Hello Irena and everybody,
Normally, I would not be so slow to respond but I have just returned from
pressing business in far-off exotic climes (Oldham near Manchester).
First, a couple of internet resources:
A discussion list for translators worldwide called Translat2000 was set up
on October 20th at
www.onelist.com and already has some lively debates on translation theory
Worth a look.
There is a list of Czech and Slovak Literature in English translation at
>My name is Irena and I work as a freelance translator/interpreter. I was
>born in Pezinok,
Slovakia (so if you need a help with Slovak expressions, I
may remember some), studied in Brno and I have moved to Prague recently. In
meantime, I spent one year in London, one in Boston and
translated 6 books (fiction as well as non fiction) from English into Czech.
Welcome aboard, Irena. What part of London did you live in? Is that Boston
Boston Massachusetts? What were you doing there?
>I enjoy my job, although I must say that sometimes it gets rather tiring
Yes, I find that translation work always expands to fill the time available
for it and I have to
give myself a strict 11 pm deadline every day.
>But I don't have to go to work every morning at least!
Hmmm, I have got to the stage where telecommuting has lost a lot of its cosy
appeal and so
I still commute into Prague several days a week to teach and in order not to
from staring at the screen too much. Maybe the winter months ahead will
change my mind.
>I am glad I've come across Melvyn's homepage, I find it very useful,
>because some of the
problems listed there are realy tricky
Glad to be useful - I would be very interested to hear about some of the
problems you faced
when translating those six books - perhaps I could add some of your ideas to
my page. I
assisted Hana when she translated a couple of non-fiction and fiction works
Czech. I know one of the greatest problems for her was what to do with the
odd little words
that clutter up some descriptive writing in English. For example: "she
offered him a gloved
hand" in a romantic story where gloves play no further role. Hana would
them or sometimes focus on their connotative meaning only ("gloved" suggests
>(by the way, what
would you call "p�ekladatelsk� o��šek" in English?)
Hmmm, this is a bit of a poser for translators, isn't it? "Poser" is in the
dictionary (the big red one), perhaps "puzzle" would fit too, and the
diminutive form would
prompt me to preface it with one or two little words. "A little translation
teaser" also springs
to mind. Any other ideas, anybody?
To go off on a bit of a tangent, "chestnut" translates as "otrepany problem"
and is used to
express familiarity with a well-known old riddle, puzzle, joke etc. So I
could ask you, for
example, how you handle that old chestnut involving "ty" and "vy". At which
point in an
English description of a developing relationship would you say the familiar
form is called for?
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