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Impressions and Expressions of Ijon
May 28th, 2002
10:03 pm


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A Hebrew Translation Gripe
For the life of me, I simply can't understand why several contemporary Hebrew translators choose to use EIZE (meaning what/which, in the masculine singular form) instead of EILU (in the plural for both genders) for plural nouns. A book I've picked up today consistently, deliberately uses EIZE for plural nouns.

Why? It is quite obviously not negligence. Why, then?

Current Mood: frustrated
Current Music: Wagner -- Tannhäuser (Solti and the VPO)

(3 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:May 28th, 2002 12:45 pm (UTC)
Because it conforms to the contemporary usage, naturally. For the life of me I cannot understand why you find it to be so perplexing.
[User Picture]
Date:May 29th, 2002 09:58 am (UTC)
Because I think that contemporary usage is not necessarily something translators ought to bow to. Many times it is, and should be, but not always. I regard translators as language agents, and therefore I expect them to have some sort of aesthetic/linguistic framework in which they make their translation decisions.

I see no good reason to erode the number distinction between EIZE and EILU, and therefore I wonder at the translator's choice to knowingly help destroy this grammatical distinction by ignoring it in this book.
[User Picture]
Date:June 18th, 2002 02:16 am (UTC)
Which book was it?
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