Los Subtítulos: La Teoría

After I had a written translation, the next step was to create subtitles. Everybody is aware of what subtitles are, but their unique position in the field of translation is not always immediately apparent. The messages move from the verbal to the written realm, in a process that Gottlieb(1994, in Chiara) has dubbed “diagonal translation”. I had already done this,but now I had to move the text to a different form that was constrained by human physiology, average reading speeds and physical shape of the screen (Bellos, 2011). It is recommended there are no more that fifteen characters per second, thirty-two characters per line, and more than two lines on the screen (Bellos, 2011). Above all, subtitles must be unobtrusive, as Bannon (2009) notes, “the success of subtitles is marked by how little the viewers notice them”. Grammatical and syntactical errors in the target language are jarring and remind the viewer that they are reading as well as watching, which with good subtitling, is something they are prone to forget. The original audiovisual is always available, which can make subtitles “vulnerable” (Díaz Cintas, 2003 in Chiara) as viewers with some knowledge of the source language can perceive discrepancies or omissions that detract from the audiovisual experience. As they are shown at the same time as the source“text”, i.e. the screen audio, they can be reduced to a simple communication or relay service, but that does detract not from the complexity of the process (Di Giovanni, 2016).