Thursday, March 08, 2007

Gelf Magazine: What the Press Loses in Translation

From Gelf Magazine:

"Foreign correspondents often rely on local amateurs—or their own language skills—to interpret the statements of their sources for readers. Confusion sometimes ensues."

Comment: As someone who has translated a (yet unpublished) novel and written about the theoretical debates among translators (PDF), I'm very concerned if this story is true -- we could be basing many of our opinions about what world leaders say and what the rest of the world thinks about us on poor translations. It would be interesting to put together a repository of translated quotes and have them verified by multiple experts in translation. The only group I know of that focuses on this is MEMRI.