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English translation: which we at first reject because it awkwardly and stubbornly defies our listening habits

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:sperrig und widerwillig sich unseren Hörgewohnheiten zunächst einmal verschließt
English translation:which we at first reject because it awkwardly and stubbornly defies our listening habits
Entered by: Mary Worby
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22:30 Jun 8, 2002
German to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary / Description of a video
German term or phrase: phrase
NAME, der begabte Jungmusiker der tschechischen Hauptstadt, schrieb eigens die Musik zum Film, ***die sperrig und widerwillig sich unseren Hörgewohnheiten zunächst einmal verschließt.*** Da hilft nur dreimaliges Hören und Sehen - mindestens.

NAME, the talented young musician from the Czech capital, wrote some of the music for the film, which at first our ears approach awkwardly and reluctantly. Only three hearings and viewings--at least--help.

Is there a better way to translate this (the phrase in the first sentence, marked by ***)?
athena22
United States
Local time: 17:38
Proposal
Explanation:
Something is being done with the German language here that can't be done in the same way with English. So I would propose a complete rewrite to capture the meaning.

which we at first reject because it awkwardly and stubbornly defies our listening habits
Selected response from:

Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 19:38
Grading comment
Thanks--I like this wording!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +2Proposal
Kim Metzger
4which initially stubbornly and emphatically refuses to penetrate our encrusted listening
Dr. Fred Thomson
4unwieldy and unwilling at first, it yields nothing to ears conditioned by conventionFrazer Clark
4...composed the original music....
Johanna Timm, PhD
4which, unwieldy and reluctantly, refuses at first to be accepted by our hearing habits
swisstell
4which, unwieldily and unwillingly, at first resists
Elisabeth Ghysels


  

Answers


14 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
which, unwieldy and reluctantly, refuses at first to be accepted by our hearing habits


Explanation:
I turn it around a bit without losing the meaning, I trust

swisstell
Italy
Local time: 02:38
Native speaker of: German
PRO pts in pair: 3377
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23 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
which, unwieldily and unwillingly, at first resists


Explanation:
our listening habits.
Greetings,

Nikolaus

Elisabeth Ghysels
Local time: 02:38
PRO pts in pair: 971
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30 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
Proposal


Explanation:
Something is being done with the German language here that can't be done in the same way with English. So I would propose a complete rewrite to capture the meaning.

which we at first reject because it awkwardly and stubbornly defies our listening habits

Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 19:38
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 21837
Grading comment
Thanks--I like this wording!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Trudy Peters: You're on the right track! For the last part, I would say "only seeing and listening to it at least three times ..."
43 mins

agree  Chinoise
3 hrs
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
...composed the original music....


Explanation:
which, defying the listener's traditional expectations, initially has a bewildering, stupefying effect that is mollified only after two or three sessions...

oder so ähnlich.

Johanna Timm, PhD
Canada
Local time: 17:38
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 7290
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
unwieldy and unwilling at first, it yields nothing to ears conditioned by convention


Explanation:
I agree with the points made above, and I think any natural-sounding translation will be somewhat loose. How about this one, which shuffles things a little but (I think) would sound ok to an English native speaker:

'NAME, the talented young musician from the Czech capital, wrote the music specially for the film; unwieldy and unwilling at first, it yields nothing to ears conditioned by convention. Only after seeing and hearing it three times - at least - do things start to improve.'

NB - I think the 'eigens' means 'specially' or 'especially', rather than 'some of'. It sounds as if NAME might have done the whole soundtrack, oder?



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Note added at 2002-06-09 00:29:32 (GMT)
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NB (again) - I should add, rereading my intro above, that I AM an English native speaker, but it\'s late and Sprachgefuehl is a fickle mistress... :o)

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Note added at 2002-06-09 00:41:02 (GMT)
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I\'m aware of a slight problem with using a single pronoun \'it\' in the last sentence, since the two verbs actually have two different direct objects - seeing = the film, and hearing = the music. I suppose one could either fudge it and hope the reader will simply assume the correct antecedents, or use the verbal noun constructions a la original German (and Athena\'s original version above). I must say, I\'d try and avoid the latter method (as Trudy suggests) - \'viewing\' sounds ok to me as a noun, but \'listening\' or \'hearing\' less so, particularly in the plural. What do you think?

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Note added at 2002-06-09 00:44:40 (GMT)
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I\'m aware of a slight problem with using a single pronoun \'it\' in the last sentence, since the two verbs actually have two different direct objects - seeing = the film, and hearing = the music. I suppose one could either fudge it and hope the reader will simply assume the correct antecedents, or use the verbal noun constructions a la original German (and Athena\'s original version above). I must say, I\'d try and avoid the latter method (as Trudy suggests) - \'viewing\' sounds ok to me as a noun, but \'listening\' or \'hearing\' less so, particularly in the plural. What do you think?

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Note added at 2002-06-09 00:45:42 (GMT)
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I\'m aware of a slight problem with using a single pronoun \'it\' in the last sentence, since the two verbs actually have two different direct objects - seeing = the film, and hearing = the music. I suppose one could either fudge it and hope the reader will simply assume the correct antecedents, or use the verbal noun constructions a la original German (and Athena\'s original version above). I must say, I\'d try and avoid the latter method (as Trudy suggests) - \'viewing\' sounds ok to me as a noun, but \'listening\' or \'hearing\' less so, particularly in the plural. What do you think?

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Note added at 2002-06-09 00:48:52 (GMT) Post-grading
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Apologies for repetition. And general prolix rambling. :o)

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Note added at 2002-06-09 00:53:36 (GMT) Post-grading
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Apologies for repetition. And general prolix rambling. :o)

Frazer Clark
Local time: 01:38
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 31
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
which initially stubbornly and emphatically refuses to penetrate our encrusted listening


Explanation:
propensities
This translation requires some poetic license. You have many options to choose from.

Dr. Fred Thomson
United States
Local time: 18:38
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in pair: 5861
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