Nollywood across languages – issues in dubbing and subtitling

Ugochukwu, Francoise (2013). Nollywood across languages – issues in dubbing and subtitling. Journal of Intercultural Communication(33)



The language of Nigerian video films, its choice, and those of subtitling and dubbing, have long escaped scrutiny, and only attracted scholars’ attention within the past ten years. The present study, based on the analysis of 19 films in English, French, Dutch, Igbo and Yoruba and on data gathered from three personal surveys and interviews dated 2009, 2012 and 2013, seeks to add to this burgeoning field by considering whether the language issue hinders the reception of Nigerian films outside their linguistic area, and surveying what has been done so far in that regard. Its findings first reveal that, while European audiences seem to prefer dubbing, Africans opt for subtitling; they also confirm that in the end, the true success of Nigerian films, whether subtitled or dubbed, will be measured in the way they cut across cultures, not just languages.

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