The Mistranslation of James Legge in A Record of Buddhistic Kingdoms from Eco-Environment Translation Theory

Mingxin Li


Fo Guo Ji, known as A Record of Buddhistic Kingdom, was written by Chinese Monk Fa Xian in the Eastern Jin Dynasty. It is more a travel documentary than an exotic sceneries miracle stories; and place-legends. It has been regarded as one of the most significant classics that probed into the South Asian culture, religion. This paper deals with James Legge’s English translation of Fo Guo Ji from the perspective of translation ecology. Eco-translatology is put forward by Michael Cronin and met with new result when Hong Kong scholar Hu Gengshen put the three properties of language, to be exact, the characteristics of variability of language in both language structure and context is possible, it follows negotiability in the process of using language and the adaptability is required in eco-environment setting. In light of eco-translation theory, this paper aims at exploring the factors influencing James Legge’s English translation by analysizing the text as well as providing a new angle to interpret James Legge’s translation to Chinese classics.

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