While he was recovering, I found an English book about the theme of our work: “Missionaries to Match Our Message.” After reading it throughout, I wondered how my Portuguese speaking friends could also benefit of its message.
Then, I decided to give my first shot on translating English to Portuguese. With the end in mind, I dedicated the whole afternoon to that project.
At the end of the day, those 52 English pages had all been translated with the help of an old typewriter. As I didn’t have a black tap, the text was all written in red. (It illustrates that a positive attitude is always useful to help us achieve our goals, in spite of the circumstances.)
Since I concluded the task, several companions thanked me for having access to the beautiful message covered in the book. This simple work enlarged my circle of friend in a meaningful way.
Can you imagine my happiness?
"We are what we repeatedly do."
Simply stated, a language consists in a symbolic representation of ideas through sounds, words and drawings properly organized.
There are many ways of representing messages and ideas. A drawing, a gesture, a facial expression or even a whistle has different meanings for different groups of people.
The Braille system, the Sign Language or the Morse code, each represents ideas from the real world. And each symbol starts making sense when both the sender as the receptor knows how to interpret the code.
That said, what does 'translate' mean?
Translating something means changing the code or symbols to a code understood by the receptor. That’s why flexibility is a main skill for good translators. They learn how to see the world under multiple perspectives.
Here is an example:
In Brazilian Portuguese, the seat belt is called ‘cinto de segurança’ – meaning ‘safety belt’. The same disposal is named after different associatioins. While English speakers associate the belt to its place (on the seat), Portuguese speakers link it to its function: ensure safety.
Select some interesting articles in your own language – or write them yourself – and try make a proper Portuguese translation. Use our Free Portuguese Translation Service* to help you get this job done.
*Use an automated translator for single words and sentences – and our human translation service for short texts;-)
“A new language is a new vision of life.”
- Frederico Fellini