on translating poetry

I’ve been thinking again about translating poetry, partly because it’s a pet subject of mine, and partly because I’m hoping to run a course on the subject next year and have been preparing the course spec.

One of the recurring questions is “when does a translation cease to be a translation and become a derivative work?”.
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de tiendas II

It’s not just the bread and cake shops that confuse me in Spain. There’s a-whole-nother area of shop difficulties associated with chemist shops and drug stores.

In the UK we have chemists. Inside a chemist shop you’ll find the pharmacy counter where you can buy your medicines – or, hopefully, in the near future get your prescription made up free of charge. You’ll also usually find a photographic department, perhaps an optician, even, maybe, a wine-making area. Continue reading “de tiendas II”

language bombs

On the subject of shops, I talked about the bombonería – the chocolate shop – and the fact that our local bar is called the Bombonera although it’s neither chocolate box pretty, nor does it sell anything sweet, focusing rather, as do most normal Spanish bars, on fried food such as calamares and pieces of pig.

The whole bomb… lexical area is, perhaps unsurprisingly, one which deserves due respect. Our butane gas is delivered in big orange bottles called bombonas. (Remember that bombón is a chocolate or similar sweet.) Continue reading “language bombs”

mostly photos

Sadly, there seems to be something not quite right with the WordPress image gallery function for this theme, Continue reading “mostly photos”

titular particular de Público

Después de su fallo con las estadístcas, de nuevo parece que el corrector de textos del periódico Público tiene un mal día:

El Banco de España tiene un procotolo de emergencia
Titular de Público, 5 octubre 2008

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de tiendas I

One thing that remains confusing about living abroad, even after so many years, is the the shopping.

Not the opening hours, this time – though that’s a subject that can always get me ranting happily, and which I’ll no doubt come back to – but the shops themselves and where you need to go to buy different things.

You’d think that mostly there’d be a one-to-one equivalence between shops in different countries, wouldn’t you? But back in French class, in the 70s, I remember seeing that this isn’t the case. Continue reading “de tiendas I”

reflections on inflections

A Spanish friend was telling me about an email he’d received from his ex.

What I heard – Dijo que intente perdonar lo que pasó – was a lot different from what he actually said – Dijo que intenta perdonar…

I (mis)understood that she was asking him to try to forgive her, and thereby apparently taking responsibility for what happened, whereas in fact she was saying she was trying to forgive him, but laying the blame squarely at his door.
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