Give or take 100,000 words

Translation is always a more complex business than you’d initially think.

The Mountain of ‘Les Mis’,” a Ideas Blog post, 29 September 2008

Literature | A new English translation of Hugo’s sprawling and digressive “Les Misérables” is 100,000 words longer than its best-known predecessor. So it draws attention to the translator’s mission of sticking to an author’s intent. Or in some cases not? In America, the 1863 “Confederate” edition, unlike a rival “Yankee” edition, “struck out all references to slavery.” [TLS]

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