Translation 58. Media Ignorance of the Role of Translators and Interpreters. Again.

Posted 24 July 2017 by Brian Steel
Categories: Translation and Interpretation

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

The Western world is at present mesmerised and traumatised by a constant hourly bombardment of media reports on the antics of a strange US President. This could last 4 years, or more. So be it.

But the latest Sunday Times (London) inclusion of an official Russian interpreter, Anatoli Samochornov (labelled by the journalist as a translator) as another of the growing number of “suspects” in  meetings between Trump people  and “meddling” Russians in 2016 and 2017 is really CRASS. (Josh Glancy, Washington, ‘President’s Red Line for Russia Investigations’, reproduced  in The Australian, 24 July, 2017)

But the truth is so simple. A translator’s paid job is to translate documents, usually in written form. A professional interpreter is paid to interpret (i.e. he or she orally translates) SPEECH by one or more persons.

If that is too difficult for some media operators to understand, try this clearer version.

But distinguish between the two professions and stop blaming interpreters (or real translators) for doing their legitimate job.

 

Translation 57. The Propagation of Hindi. Kaushal Srivastava’s Recent Contribution

Posted 30 June 2017 by Brian Steel
Categories: Hindi Language

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

 

 

Over a number of years since his retirement from a teaching and research career as Professor of Physics in India, UK, USA and Australia, Dr. Kaushal Srivastava has enthusiastically carved out a special niche in contemporary Hindi literature as a writer of bilingual Hindi and English poetry and short stories, with a focus on 21st  century globalisation and multiculturism, with particular reference to India and the Anglosphere.  (Bibliographical details are given at the end of this article.)

His latest volume of poetry (Kavita Saagar. Naye Yug Kee Tasveer) adds a valuable new dimension to his work by showing how the use of a simple roman transliteration system for Hindi’s Devanagari script can expand the readership, and the spread, of the Hindi language (both in northern India and in the enormous Indian diaspora). He is especially interested in the needs of those whose ability to read and write Devanagari is limited. In his praakkathan (Preface) he himself acknowledges a debt to Google Transliteration, just as many others, including myself, acknowledge the boon of Google Translation’s magical instantaneous transliteration of roman script into Devanagari to further our studies.

Dr. Srivastava is in very good company. In a 2016 blog and e-book, I quoted prominent Indian intellectuals Ramchandra Guha and Harish Trivedi on the relevant subject of the decline of full bilingualness in contemporary India.

As a quick reference to Wikipedia’s article on Devanagari Transliteration will show, the various (mainly academic) transliteration systems of Devanagari to roman are effective but much too complex for quick writing or typing (for example in text messages or social media).

The attraction of Srivastava’s simple basic transliteration system is immediately obvious in this new bilingual book of poetry, which should inspire other poets and short story writers to follow his example. It is also to be hoped that Urdu writers will be able to find a similarly simple but effective transliteration system from Urdu Nastaliq script to roman. This would help Hindi speakers to read Urdu more easily and to appreciate how very similar the two languages are.

I would respectfully suggest that, in the revised edition of this work, it would be preferable to give a very short explanation of the transliteration system chosen. In the meantime, since Dr. Srivastava’s  painstaking translations speak for themselves, interested readers should go straight to the roman versions of the poems to see the details. The following short extracts will give a good idea of the usefulness of the system. In the three extracts, readers will notice the vowels aa, ee, and oo, as well as consonants Na, NNa, Ta, Tha, Ra, Sha and Ta. Other symbols used by Srivastava in the book are ii, uu, RRi, Da, Dha, Rha, and Ma. (He also uses capital letters for proper nouns and in titles.)

Note: In my own lexicographical work and especially in the documentation of a few thousand English loanwords in Hindi, I have used all the above, as well as one or two more roman vowel combinations and a few more capital letters (taking advantage of the fact that Devanagari does not use capitals). I intend to reveal my system in a later blog.

Samples from Dr Srivastava’s book

2.14 VarShaa Raanee BaRee Suhaanee

griShmakaal meN tapatee dharatee sookhe baag bageeche

phooloN ke sundar chehroN par paR gae kaale dhabbe,

sooraj kee teekhee garmee ne kiyaa haal behaal

peene ke paanee par bhee aayaa saNkaT kaal,

bheeR bharee saRakeN jaise lagatee haiN khaalee-khaalee

khatma ho rahee tejee se khetoN kee hariyalee.

*

4.8 Teen Akelee LaRakiyaaN  (Verse 7)

agale saptaah ek shaadee samaaroh meN gayaa

vahaaN teen yuvatiyaaN apane puruSh-mitroN ke saath theeN,

preeti-bhoj raNgeen thaa

saboN kee nazar un yuvatiyoN par thee,

ek buzurga pitaa ne un yuvatiyoN se kahaa

‘beTee, paarTee meN akelee mat aayaa karo

samaaj kee dRiShTi kutsit hai.’

2.13 Jalavaayu Parivartan

yah hai Melbourne kaa vistrit praangaNN

jisakaa prakriti karatee hai anupam shriNgaar

isake aabhooShaNN haiN

Dandenong pahaaRiyoN par hariyaalee kee shriNkhalaa

door-door tak phailaa sunahalaa samudra taT

aur chaturdik lahalahaataa vrikshoN kaa vriNd.

jise kaee baar milaa hai

sarvashreShTha vaishvik shahar kaa sammaan

jo hai Australia ke mukuT kaa chamakataa ratna,

yahee hai hamaaraa Melbourne!

[Suggested amendments: melborN, DaNdeenoNg, ausTreliyaa]

Kaushal K. Srivastava’s bilingual poetry:

Kavita DarpaNN, New Delhi,Vani Prakashan, 2013.

English Translations:  Beyond Blue Oceans. One World, One People, Kindle edition, 2013. ISBN-10: 149279970X  

Kavita Kalash (SaaNskritik SaNgam kaa DarpaNN), Kindle edition, 2014. ISBN-10: 1502909855

English Translations and Adaptations: Reflections: Poetry of Composite Culture, Kindle Edition,  Amazon.com, 2014.

Kaushal Kishor Srivastava, Kavita Saagar, Naye Yug kee Tasveer. (In Devanagari and Roman scripts), May, 2017.  [Sea of Poetry, A Picture of the New Age /Era.]  ISBN-13: 978-1544088259. ISBN-10: 1 544088256. Available from Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.in, Amazon.com

 

 

Kaushal Srivastava. Hindi Poetry in Devanagari and Roman Scripts.

Posted 18 June 2017 by Brian Steel
Categories: Hindi Language

Tags: , , , ,

The latest volume of Hindi poetry by Indian-Australian Dr Kaushal Srivastava presents a pioneering new feature which will be highly appreciated by many readers whose command of written Devanagari is limited. This especially includes students of Hindi as a Second Language (HSL), of whom I am one. It also includes many young (and not so young) Indian Hindi speakers.

Details:

Kaushal Kishor Srivastava, Kavitaa Saagar, Naye Yug kee Tasveer.

(In Devanagari and Roman scripts)   ISBN-13: 978-1544088259. ISBN-10: 1 544088256

Available from Amazon.co.uk  and Amazon.in

*

For more background on the Hindi and transliteration questions, please see my 2016 essay.

To be expanded in a forthcoming blog.

 

Did Pres. Donald mean kerfuffle rather than covfefe?

Posted 31 May 2017 by Brian Steel
Categories: English Language, Translation

Tags:

covfefe ?    Maybe kerfuffle, as in fuss, bother, commotion, etc.

Just a thought.

Brian’s Private Tweet service on language and translation

Translation 56. Michel Houellebecq’s Latest Publication

Posted 17 January 2017 by Brian Steel
Categories: Translation and Interpretation

Tags: , ,

Just interviewed on French television (FT2, 20 Heures), a more sympathique-looking and -sounding Michel Houellebecq spoke about his hefty new collection of essays and his current attitude to life and writing, Cahiers de l’Herne. (l’Herne is the publisher.)

Here are some references for his fans.

http://www.editionsdelherne.com/publication/cahier-houellebecq/

“Insaisissable, inclassable, irréductiblement ambigu : Houellebecq, infailliblement, nous échappe. Sauf, peut-être, dans le cas précis d’un Cahier de l’Herne, lieu idéal d’une approche plurielle et du mélange des genres. Nous retraçons ici la trajectoire d’un écrivain singulier en montrant les hésitations, les points de rupture, les multiples « bifurcations » qui contribuent à la construire. En entremêlant les textes rares ou inédits, les essais universitaires, les témoignages de proches, d’écrivains, d’artistes, de musiciens, d’amis ou d’ennemis (et tout l’éventail se situant entre ces deux extrêmes), il voudrait rendre compte de la complexité d’un auteur et d’une oeuvre qui ont pour ambition de sauver une époque – la nôtre – de l’évanouissement.”

http://www.leparisien.fr/flash-actualite-culture/houellebecq-vedette-de-la-rentree-de-janvier-sans-nouveau-roman-17-01-2017-6580452.php

https://blogs.mediapart.fr/jean-jacques-birge/blog/291216/le-nouveau-michel-houellebecq-est-un-cahier-de-lherne

If necessary, you can submit these references to the new improved Google Translate. For example:

“Ungraspable, unclassifiable, irreducibly ambiguous: Houellebecq, infallibly, escapes us. Except, perhaps, in the case of a Cahier de l’Herne, an ideal place for a pluralistic approach and the mixing of genres. We retrace here the trajectory of a singular writer by showing the hesitations, the points of rupture, the multiple “bifurcations” that help to build it. By combining rare or unpublished texts, academic essays, testimonies of relatives, writers, artists, musicians, friends or enemies (and the whole spectrum between these two extremes), Would like to account for the complexity of an author and a work whose ambition is to save an era – ours – from fainting. ”   (GOOGLE TRANSLATE)

Opinions of Houellebecq’s Soumission.

Translation 55. English Loanwords in Hindi. Addendum on Demonetisation (noTbaNdee)

Posted 14 December 2016 by Brian Steel
Categories: Hindi Language

Tags: , , , , ,

In the past 5 weeks of turmoil in India, the following English loanwords or phrases have been  heard or read in the Hindi media. They offer important additional evidence of the ever-present influence of English on the use and development of the Hindi language. Contributions (and corrections) from readers would be most welcome.

More background information on my Loanword collection is available here:

baileNs, (bank) balance

chek, or chaik, cheque, check (USA)

DebiT kaarD, debit card

ekaauNT, account

eTeeem, ATM (Automatic Teller Machine)

haaee kamaan, High Command (military)

haaee Deenomineshan (noTs), high denomination (notes)

haaipothesis, hypothesis

haikar, m, hacker

haiNDlar, m, handler (military, etc.)

iNkam Taiks, income tax

kaishles sasayaTee, f, cashless society [Also: les-kaish, less cash]

kareNsee, f, currency

kreDit kaarD, credit card

laain, line, queue, laain karnaa, to queue (EH) [English/Hindi hybrid form] [Hindi: qataar]

manee, money; remiTens manee, remittance money (from Indians abroad)

manee aurDar, money order

manee lauNDariNg, money laundering

noT, note, banknote

noTbaNdee, f, (bank)note cancellation, “demonetisation” (EH)

prauparTee, property

railee, political rally

rizaarv baiNk auf iNDiyaa, Reserve Bank of India (Also: aarbeeaaee, RBI)

sarkooleshan, circulation

smaarT fon, smart phone

Taiks, tax

vaaTs aip, or vhaaTs aip, WhatsApp (message softwARE (Int.)

vauleT, wallet

yoojars, or yoozars, users

(More to follow soon on English loanwords observed in the Hindi media between February and December 2016.)

Microsoft’s Intrusive Windows 10 Campaign Takes a Step Too Far. Apology Sought.

Posted 30 May 2016 by Brian Steel
Categories: Internet and Media

Tags: , ,

After a year of “heavy-handed nudging” (AP), Microsoft’s extraordinary campaign (waged from the cosy sanctuary of its users’ computers) to persuade Windows 7 and 8 users to update to Windows 10, has recently taken initiatives which have enraged many of its users. I am one of those misused users.

Because of Microsoft’s power over our PCs, for a year we have had to tolerate the irritating 24/7 presence of this massive M/S Campaign on the bottom  bar of our computers (looking like a large white flag of Truce while behaving like a Trojan Horse). With complete impunity, its Windows 10 Free Update offer popped on to our screens several times per week for our acceptance or rejection.

Recently, as the Internet now reports, Microsoft has become even more proactive in its “salesmanship” and coercion, and 2 days ago, I was on the receiving end of what I consider to be unwarranted interference and hassle from their Trojan warriors.

I had left my PC for some brief R & R. When I returned about 20 minutes later, I found myself facing a a black screen announcing UPDATING WINDOWS: 4%. Alarmed and mesmerised, I slumped in the chair for 20 minutes while the Windows 10 preparation files were loaded. Since there was no way that I, as a non-techie person, could stop this ghastly intrusion, I gradually came to accept that I would have to learn the arcane ways of the new Windows 10 and suffer the inevitable losses of TIME, programmes, etc. (all of which I had hitherto tried so hard to AVOID, by my FREE CHOICE of the NO option, in a free society).

And then, suddenly, a BLUE screen appeared with a lot of legalese jargon describing the Accept and Decline alternatives. The latter were heavily padded out by legal gobbledygook hinting at the extreme difficulties which might materialise for the user in the event of clicking the Decline button. I was alarmed and ready to Accept but still stared at this screen for several more minutes. The prospect was so unacceptable that, in spite of possible difficulties, I finally took a chance: DECLINE.

And, slowly, the situation was reversed and Window 7 eventually returned to my control.

Apparently without damage.

I was, and continue to be, extremely ANGRY with Microsoft for their aggressive actions and for the extreme distress caused to me.

*ADDENDUM.  I have now applied Steve Gibson’s (GRC)  Never 10 remedy and the M/S Trojan Horse has at last been driven from my bottom bar.

Yesterday I took a look on the Internet and found evidence of serious professional and public criticism of Microsoft’s  recent high-handed (euphemism!) measures.  For anyone seeking the real details, I recommend an article by Mark Hachman of PC World, who fills in some of the technical details of Microsoft’s recent behaviour: How to escape that forced Windows 10 upgrade you mistakenly agreed to. Sadly, it’s not as simple as it should be.’

PS Because I was not present when the M/S intrusion commenced, I cannot say whether Microsoft offered me any last minute way out of the update, which, in any case, was NOT requested by me.