Vol. 1 No. 1 (2023)
Essays by the members of the Hieronymus Translation Studies Research Group

Translating Non-standard Language: Andrea Camilleri in English

Giulia Magazzù
“Gabriele d’Annunzio” University of Chieti-Pescara, Italy
Pázmány Papers vol. 1. nr. 1.

Published 12/18/2023 — Updated on 06/13/2024


  • Camilleri,
  • Montalbano,
  • Literary Translation,
  • Dialect,
  • Diatopic variation


With the flowering of literary works written in a non-standard variety, especially in dialect, translation studies have tried to partially delineate theories, methods, and models to apply when translating these kinds of work. Despite this, translating a literary work written in dialect always represents a challenge for a translator. This difficulty is due to the main characteristics of dialects: they are spoken in a very restricted area and depict a specific cultural world. An example is represented by the language of Andrea Camilleri’s novels. In fact, by examining some linguistic features and expressions taken from the English translation of three of Camilleri’s detective novels, this paper offers an analysis of the linguistic choices made by the American translator Stephen Sartarelli, with a particular attention on Sicilian culture.