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50197Re: Reading in Prague / Alex Zucker

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  • Melvyn
    Nov 12, 2012
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      --- In Czechlist@yahoogroups.com, "Liz" <spacils@...> wrote:
      > Reading & Discussion with Alex Zucker
      > Friday, November 9, 2012
      > 7:00pm until 10:00pm
      > Anglo-American University Library, Letenska 1, Mala Strana
      > As Zucker is going to read several versions of his translation of "Marketa Lazarova" opening pages, the reading will hopefully stir up a discussion about the craft of translation as such, with author sharing his experience and talking about the difficulties he has been facing.

      Many thanks to Liz for passing on this info. I found the time to get down there and really enjoyed myself. I do like a good translation analysis. Alex Zucker openly admitted to some confusion over how to capture Vancura's "voice" in this opening passage of Marketa Lazarova - he had a good half dozen alternative versions.

      Blazniviny se rozsevaji nazdarbuh. Poprejte teto príhode mista v kraji mladoboleslavskem, za casu nepokoju, kdy kral usiloval o bezpecnost silnic, maje ukrutne potize se Slechtici, kteri si vedli doslova zlodejsky, a co je horsi, kteri prelevali krev malem se chechtajice. Stali jste se ze sameho uvazovani o uslechtilosti a spanilem mravu naseho naroda opravdu precitliveli, a kdyz pijete, rozlevate ke skode kucharcine vodu po stole, ale chlapi, o nichz pocinnam mluviti, byli zbujni a certovsti. Byla to chasa, jiz nedovedu prirovnati nez k hrebcum. Pramalo se starali o to, co vy povazujete za dulezite. Kdezpak hreben a mydlo! Vzdyt' nedbali ani na bozi prikazani.
      Praví se, ze bylo bezpocet podobnych randabasu, ale v teto povidce nejde lec o rodinu, jejiz jmeno pripomína Vaclava zajiste nepravem. To byli vykutaleni slechtici! Nejstarsi za tohoto krvaveho casu byl pokrten líbeznym jmenem, ale zapomnel je a nazyval se az do sve ohavne smrti Kozlik.

      A couple of quicky questions for Czech colleagues:

      How would you characterize this language? What is so unique about it? We were trying in vain to think of a comparable anglophone writer.

      Do you enjoy this kind of work? What do you get out of it? :-) Did you like the film?

      And for anybody who has any ideas:
      How would you translate the opening line? Something nice and memorable. Ideas that came up included:
      Folly/foolery is sown/spreads/scatters/is scattered/is wind-scattered without rhyme or reason/helter skelter/at random...

      BW

      M.
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