If you’re an academic looking to have your work published in another language, there are several challenges that must be overcome before your text reaches the high standards required by most publications. If you attempt to address these issues on your own, chances are you will run into serious difficulties along the way. However, working with an academic editor increases your odds of success. Here is a look at two specific problems that translation poses and why you should enlist an editor to help you overcome them.
If you’ve spent even a short amount of time in academia, you’re probably already familiar with the importance of considering your audience when you write. Even if you’ve got the most brilliant thesis in the world, if you don’t make an effort to tailor your text to potential readers, there’s a good chance it won’t be well-received.
This rhetorical consideration of your audience becomes even more complicated when dealing with a translation, though. Even if you’re studying the same subject matter, scholars who are from another culture may be expecting entirely different writing conventions that the ones you normally use. Without an editor familiar with these differences between languages, you run the risk of unintentionally alienating your audience.
While you are primarily responsible for the integrity of your work, an editor can also help to ensure that this integrity carries over into the language of translation. Issues like inconsistency and ambiguity are common problems that can lead to a text being rejected for publication—and these sorts of things reflect poorly on the author as well.
When you work with an academic editor, they can help you better ensure that your arguments and research maintain the strength they had in your native language. Whether it’s because of unexpected cultural differences, trouble with idiomatic phrases, or simply difficulty with grammar, vague and inconsistent writing is a problem best addressed by an expert editor.