Re: CHAT: Hello
|From:||Frank George Valoczy <valoczy@...>|
|Date:||Wednesday, May 2, 2001, 17:26|
I'm sorry for having made the statement about translating the UN human
rights thing; even for Dalmatian it would be out of place IMO. When I said
that I was just being. ...(I don't know the word)... the only reason I
said, "now this would be a translation exercise", is I thought at first
only about the complexity of said document.
On Wed, 2 May 2001, Roger Mills wrote:
> Irina Rempt wrote:
> << Translating *anything* lengthy from the Bible (or modern-day
> political texts, or Kipling, for that matter) into Valdyan calls for
> many words for concepts that don't exist in Valdyan (the *concepts*
> don't exist, it's not just that I don't know the words yet) which
> will forever after be part of the Valdyan vocabulary, that is, of the
> culture. By translating something alien to the culture I've
> contaminated the culture by concepts alien to it, and I don't want
> that to happen so I take care only to translate things either neutral
> or fully compatible (like the Vlami story or the Draseléq play). >>
> I fully agree with Irina's position. Some of us, clearly, put a great deal
> of care and thought into the creation of the culture(s) underlying our
> languages. Those that are Not of This Earth, or of This Time, by
> definition, will lack, perhaps will not need, certain concepts that we
> members of theW.European/Judeo-Christian world take for granted. And
> indeed, some of those things we take for granted seem odd, quaint, _alien_
> to many others of our own species. So how will they be seen by a truly
> alien culture?
> It is also true that some of us probably ascribe more reality to our created
> cultures than would the casual observer. Perhaps, even, more than is
> healthy-- but that's a judgment call, and I haven't seen any evidence here
> lately of severe mental imbalance.
> I have translated bits and pieces of the Bible into Kash; it's readable, but
> if Kash people truly existed, they would be asking "What this all about?" at
> almost every phrase, and a really adequate translation would thus require a
> vast explanatory apparatus. "A God who speaks (!) to "His" people? What
> kind of "God" creates a paradise but enjoins the 2 residents not to touch
> one particular bit of it? In what way are murder, theft, or adultery
> "sins"-- crimes yes, but that's a legal matter isn't it? If I commit an
> offense against my society, the society has ways of dealing with it-- what
> does "God" have to do with it? If I offend my neighbor, surely it's up to
> me to make amends, if at all possible; and if I do so adequately, then it's
> up to my neighbor to accept it, and we get on with our lives.
> "We can speak of "redeeming" a coupon, or a bond; we know about "ransoming"
> a kidnap victim; but how do you "redeem" a person? From what, with what?
> What is this 'original sin'? Do you truly consider yourselves inherently
> sinful? How odd.
> "Give us this day our daily bread"-- in what way is this "God's" concern,
> and who are we to be giving God an order? Even as a figure of speech, isn't
> my daily search for physical and spiritual sustenance my own problem?"
> Re the Declaration of Human Rights: they would ask, "what's with you people,
> that you have to be _told_ how to live in harmony with one another?" (Also,
> it's just too long and dreary to translate....)
> Not that I view the Kash as perfect specimens. They get up in the morning
> and go to work; cheat and lie; they eat, drink and shit. They dislike and
> distrust their Gwr neighbors. They occasionally kill. They do take far
> better care of their planet than we do, and, having been civilized longer
> than we, tend to think things through more carefully.
> I have read and used the _I Ching_; to me it's an amusing game, not totally
> understood even with all the footnotes; at a higher level, the _Tibetan Book
> of the Dead_ in English translation. Grammatical yes, but almost
> incomprehensible to me. Alas, I'm not a member of the cultures that
> understand and respect these things, and it would take years, perhaps a
> lifetime, to achieve such understanding. Sometimes, mere translation isn't
Ferenc Gy. Valoczy
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