Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Be like Oprah?

I decided the next book I will start on (now that I've taken a couple days' break with episodes of Lost and Prison Break) will be Anna Karenina. Yes. That tome. I will carry it with me to Ocean City (where I will be sitting on the beach for a week), reading while I tan, well, when I'm not writing, of course.

It's one of Oprah's picks for summer reading this year. Her version has nice uneven pages, a softcover jacket flap, a pretty cover, and a supposed racier translation. I have the budget version. Not even the Constance whatever-her-last-name-is translation, but the other translator, a copy I got from the Strand for like $3. I hope this difference won't make my experience with the book any worse.

Speaking of though, with classics like these, how important are the translations? Do people have a preference in who the translator is? Has anyone ever read two different translations of the same thing and decided one was better?

In any case, I hear the book is wonderful. So I'm going to attempt to attack it. This may mean that I don't read anything else for awhile, but that's okay. Gotta read this someday right? Might as well be now, when I'm sort of being leisurely with my time.

I think it's funny that Oprah is endorsing classics though. Good for her, but nonetheless, still kind of funny.

[edit]
Fine, on Moonrat's insistence, I will get the new translation instead. But I don't have it now, so I will hold off on reading Anna Karenina until I do. Henry Miller it is.

2 drops:

moonrat said...

Dude--you should really spring for the new translation. Not only is it a lot more readable, it's a lot more accurate. Plus you'll be less likely to hate Russian literature when you're done.

C. Dappen said...

I agree. Get a good translation. I've had the desire to also read A.K. lately.

p.s.- I love Russian lit...I think I've said this before when you talked about Nabakov. Oh well. True all the same.

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