钱钟书先生的这篇散文说的是窗子,但是其用意绝不仅仅是说说窗子而已,而是要以窗子来比喻生活、比喻人生。从语言上看,《窗》延续了一贯的钱派手法,用词平实、普通,没有长句,没有什么复杂结构,非常从容地叙述、说理,却又紧紧地扣住了主题。这样的特点对翻译构成的难度不言而喻,翻译中应当时时充分考虑上述特点,尽量在译文中体现出来。下面我们就以《窗》这篇散文的前两段为例,来谈谈汉译英中可能遇到的问题。

汉译英翻译:

窗 Random Thoughts on the Window


又是春天,窗子可以常开了。春天从窗外进来,人在屋子里坐不住,就从门里出去。不过屋子外的春天太贱了!到处是阳光,不像射破屋里阴深的那样明亮;到处是给太阳晒得懒洋洋的风,不像搅动屋里沉闷的那样有生气。就是鸟语,也似乎琐碎而单薄,需要屋里的寂静来做衬托。我们因此明白,春天是该镶嵌在窗子里看的,好比画配了框子 

It is spring again and the window can be left open as often as one would like. As spring comes in through the windows, so people -- unable to bear staying inside any longer -- go outdoos. The spring outside, however, is much too cheap, for the sun shines on everything, and so does not seem as bright as that which shoots into the darkness of the house. Outside the sun-slothed breeze blows everywhere, but it is not so lively as that which stirs the gloominess inside the house. Even the chirping of the birds sounds so thin and broken that the quietness of the house is needed to set it off. It seems that spring was always meant to be put behind a windowpane for show, just like a picture in a frame.

同时,我们悟到,门和窗有不同的意义。当然,门是造了让人出进的。但是,窗子有时也可作为进出口用,譬如小偷或小说里私约的情人就喜欢爬窗子。所以窗子和门的根本分别,决不仅是有没有人进来出去。若据赏春一事来看,我们不妨这样说:有了门,我们可以出去;有了窗,我们可以不必出去。窗子打通了大自然和人的隔膜,把风和太阳逗引进来,使屋子里也关着一部分春天,让我们安坐了享受,无需再到外面去找。  

At the same time it also becomes clear that the door has a different significance from the window. Of course, doors were made for people to pass through; but a window can also sometimes serve as an entrance or as an exit, and is used as such by thieves and by lovers in novels. In fact the fundamental difference between a door and a window has nothing to do with them being either entrances or exits. When it comes to the admiration of spring, it could be put this way: a door makes it possible for one to go out, whereas a window makes it possible for one not to have to. A window helps to pull down the partition between man and nature. It leads breezes and sunlight in, and keeps part of the spring in the house. It allows one to sit and enjoy the spring in peace, and makes it unnecessary to go looking for it outside.


汉译英赏析:钱钟书经典美文《窗》英文翻译: http://insuns.com/article/19491-1.html