Husband-and-wife translation team finished new translation from Russian to English of “Doctor Zhivago”

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missdutch  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 05:52
Member (2010)
English to Italian
+ ...
Good for them, however Dec 10, 2010

it's a shame that a great poet like Pasternak is remembered and known more for this lousy novel than for his wonderful poems. Sure, his poetry is very, very difficult to translate. I hope the couple did justice to Yury Zhivago's poems, the only truly remarkable things in the novel. I'm thinking about Winter's Night.
http://www.kulichki.com/poems/Poets/bp/Eng/bp_1.html


 

sokolniki  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:52
English to Russian
+ ...
So that is the reason.. Dec 11, 2010

why the Soviets would not publish it until late 80s and Isaiah Berlin had to smuggle it abroad risking his freedom and possibly life? Too lousy.. That was Vladimir Nabokov's opinion but Nabokov was the writer of sans-pareil talent and he could criticize.

 

missdutch  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 05:52
Member (2010)
English to Italian
+ ...
No, that's not the reason. Dec 11, 2010

The Soviets didn't want to publish it for political reasons, as you well know. In fact, they published a lot of lousy propaganda literature. They didn't care about Zhivago's literary value. And it's not what I wrote.

That's not my point: it's lousy because it is not a great - or, at least - a good work of art. Although it's a beautiful prose, Pasternak - unlike Pushkin or Belyj before him - simply couldn't manage a novel. It sounds like a soap opera; too many coincidences; the characters don't come alive, and the bolshevik revolution is depicted in an almost romantic way, like the Mafia in Coppola's "Godfather 1", which was, instead and nevertheless, a very good movie.

Think about it: what would Tolstoy have made of the same plot?

Pasternak was a truly supreme master of language and thought, that was his "curse". If you remember, the Soviets started not to like him well before Zhivago.

And a last thing. I'm a devoted, passionate reader, and Nabokov is the "light of my life".
I have the right to my own literary taste - I've developed a quite sophisticated one in 45 years - and I have the right to criticize, even though I'm not a writer.


 


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Husband-and-wife translation team finished new translation from Russian to English of “Doctor Zhivago”

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