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Aujourd’hui, maman est morte

This article from The New Yorker (link below) initially caught my attention because I have loved this existentialist book since my teenage years, but also because it highlights issues in translation. 

I work with a lot of translators and much of my editing work deals with writing that has been translated into English. 

Last week, I received two versions of the same article translated from Arabic into English, and they could not have been more different. 

Both were excellent translations. They conveyed the same message, the facts were identical, but the style, mood and the essence were so contrasting.

There are so many different ways of saying the same thing, and it is these style choices that really differentiate one writer from another. 

Personally, I’ve always loved the starkness of Ernest Hemingway and James Joyce’s writings. They taught me that you don’t need to say a lot, to say so much.

Enjoy the article!