes next to impossible, task within the translation studies, humour translation requires and deserves special attention since, as it was explained in the related sections, it may unite or separate people within the context of one single joke. As we also have stated elsewhere in the text, the description of both humour and translation, as two separate concepts, are not available in certain and decisive terms. This is especially true for the concept of humour which also covers the areas of laughter, jokes, wit, satire, irony and many others which are all interchangeable with each other. This fact makes an all-round definition very difficult. We also tried to show that, the visual humour or the visual aspect of humour could be a valuable asset for a foreign recipient who genuinely wishing to understand humour products from a different and remote culture. We wanted to show, and to some extent share, that the cartoons, provided they are not strictly political or crammed with regional issues and accents, could be fathomed by an outsider with the help of a decent translation and an adequate amount of contextual and cultural background information. We have assumed, from the very beginning of this project, that the contemporary Turkish humour, particularly cartoons that are represented in Leman and other similar publications, was interesting enough to become a dissertation subject, particularly those with stock types or characters since they have the potential of becoming snapshots of a country which is still considered as alien (or other) by the West. As far as this writer concerned, the main points of interest concerning Turkey by the British public could roughly be summarised in two points: a bargain trip to the seaside during the summer season and some occasional football matches Manchester United plays against Turkish teams in Istanbul. Especially the latter always attracts heavy press coverage during and after a match. We wanted to show that there are other cultural aspects exist in Turkey as well and such aspects could be transferred to other cultures by ways of translation. The material we have chosen is both visual and prose at the same time and although they function as a unity, they also complement each other. It is proposed that, although a perfect translation is always a desirable concept in almost every field, the translation of humour is possible within certain frameworks. The visual side of cartoons, as in situation comedies, contributes immensely to the comprehension of the message, which should be considered as the most important feature of the joke. To this end, a variety of cartoons are selected from both Lenicyn and other similar humour weeklies and translated with an adequate amount of background and contextual information that provided beforehand. This background information also includes, as far as the material in question permits, a close analysis of the language and the subject matter. To provide a better insight for the reader, a summary of Turkish humour and humour magazines are added alongside a section on the issue of humour itself.