The article investigates the transformation of the image of the Chinese government in the process of translating its Annual Work Reports (AWR) into English. The focus is the linguistic choice of Agency, which specifies whether an event is presented as happening by itself or being caused by an external agent. By analyzing both the Chinese AWRs and their translations diachronically (2001, 2006, 2011 and 2016), the study finds that the modest and inclusive image of the government in the Chinese reports is often transformed into a competent and responsible government in the English translations through consistent linguistic choices of presenting the work as either happenings or doings. Both the linguistic shifts and image transformation, as is argued in the article, relate more to the context than to the linguistic constraints.
- Annual Work Report
- Chinese government