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Floating issues List
WEEKLY READINGS AND EXERCISES
29 Sept: Issues
6 Oct: A Semi-opaque process
13 Oct: Letter vs. Spirit
20 Oct: Comparing Translations
27 Oct: Process and Hermeneutics
3 Nov: Radical Translation
10 Nov: Linguistic Differences I
17 Nov: Linguistic Differences II
24 Nov: Traveling Will
1 Dec: Literary Considerations I
8 Dec: Literary Consdiderations II
13 Dec: Final Project Presentations
Assignments and Readings for Week 5, October 27
Process and Hermeneutics
This week, you have the one of the most difficult reading assignments of the quarter, namely, chapters 2-3 of Steiner's opus. This reading is, therefore, the great bulk the preparation for the Oct. 27 class.
On the basis this and other readings, however, I want you to try an experiment (I'll do this one myself, too). Write something about what goes on in your head when you translate something. What are the mental processes? Steiner describes what he thinks goes on (as does W.V. Quine in next week's assignment), but you should try to see what you think goes on in your head. I'm interested in the way you manipulate the triangle of word-object-word, whether and when you short-circuit "object" and go word-word, how these processes may be different at the word level and the phrase or paragraph or sentence level, what this says about the relationship between glosses and translations, and anything else about the mental process that gets you from your original text to your final translation.
Post your ruminations by 8:30 a.m. on the day of class, Wednesday, Oct. 27. Use a single conversation for everyone's thoughts. Have yours and others' posts available in class. This assignment will not be graded.
You also might want to make a list of issues that come up in the Steiner readings that you would like to discuss in the class section. You may post these or not as you feel like it.
1) Continue our discussion of comparative translations, with particular reference to Borges, and to the problems of universality and monadism brought up in Steiner's Chapter 2.
2) Discuss a series of issues brought up in Chapter 3 of Steiner--I will have some, and you should also try to think of some.
3) At least begin the discussion of the discussion of the phenomenology of the hermeneutic process which you have posted on. This may well stretch into next week, as we consider issues brought up in Steiner's Chapter 5.