Moliere for Moderns on Translating and Directing Tartuffe

Publication Year



poetry, language, translations, playwright, Moliere, Tartuffe


Language Interpretation and Translation | Playwriting | Poetry


There is a popular theory, totally erroneous, which insists that translation of poetry, or anything for that matter, from one language to another is impossible. This petty chauvinism is ridiculous. The mere fact that bad translations abound is by no means reason enough to deny the possibility of good ones. No translation, however, is a restatement of the original in new forms and symbols. It is a good idea to read the original work in the original language whenever possible, for something is bound to get lost in the restatement; yet, it is utterly inconceivable that all of us learn to be fluent in every civilized language of this earth. To do so in one or two is a formidable enough task.

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