War and Peace Book Club discussion

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Joining you all a little later in the game...

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message 1: by Kimley (new)

Kimley Welcome to the group Guy! I too started somewhat late but didn't take any breaks and managed to finish a few days ago. What a trip! I'm still taking it all in.

I want to go back now and look over the NY Times blog stuff as they seemed to be having some pretty heated discussions especially as you say regarding the translation.

I can't really comment on the quality of the translation but this is what a friend of mine's sister who is a Russian professor said (sorry if I posted this before):

"The Pevear-Volokhonsky translations are great, I absolutely approve. It doesn't always mean that they "read easier" to the American ear, which is kind of used to a Jane Austenish diction for 19th century novels, but in most cases a) they really do read easier and more smoothly and b) in all cases, the actual diction, the way the prose is structured in Russian, the layers of dialect, etc. is much much much better rendered by P&V than by any previous translators."

Guy, I love your comment about how Tolstoy seems to be REPORTING rather than creating because he really gets into the whole subjectivity of history issue and I kept thinking how ironic it was that here he is giving his own subjective spin on events. Everyone has an agenda - even good ol' Leo!


message 2: by Scott781 (new)

Scott781 | 1 comments Hello everyone. Just joined the group, i'm in the process of reading the Constance Garnett version on page 746 at the moment. I am sorry to hear that Constance admits to "sanitize" Tolstoys text... although I have been enjoying the story. I have started to contemplate Tolstoy's comments through Andrew Bolkonski as to how there can be no such thing as "Military Genius" due to the fact that troops in battle are constantly changing positions in a split second, not giving anyone time to plan for the change. This is going along the lines of Tolstoy "reporting" as Guy put it earlier, the idea that military "geniuses" are really nothing more than ordinary people.


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