The Russia – Ukraine war shook the world deeply. As plurilateral discussions gained momentum, the demand for translation and interpretation services grew rapidly. During these tragic days, two language combinations come to the fore: Russian and English.
During times of war, translation and interpretation always come to the fore as multilateral relations increase exponentially. Summits, meetings, and plurilateral discussions are taking place in the international arena. The Russian English language combination has gained precedence as the world’s leading countries engage in conflict, and thus, the demand for Russian English translation services grows.
Russian English Translation Challenges
- The first significant difficulty when translating Russian English combinations is using different alphabets. Russians use an alphabet derived from Cyrillic script in the 9th century. One must first master both alphabets.
- Another difference that leads to problems in the translation process is the absence of articles in the Russian language. Articles help distinguish the subject and the object. For instance, the sentence “Man loves cake” leads to confusion in the English language as there is no article describing the object. Does the speaker mean a particular man loves cake or men in general? Are they referring to a specific piece of cake or all cakes? The lack of articles is troublesome for English speakers.
- Some Russian words have no equivalent in the English language. Culture is the backbone of any language; its impact is always evident, and thus, translating culture-specific words is a constant challenge. The famous novelist Vladimir Nabokov claims that no English word renders all the shades of the Russian word “toska”. Toska means great spiritual anguish, often without a cause, and for this reason, it is roughly translated as sadness, yet this is not adequate as it does not truly express the deep meaning of the Russian word.
Tips for Overcoming Barriers in Russian English Languages
- Translate meaning rather than words
- Proofreading by a native speaker
- Master both cultures
- Follow the agenda closely in both languages
Russian English Machine Translation Tools
- DeepL Translator
- Bing Translator
- Google Translate