Group Discussion about two translation version of Requiem.
- I like the piece from Anderson the best
- Group discussion:
- Thomas is more literal, Anderson is more poetic
- Anderson uses more metaphors with thinking process
- Anderson uses contrast between gloomy and hope
- I like Anderson because he brings the poem into a bigger scope
- example in Instead of a Foreword: both author did a good job in translating the torpor and gloomy feeling of waiting outside the prison lines in the Yezhov era.
“ ‘Can you describe this?’
And I said:
Then something like a smile slipped across what once has been her face.”
This is the translation choice from Anderson, while Thomas chooses to translate the underlying part as “like the shadow of a smile,” adding more gloominess and impotency to the poetry. It’s obvious that hardly can any one explain the absurd situation. Yet, it’s reasonable for commoners to laugh at how absurd the situation is. How can arrest, torture, and murdering happen almost randomly! This sense of humor added sarcasm to the response, which I believe is more powerful compared to mere sadness. This is due to the fact that ill-fate and unhappy are feelings that come from one’s helplessness in the face of the government, but sensing the fate brings the reader to a higher scope that enables one to consider the injustice system.
· because he uses contradiction to help people contemplate and question current situation.
In dedication, the poems start form the grief from imprisoning and the mortal agony. Then Anderson gives a description of the fresh air and tranquil mood. This evoked my thinking. Who would be happy in front of convictions? Those who know the destiny is coming. Only one group of people could have this kind of release of pressure, the “involuntary friends,” done without one’s will, those who are dead now. I think the author would mean that living is harder than death, that the troop of the army is the ultimate agony and breaking from it for freedom is the only hope far away. Anderson uses moon’s white circle and snowstorms whirl to farewell to the brave friends who are free, presenting a sense of mourning and nostalgia. By contrasting, Anderson asks “what portends?”, leading the readers to ponder could there be something momentum of change could happen.