Dear Raghavendra Udupa
I have no clear idea of what you mean by "structure hugging
fabric". Experience, from my point of view, is an
uncoordinated manifold of possibilities and it is the
experiencer's attention and perception that generate
If you articulate a more explicit question and tell me where
you are I'll be happy to answer.
Ernst von Glasersfeld
Dear Professor Glasersfeld:
My name is Marilise Rezende Bertin. I'm a Brazilian English
and Portuguese teacher and am now ending my MA in the area of
English literature and translation. I write 'easier' theatre
texts of Shakespeare's plays in English to English students,
and treachers of English. I have them with my supervisor and
they've been launched already.
My MA dealt with the word adaptation, a concept not very well
accepted in the are of international translation studies. But
the concept adaptation is well used here in Brasil to mean a
simplified text, and Shakespeare's originals are difficult.
Very well, I'm thinking of developing a PhD on translation
pedagogy or adaptation pedagogy within translation area and
came across your text on Radical constructivism and
adaptation, which made my way of thinking change completely.
As a writer who worries about teaching readers I became very
much interested in your work. Could there be a way to bridge
your ideas of radical constructivism with a pedagogy on
translation or adaptation - which, in my case is an easier
text in English - and analyse reading via it? What I mean is
how could I make sure anyone who read my easy texts would
understand them all, considering Shakespeare's text is old and
I wanted to bring something of it to a new public?
Hope you can answer and suggest anything it could help my work
Many thanks so far.
Marilise Rezende Bertin.
Dear Marilise Rezende Bertin,
I gather from your explanations that by "adaptation" you
intend a simplification of a foreign text so that Brazilian
readers will be able to understand it in terms of their own
cultural background rather than that of the author. If this is
a correct interpretation of what you intend, such a generic
use of "adaptation" makes me nervous.Translating is a tricky
business. In my view, a translator must in the first place
try to find words that, with regard to meaning, are as close
as possible to those used by the foreign author. As there are
almost always differences, it is a relative business, and the
translator has to judge when the discrepancy is too large. In
those cases he/she may have to rewrite the phrase or even the
situation in order to present one that has a similar
connotational and emotional effect. Experiences referred to by
one language are often at least partially (and sometimes
wholly) outside the experiential range of another language
group - in which case the translator has to re-invent.
Concerning your last paragraph, I have to say that I am
against simplifying Shakespeare's or any other author's text
for the benefit of readers who are ignorant of the historical,
social, and literary background of the author.
Ernst von Glasersfeld