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Sehnsuchtsmotive

English translation: overcoming the constraints of gravity is one of the persistent themes

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:Sehnsuchtsmotive
English translation:overcoming the constraints of gravity is one of the persistent themes
Entered by: Kim Metzger
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13:55 Nov 16, 2008
German to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Architecture
German term or phrase: Sehnsuchtsmotive
Sehnsucht - yearning, desire, longing
Motiv - theme, motif, object, impulse, motive, inducement, spur, drive, incentive
But how to deal with Sehnsuchtsmotive in the first sentence below? Your suggestions will be appreciated.

Die Überwindung der Schwerkraft ist eines der durchgängigen Sehnsuchtsmotive in der Architektur der Moderne. Während in den 1920er Jahren Entwürfe wie El Lissitzkys Wolkenbügel, die Petersschule von Hannes Mayer & Hans Wittwer, die Hängehäuser der Brüder Rasch oder Leonidovs Lenin Institut schon aus konstruktionstechnischen Gründen noch kaum umsetzbar waren, wurden in der späten Moderne eine Reihe von »schwebenden« Architekturen realisiert. Dazu zählen Bauten wie Niemeyers einem UFO gleich an der Steilküste über dem Meer schwebenden Contemporary Art Museum in Niterói oder John Lautners Garcia House, das Michelangelo Antonioni 1970 in Zabriskie Point so eindrucksvoll explodieren ließ.
Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 07:46
reword
Explanation:
possible option:

'the longing to overcome the force of gravity is one of the persistent themes/motifs of modern architecture'

However, I suspect that Sehnsuchtsmotiv is standard term in art criticism (more specifically music or literature criticism), so there may be a better solution (or a solution more in line with accepted usage).

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Note added at 2 hrs (2008-11-16 16:49:14 GMT)
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'overcoming the constraints of gravity' might be better. From an engineering perspective, traditional architecture is essentially the art of stacking things on top of each other so they don't fall down and can support loads, while the 'floating' structures of modern architecture are supposed to give the impression that they are disconnected from the ground and rest on air.
Selected response from:

Ken Cox
Local time: 14:46
Grading comment
Many thanks to all of you. Fortunately, I was able to get the author's feedback. He was happy with both of Ken's proposals: "Overcoming the constraints of gravity is one of the persistent themes of modern architecture and "The longing to overcome the constraints of gravity .."
I also appreciated "persistent" for durchgängig

4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +5rewordKen Cox
3 +2motives (motifs) of yearning
Bernhard Sulzer
3 +1longing motive
ivo abdman
2 -1rephrase: architecture you have always longed to see
Stephen Sadie
2 -2nostalgic themecasper
Summary of reference entries provided
motif of longing
Helen Shiner

  

Answers


27 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5 peer agreement (net): -1
rephrase: architecture you have always longed to see


Explanation:
just for starters, but this approach may work

Stephen Sadie
Germany
Local time: 14:46
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 16

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Helen Shiner: Sorry, Stephen, but I also have to disagree with this. The motif of 'schweben' - think Barlach's sculpture, for instance - is about longing, attempts at an ultimately failed transcendence, at striving for something beyond the human. eg Goethe and streben?
1 hr
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48 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
longing motive


Explanation:
Actually it is music term --> but it can be architecture term as an analogy

From the first row

Überwindung
Willpower

Über windung
Over meander ---> like longing motive in music



http://www.google.co.id/search?hl=id&q="longing motive"&meta...


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 55 mins (2008-11-16 14:51:13 GMT)
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when you have big desire like a wolf ..... au au auuuuuu auuuuuu uuuu (is it like over meander isn't it). Please do not be a werewolf now

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr (2008-11-16 14:58:19 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------


Albert Einstein quotes

“Feeling and longing are the motive forces behind all human endeavor and human creations.”

Albert Einstein quotes (German born American Physicist who developed the special and general theories of relativity. Nobel Prize for Physics in 1921. 1879-1955)

Quotes about: Longing.
Quotes with: behind, creations, endeavor, feeling, forces, human, longing, motive.

Albert Einstein said:

"Feeling and longing are the motive forces behind all human..." and:

“Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.”



ivo abdman
Indonesia
Local time: 19:46
Native speaker of: Native in IndonesianIndonesian
Notes to answerer
Asker: It would be much appreciated if you would stick to languages you understand.


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Helen Shiner: motif of longing is, I think, correct, though some of what you say is not very clear. It is the longing for transcendence, for that which is not human. Nietzsche springs to my mind, but he is certainly not alone as your Einstein quote demonstrates.
1 hr
  -> thanks
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5 peer agreement (net): -2
Sehnsuchtsmotiv
nostalgic theme


Explanation:
Might fit - considering that the para talks about architecture in the 1920s and in 1970 ?

casper
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 12

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  KARIN ISBELL
17 mins
  -> Danke, Karin

disagree  Helen Shiner: Sorry to disagree but this is longing for some form of transcendence or something beyond the human, not for the past./Exactly, therefore, something beyond the human - we are bound by gravity as are our buildings!
1 hr
  -> Oh no, Helen, this is NOT "longing for some form of transcendence or something beyond the human".Unless I'm reading it wrong, the Sehnsuchtsmotiv pertains to "die Überwindung der Schwerkraft". as expressed through "schwebende Architektur" in the past.

disagree  Armorel Young: nostalgia is a longing for something that has existing in the past, so this would imply that there was a past age in which humans were not bound by gravity
4 hrs
  -> As I read it: there ws a past age (1920s and 1970) when the Sehnsuchtsmotiv for Überwindung der Schwerkraft was realised through schwebende Architektur. Maybe I'm reading it wrong, Armorel?

disagree  Harald Moelzer (medical-translator): Der deutsche Satz sagt eindeutig, dass sich die Sehnsucht auf die Überwindung der Schwerkraft bezieht, und nicht auf bestimmte Zeiten (= Nostalgie) oder anderes...
16 hrs
  -> Ok - fine. I get the point - *finally!* Thanks, Harald :-)
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47 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +5
reword


Explanation:
possible option:

'the longing to overcome the force of gravity is one of the persistent themes/motifs of modern architecture'

However, I suspect that Sehnsuchtsmotiv is standard term in art criticism (more specifically music or literature criticism), so there may be a better solution (or a solution more in line with accepted usage).

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2 hrs (2008-11-16 16:49:14 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

'overcoming the constraints of gravity' might be better. From an engineering perspective, traditional architecture is essentially the art of stacking things on top of each other so they don't fall down and can support loads, while the 'floating' structures of modern architecture are supposed to give the impression that they are disconnected from the ground and rest on air.

Ken Cox
Local time: 14:46
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 34
Grading comment
Many thanks to all of you. Fortunately, I was able to get the author's feedback. He was happy with both of Ken's proposals: "Overcoming the constraints of gravity is one of the persistent themes of modern architecture and "The longing to overcome the constraints of gravity .."
I also appreciated "persistent" for durchgängig
Notes to answerer
Asker: This is one of the extremely rare occasions when I have the luxury of asking the author what he thinks of a translation. I just sent him your initial proposal. His reply: great, you got it!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Helen Shiner: Please see my comments elsewhere. Not so much a standard term, as a frequently occurring theme - space travel might be a later manifestation, but it is 'longing' per se./Your translation misses the point that there are other motifs of longing.
1 hr
  -> Sorry, you lost me with the reference to space travel. Space travel does not overcome the force of gravity, but simply counters it (in a rather brute-force manner in the case of rockets).

agree  Andrew D: longing to overcome the force of gravity (counterbalance it) standard theme from Le Corbusier to the new Porsche museum
3 hrs

agree  Paul Cohen:
4 hrs

agree  Armorel Young: that's exactly how I read it too
4 hrs

agree  Harald Moelzer (medical-translator)
17 hrs

agree  Stephen Reader: Yes, I like it. Taking Helen's note re 'other motifs of longing' on board, could change syntax à la 'One of the most persistent expressions of ((the motif of)) longing in modernist architecture is the striving to overcome...'
1 day8 hrs
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4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
motives (motifs) of yearning


Explanation:


I think it describes the type of motif rather than the longing/yearning for overcoming gravity "as a (recurring) motif" - which is, however, closely related in meaning.

as in motifs expressing various types of yearnings (= yearning motives - although I am not as happy with that term))


one of the ... strongly desired, yearned-for motifs/motives

http://www.pushthebuttonplay.com/dlwd/alvargonzalez/crosslin...

Der Pavillon führt den Betrachter in diese Gegenüberstellung ein und fokussiert ihn auf die Differenz der inneren und äußerlichen Reiseschilderung vor dem Hintergrund des Hafens
als Sehnsuchtsmotiv. Das Licht wird dabei zum elementaren Bindeglied zwischen den unterschiedlichen
Elementen des Ensembles.

The pavilion leads the viewer into this contraposition, focusing him on the difference between the inner and external travel description set against the harbour as a motive of yearning.
The light becomes the elementary link between the different elements of the ensemble.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 4 hrs (2008-11-16 18:12:22 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

correction: - never mind the "one of the ... strongly desired, yearned-for motifs/motives" - that would be way too weak and not describing the type of motif.

Bernhard Sulzer
United States
Local time: 08:46
Native speaker of: German
PRO pts in category: 19

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Helen Shiner: I agree with your understanding of the sentence, i.e. 'one of the motifs of', though longing is better than yearning to my mind.
4 hrs
  -> thank you, Helen! For your input as well. That would then be "motifsof longing".

agree  Harald Moelzer (medical-translator)
13 hrs
  -> danke, Harald!
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Reference comments


2 hrs peer agreement (net): +2
Reference: motif of longing

Reference information:
I don't want to repeat myself, so please see my comments elsewhere. In order for your translation to be clearer, you could perhaps stress for what the architect/architecture is longing. As I see it, this theme always incorporates an element of failure to attain the desired goal, whether it is the wish to transcend the human/earthly, the love of some unobtainable person, or a state apparently lost - see Zionism. It is essentially a Romantic theme, which reoccurs when Romanticism is an artist's/architect's world view or at least the tendency to which he/she aligns him/herself:

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=pkCsOcATvd0C&pg=PA238&lpg...

but there are many other examples if you google the terms above.

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Note added at 2 hrs (2008-11-16 16:47:08 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Though clearly you need 'motifs of longing'!

Helen Shiner
United Kingdom
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 246

Peer comments on this reference comment (and responses from the reference poster)
agree  Bernhard Sulzer
16 hrs
  -> Thank you, Bernhard
agree  ivo abdman
1 day34 mins
  -> Thank you, ivo
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