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Title: Wygasłe kody językowe w rosyjskim przekładzie Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions Johna Donne’a
Authors: Plichta, Piotr
Advisor: Fast, Piotr
Keywords: kody językowe; język rosyjski; John Donne; tłumaczenia
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: Katowice : Uniwersytet Śląski
Abstract: Apart from being an excellent metaphysical poet John Donne (1572– 1631) was also one of the most important and voluminous authors of English prose of the first half of the seventeenth century. His extant prose works comprise Menippean satire, political and religious essayes, as well as multiple letters and sermons. Among them the most prominent are two masterpieces. The first of them are Devotions upon Emergent Occasions, an unusual treatise on the issues of sickness, death and salvation written as a direct response to the grave illness Donne suffered in 1623; the second is Death’s Duell, the last sermon preached by Donne and published posthumously in 1632. Both Donne’s Devotions and his Death’s Duell have been translated into multiple European languages, namely into Dutch, Italian, German, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Russian. With few exceptions, all these translations were published in last twenty years. Unfortunately, the translators often underestimate the structural intricacy of Donne’s prose works. Actually, in the structure of Devotions upon Emergent Occasions and Death’s Duell John Donne has hidden a deep theological message and therefore to disregard it is to create a superficial translation bereft of the most crucial layer of original meaning. To make things worse Donne frequently uses obsolete alchemical, medical and legal notions, which tempts the contemporary translators to render them with general or abstract equivalents being easier to grasp for the readers. However, in the original English text these notions hardly stand alone but are bound together making up a meaningful structural net. Each of such notions comes back several times in slight variations, which indirectly but clearly refers to the Christian doctrine of salvation, in particular to its protestant variant of salvation by faith alone. Hence, their proper translation is extremely important to save some deeper aspects of Donne’s prose works. In this regard, the Russian translation of Devotions upon Emergent Occasions by Anton Niestierow is much better than the other ones. The Russian translation of Death’s Duell by Olga Siedakowa is also very good and consistent, but Siedakowa has a specific problem with rendering some audatious passages of that sermon in which Donne deliberately stands on the verge of blasphemy. This dissertation concerns the issues connected with translation of some obsolete alchemical, medical and legal notions which are present in John Donne’s Devotions upon Emergent Occasions and his funeral sermon Death’s Duell. The analysis pertains primarily to the Russian translations of the above-mentioned works by Anton Nesterov and Olga Sedakova, respectively. The other translations are presented for comparison, mainly because all the translations of Donne’s Devotions upon Emergent Occasions into romance languages are incomplete. Their authors decided to translate only meditations ant to omit expostulations and prayers as too religious and so uninteresting for the contemporary readers. As a result, their translations lack approximately two third of the original English text and its careful structure was almost entirely lost. On the other hand, the full translation of Donne’s Devotions into Dutch by Johannes Grindal was published in 1653 and therefore it is a valuable source for the translatological analysis: its author lived in the same era as Donne and the obsolecy of the referred terms and notions was no issue for him. The translatological analysis refers to two translatological theories. The first one was the theory of the equivalent effect by the Chinese scholar Jin Di. For many years he has collaborated with Eugene Nida and finally he transformed Nida’s theory of formal and dynamic equivalence so that to apply it not only to the translation of the Bible but also to the translation of literary works in which one must face the issue of protection of the state of facts and the fragile aesthetic features of the original text. Apart from Jin Di’s, the chosen theories by French scholar and translator Antoine Berman were chosen. Antoine Berman was particularily interested in the problem of deformation and distortion in translation. However, he died prematurely and his last book Toward the Science of Translation: John Donne is a very intriguing attempt to make up a serious translation theory based on the hermeneutic philosophy by Martin Heidegger and Paul Ricouer. Written in the last months of Berman’s life, that book bears striking resemblance to the circumstances in which Donne himself had created his Devotions upon Emergent Occasions. Its second part directly concerns the analysis of some poems and sermons by Donne on the issue of death and resurrection, among them — Death’s Duell. The translatological theories by Jin Di and Antoine Berman have not much in common, but they both stress the necessity of due respect for the original literary text. As such, they are against the post-structural tendencies in translation which barely recognize any boundaries of the free adaptation. The first chapter is dedicated to the detailed literary analysis of Donne’s Devotions upon Emergent Occasions and his Death’s Duell. The description of the development of Donne as prose writer and the relationship of his prose works with the genre of essay by Michel de Montaigne is followed by the thorough analysis of the structure of Devotions upon Emergent Occasions and the protestant soteriology being its hidden background. Then, the analysis of the emblematic structure of Death’s Duell and the role of alchemical imagery in it takes place. Apart from that, the first chapter contains the brief description of the available translations of the above-mentioned works. The second chapter presents the translatological theories by Jin Di and Antoine Berman and how they can find application in the translation of Donne’s prose works. The third chapter comprise the main translatological analysis focused of the issue of rendering obsolete medical, legal and alchemical notions present in the Devotions upon Emergent Occasions and Death’s Duell by Anton Nesterov, Olga Sedakova and other translators. In the separate annex the author of the dissertation put his own Polish translation of both referred works by Donne.
Appears in Collections:Rozprawy doktorskie (W.Hum.)

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