Abstracts numero 6

A cura di Katy Hannan

As the priest his breviary

by Norman Gobetti This article is aimed at conducting a survey of printed and electronic instruments (and dictionaries in particular) available today for literary translators from English. It provides a mapping of existing instruments (although almost certainly not complete) and, at the same time, describes how much and in what way these instruments are actually used through the answers supplied in a questionnaire filled out by fifty professional translators and students.

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Personal linguistic geology

What it means to translate Alice Munro. Lectio magistralis by Susanna Basso “What do translators learn about authors, both in terms of language and of stylistic devices, when they work on the same authorial voice for a long time?”After more than a decade spent on the translation of Alice Munro’s stories, Susanna Basso recounts her experience reflecting on what the impressive accumulation of words and pages has taught her not only about the author but also about her own way of approaching the task of the translator.”

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The rediscovery of (SUR) America

INTERVIEW WITH MARCO CASSINI by Damiano Latella The founder of the publishing house minimum fax has recently begun a new adventure with the SUR publishing house, which will focus completely on Latin American authors. Cassini is convinced that much is to be discovered and to be rediscovered in Latin American literature, even though it is already very well-known to the Italian public. To launch this project they have decided to entrust some of the work to new translators. SUR is also trying to open up a new road for book distribution creating direct contact with book stores and thus eliminating…

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Modern scientific language and translation

by Silvana Borutti The birth of modern science is a fundamentally linguistic matter. Modern scientific language was established through its separation from natural language. From the time of the Middle Ages scholars sought to develop a language that was neither ambiguous nor esoteric, in contrast with the language used by alchemists, and designated with graphic symbols that were more appropriate to scientific subjects. A deciding role in this process was played in the XVIII century by Antoine de Lavoisier, the father of modern chemistry. However, once modern scientific language had been established, the problem arose concerning its “translation”, or the…

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Publishing rights, an unknown territory

by Maria Giulia Castagnone The author explains the mechanisms of acquiring the translation and publishing rights of foreign books, focussing on auctions and the best offer system, and includes several specific episodes encountered during her long experience at the head of certain prominent Italian publishing houses.

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Retranslating Andersen

by Bruno Berni The fairy tales by Hans Christian Andersen are among some of the most widely translated texts in the world, available in an amazing number of languages. So why decide on yet another translation into Italian? Certain problems resulting from retranslating translations from other languages or translations from incomplete editions, produced by an inadequate publisher, or destined for an incorrect target public can motivate the need to re-identify an author as famous as Andersen in Italian literature.

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The other Monicelli

by Gianfranco Petrillo (with the collaboration of Franco Chiavegatti and Maria Chiara Romani) The great film director Mario Monicelli had several brothers. One brother, Giorgio, widely recognised for having founded the «Urania» book series at Mondadori, was also a prolific and talented translator who translated into Italian about 140 works of a wide range of very different authors including famous names such as Walt Disney, Winston Churchill, Louis Bromfield, Jean-Paul Sartre, Pearl Buck, Albert Camus, Guy de Maupassant, Malcolm Lowry, Georges Simenon, Arthur Koestler and Ray Bradbury, dissipating a wealth of talent and culture with his disorderly life-style. The list…

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Macro and micro adaptation

by Paola Ciccolella Theatrical texts are also created for stage representation and for this reason they present interesting features and significant risks for the translator. This article deals with three main issues: 1. the question of adapting the geographical and social context in which the play is set, 2. when it is necessary to create a completely new translation, 3. the translation of the dialogue from a pragmatic point of view. The author provides a number of examples to illustrate these issues.

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Le Quatre Livre de Pantagruel: fiction en archipel

by Paola Cifarelli  This study deals with analysing certain problems concerning the translation of The Fourth Book (Quart livre de Pantagruel) by François Rabelais, focussed on three particular aspects: stylistic questions, lexical variety, and plays on words. After a brief introduction describing the work and its (un)lucky reception in Italy, three textual sequences were examined to demonstrate the difficulties faced by the translator charged with creating a metatext to be published as a parallel text alongside the French version; it shows some of the most difficult obstacles that had to be overcome also because of the cultural and literary problems…

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The case of The Case of Sergeant Grischa

by Natascia Barrale   In 1945 Mondadori decided to republish the full version of The Case of Sergeant Grischa by Arnold Zweig. The previous edition had been published in 1930 with 140 pages eliminated from the original text. Mondadori asked the translator Enrico Burich to integrate the missing text into the old edition. Due to the insistence of the publisher and the reticence of the translator who was asked to translate the same work in two different historical-literary periods with standards, parameters and canons that were obviously very dissimilar, the retranslation of Grischa took 15 years and was finished only…

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