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自分が読んで興味深く感じた英文記事を中心に取り上げる予定です

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TIMEの流れを絶やすな -2-

 
前回はTIMEに挑戦するならカバーストーリーを読むように勧めておきながら、いきなりベタ記事の紹介になっています。ただ、TIMEは一週間の出来事を50ページ以内に収めているため、ベタ記事の扱いのものでも自分の関心によっては大きく広がる可能性もあることを今回の記事で感じていただけたらありがたいです。

今回取り上げるのはMilestonesにあった以下の記事です。翻訳・通訳の仕事をしているのでどうしても関心がいってしまいます。政府首脳の通訳なんてメジャーリーグのトップクラスに匹敵する人ですから。

DIED
Viktor Sukhodrev, 81, Soviet interpreter who played a central role in Cold War summits, serving as a personal interpreter for every USSR leader from Nikita Khrushchev to Mikhail Gorbachev.

TIMEでは小さい扱いでも他のメディアではそれなりに扱われています。NPRやニューヨクタイムズの記事を紹介します。



スクリプトはこちらから。

今年のダボス会議で安倍首相の通訳が話題になりましたが、Sukhodrevさんにも有名なエピソードがあるようです。

Viktor M. Sukhodrev, Soviet Leaders’ Trusted Interpreter, Dies at 81
By ANDREW ROTHMAY 19, 2014

Mr. Sukhodrev was often trusted as the sole interpreter between leaders at summit meetings at the height of the Cold War. As Khrushchev harangued foreign diplomats at a reception at the Polish Embassy in Moscow in 1956, it was Mr. Sukhodrev who indelibly rendered Khrushchev’s words into English as “We will bury you.”

We will bury youに関してはウィキペディアで項目として立っていますし、「歴史的な誤訳」として紹介しているサイトもありました。ただこの件は文字通り訳したとしても失礼な言動であることには変わりないと思うのですが。。。

(ウィキペディア)
We will bury you
"We will bury you!" (Russian: "Мы вас похороним!", transliterated as My vas pokhoronim!) is a phrase that was famously used by Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev while addressing Western ambassadors at a reception at the Polish embassy in Moscow on November 18, 1956.[1][2][3] The phrase was originally translated into English by Khrushchev's personal interpreter Viktor Sukhodrev.


6 Mistranslations That Changed The World
By Rohan Ramakrishnan April 05, 2011

As it turns out, a better literal translation of his words would have been, "We will be present when you are buried."

This was actually a pretty common saying in Soviet Russia. What Khrushchev really meant was, "We will outlast you." It was just the usual "communism is better than capitalism" posturing that went on all the time in the Cold War, but thanks to misinterpretations like the one in a Time article, Americans thought Khrushchev was threatening to literally bury us in the rubble of a nuclear attack. And he didn't clarify his statement for three whole years. While the U.S. operated under the assumption that Khrushchev was chomping at the bit to kill us, we watched as the U.S.S.R. launched both Sputnik and the world's first intercontinental ballistic missile, and we consequently went space missile crazy ourselves. Would we have landed on the moon if it hadn't been for our misunderstanding of Khrushchev's bluster? We'll never know.

米原万里さんの『不実な美女か貞淑な醜女か』でも紹介されているようです。以下サイトで見つけたブログの抜粋で、孫引きになります。上記のサイトと説明は同じです。

(引用)
 一九五九年、時のソ連共産党第一書記兼ソ連邦首相のフルシチョフがアイゼンハワー大統領との会談のため訪米したおりのことである。ロスアンジェルス市長主催歓迎晩餐会に招かれ、主賓挨拶にたったフルシチョフが、「お前らを地中に埋めてやる」と言ったため、歓迎の宴は修羅場と化した。主催者側は、無礼極まる脅迫だと抗議するし、フルシチョフ一行は、旅程を繰り上げて帰国すると言い出す始末。
 さて、実際にフルシチョフが挨拶の中で述べようとしたのは、「資本主義は滅びゆく体制であり、社会主義のほうに生命力がある。だからわれわれ(ソ連)のほうがあなた方(アメリカ)よりも生き延びる」ということだった。この最後の部分のフレーズを、ロシア語の慣用句を使って、「われわれのほうがあなた方のお葬式をしてさしあげることになる」と表現したのであった。
(略)
通訳者がこれを「土に埋める」と英訳したために一波乱起こってしまったのである。

このあたりはNPRではSukhodrevさんに同情的に解釈しています。文字面だけでなく人柄をも通訳していたというのです。

KALB: Well, you know, it's terribly important what kind interpreter you have. Sukhodrev was capable of not just translating the words of the Soviet leader, but conveying the personality of the Soviet leader. He conveyed the ebullience and the excitement of Khrushchev and the rather dour, quiet conservatism of Brezhnev. And you got the true quality of the man because Viktor was such a complete pro at what it is that he was doing. I mean Viktor was the best.

通訳のエピソードを紹介してくれるものとして2005年のニューヨクタイムズの記事が面白かったです。普通に読んでいても通訳を無意識にしてしまうというのです、So again, it might be an effort when you are just starting out, but then it grows on you and it becomes part of you and then you are not making a conscious effort. It just comes naturally. というのは外国語学習にも大切なことでしょうね。

'Man in the middle' at U.S.-Soviet summits
By Seth Mydans
Published: Friday, September 30, 2005

Sometimes when he is reading, he said, he catches himself unconsciously translating passages. "It's very annoying."

And when he talks, it is deliberately and with precision, as if he were processing and translating the thoughts that come into his head.

"That is your life, that is your profession," he said. "So again, it might be an effort when you are just starting out, but then it grows on you and it becomes part of you and then you are not making a conscious effort. It just comes naturally. You slip into that role. You could analyze it through Freud somehow."

Somehow, through a process he does not understand, he finds himself unconsciously speaking perfectly with an American accent to an American and with a British accent to a Briton.

"I would not be play-acting," he said. "I would adapt without noticing it, because when I'm speaking to a person I want to be on the same wavelength. It's something in the brain."

政府首脳の通訳ですから、求められる通訳のレベルは最高級のものでしょう。相当なプレッシャーであることが伺えるエピソードが以下です。

He found that the interpreter, as cool as he may seem, is often sweating much harder than the men on either side.

There at the pinnacle, where every nuance has a nuance, the mind is a constantly whirring computer, empty of thought, making instant decisions. "You cannot stop to ponder,"Sukhodrev said. "You just can't. If you do, you fail. You simply stop."

There is no margin for error; only perfection is acceptable.

"An interpreter at that level cannot - not 'should not' - simply cannot, make a mistake," Sukhodrev said. "He cannot. No way. Well, if he did he'd be out, and rightly so."

Sometimes after interpreting at the Kremlin and writing the required memorandum of all that had been said, he would come home long after midnight, his head still full of words, unable to sleep.

通訳は黒子の役割ですが、当のご本人は自分を通じてやり取りが成立していることに快感を覚えていたようです。

As he looked back over a life very well spent, the great interpreter revealed a secret. The man in the middle is not, after all, as self-effacing as he seems.

"You are the one," he said, remembering those heady moments when the world was watching. "It all boils down to, you are the one that they are understanding, not your boss who speaks in an unknown tongue.

"It is you they're reacting to. If you get applause, it's you who are getting applause."

So there really is an ego hovering there between the statesmen, and sometimes stealing their applause lines.

"Well, yes," he said. And their punch lines as well. "That's why when you are translating a joke, you've got to make the other guy smile. That feels pretty good."

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