Qui veut lire, disait mon Prof?
Qui veut dire, dit-je?
Qui voit comme moi?
Parfois aucun qu’un.
My daughter asked me what’s up with the translation, why the fascination? The answer lies in the complexity of communication and the difficulty of understanding.
Qui veut lire?
“Qui veut lire?” said my French professor. His question was generally answered with a deafening silence.
Translation, my French professor said, is a conversation first with the author, then with one’s self, and finally with the reader. Along the way, the translator struggles with a dictionary, looking up various interpretations and readings.
What was intended, what was meant, and what is understood, may vary like the parlor game where the party forms a circle. Someone starts by whispering a phrase into the next person’s ear, and this continues to go down the line, until it comes back to the original speaker, who hears something differentl.
That is a lot to handle and quite amusing.