A Master of Arts thesis in Translation and Interpreting MATI (English/Arabic/English) by Eiman S. Al Shandouri entitled, "Pragmatics and the Translation of Self-Help Discourse," submitted in December 2016. Thesis advisor is Dr. Ahmed Ali. Soft and hard copy available.
Traditionally, books are meant to instruct, entertain or both. A new wave of books has emerged known as self-help, promising its readers with better lives. These recipe format books present their own characteristics, notably with pragmatics as a primary feature of functionality. This thesis investigates those characteristics and relevant aspects of pragmatics used. The examples discussed in the analytical part of this thesis are divided into categories such as book cover and translation, speech acts, politeness, rhetorical questions, use of 'we' and 'you,' use of 'I' ethos, pragmatic markers, motivational language, cleft construction, intertextuality and argumentation. The thesis study case is The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey, 2004 and its Arabic translation titled العادات السبع للناس الأكثر فعالية by Jarir Bookstore, 2015. The aim of this study is to examine whether the Arabic translation of this self-help book has managed to maintain the pragmatic features of the source text and which strategies may be considered best to use when translating such genres. The findings of the study show that the translation succeeded in retaining some pragmatic features while it failed to do so for others. It also shows that the literal translation strategy used in translating the source text was in most cases successful; however, it needs to be supported by other strategies to achieve the ultimate equivalence of the target text.