Тахтамышева Екатерина Олеговна1, Ласкова Марина Васильевна2
1Южный Федеральный Университет, студентка 4 курса, бакалавр
2Южный Федеральный Университет, зав. кафедрой перевода и ИТЛ, доктор филологических наук, профессор

В данной статье мы рассмотрим феномен, который называется художественным своеобразием и поговорим о проблеме его сохранения. Данный вопрос будет рассмотрен на примерах работ знаменитого русского писателя М.А. Шолохова и их переводов с русского на английский.

Ключевые слова: вторичный текст, диалектизмы, купюры, оригинал, художественное своеобразие, художественный перевод


Takhtamysheva Ekaterina Olegovna1, Laskova Marina Vasilevna2
1South Federal University, 4th year student, bachelor
2South Federal University, head of the department of translation and it'll, doctor of philological Sciences, Professor

In this article we are going to speak about such phenomenon as artistic originality and the problem of its preservation. This problem will be contemplated on the examples of works of famous Russian writer Mickhail Alexandrovich Sholokhov and their translation from Russian to English.

Keywords: artistic originality, cuts, dialecticisms, literary translation, original text, secondary text

Рубрика: Лингвистика

Библиографическая ссылка на статью:
Тахтамышева Е.О., Ласкова М.В. The Preservation of Artistic Originality of the Original in the Translation of M.A. Sholokhov's Works // Гуманитарные научные исследования. 2015. № 12 [Электронный ресурс]. URL: https://human.snauka.ru/2015/12/13516 (дата обращения: 18.07.2023).

As A.S. Serafimovich, a Russian writer, said: “Sholokhov’s works at their truthfulness, sincerity, their inner beauty and artistic credibility, skillful psychological analysis found a wide access into the hearts of Russian and foreign readers.”  One cannot but agree with his words. Actually, the contribution of the writer in Russian literature is really great. In his works Sholokhov glorified his native land and showed the world the unique colouring of Don Cossacks, the power of the spirit of a Soviet man, a don Cossack, a soldier. With the extraordinary power of love he described a tragedy of a common man, passing through the “millstones of history”: the First World War, the Revolution, the Civil War, the Great Patriotic War, the lifting of virgin land, and the recovery of the economy. Losing family, friends, land, home, wealth, his man was keeping the light inside. All of his characters do not leave indifferent readers all around the world. Because what Sholokhov writes about, helps each man to become more human, to change his life, the life of his country for the better.
In his Nobel speech M. A. Sholokhov said, expressing his ongoing concern about the fate of all mankind. These were the words of the writer-humanist, turned to his colleagues on all continents of the globe. “I would like my books to help people to become better and purer in heart, to awaken the love for man, to become an active fighter for the ideals of humanism and human progress…”.
Talking about the translations of his works, it’s necessary to mention that translation is the type of secondary text according to A.A Lipgard. The translation peculiarity, in particular, literary translation as a form of secondary text is that it is an aesthetic event [Bakhtin, 1979, 22], being an intermediate category between performing art and original creativity [Levyi, 1974, 90].
In the process of translation there is always a struggle between two unchanged components: form and content [Gachechiladze, 1970, 123]. If the translator, the author of the secondary text, takes into account only the content and manifests weakened attitude to form, it can come to inaccurate embodiment of style of the author’s narration and the characters’ speech features. Following only unfamiliar linguistic forms of the original leads to the formalism, stylization under the laws of a foreign language, and sometimes to distortion of the original ideological tendency [Musaev, 1987, 257].
It should be noted that literary translation has its own author. His originality is always manifested. The translator strives to recreate the value of the original as fully as possible and to achieve the same impact on the reader, which the author of the original wanted.
Analyzing the characteristics of translations of M. A. Sholokhov’s works to English, it is impossible to omit the important fact that the first English editions of “And Quiet Flows the Don”, which were implemented in April and in June 1934 by the London publisher “Putnam” and the American publishing concern “Alfred Knopf “, were accompanied by significant cuts of the original text. Both Britain and American editions of the novel are identical in content and represent the translation of the first two books of the epic, combined in one volume under the title: “And Quiet Flows the Don”.
The first translator of “And Quiet Flows the Don” was the Englishman Harry S. Stevens (nickname Stefan Harry). His translation had many advantages in terms of artistry. However, the chronological order of events described in the novel was changed, and new divisions of chapters, sections and paragraphs were introduced. Dozens of chapters had been crossed from the novel (nearly 100 pages of original text, which accounts for 25% of total works); many historical documents were excluded and almost all the Cossack songs were skipped.
It should be recognized that “And Quiet Flows the Don” has been bleached by the withdrawal of the majority of the Cossack songs, sayings and proverbs. Meanwhile, folklore in the book by Mikhail Sholokhov is not just a backdrop, but the artistic and philosophical expression of the soul of the Russian people. David Stewart wrote that a close acquaintance with the folklore and folk use of language of Mikhail Sholokhov creates the unique colour of this work. The lyrics in «And Quiet Flows the Don» bring a sense of authenticity and originality of the narrative and reveal the Cossack soul”.
As for dialecticisms in the writer’s books, it should be noted that they carry not just meaning, helping the author to reveal all the diversity and all the shades of the “folk” of the Cossack everyday life and labour, but they have great strength of emotional and artistic expression. That is why they are a means of artistic originality which the first translator, Harry Stevens, failed to preserve. It’s understandable that in translation many dialectal words have been deleted or replaced by a neutral, understandable to a foreign reader. But at the same time, the artistic originality of a work was broken.
Let’s look at some examples:
1.     –Ну, заводи. Да ты ить не мастак. Эх, Гришка ваш дишканит! Потянет, чисто нитка серебряная, не голос. Мы с ним на игрищах драли (Тихий Дон, книга 1, 51).
“Well, sing up. Only you are no good at it. Your Grishka now, he can sing. He isn’t a voice; it’s a pure silver thread” (S. Stevens).
Dialecticism «дишканить» is expressed by a neutral English verb – to sing. But the Russian dialectal verb has an additional dialectical shade – to sing in high voice.
2.     – Сама видала – в шароварах, тольки без лампасин. Должно, буднишные его подцепила. Длинная на ней рубаха, а из-под рубахи шаровары, в чулки вобратые (Тихий Дон, книга 1, 30).
“I saw her myself – in trousers, but without the side stripes. She must have got hold of his everyday ones. She had a long blouse, and under that were the trousers, tucked into sock” (S. Stevens).
Dialecticism «шаровары» is expressed by English word – trousers. This common word doesn’t express the national colour of Cossacks.
In general, Stevens he did not try to find English equivalents of the Cossack-specific words and expressions, Don dialecticisms were replaced by common English words did not transfer the colorful language of the Don Cossacks.
Soon it was decided to make a new edition of the translation of “The Quiet Don” to English language. The translator at this time was Robert Daglish. In his article “Making a New Translation of “The Quiet Don” (Soviet Literature, 1980, No. 5 (386), PP.114-118) Robert Daglish explained the problems he had to solve in the process of working on the translation: the problem of the title of the book, the problem of transferrin Sholokhov’s descriptions of nature by means of the English language, the problem of skill translation of Sholokhov’s dialogue ( although, Daglish wrote, that the foreign reader is not so interested in “local color, because he is more interested in what is said, not how it is said”). In this case, the translator chose to transfer the Cossack language using the English vernacular.
We can say that Daglish translation is quite accurate and is made without significant editing of the text. Although, of course, it is present. It is connected, as mentioned earlier, with the use of dialecticisms, special national words of the Cossack language, and also it is connected with the language of the author, reflecting his brilliant skills of the writer. Let’s look at some examples by Daglish.
3.     – С ними надо покороче: цоб-цобэ, вот и вся бычиная дисклокация (Тихий Дон, книга 4, 410).
You have to talk more curtly to them: ‘Gee up!’ That’s all the bullocks know about dishlocation (R. Daglish).
Here we can see how the translator tried to express the Russian word by adding an extra letter to the English one.
4.     – Наш дед Гришака про турецкую войну брешет (Тихий Дон, книга 1, 35).
Our Grandad Grishaka’s bragging about the Turkish war (R. Daglish).
The emotionally colored Russian word «брехать» is expressed to English by the verb – to brag which means “to talk too proudly about something you own or something you have done”.
In conclusion, I would like to say, that no matter how the translators tried to convey the essence and uniqueness of the Cossacks, in full measure they will never be able to do this. We see that there were attempts to preserve the artistic originality of the text in various ways, there were also examples of complete omission of dialecticisms and national peculiarities of the Cossacks, which completely contradicts the notion of preservation of artistic originality. It proves once again that the Russian language is unique, both people and nations living here.

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