Akhmatova Translation – Emily Ezell

Rather than studying the different translation as a whole, my AT group decided to focus on a specific poem and apply the differences we found to the rest of the work. We chose the first poem and engaged in a great conversation about the disparities between translations. Thomas translates the poem to read similarly to Akhmatova’s original literary content, as seen in his more passive and linear language. Oppositely, Anderson takes artistic liberty to stretch Akhmotava’s original language into English rhymes. The difficulty of finding equivalent rhymes in two languages appears in some of Anderson’s imperfect rhymes, such as back and wax; brow and howl. Our comparisons led us to conclude that the two translators took different approaches to Akhmatova’s poems. While Thomas used the translation to strictly convey words and phrases equivalent to the original, Anderson bounded his translation to preserving the artistic nature of the original.

! Although Russian artists were fully aware of the strict censorship and dramatic consequences, they were not afraid to use their art to challenge the Soviet regime

? Did these artists use a common collection of symbols/ codes that went unnoticed by Soviet censorship but recognized by the artists’ audiences?

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