Translating from Bangla to English : Sarat Chandra Chattopadyay’s “Abhagir Sorgo” recreated as “The Heaven of the Wretched”

Posted: January 6, 2009 in ESSAYS /RANDOM COMMENTS
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Translation is confusing or to use a word that is always in vogue in literature: problematic. Translation is problematic.

All literary works are an act of translation. When a writer creates a text, he translates the abstract images in his/her mind into definite language. Thereby the writer indulges in translations that change from one form to another. The creation of a text is in itself an act of translation. The act of recreating an image from the nature into a text is also an act of translation.

No literary work can be completely translated. The language is an arbitrary means of symbolizing an image or thought. The mental process of a writer can never be conveyed exactly through language. Thereby the translation fails to convey the exact meaning or even‘equivalence’. Even at the level of inter-linguistic, translation fails to find equivalence. A particular language is deeply rooted in its culture and history. Different feelings and emotions have different ways of being expressed. Certain cultures may not even have words for images that do not exist in their cultural imagination or their historical heritage.

read the complete text on my main blog:

  1. Biswadip says:

    Liked your thoughts on translating literature, can’t agree more . I am involved with a project to translate bengali children’s stories ,will you like to help?

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