蘇老師專欄

[ 2018-06-25 ]

<談文論譯>NTNU校園標誌的英譯   蘇正隆

台灣師大最近準備改進校園環境的英漢雙語標誌,請翻譯研究所找人修訂或重譯,而且願意付較合理的翻譯修訂費。許多學校碰到需要英譯的時候,往往就丟給英/外文系/翻譯系所去處理,不願出一毛錢,台師大願意付比政府標準高許多的翻譯費,的確難得。譯研所秋慧助教請我負責,我就接下來了。

審訂過程中碰到不少頗具挑戰的難題,譬如以下一則標語:「做人要嚴以律己,寬以待人。做事要海納百川,萬事圓融。」

學校提供的原譯是: 
  • “To be a human, one must treat oneself harshly but treat others benevolently. To conduct general affairs, one must have a heart that can accommodate a hundred rivers, and allow all to happen.” (Original)

原譯英文也還不錯,但treat oneself harshly不太對勁,「海納百川」直譯為accommodate a hundred rivers也不太好。我先請一位英國文藝青年Ian Maxwell修訂,他改成:
To be human, one must be strict with oneself, but lenient with others. When conducting one’s affairs, be accepting of all things; the world’s multitudes will smooth into one. (First edit)

我們討論過以後,他修改成:
To be human, one must be strict with oneself, but lenient with others. Doing anything, one must accept all that exists. This way, the world's multitudes will present few problems. (Second edit)

我保留他的第一句,建議把第二句改成:
Doing anything, one must accept all that exists and be tactful in resolving problems. (Third edit)
他的答覆是:“Yes, I think your suggestion is the best and most complete so far.”

但我覺得還可再改進。今天我與書林美國編輯 Rebecca Lee討論,最後改成:
To be human, one must be strict with oneself, but lenient with others. In doing anything, one must accept that many possibilities exist and be tactful in resolving problems. 

今天再參酌張錯教授 (Dominic Cheung) 意見修訂為:
One should be strict with oneself, but lenient with others. In doing anything, one should accept that many possibilities exist and be tactful in resolving problems.

為了這一則標語的英譯花了三天,真是「晨夕推敲,句始堪傳。」 (Jerome Su, June 8, 18, Revised June 9, June 10, 2018)