Cohesion and Coherence in Spanish Translation

Cohesion and coherence in Spanish translation are important factors that a Spanish translator needs to address when performing a Spanish translation.


Cohesion in Spanish translation emerges from grammatical, lexical, and other relationships that provide connections in the exterior structure of the text. The evaluation of cohesion can be done objectively, but different languages use cohesive tools (conjunctions, substitution, paragraphs, and references) differently.

The different cohesive tools must be considered and properly arranged by a Spanish translator when composing the target text. Cohesion provides the reader with an idea about the metaphoric point and analysis of the text and their alterations accordingly affect the content. There are two main types of cohesion that a Spanish translator needs to know: lexical and syntactic cohesion.

Syntactic Cohesion

Syntactic cohesion is also called textual cohesion. While working on a Spanish translation, the Spanish translator must learn the recurrence of syntactic and tachygraphic strategies which provide syntactic cohesion to the text. Syntactic cohesion is also a result of the repeated use of the question form and the subjunctive in the source language text.

Some symbols, like the inverted question mark before a question in a Spanish language text, are tachygraphical, extra markers that are never seen in an English language text.

In the process of English to Spanish translation, there are a few main distinctions that the translator must make. For instance, the major question words in English start with W, while there are several combinations of words to ask questions in the Spanish language.

The Spanish translator should have total awareness of the multiple words to distinguish the right applicable words for use in the target text. As the word order in English text is fixed, many words are repeated several times, which is not the case in a Spanish text. The repetition of the words in English text makes it more consistent than the Spanish text.

Coherence in Spanish Translation

Coherence in Spanish translation is a salient factor that needs attention in the process. Coherence in a text is a result of the system of relationships that lie below the superficial level. This is a significant aspect that needs consideration in Spanish translation because it organizes and creates the text.

The level of coherence in Spanish translation varies from translator to translator because it depends on the extra-textual knowledge of the Spanish translator. One translator may interpret the relationships within the prose differently from another, depending upon the culture and social frame in the locality to which the translator belongs.

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