4/15/2013: John Balcom, MIIS

Serving Two Masters: Reflections on Literary Translation

Monday, April 15
The Orchard, Franklin Environmental Center 103
Middlebury College

Translators act as mediators bridging the gap between cultures.  For the translator of Chinese literature the issues of translatability and cultural understanding seem especially pronounced, if not insurmountable at times.  The translator must serve both the author and the reader, simultaneously seeking maximum fidelity and maximum readability.  Is the enterprise possible or foredoomed to failure? Will the translator come to be devoted to one master and despise the other?  Will successful mediation or betrayal ensue?




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The Monterey/Middlebury Lecture Series was established for Middlebury College and the Monterey Institute of International Studies to promote shared expertise and education through the exchange of faculty visitors. An affiliate of Middlebury since 2005, the Monterey Institute became a graduate school of Middlebury College on July 1, 2010.