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The episode has been subtitled using established Swedish subtitling norms for television. These norms are of two kinds, partly technical, dealing with expected reading speed, subtitle density and condensation, and also translation-related.

In this article the translation norms under discussion are those that govern the translation of extralinguistic cultural references (ECRs), i.e. references that are expressed verbally, but which refer to cultural items outside of language, such as names of people and places (like Al Roker or Panmunjon). A model for rendering such references in subtitled translations is presented; it consists of two parts: a taxonomy of translation strategies, and a series of parameters that influence the choice of translation strategy. This model is applied to the ECRs in the episode, using Swedish subtitling norms.

The results are presented and complex cases are discussed further, as we find out how we can make a target audience understand the connotations of those bungling Keystone Kops.

Keywords: cultural references, subtitling, norms, translations strategies, west wing, audiovisual translation

Author: Jan Pedersen
Title: In Sweden, we do it like this: On cultural referencesand subtitling norms
Journal: inTRAlinea Special Issue: A Text of Many Colours – translating The West Wing
Editor: Christopher Taylor
Published: 2016
DiVAIn Sweden, we do it like this: On cultural references and subtitling norms