Unit 2 Post 2 Emily McDill

Option 1:

What exactly are hrönir (pp. 29-30)? See if you can give your own examples to illustrate this concept. Do hrönir appear in Plato’s narrative? Explain

Hrönir in Borges reading are the duplicates of lost objects that are produced when someone loses them, with slight modifications. For example, two people can lose the same object, like a pencil, and can both find the same pencil, because a duplicate has been produced as a result. I think in a broader sense, the term hrönir could extend to mean the simultaneous existence of an object in different universes or times. In Borges text, hrönir can also alter history, because people can conjure hrönir artifacts, which shape our perception of history. I think this is similar to how in the movie Arrival, Lousia could exist in both the present and the future, like a hrönir, and the information she learned shaped her choices, and therefore altered the course of history. In Plato’s narrative I think that the shadows of the people, and the people themselves could be considered hrönir because they essentially exist in two different ways to different people. To the prisoners who can only look at the shadows, the people are only shadows and have no greater meaning, but to the prisoner who could escape, the people are physical beings. Therefore, the people and their shadows are like hrönir because they simultaneously exist in two different conceptual schemes. 

Option 2:

In a few sentences, comment on / raise a question about Thursday’s translation panel. This can be based on your !/? posts, or it can be something new. And it could be useful—though not required—to connect the translation panel to Plato or Borges (note for starters that both of these readings are translations).

Prior to the translation panel, I had never considered translating to be a form of creative writing, nor had I thought about the translator’s obligation to maintain the authenticity of the text. This raises the question, is it better for the translator to strive for literal accuracy or to preserve the mood of the piece? Personally, I believe for creative pieces, like poetry, it is more important for the translator to replicate the tone of the original text, because otherwise it will not elicit the same emotional response from the audience. However, it is unclear where one should draw the line to limit the translator’s creative liberties, and how to best balance mood and translational accuracy. Therefore, is the only way to truly experience a text the way its author intended to read it in its original language?

Leave a Reply