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Converging Texts:

Teaching Culture
and Subtitling

Dr. Pia Arboleda

University of Hawaii at Manoa
Components of an Integrated Approach
to Teaching, Culture and Translation

Philippine Literature

Philippine History and


My Subtitling Student
Translation course
Project output

Philippine Language

Philippine Film
Teaching Translation

Course Description: This course is an introduction to

the theory and practice of translation from Filipino to
English and vice versa. The student will learn the
fundamentals of translating literary and non-literary
texts for a specific purpose and a specific audience.
Objectives: By the end of the semester, the student
should have been able to exhibit an understanding of
translation theories, use these theories to analyze
translated texts, apply these theories to produce a
translation project.
Methodology for Fil 435: Translation Theory and
Theoretical discussion
Discussion on aims of translation
Writing a critical review
Choosing projects
Review of cultural/historical contexts (source
language and target language)
Determining linguistic competence
For subtitling: transcription of original text
Actual translation
Revision and finalization of project
Writing final papers
My Subtitling Project

Aim: accessibility
Target Audience: Filipino heritage language learners
and non-Filipino language

Main Principle: to [reproduce] in the receptor

language the closest natural equivalent of the source-
language message, first in terms of meaning and
secondly in terms of style. (Nida and Taber in The
Theory and Practice of Translation)

Challenge: Many equivalents; the equivalents may be

accurate in meaning, but unnatural in colloquial
Notes on
Raymond Reds
I considered the following:
the historical and cultural context of the
periodaccuracy of names, places, dates
and events, the inclusion of Spanish words
the formal register of Filipino that was
used in the film
literary tone
the same understanding for non-Filipino
viewers as they would for native speakers
setting of the movie,
L to R: seated, Julian Montalan, Francisco Carreon, Macario Sakay,
Leon Villafuerte; standing, Benito Natividad, Lucio de Vega
source: Flores, Paul. "Macario Sakay: Tulisn or Patriot?" in Hector Santos, ed., Philippine
Centennial Series; at US, 24 August 1996.
comedia, or moro-moro, a folk drama based on the battles
between Christians and the Muslim Moro, the Philippines
photo courtesy of Philippine Embassy
worker in kalesa (horse carriage) shop
Sakays vest
with religious
figures and
Latin phrases.
This was his
believed to
protect him
from bullets
and other
hazards of
Further reading:
Abad, Antonio K. General Macario L. Sakay: Was he a
bandit or a patriot? Manila: J.B. Feliciano & Sons,
Constantino, Renato. The Philippines: A past
revisited. Quezon City: Tala Publishing,1975.
Ileto, Reynaldo C. Pasyon and revolution: Popular
movements in the Philippines, 1840-1910. Quezon
City: Ateneo de Manila University Press, 1979.
Sample video clips on using these videos
to teach culture

Video clip
Maraming salamat po!

For questions or comments: