About translation

Schleiermacher said, that the translation is a movement, that can be made in two opposite directions: bringing the author to the readers's language or bringing the reader to the author's language. 

Do you agree? What type of translation do you prefer? 

Mar 25, 2019 8:36 PM
Comments · 8

A discussion about translation in a site about languages...


Great success. 

March 26, 2019

Great topic for reflection and discussion. Many years ago I had the honor of taking a one-semester course in translation from the great Gregory Rabassa, who translated most of Garcia-Marquez' work from Spanish into English. He spoke about the many difficult decisions that any thoughtful translator must grapple with. The most useful thing I have kept from the course is the recognition that a literary translator is, hopefully, as much an artist as the original author. So, yes, I suppose, I prefer bringing the author to the reader's language, as much as possible.

If we're talking about technical translation, I think the most useful approach is to essentially rewrite the content in the target language. That is, to answer the original question in this discussion, to bring the author to the reader's language. 

Maybe the area where I would diverge from this preference would be in poetry, which is magic in the first place. Bring me, by poetic magic, to the original language, and let me savor the essence of the poet's dream without the need to "understand."

April 2, 2019

A great topic to discuss! Really interesting!

I don't have much to say, but I thought I would comment just to make this discussion show up to the first page for more additional minutes. 

April 1, 2019
Yeah,I probably described an ideal translation:D If the translator can achieve the same meaning and rhyme scheme,that's enough, and usually there's more than one way to do it. Other things e.g alliterations, contour of vowels are would be just icing on the cake(unfortunately, I only know examples of into-hungarian translations).To be honest, I don't really know poems that so centered around the sounds itself, impressionists maybe.
<a href="" style="background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"></a> for example , in this case it might be a better to choose the same sound at the expense of meaning.
In general, an ordinary translation is better. The best is having also a literal translation.


March 31, 2019

Thank you both for your opinion! 

@Pedro I think I agree with you, but sometimes it is really interessting to read also the other type of translation. 

@GyulaSgabó I think you are speaking about a perfect translation. Don't you thint that it is quite impossible? Usually a translator must choose one or two characteristics from all that a poem may have, especially if the two languages are very different. What do you think? 

March 31, 2019
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