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Translators have their day

Update: June, 12/2015 - 09:06

The seminar, which took place on Wednesday at the French Culture Centre L'Espace, 24 Trang Tien Street, Hoan Kiem District, was organised by Nha Nam Communication and Culture Company. — Photo Vnexpress

 

HA NOI (VNS) — "Those who translate literature today always respect the original work of the author, and at the same time they try their best to help readers understand what the writers wish to say in a book or novel," Deputy Director Nguyen Duy Binh of Vinh University's Publishing House said at a seminar titled Dich van hoc - co the va co the (Literature Translating - possible and possible).

The seminar on June 10 was organised by Nha Nam Communication and Culture Company. Its goal was to help the audience have a broader view of the translation work and look for solutions for a more developing translation research and criticism.

Along with Binh, a translator himself, who has also done several significant novels of French into Vietnamese, like Promise at Dawn by Romain Gary, The Sermon on the Fall of Rome by Jerome Ferrari, the seminar also included Doctor of Literature Tran Ngoc Hieu and translator Dinh Ba Anh, who translated Czech Republic's Franz Kafka's Letter to His Father into Vietnamese.

Besides discussing with the audience the important role played by translators in the present day, the three scholars exchanged views on how some great novels of international literature are translatable or untranslatable.

"Are all the masterpiece of novels in this world translatable? If the answer is no, should we continue to do the translating, or keep the original of an untranslatable work? Personally, I will find a way to contact the author and find a solution for it," Binh said.

Doctor of Literature Hieu, who spent many years studying and translating several international novels, offered a new look at this meticulous and complicated work, by emphasising the role of women in the history of translation.

"I think female translators play an important part in the history of translation, like the Quebec female translating group of many centuries ago. They are all influenced by the feminist movement and bring those influences into their work. I must say that women and translation have a lot in common. If translation is considered a derivative of original work, women are also a derivative species of men, according to the Holy Bible. However, their feminist ways of seeing things have made the translation of many masterpieces much easier to understand," Hieu said.

The seminar attracted a large number of students and young writers from various universities of Ha Noi. –VNS



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