Style and Translation

Submitted by: Submitted by

Views: 218

Words: 736

Pages: 3

Category: Literature

Date Submitted: 09/14/2012 12:37 PM

Report This Essay

Style and Translation

--Instructed by DR Sony

1. Translatability of style

Some consider the original style untranslatable, others argue that translatability of style is a matter of degree. No objective criteria are seemingly found for the judgment of good or bad translation. To be sure, some isolated words, expressions and even sentences may sometimes be hard to judge. But as far as the wording and style of a whole piece of translation are concerned, there still arise objective criteria to go by. Comparison and contrast will point the way to a better understanding of what translation is more satisfactory. Look at the following examples:


"I know you will laugh at me," he replied, "but I really can't exhibit it. I have put too much of myself into it."

Lord Henry stretched his long legs out on the divan and shook with laughter.

"Yes, I knew you would laugh; but it is quite true, all the same."

"Too much of yourself in it! Upon my word, Basil, I didn't know you were so vain; and I really can't see any resemblance between you, with your rugged strong face and your coal-black hair, and this young Adonis, who looks as if he was made of ivory and rose-leaves. Why, my dear Basil, he is a Narcissus, and you--well, of course you have an intellectual expression, and all that. But beauty, real beauty, ends where an intellectual expression begins. Intellect is in itself an exaggeration, and destroys the harmony of any face. The moment one sits down to think, one becomes all nose, or all forehead, or something horrid. Look at the successful men in any of the learned professions. How perfectly hideous they are! Except, of course, in the Church. But then in the Church they don't think.

A. 燕山出版社译文