translating and editing
I have started translating with great enthusiasm and pride, but now, after editing each other, I wonder will we ever know which is the right or more suitable translation? Sometimes I feel a bit puzzled.
It's all about perspective. Translation is just the way someone believes a message should be construed: no more, and no less. There are always different ways to write things, so translation will never be "right" 100% of the time.
Yes, that's true. One should understand the writer's intention -When you translate you should interpret the text, which is not easy, above all you translate from a language which is not yours to another one, which is not yours too. I think that facing different choices there should be a discussion (polite of course) in which translators can motivate and compare their choices. Actually I can't stand staying too much time editing the same text without knowing if mine or someone's else traslation is more faithful.I' d like to see the task completed.
During the course of editing, I sometimes wonder about the correctness of the French text even though I'm only learning French. For one example, a story written in the past tense included the following at the beginning of a sentence: "C'est apres le..." . I thought it should be "C'etait apres le..." and I think it would have better still if it had simply started with "Apres le ...". Am I mistaken about the grammar? (BTW, I don't remember how to do accent marks on my computer.)
Also, at times it seems that sentences in the French version are too long in the English translation. Are there guidelines for that?
Along the lines of your discussion, I wonder about who decides on the final translated version. In any case, it's great practice for the language learner, I suppose.
I have been learning French for 20 days now, so I can't help you much I have understood that French speakers use "c'est....." a lot above all in informal situations. "Apres le..." is simpler. When I am not sure about something I digit the sentence or a chunk onf words and look for examples in the internet . I'll check .- As far as "long sentences" I agree with you : English prefers short simple sentences . Neo-latin languages are more complex , as we now the Romans were great speakers and fluent lawyers. (Cicero the most famous). If you think your sentences are too long or too complicated you could divide them into two shorter ones, a semicolon could separate them.