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《译者的使命》中英文对照(1,2)


In the appreciation of a work of art or an art form, consideration of the receiver never proves fruitful. Not only is any reference to a certain public or its representatives misleading, but even the concept of an “ideal” receiver is detrimental in the theoretical consideration of art, since all it posits is the existence and nature of man as such. Art, in the same way, posits man’s physical and spiritual existence, but in none of its works is it concerned with his response. No poem is intended for the reader, no picture for the beholder, no symphony for the listener.
在欣赏一件艺术作品或者一种艺术形式时,如果考虑接受者,将永远不会有所收获。从理论上对
艺术进行考量,对于特定群体来说,不管是任何提示,或是有代表性的误导,即使对于理想的接受者来说都是有害的。因为艺术就是存在,与人的本质包括肉体与精神的存在一样,没有一样需要考虑人的反应。没有一首诗是写给读者的,没有一幅画是画给观者的,没有一首交响乐是谱给听者的。
Is a translation meant for readers who do not understand the original? This would seem to explain adequately the divergence of their standing in the realm of art. Moreover, it seems to be the only conceivable reason for saying “the same thing” repeatedly. For what does a literary work “say”? What does it communicate? It “tells” very little to those who understand it. Its essential quality is not statement or the imparting of information. Yet any translation which intends to perform a transmitting function cannot transmit anything but information—hence, something inessential. This is the hallmark of bad translations. But do we not generally regard as the essential substance of a literary work what it contains in addition to information—as even a poor translator will admit—the unfathomable, the mysterious, the “poetic”, something that a translator can reproduce only if he is also a poet? This, actually, is the cause of another characteristic of inferior translation, which consequently we may define as the inaccurate transmission of an inessential content. This will be true whenever a translation undertakes to serve the reader. However, if it intended for the reader, the same would have to apply to the original. If the original does not exist for the reader’s sake, how could the translation be understood on the basis of this premise?
翻译就是为那些不懂原文读者服务的吗?这个问题似乎可以充分地说明读者为什么会对艺术作品在理解上有分歧。此外,这似乎是唯一可以解释翻来覆去地说“译作与原作是同样的东西”的可能原因所在。文学作品究竟在“说”什么?它要传达什么?对于了解它的人们来说,它缄默不语。文学作品的本质并不是要讲述或是传递什么信息。尽管翻译往往扮演的是传播的角色,但其只能传递一些无关紧要的信息,除此之外,不能传递任何东西。这就是糟糕翻译的特点。一般而言,难道文学作品除了信息之外,没有其它实质性的东西吗?即使是再差的译者也承认:文学作品中包含的神秘的、深不可测的诗一样的东西,尽管其也能复制,难道说译者也是诗人吗?事实上,这也是造成劣等翻译的另外一个原因,我们可以把这种低劣翻译称作无关紧要内容的不准确翻译。只要译者担负的是服务读者的任务,这是无可质疑的。然而,如果翻译是为读者服务的,译文与原文要丝毫不差。如果原文并不是为读者存在,基于如此前提的翻译如何让人理解呢?
——from Walter Benjamin's The Task of the Translator: An Introduction of the Translation of Baudlaire’s Tableaux Parisians

 


 

 

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