Posted by: hatzihatzi | July 23, 2012

Lost in Translation

I know a lot of people who would prefer to read literature in the language it was written, and I really wonder how much is gained without the translation. A Russian friend told me that Brave New World was different when she read it in Russian with a pronounced pro-communist message that she learned with much surprise wasn’t in the original when she finally read it in English. (As an aside: the brave new world in Brave New World is my favorite dystopian world. When it comes to dystopia, it’s really not all that bad.)

I’m thinking about this now because this is decidedly not how E and I have decided to raise Q. E translates English books into Hebrew, and I fumble through Hebrew books in English. And we bought the Chronicles of Narnia in Hebrew because I hate them and refuse to read them to Q. (Seriously, I hate them. I tried reading the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe recently but my sister took the book away from me because it made me so miserable and turned me into a big bitch.)

This is our edition. Pretty to look at, if nothing else.

And today, Q was watching (and translating for me) a Hebrew dubbed Japanese cartoon of an American story.

Q calls it the yellow rocks. Yes, something is lost in translation.


Responses

  1. Oh, I’m TOTALLY interested in anime WoO dubbed in Hebrew!

  2. That does look like an awesome cover for a Narnia book. I read the first three books of the series and, yeah, the preachiness and authorial intrusions are kind of annoying. I loved the latest Lion, Witch, Wardrobe movie, though — more focus on the story and less of a sense that This Is a Christian Allegory And This Is What You Should Be Learning From It, Dear Reader.


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