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Taking liberties with the text

February 3, 2017

An excerpt from an OUPblog article published on 1st February by Gideon Nisbet, author of Oxford World's Classics: Martial: Epigrams.

Martial - 'Wine Dark'?
"If you have ever tried to learn another language you already know that, even for beginners, translation is never simply a matter of looking the “foreign” words up in a dictionary and writing them down. The result is gibberish, because no two languages work in exactly the same way at the level of grammar (what the rules are) and syntax (how the sentence puts them to work). But more than that, and even once you’ve taken those differences into account, it’s hard to get a satisfactory result–satisfactory to yourself as a translator learning the craft of a different language, never mind to anyone else.

Languages don’t just differ at a nuts-and-bolts level; they’re unlike each other in how they represent the world, how they convey the experience of being a speaker (which is to say, a person) within a culture..."

Read the rest of this article on the OUPblog >

Image Credit: Wine-dark? “Sunrise, Phu Quoc, Island” by quangle, CC0 Public Domain via Pixabay..


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