New22-vol­ume col­lec­tion­gath­er­s­the com­plete­work­sofchina’s most­fa­mous­rus­sian-tochi­ne­se­trans­la­tor Mon­u­men­tal achieve­ment

Global Times US Edition - - LIFE I - Page Edi­tor: li­[email protected]­

the Cao Ying Study, es­tab­lish­ing the Cao Ying Foun­da­tion and Trans­la­tion Lit­er­a­ture Award, and pub­lish­ing The Com­plete Trans­la­tions of Cao Ying. The pre­vi­ous two have been com­pleted, and now the last one has come true,” she said at the open­ing cer­e­mony.

“I re­mem­bered Sheng once told me that Leo Tol­stoy spent seven years com­plet­ing War and Peace and re­vised it eight times. As a trans­la­tor, he needed to read it at least a dozen times. Ac­cord­ing to him, he read War and Peace 12 times and spent an­other six years trans­lat­ing it into Chi­nese,” Zhao Li­hong, the vice pres­i­dent of the Shang­hai Writ­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion, told the Global Times.

Sheng once said that a trans­la­tor is not a “voice tube,” nor a “trans­la­tion ma­chine.” Lit­er­ary trans­la­tion needs to have emo­tional res­o­nance, be­cause only when peo­ple are touched emo­tion­ally can they ex­pe­ri­ence the orig­i­nal work’s

at­mos­phere. He noted that he firmly be­lieves that a good trans­la­tion will al­low foreign read­ers to have the same feel­ings and re­ac­tions as na­tive read­ers.

At the event, Chen Zhi, the pres­i­dent of the Shang­hai Lit­er­a­ture and Art Pub­lish­ing House, told the Global Times that in or­der to com­pletely im­merse him­self in War and Peace, Sheng wrote the names, iden­ti­ties and per­son­al­i­ties of all 559 char­ac­ters in the novel on sep­a­rate cards so he could study each and every one.

Dif­fi­cult task

Pub­lish­ing a com­plete col­lec­tion of all his works was one of Sheng’s fi­nal wishes. How­ever, this was no easy task for the Shang­hai Lit­er­a­ture and Art Pub­lish­ing House, as the trans­la­tor’s per­sonal writ­ings were scat­tered through­out nu­mer­ous news­pa­pers and mag­a­zines.

In or­der to fully demon­strate Sheng’s lit­er­ary trans­la­tion achieve­ments and his per­sonal dis­course on Rus­sian and Soviet lit­er­a­ture and

trans­la­tion is­sues, the pub­lish­ing house first be­gan work­ing with Sheng and his fam­ily in 2014. Af­ter years of or­ga­niz­ing and edit­ing his trans­la­tion works, all his writ­ings have been con­tained in a 22-vol­ume col­lec­tion.

“No mat­ter how hard life was, he never gave up his trans­la­tion work. Dur­ing the edit­ing process, we too were deeply im­pressed by Mr. Sheng’s in­cred­i­ble fo­cus,” Chen said.

Ac­cord­ing to a re­port from The Pa­per, the en­tire set con­tains more than 10 mil­lion Chi­nese char­ac­ters. Twelve of the 22 vol­umes con­tain his trans­la­tions of Leo Tol­stoy’s nov­els; seven vol­umes are trans­la­tions of the writ­ings of Mikhail Sholokhov, who won the 1965 No­bel Prize in Lit­er­a­ture, and Rus­sian Ro­man­tic writer Mikhail Ler­mon­tov; one vol­ume cov­ers Sheng’s per­sonal works in Rus­sian; one vol­ume is a Rus­sian gram­mar book com­piled by Sheng; and one vol­ume con­tains his trans­lated ar­ti­cles pub­lished in var­i­ous news­pa­pers and mag­a­zines over the years.

Photo: IC

A dis­play in the Cao Ying Study in Shang­hai

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