A Comparative Analysis of Paratextual Elements in the Complete Translations of Gulliver’s Travels
Özdoğan, Esra Duygu
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ABSTRACT ÖZDOĞAN, Esra Duygu. A Comparative Analysis of Paratextual Elements in the Complete Translations of Gulliver’s Travels, Master’s Thesis, Ankara, 2018. Jonathan Swift’s work, Gulliver’s Travels is regarded as one of the most important satirical works of English literature. The novel mainly includes explicit and implicit criticisms of institutions and humankind. However, the book is not always perceived as a satirical work because of non-textual elements applied by the publisher, the author or by a third party. Genette (1997) has defined these elements as paratextual elements which enable a work to become a book and to reach the reader. Besides, these elements affect the reception of a text. The aim of this study is to explore the paratextual elements in the complete translations of Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels and to find out the most effective elements on the reception of the novel by the reader. The study firstly carries out a bibliographic survey to demonstrate the position of the book in the Turkish literary polysystem within the framework of Itamar Even-Zohar’s (1990) polysystem theory. It later analyzes the paratextual elements of the complete translations of the novel translated by İrfan Şahinbaş, Kıymet Erzincan Kına and Can Ömer Kalaycı, and published by five different publishing houses. It finally discusses the most effective elements which can change the perception of Gulliver’s Travels. As a result, the study shows that the novel is mostly appreciated as a part of children’s literature in the Turkish literary polysystem and it also finds out four effective paratextual elements which are the titles of the series, the please-inserts, the prefatory notes and the notes among eight detected elements in the complete translations. Although the bibliographical survey displays its position in the Turkish literary polysystem mostly as a work of children’s literature, the paratextual elements of the complete translations reveal the satirical style of Swift and the target reader as adults. Keywords Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels, polysystem theory, paratextual elements, perception.