Metaglossia: The Translation World
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Metaglossia: The Translation World
News about translation, interpreting, intercultural communication, terminology and lexicography - as it happens
Curated by Charles Tiayon
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Translating “Aujourd’hui, maman est morte”

  Aujourd’hui, maman est morte – The first line from L’Étranger by Albert Camus. According to a writer in The New Yorker last week, this famous line has been mis-understood by all...!
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Camus's - Lost in Translation: What the First Line of “The Stranger” Should Be

For the modern American reader, few lines in French literature are as famous as the opening of Albert Camus’s “L’Étranger”: “Aujourd’hui, maman est morte.” Nitty-gritty tense issues aside, the first sentence of “The Stranger” is so elementary that even a schoolboy with a base knowledge of French could adequately translate it. So why do the pros keep getting it wrong?

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