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      英語世界
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      翻譯擂臺第22期點評
      發布時間:2018年02月09日     發布人:nanyuzi  
      來源: 英語世界
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      【原文】


      [1]我小的時候特別盼望過年,往往是一過了臘月,就開始掰著指頭數日子。[2]對于我們這種焦急的心態,大人們總是發出深沉的感嘆,好像他們不但不喜歡過年,而且還懼怕過年。他們的態度令當時的我感到失望和困惑,現在我完全能夠理解了。[3]我想長輩們之所以對過年感慨良多,一是因為過年意味著一筆開支,二是飛速流逝的時間對他們構成巨大壓力。

      ——莫言


      原文選自諾貝爾文學獎獲獎作家莫言的散文《過去的年》。固然,莫言以寫小說見長,但是他的散文也樸實無華,帶有鄉土氣。選段雖短,仍描繪出孩子與老人在“過年”這件事上的不同心態,頗有涵義。


      [1]中,“我小的時候”參賽者譯得最多的是“When I was young…”,可能是受到卡倫·卡朋特(Karen Carpenter)著名的《昨日重現》(Yesterday Once More)歌詞的影響:When I was young/ I’d listen to the radio/ Waiting for my favorite songs(當我小時候,聆聽收音機,等待著我最喜歡的歌曲)。當然,也有譯成“When I was little/ a kid/child/boy”等,但若用when I was growing up則比較模糊,不如during my childhood,類似的如:During my childhood, house doors could be left ajar at night. (兒時是可以夜不閉戶的。)


      對于“盼望”(過年),參賽者一般用了look forward to、hope for、long for、yearn for、expect等,但I special look forward顯然有語法錯誤,而I had such an eager anticipation又過于正式,不如“… be fond of”自然,如:He is fond of retracing the experiences of his youth.(他喜歡回想少年時代的經歷。)


      對于“一過了臘月”,許多人譯成“after the twelfth lunar month/ as soon as the twelfth lunar month had passed/ after the 12th month had gone/ the moment December was over”等,但分析起來,“過了臘月”不就是正月、過年了嗎?所以這是一種口頭說法,實際是指“過了臘月一日”,即“一進入臘月”,可為“as soon as the first of twelfth lunar month had passed/ at the very beginning of the twelfth month/ when there was still a month away”等。


      “掰著指頭”,有的用了reckon/count the days、snapping fingers等,似太籠統,而count the days neared the hand、we started snapping fingers counting days又欠準確。


      有的將“過年”譯成了New Year,其實這是公歷,即俗稱的陽歷;世界各國在古代雖都有不同的日期,但到了現代,大都使用了公元制紀年的1月1日。1912年1月1日,中華民國正式成立,這是亞洲第一個民主共和國,也是亞洲第一個實行共和立憲制的國家,由于孫中山在就職誓詞中以“中華民國元年元旦”為結尾,故有了中國現代“元旦”的來歷,同時將“過年”稱為“春節”,英文為“Spring Festival / the Chinese New Year New Year”。


      故此,該部分不妨譯為:I was especially fond of the Spring Festival during my childhood. As soon as reaching the twelfth month of the Chinese lunar year, I started counting the days with my fingers.


      [2]中,“對于我們(這種焦急的心態)”,許多人以為非用at such eagerness of、to our、for our attitude、towards children’s eagerness等的介詞短語,不足以對等;其實未必,如:對于我們,自此人人感到了工作危機。(From then on, everyone senses a threat of job security.)故不妨直接以Our anxiety為主語,展開全句。


      對于“好像他們(不但不喜歡過年)”,一般用了“as if they…/ they seem to…”,少數用了“It seemed to me…”;相對而言,后一種更貼切。這是一種行文和翻譯中的視角轉換,即對所敘述的事情以不同的視角切入,對信息作重新的選擇和組合,以求更為確切、便利的表達,這在翻譯中是一種常見的方法,如:只要稍稍具有現代世界地理眼光的人,都會看中上海。按通常視角,似可譯成“Anyone who has a vision of modern world geography will fancy Shanghai.”,但這里作者實際強調的是從“世界地理”角度,故不妨以此切入:From a modern geographical perspective, Shanghai is a good proposition. 即將視角從“人”變成了“物”。再如:一百年前,科學界發生了劃時代的變化。一般可譯成“A hundred years ago, the epoch-making changes took place in the scientific community.”,但將視角轉換后,不妨譯為:A hundred years ago, science saw the epoch-making changes in its community. 在文學翻譯上,這種變化更多,如沈從文的小說《丈夫》的開篇句“落了春雨,一共有七天,河水漲大了?!?,可有至少三種譯法:①That spring, it rained for 7 days and the river rose. ②That spring, after a whole week’s rain, the river rose. ③Seven days of spring rains have left the river swollen. 此句的中心在“河水漲了”,前兩個譯文的視角和原文相同,最后一個則從rain著眼,變換了信息切入角。


      對“大人們”,很多人譯成了adults,但該詞的本義是a fully grown person who is legally responsible for their actions(法律上指能為自己的行為負責的成年人),即是一個法律概念,而此處的意思是相對兒童來講的長輩,故應為the elderly (注意定冠詞)。同時,對于其中的兩個“過年”,不宜重復Spring Festival或the Chinese New Year。一般來講,教授英文寫作的教師都會告訴學生:Never use the same word or write the same thing twice in a sentece unless you are repeating intentionally for emphasis or for clarity. 相對而言,英文不喜歡重復,而中文則不怕重復,因而在中譯英時,需特別注重“替代”。如:即便是在那個小房間里抽煙也不好,因為若有人在那里抽煙,整個體操房會被污染的。若按其表面意思,可譯成:Even smoking in that little room is not good, because if a few people smoked there, the whole gym would be polluted. 其中劃線部分可用it代替,使譯文有所變化、精簡:Even smoking in that little room is not good, since it can still pollute the gym as a whole. 再如,魯迅的《孔乙己》的開篇:“魯鎮的酒店的格局,是和別處不同的:都是當街一個曲尺形的大柜臺,柜里面預備著熱水,可以隨時溫酒?!敝g家楊憲益和戴乃迭的初版翻譯成:The layout of Luzhen’s taverns is unique. In each, facing you as you enter, is a bar in the shape of a carpenter’s square where hot water is kept ready for warming rice wine. 即以layout 為主語,似與原文完全吻合,但因整篇故事是圍繞“酒店”展開的,故不免顯得有些刻板、不確切,于是再版時改為:The wine shops in Luzhen are not like those in other parts of China. They all have a right-angled counter facing the street, where hot water is kept ready for warming wine. 即以The wine shops為主語,同時在第二句中以They替代了前面的The wine shops,不但簡潔,而且前后呼應,流暢自然。


      就[2]整句而言,對其中的“不喜歡”“懼怕”“失望”“困惑”等的詞序表述,參賽者一般都遵循原文進行翻譯,典型的,如:However, grown-ups were always sighing with deep distress towards children’s eagerness and anxiety, as if they didn't expect even worry about New Year, which was a frustration and perplexity to me. / We children were so anxious, while the elder, with heavy sighs, seemed to dislike and even fear it, which made me dismayed and confused. / The adults, however, sighed deeply for our raring manners, looking like they not only not longing for it, but also fearing of it. I was really confused by and disappointed with their negative attitudes then. 其實,譯文不一定遵循原文的詞序,而可根據對作者意思的理解,在翻譯中加以重組和詮釋,類似的例如:我們知道,對患者來說,某種疾病雖然病因和病理是穩定的,但是受到內外多重因素的影響,它的個體化、階段性表現卻是變化不定的。如果按原文的結構和詞序翻譯,會非常冗贅,故不妨圍繞其中心意思展開:The cause and pathology of a certain disease are relatively unchanging, but their clinical manifestations are different in different patients and at different stages of disease, being influenced by both internal and external factors. 其中特別是對劃線部分的詞序作了調整,以便捋順其意,便于表述。


      就此而言,該部分不妨譯為:Our anxiety was such that the elderly couldn’t help but sigh deeply. Their attitude towards the Spring Festival disappointed and puzzled me; it seemed to me that they not only disliked the celebrations but actually dreaded it! Nowadays I fully understand what they felt.


      [3]中,“我想”,很容易翻譯成I think、I believe that、I assume、I guess等,但in my opinion、from my perspective、my viewpoint is等, 則不像文學作品而更像學術論文中的語言。其實,結合前面的“失望和困惑”到后來的“我完全能夠理解了”,這里不妨用In/To my understanding,以表達更深一層的體會,類似的如:①我想有些問題是沒答案的。(In my understanding, not everything has an answer.)②In my understanding, Buddhism is a multi-cultural social education.(我認為佛教是一種多元文化的社會教育。)


      對于“一是……,二是……”的句式,許多人忠實地譯成“First, celebrating the New Year means putting them to a lot of expense. Second, the fleeting days put considerable pressure on them. / firstly, celebrating the New Year means an expense; secondly, the flying passing time produces huge pressure on them. / First, the observance of Spring Festival brings about an excessive deal of expenditure. Second, the fast elapse of time constitutes a great pressure on them. / I think the reasons why the elders had mixed feelings towards celebrating the Spring Festival are twofold— firstly it meant an expenditure; secondly the flying time posed great pressure on them.”等。然而,譯文對此不必過于拘泥,而可將其融入一整句中,如“…not only…, but also…”等。同時,“構成的巨大壓力”一般都理解成了指“二是飛速流逝的時間對他們”而言的,如“Maybe one of the reasons why the eldership were filled with sort of thought is the celebration of New Year signified an expenditure; and the other is the slipping time played an significant role in their massive pressure.”,其實,此句是有歧義的,因為“一筆開支”又何嘗不是一種“壓力”?


      故在譯文中不妨將此打通處理:In my understanding, for the elderly, every time the Spring Festival comes round, they feel oppressed not only by the considerable expenditure but also by the flight of time.


      總之,譯文在吃透原文意思的基礎上,不妨放開尺度,增加靈活性,從而做到“萬變不離其宗”。


      優勝譯文:


      @manny


      When I was little, I always yearned for the Spring Festival to come. Hardly had it been the twelfth lunar month, when I began to count the days. The adults, however, invariably sighed deeply to our eagerness as if they not only disliked the Festival, but even dreaded it, which, back then, made me feel very disappointed and confused. But now, I completely understand. I think the reason why the Festival invoked such sentiments in the elders’ hearts is, for one thing, it meant a large expense; for the other, it came as a reminder to them that how time flew, which gave them great pressure.


      @Lyy


      When I was a child, I was always looking forward to celebrating the Chinese Lunar New Year. Upon stepping into the twelfth lunar month,I began to count days for its arrival. However, contrary to our eagerness, adults always uttered deep sighs, as if they were not only reluctant to celebrate it, but also afraid of it. Although their attitude made me disappointed and confused at that time, I can fully understand them now. I think the reason why they have so many different feelings towards the Lunar New Year lies in two sides: one is that celebrating the Lunar New Year means spending a large amount of money, the other one is that the flying time poses a great pressure on them.


      @阿涵Robin


      I was always expecting the Spring Festival when I was young. Once the twelfth lunar month came, I would start to count the days. In contrast to our anxiety for the festival, the adults were always sighing deeply, as if they not only disliked the Spring Festival but also feared it. Their attitudes disappointed and puzzled me at that time, but I can totally understand now. Confronted with the Spring Festival, the adults,I think, sigh for two reasons. One is that the Spring Festival means large expenditure. The other is that the fleeting time overwhelms them with immense pressure.

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