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Re: The difficulties of judging a language which you don't speak natively (was Re: The difficulties of being weirder than English)

From:Roger Mills <rfmilly@...>
Date:Sunday, May 30, 2004, 23:42
Javier and many have discussed
> The issue I was talking about is that the guy claimed that in Spanish > we are supposedly _unable_ to say the equivalent of an explicit and > elaborate description of path like in English "went back down into > the cellar" or "come right back down from up in there".
Speaking as one with native knowledge of Engl. and reasonably good (tho fading from disuse) ability in Spanish, I am tending to agree with Javier here. The article, written in English and presumably addressed to English speakers, certainly gave me the impression that the author was saying that certain things are _impossible_ in Spanish. As Javier has shown, one can come up with equivalents.
> > Of course, you're hardly ever going to get a 100% exact translation > between two languages that offers an scrupulously exact equivalent > level of fore/backgrounding for each and every bit of information, > because that would mean that both languages share the exact same > semantico-grammatical structure. >
Quite so. One might be accused of translationese; OTOH the "come right back down... etc." sentence is not exactly everyday English, either.