The Goal of Advertisement Translation: With Reference to C-E/E-C Advertisements

Ying Cui 1
Author Information & Copyright
1City University of Hong Kong

Copyright ⓒ 2016, Sejong University Language Research Institue. This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Published Online: Jan 01, 2017


Advertisements have a clear goal to promote a product or service by appealing to the audience, so the conditions of target readers must be considered. Thus, there are various restrictions for advertising, including people’s habits and customs, religion and beliefs, morals and ethics, laws in the target place, and linguistic or stylistic requirement. A translated advertisement is supposed to promote a product or service in the target culture. In this sense Skopos theory can be applied, for it pays great attention to purpose of translation, and holds that, as long as the purpose of translation can be realized, the translation is successful. Guided by this theory, we will summarize five points to be considered in advertisement translation. First, there is no need to stick to linguistic equivalence, for the dominant rule is the skopos rule. Second, the translated advertise- ments should be both textually and intertextually coherent in order that the readers can understand and trust them. Third, habits and customs, religion and beliefs, morals and ethics of the target audience should be considered and respected. Fourth, the relevant laws and regulations in the target culture should be observed. Fifth, the stylistic requirement of advertisements should be met.

Keywords: goal; advertising translation; skopos theory



Baker, M. 1998. Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies. London &New York: Routledge.


Munday, J. 2001. Introducing Translation Studies: Theories and Applications. London &New York: Routledge.


Newmark. P. 2001. Textbook of Translation. Shanghai: Shanghai Foreign Language Education Press.


Nord, C. 2001. Translation as a Purposeful Activity: Functionalis Approaches Explained. Shanghai: Shanghai Foreign Language Education Press.


Venuti, L. 2001. The Translation Studies Reader. London &New York: Routledge.


Wells, W. et al. 1999. Advertising—Principle and Practice(Fourth edition). Beijing: Qinghua University Press.


Duan, Z. 2002. An Introduction to and Comment on Skopos Theory [翻译目的论介评.渝州大学学报(社会科学版)]. Joural of Yuzhou Universty 2, 81-84.


Guo, D. 2003. The Translation of Culture from the Point of Skopos Theory [从目的论看文化因素的翻译.河北理工学院学报]. Journal of Hebei Institute of Technology (Social Science Edition) 2, 114-116.


Jiang, H. 2002. Skopos Theory in Translation Studies [浅谈翻译目 的论 . 盐城 师范学院学报 ( 人文 社会科学版 )]. Journal of Yancheng Teachers College 3, 87-89.


Luo, L. 2000. Strategies and Techniques in Translating Chinese Advertisements into English [汉英广告翻译的策略与方法.南 都学坛(哲学社会科学版)]. Academic Forum of Nan Du 3.2, 58-60.


Miao, J. 1994. Modern Advertising [现代广告学.北京: 中国人民大 学出版社]. Beijing: China Renmin University Press.


Ni, N. 2004. Advertising Textbook [广告学教程.北京:中国人民大 学出版社]. Beijing: China Renmin University Press.


Wang, J. 2000. Interpretation of the Variation in Chinese Contem- porary Translation from the Perspective of Skopos Theory [从 Skopos 理论解读中国近代翻译中的变体现象.北京第二外国 语学院学 报 ]. Journal Beijing Second Foreign Language Institute 6, 24-29.


Zheng, X. 2002. Skopostheories and Advertisement Translation [从 目的性理论看广告翻译.福建农林大学报(哲学社会科学版)]. Journal of Fujian Agriculture Universigy (Social Science Edition) 3, 88-90.


Zhuang, E. 1998. Cultural Difference between China and West & Cross-Cultrual Communication [东西方文化差异与对外交流. 上海:华东化工学院出版社]. Shanghai: East China Chemical Technology Publishing Company.