proposal for reading group: capital vol. i

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Angelus Novus
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Sep 5 2008 10:58
idioxote wrote:
However, even the Fowkes reportedly has its limitations. A Marxian scholar with whom I used to correspond (but who sadly died recently) said that even this edition pales next to original German book - and even the French text, which I believe Marx translated himself.

This is true to the extent that any work is always going to be far more enjoyable when read in the original language. Realizing this is sobering to a certain extent. Since I'm never going to learn Russian, I probably will never be able to "really" read the Brothers Karamazov. On the other hand, this also shows that any translated work will be successful to the extent that the translator is able to effectively convey the original author's intent and the translator possesses enough literary imagination on his or her own.

Spartacus wrote:
did everyone not a german or french speaker completely misunderstand/misinterpret the book before fowkes?

I think this is too simplistic. A lot of German speakers (Engels, Kautsky, Wolfgang Fritz Haug) misunderstand aspects of the work, as do some French speakers (Althusser dismisses the importance of "fetishism" altogether). A bad translation might assist certain misinterpretations, but I don't think such misinterpretations can be merely attributed to bad translation.

Speaking of which, does the Fowkes translation include the phrase "automatic subject"? The Aveling translation doesn't, opting instead for the following rather weak translation:

Quote:
It is constantly changing from one form to the other without thereby becoming lost, and thus assumes an automatically active character.
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Spartacus
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Sep 5 2008 12:57
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I think this is too simplistic. A lot of German speakers (Engels, Kautsky, Wolfgang Fritz Haug) misunderstand aspects of the work, as do some French speakers (Althusser dismisses the importance of "fetishism" altogether). A bad translation might assist certain misinterpretations, but I don't think such misinterpretations can be merely attributed to bad translation.

which is my point. having done translations myself, i will of course bear in mind that it is that, a translation. but i hope that with discussion any misunderstanding/misinterpretations will be ironed out, particularly if others are reading it in another language or translation. by the way, my edition has additional notes by the editors, and allegedly draws on the fowkes translation and marx's notes/drafts as well.

if we're all agreed on the 22nd, then shall we keep this thread for general discussion of the reading group? then when we get to the 22nd whoever's first create a new thread called something like "Capital Vol 1 Reading Group: Chapters 1-2". keeping the discussion of each section separate seems best, and if we keep the format of the subject the same it will be easier to find older ones if we or others want to return to discussions later without disturbing whatever the current one is.

i'm sure if the discussions are interesting and active enough, the admins will push things into a sub-forum to stop the threads monopolising the thought forum, but until it gets to that stage i think it is best not to separate them off so as to get passing traffic etc.

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Khawaga
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Sep 6 2008 01:17
Quote:
if we're all agreed on the 22nd, then shall we keep this thread for general discussion of the reading group? then when we get to the 22nd whoever's first create a new thread called something like "Capital Vol 1 Reading Group: Chapters 1-2". keeping the discussion of each section separate seems best, and if we keep the format of the subject the same it will be easier to find older ones if we or others want to return to discussions later without disturbing whatever the current one is.

yeah, I think this is the best way to organize the reading group. and obviously stick it in thought.