Thursday, 4 June 2015
Found in Translation
It's not secret that I hold high value for both words and literature, as anyone would for something that can connect people through shared emotions and experiences. Literature is undoubtedly something to be valued by every single person. Everyone has a right to fall in love with words, to be given that opportunity to get wrapped up in a story. I guess that's the beauty of translation, and why companies such as Smartling offer translation services. Translation breaks yet another barrier that prevents people from experiencing the same stories and journeys. The 'language barrier' is no longer an excuse, and we are lucky that through stories, people all around the world can connect more and more.
Personally, the most important thing that could happen with a translation is that the story retains its original feeling. I know that sounds weird- surely making sure everything was accurate and well presented is best? However, I know that when I read a book I really love, I can feel it. Something in the story just makes you happy, makes you want to read on and consume even more of the plot. It's one of the best feelings in the world, finding a good book, and I think it's something to do with the style and passion the author writes with. When you see how much care and work has gone into the tiniest details, it's impossible to not have a whole world come to life. Everything just seems a little more breathtaking, and for me, that's what makes a difference between a book I enjoy, and a book that just won't get out of my head.
That means I can't bear the thought of that being lost in translation. Any reader, regardless of what language they speak, should be able to feel the same thing as they read, and that should make you really appreciate the painstaking work that goes into translating. I've never really thought about it before, but each word has to be translated precisely, so that nothing is lost. It must be a long process, but I would definitely say it's worth it.
Imagine if we couldn't translate books. All I can think of is the amount of people from different countries who I've been able to talk to and become friends with, just because of books. That wouldn't have happened if we didn't have books being translated all the time. Because of translation, we are allowed to discover things we would have never had the chance to before hand. This expands people's ideas for the future, and gives us more choices than ever. And it's all because we don't limit ourselves any more. For me that's what reading embodies; learning not to conform, but to be innovative. To explore, whether it's languages, countries, histories. Anything. Doesn't that seem pretty great? I think it does. It really is something to be found in translation, hence the title. ;)