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When I want to freak myself out, “I” think about “me” thinking about having an “I.” The only thing stupider than puppets talking to puppets is a puppet talking to itself.

Daryl Gregory


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Hearing voices: L2 revisions

This afternoon I finished my first round of revisions/corrections on a translation of Aaron Bady's essay The Autumn of the Patriarch: forgetting to live. Not the first L2 translation I have done but certainly the longest, and I think perhaps as well, I have approached this text with a little more systematic method, more "seriously", than previous ones.

Writing in Spanish is a peculiar, unfamiliar feeling for me, as I've said; but it does not hold a candle to revising material that I have written in Spanish. The denseness of the bifurcations of identity of the speaker that I have to go through to get from "me the translator" writing the words to "me the identification-with-the-author" playing the parts of Bady and of Bady's authorial voice to "me the reader" speaking the words to "me the listener/hearer" digesting the syntax and meaning, is quite remarkable. I am finding the multiple "me" voices in harmony with one another for much of the essay, which makes me think the translation is pretty good -- there are a few parts that seem clumsy and a few parts where I'm totally in the dark as to whether the Spanish rings true -- but I think I need to get in touch with some Spanish speakers to ask...

posted afternoon of Sunday, August 5th, 2012
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