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Beautiful Versus Faithful Translations

“Translation is like a woman. If it is beautiful, it is not faithful. If it is faithful, it is most certainly not beautiful.” —- Yevgeny Yevtushenko The quote above is from Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko, author of Babi Yar and known critic of the Soviet government. While this quotation is undeniably mis

Translation Techniques

December 16, 2008 8 Comments »

To avoid  falling into the trap of a literal translation (an exceedingly strict adherence to the source text’s composition and grammatical structure), which is justifiable only in some isolated cases, we generally use a variety of methods. These are almost always done automatically, without knowing which approach we

The Hardest Things to Translate

September 19, 2008 3 Comments »

If there is one thing that almost all translators can agree upon, it’s that two of the most things to translate, no matter what the language, are jokes and poetry. Jokes, because they usually have a play on words or phrases with a “double meaning” that are practically impossible to transfer from one langua