Creative translation

« previous post | next post »

From Tanner Greer:

I was playing around on The Communist Youth League's Bilibili channel the other day when I came across this video. You'll notice it is an attempt to appropriate an interview with Trump's chief of staff to legitimize Party narratives. Some of things the Party says are fair game, I suppose, but a lot of them revolve around… very creative translations. This is my favorite:

What the Americans want is for China to have a xīn shídài 新时代 ("new era") sort of leader!  It is a bit like taking a foreign statesman who said "I hope America will have great leadership" and translating it as "I hope America will have a leader committed to making America great again," isn't it?

Here's the full Chinese translation (in yellow) of what John Kelly said (in white):

Dànshì… wǒmen háishì qídài xīn shídài de lǐngdǎo rén ba


But… let's still look forward to the leader of a new era

bùyào zǒng xiǎngzhe jǐ shí nián qián de shì


and not always be thinking of things from decades ago

It seems to me that this is a good example of the Lost and Found Department of the Translation Bureau.

Comments are closed.