For some reason, this translation feels a bit awkward to me, and McDuff has a choice of words and a style that hinder more than help me. A translation that has gained a lot of attention, positive as well as negative, is the one from Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky. Their version of the same text is:. A man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point where he does not discern any truth either in himself or anywhere around him, and thus falls into disrespect towards himself and others.
Not respecting anyone, he ceases to love, and having no love, he gives himself up to passions and coarse pleasures, in order to occupy and amuse himself, and in his vices reaches complete bestiality, and it all comes from lying continually to others and to himself. Some people find this reinvigorating, while others shudder at the thought of translators trying to improve the language of Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, and more. Finally, I found the translation by Ignat Avsey which I have heard many positive remarks about. But no translation is perfect, and he uses a language that appeals to me and many others:.
He who lies to himself and listens to his own lies reaches a state in which he no longer recognizes truth either in himself or in others, and so he ceases to respect both himself and others.
Having ceased to respect everyone, he stops loving, and then, in the absence of love, in order to occupy and divert himself, he abandons himself to passions and the gratification of coarse pleasures until his vices bring him down to the level of bestiality, and all on account of his being constantly false both to himself and to others. There is something about the rhythm and choice of words that appeal to me, and that helps me understand the characters. A final version of the above writing is from Andrew R.
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MacAndrew and the Bantam Classic version, which also is pleasing to me:. A man who lies to himself, and believes his own lies, becomes unable to recognize truth , either in himself or in anyone else, and he ends up losing respect for himself as well as for others. When he has no respect for anyone, he can no longer love and, in order to divert himself, having no love in him, he yields to his impulses, indulges in the lowest forms of pleasure, and behaves in the end like an animal, in satisfying his vices.
And it all comes from lying—lying to others and to yourself. I repeat, it was not stupidity —the majority of these fantastical fellows are shrewd and intelligent enough—but just senselessness, and a peculiar national form of it. I repeat: here there was no question of stupidity; the bulk of these madcaps are really quite sharp and clever — but plain muddle-headedness, and, moreover, of a peculiar, national variety.
Again I say it was not stupidity—most of these madcaps are rather clever and shrewd—but precisely muddleheadedness, even a special, national form of it. Let me repeat yet again: this was not a case of stupidity—most of these crackpots are shrewd and cunning enough—but of muddle-headedness, and of a special, typically Russian kind. Let me repeat: it was not stupidity, for most such eccentrics are really quite intelligent and cunning, and their lack of common sense is of a special kind, a national variety. As a final comparison, we can hear the different versions of how Mrs.
Khoklakova and her daughter Lise are introduced:. Sign in New customer? Start here. View Cart 0 Your Shopping Cart is empty.
The Karamazov Brothers (Oxford World's Classics) - أبجد
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The less stilted version is preferable in Russian there's no choice in the matter. It's a feature of Dostoevsky that whenever he ups the rhetoric, he lowers the profile.
Choosing the best Karamazov translation for you
The lads could well have been a trapeze act, though that too, I seem to remember, is not an altogether original observation. And lastly, the two greatest titles of all time must be Crime and Punishment and War and Peace - so far! The Karamazov Brothers, Hamlet etc are cop-outs in comparison. But that's quite another story.
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