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Mentalese

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  • Vitezslav Ruzicka
    Well, could not be images, dreams, logics, etc. perceived just as various vehicles for the Mentalese? Or is there any better common denominator for thought?
    Message 1 of 4 , Sep 30, 2005
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      Well, could not be images, dreams, logics, etc. perceived just as
      various vehicles for the Mentalese? Or is there any better common
      denominator for thought?
      "If there is one, try to find. If there is none, never mind it." :-)
      Vit
    • James Kirchner
      ... It s all just conjecture. Jamie [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      Message 2 of 4 , Sep 30, 2005
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        On Friday, September 30, 2005, at 07:52 AM, Vitezslav Ruzicka wrote:

        > Well, could not be images, dreams, logics, etc. perceived just as
        > various vehicles for the Mentalese? Or is there any better common
        > denominator for thought?
        > "If there is one, try to find. If there is none, never mind it." :-)

        It's all just conjecture.

        Jamie



        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Vitezslav Ruzicka
        Agree, as most of the human knowledge. Just reading A Short History of Nearly Everything . Quite depressive. Better thinking of something else. Or stick to
        Message 3 of 4 , Sep 30, 2005
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          Agree, as most of the human knowledge. Just reading "A Short History of
          Nearly Everything". Quite depressive. Better thinking of something
          else. Or stick to the work.
          Kind regards
          Vit


          --- In Czechlist@yahoogroups.com, James Kirchner <jpklists@s...> wrote:

          >
          > It's all just conjecture.
          >
          > Jamie
          >
          >
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • melvyn.geo
          ... There is a chapter in After Babel: Aspects of Language and Translation by George Steiner ( http://www.bohemica.com/index.php?m=catalog&s=258&a=140 ), which
          Message 4 of 4 , Oct 2, 2005
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            --- In Czechlist@yahoogroups.com, "Vitezslav Ruzicka"
            <translations@v...> wrote:
            > "If there is one, try to find it. If there is none, never mind it." :-)

            There is a chapter in After Babel: Aspects of Language and Translation
            by George Steiner (
            http://www.bohemica.com/index.php?m=catalog&s=258&a=140 ), which
            suggests that the literary translator sometimes has to tune in to some
            ineffable common language of the soul like this.

            I wouldn't necessarily be critical. It might be a useful mental trick
            to get into the right frame of mind for translating literary texts. I
            don't know. As you say, no harm in trying to grok it out if it is
            there. But the idea always leaves me feeling a little tantalized and
            disappointed, because I rarely get to hear any solid examples (which
            are not commonplaces) of this ethereal universal language of thought
            in practice, whereas I hear plenty of specific examples of
            untranslatable elements e.g. involving humour (see Dilbert discussion
            in archive:-)).

            So how DOES this idea help the translator exactly?

            Anyway, as I've said often enough in the past, when I read literature
            in translation, I WANT to smell and touch the otherness. I want to
            remain conscious of the remoteness. The often sad awareness that we
            can never come close to a protagonist's experience is often an
            important part of the literary adventure IMHO :-)8, particularly with
            foreign literature. The last thing I want is for some smartipants
            translator to homogenize this experience for me:-). That's why I get
            annoyed sometimes when idioms and sayings are consistently and
            smoothly recast in some more 'digestible' form (and maybe this awkward
            desire of mine to reproduce the 'local colour' [dreadful expression]
            spills over into other genres and is one reason why I tend to retain
            all the academic titles after names in legal and administrative texts
            - a lot depends on the type of text, mind. You know my attitude - we
            translators are like actors - they pay you for stiff and formal, you
            give them stiff and formal...).

            Talking of idioms and sayings (and to go off on another tangent):

            "Ze te huba neboli!"

            Here's an example of a turn of phrase that to my mind is so neat in
            the original, it would often be a disservice to lose it in a 'smooth'
            translation. "It's a wonder you don't have mouth/gob-ache!" - that
            would often be my approach, even if it does sound a bit odd. :-)

            Translating the "ze" is an awkward one too.

            BR

            M.
            The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the
            human mind to correlate all its contents.
            - H. P. Lovecraft
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