Conversion of Voice

Chinese and English, these two languages, have vast difference in expressions. Among them, the voice is obviously arresting. In Chinese, the active voice is preferred. Yet in English, they tend to apply passive voice instead. Therefore, translators should pay some attention on this aspect in order to produce the smooth, idiomatic works.

I collected some examples to shed some light on it, in hope of helping us improve the translation skills.

1.  We are kept strong and well by clean air.

我们被清洁的空气保持得健壮?

空气清新使人身强体壮。

The first version is translated literally. The voice is consistent. Yet, it is an aweful translation and the Chinese people would feel very confused at hearing this sentence. Then the conversion of voice asserts itself here.

2. His dismissal turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

他被解雇了,结果反而因祸得福。

3. Other cases will also be discussed later.

其他事项稍后也将讨论/稍后也将讨论其他事项。(不必说出主动或无法说出主动)

4. If the water is heated, the molecules move more quickly.

水一加热,水分子就快速运动。

5. Visitors are requested to leave their coats in the cloakroom.

请来宾将外套存放衣帽间。

6. Your inquiries for all types of electric goods would be appreciated.

欢迎来函询购各种电器产品。

7. We expect that the delivery will be effected at your earliest convenience.

盼你方早日交货。

8. The goods are urgently needed. Prompt shipment will be appreciated.

急需此货,请即装运。

9. Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested; that is, some books are to be read only in parts; others to be read, but not curiously; and some few to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention.

书有可浅尝者,有可吞食者,少数则须咀嚼消化。换言之,有只须读其部分者,有只须大体涉猎者,少数则须全读,读时须全神贯注,孜孜不倦。

The above sentences are converted into active voice while translating, which makes them native to us, Chinese people. When we come into some sentences of passive voice, it would be the right approach to make it converted.

In addition, the clause "It" are the commonly seen phenomemon that needs conversion of voice.

It is generally accepted that…

一般认为;大家公认

It is alleged that…

有人主张(断定)

It is believed that…

据信;人们相信。

It can not be denied that…

不可否认

Words translated by CCJK

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