Leo Tosltoy’s novel “Anna Karenina”: Semantic and stylistic peculiarities of the Tatar translation

Abstract: 

The article provides results of a comparative textual analysis of a number of episodes from Leo Tolstoy’s novel “Anna Karenina” (source text) and its only existing translation into the Tatar language, which was made by Makhmud Maksud in the late 1950s. The purpose of our research is to assess the scope of M. Maksud’s contribution to the national translation school of the last century, and to discover how accurate the translation into the Tatar language is. The article focuses on the scenes, describing the meetings of the two main characters of the novel ­– Stiva Oblonsky and Konstantin Levin. These scenes are of special interest to us due to the fact that they reflect the literary-aesthetic category of “сase (event)”, which we see as one of the most important structure-forming elements of the novel. In the article we focus on the so-called “translation errors”, which have “crept into” the Tatar text owing to a number of objective and subjective reasons. The methodology offered by V. N. Komissarov, a well-known Russian expert in the sphere of translation theory, is used during the analysis. By checking the Tatar translation against the source text we have come to the conclusion that Makhmut Maksud’s translation is quite successful, in its time it fully met readers’ national needs. Certain semantic and stylistic errors, found in the translated text, by no means belittle the value of the translator’s extensive work, which only indicates that any translation of fiction is a long term process, requiring repeated work with the source text. Imperfections of the first translation should be eliminated during subsequent references to the source text of the novel.

Key words: 

novel “Anna Karenina” by Leo Tolstoy, source text, M. Maksud’s translation, translation errors, textual analysis, style of the Tatar translation.

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