If this be Treason: Translation and Its Dyscontents : a Memoir

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New Directions Publishing, 2005 - Biography & Autobiography - 189 pages
14 Reviews
Gregory Rabassa's influence as a translator is incalculable. His translations of Gabriel Garcia Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude and Julio Cortazar's Hopscotch have helped make these some of the most widely read and respected works in world literature. (Garcia Marquez was known to say that the English translation of One Hundred Years was better than the Spanish original.) In If This Be Treason: Translation and Its Dyscontents Rabassa offers a cool-headed and humorous defense of translation, laying out his views on the art of the craft. Anecdotal, and always illuminating, If This Be Treason traces Rabassa's career, from his boyhood on a New Hampshire farm, his school days "collecting" languages, the two-and-a-half years he spent overseas during WWII, his travels, until one day "I signed a contract to do my first translation of a long work ! Cortazar's Hopscotch ! for a commercial publisher." Rabassa concludes with his "rap sheet," a consideration of the various authors and the over 40 works he has translated. This long-awaited memoir is a joy to read, an instrumental guide to translating, and a look at the life of one of its great practitioners.
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - MarthaJeanne - LibraryThing

I enjoyed the introductory section, but the core of this book is Rabassa's descriptions of the various authors he has worked with and the books he has translated. Even without any knowledge of the ... Read full review

Review: If This Be Treason: Translation and Its Dyscontents

User Review  - David - Goodreads

A TOP SHELF review, originally published in the July 12, 2014 edition of The Monitor After WWII, the English-speaking world experienced a boom of interest in Latin-American literature that arguably ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

The Many Faces of Treason
In Pursuit of Other Words
ii
Stringing Words Together
18
In the Beginning
22
Me and My Circumstance
29
Advance to Be Recognized
40
THE BILL OF PARTICULARS
47
THE BILL of PARTICULARS
49
Juan Benet
123
Vinícius de Moraes
126
Luisa Valenzuela
129
Jorge Amado
132
Oswaldo Franca Jūnior
138
António Lobo Antunes
141
José Donso
147
Irene Vilar
151

Julio Cortázar
51
Miguel Ángel Asturias
63
Clarice Lispector
70
Mario Vargas Llosa
75
Afránio Coutinho
82
Juan Goytisolo
85
Manuel MujicaLáinez
90
Gabriel Garcia Márquez
93
Dalton Trevisan
105
José Lezama Lima
108
Demetrio AguileraMalta
111
Osman Lins
116
Luis Rafael Sanchez
119
Mário de Carvalho
154
Joaquim Maria Machado De Assis
157
Ana Teresa Torres
162
Darcy Ribeiro
166
Joáo De Melo
169
Jesús Zárate
172
Jorge Franco
175
Volodia Teitelboim
178
José Sarney
180
The Plays
183
BY WAY OF A VERDICT
189
How Say You?
190
Copyright

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About the author (2005)

Gregory Rabassa is presently Distinguished Professor of Romance Languages and Comparative Literature at Queens College, New York.

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