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Concentrational

English translation: concentrationary

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19:31 Feb 23, 2009
English to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Poetry & Literature
English term or phrase: Concentrational
The word doesn't exist in English. As this is a literary translation, I wonder if I can use it though. It comes from the French "concentrationnaire" - of concentration camps.
The translation is from Romanian, and it's going to be something like:
"In order to escape a concentrational universe - and it doesn't have to be a work camp, prison or other form of incarceration; the theory applies to any manifestation of totalitarianism...."
Can I get away with using "concentrational", and if not, any suggestions as to alternatives?
Gabi
English translation:concentrationary
Explanation:
In academia, especially in Cultural Studies, the term 'concentrationary' is used in this context. If you google the term you can find quite a few books/conferences/seminars with this term, referring to things in relation to concentration camps. Its central use focuses around concentration camps for the Jews during the WWII, but I have seen the term applied to experiences of other people as well.

hope this helps.
Selected response from:

tappi_k
United Kingdom
Local time: 04:58
Grading comment
Thank you
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +4do not use...Ken Cox
5The spatial property of being crowded together
Gary D
2 +3concentration-type
Sheila Wilson
3 +1concentrationarytappi_k
3confinemental, confinedjuvera
2a universe of repressive conformity
Christine Andersen


  

Answers


23 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
concentrational
concentrationary


Explanation:
In academia, especially in Cultural Studies, the term 'concentrationary' is used in this context. If you google the term you can find quite a few books/conferences/seminars with this term, referring to things in relation to concentration camps. Its central use focuses around concentration camps for the Jews during the WWII, but I have seen the term applied to experiences of other people as well.

hope this helps.

tappi_k
United Kingdom
Local time: 04:58
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in JapaneseJapanese, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
Thank you
Notes to answerer
Asker: Following your suggestion I googled 'concentrationary universe' and found quite a few instances of it being used. Thank you


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  xxxd_vachliot
15 hrs
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14 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5 peer agreement (net): +3
concentrational
concentration-type


Explanation:
I'm not sure how to answer the "get away with" question, hence the low confidence level. As you say, it isn't an English word. It seems to be quite fashionable to make up words in a marketing context, but I would have thought it a dangerous thing to do in a literary context.

Would "concentration-type environment" work? It's difficult to say without the context, but in this case that would be useless to me. Googling concentration-type and prisoner together brings up a good deal of examples, not all to do with the classic POW camps

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Note added at 44 mins (2009-02-23 20:15:54 GMT)
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I don't think "concentrational" would be understood easily, although it can be worked out from the context. It would require reading, then re-reading, and would sound like interference from a foreign language (!). The problem is not so much that it is an invented word (we're all used to those nowadays!), but that the verb to concentrate is so common and has various meanings - in other words, the reader would look for meanings that aren't there.

Sheila Wilson
Spain
Local time: 04:58
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 44
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you. Would a reader understand what I mean by 'concentrational' in the context given, I think that's what I meant by 'get away with it'.

Asker: That was my fear too, the confusion with 'concentrate'


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Mihaela Ghiuzeli: That's exactly I was thinking !
10 mins
  -> Thanks, I must have heard!

agree  Gary D
2 hrs
  -> Thanks

agree  Tina Vonhof
3 hrs
  -> Thanks
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +4
concentrational
do not use...


Explanation:
In your specific context, the author is apparently using the Romanian cognate of 'concentrationnaire' to characterise any sort of repressive sociopolitical system or structure. For this reason, I don't think 'concentrationary' will work well, partly because it is not a commonly used or commonly undestood term, partly because (as Shiela Wilson) said) the most common meanings of 'concentrate' and 'concentration' in English are entirely different from this.
In the term 'concentration camp', the word 'concentration' refers to the act of gathering a certain group of people in a small place, in which sense they are 'concentrated' in this place, and I suspect that the term entered English as a literal translation, probably from French. In light of the historcal function of concentration camps, it can probably be regarded as a euphnemism, althogh this may not have been the original intent when the term was coined. However that's a bit beside the point here.

Getting back to the point, you might find that 'gulag' has a resonance in English that is closer to what your author is expressing. It is fairly well known in English-speaking countries (mainly as result of the popularity of the the book The Gulag Archipelago) as a synonym for the systematic repression associated with concentration camps and similar institutions.

Ken Cox
Local time: 05:58
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 88
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you. That is definitely something to bear in mind

Asker: Gulag is quite specific, my reading of 'concentrationary universe' is wider. The remainder of the sentence confirms it I think: "it doesn't have to be a work camp, prison or other form of incarceration; the theory applies to any manifestation of totalitarianism...."


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Gunilla Zedigh
1 hr

agree  Sheila Wilson: I'm pretty sure all Brits know the word Gulag
11 hrs

agree  B D Finch: "Gulag" certainly gets the idea across.
13 hrs

agree  xxxd_vachliot: Yes, but Gulag is associated with the Soviet Union, whereas "concentrationary" is associated with Nazi concentration camps. The connotations should be maintained.
14 hrs
  -> In the minds of English-speaking people other than specialists, 'concentrationary' isn't associated with anything, but 'Gulag' is associated with the USSR and more generally with state repression.
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
concentrational
confinemental, confined


Explanation:
Confined sounds a bit simplistic in comparison to the verbal gymnastics of the other possibilities, so I am offering cofinemental.
Not a favourite word of linguists, according to some it doesn't even exists, but there are traces of it on Google, like:

Obstructiv Pulmonary Disease in Never-Smoking Animal Farmers Working Inside Confinemental Buildings. American Journal of Industrial Medicine 46,...
arbmed.klinikum.uni-muenchen.de/publikationen.pdf

...and the surrounding medium can give interesting confinemental effects. Typically these clusters are surrounded by dielectrics such as air, organic solvents, ...
linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0025540897000044

I was not aware, until I viewed the Confinemental art work, the physcological effect being disturbed would have on you.
journals.student.com/journal/gayguyinsussex/55157

...optical and confinemental in the latter.
www.electrochem.org/dl/ma/201/pdfs/0632.pdf

juvera
Local time: 04:58
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in HungarianHungarian
PRO pts in category: 39
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you. I guess confinement is the primary purpose of a concentration camp, but to me it's so much more. And I think the author meant it the same way

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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
concentrational
The spatial property of being crowded together


Explanation:
In order to escape a concentrational (The spatial property of being crowded together) universe -
comes from - concentration
I really wouldn't change it. It is an evolving word.

If you did change it you would have to change the sentence. I tried a few, but none sound as good as the original, this is maybe the best.

In order to escape a concentration based universe

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Note added at 2 hrs (2009-02-23 22:21:54 GMT)
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yes Gabi, I tried a few and the original always sounded better, anything else just didn't fit the rest of the text.

Example sentence(s):
  • In order to escape a concentration based universe
Gary D
Local time: 13:58
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 20
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you. I've been trying different sentences for a while now, but none feel right. I don't know

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15 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5
concentrational
a universe of repressive conformity


Explanation:
Sometimes you have to look away from the source and sleep on it. Think what it means, and forget the etymology.

A metaphor that is sometimes used in Danish for overcrowding is 'battery hens'. However, that is difficult to incorporate here, and
´In order to escape a universe of battery hens...´
does not really work in English.

As I understand it, what the text refers to is not so much the physical confinement as the inhibition and obstruction of any individualism or questioning of the system.
This does tend to lead to physical confinement within national borders, poverty through lack of development etc. but these are more the results of the repression than its actual objectives.

Just a thought.

Christine Andersen
Denmark
Local time: 05:58
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you. I've been sleeping on it for a while, I need to make up my mind.

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