« The Essay Project: Postmodernism and Childhood Inspirations | Main | NaPoWriMo 2022 is Coming »

02/02/2022

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Frank

I picked up used copies of Ficciones (Grove Press) and Labyrinths (the one with the William Gibson intro) a couple years ago. Some overlap between these collections, but I didn't notice there were different translators for this story. The Temple-Todd translation looks to be from 1956, Yates from 1958. I would usually go with the newer translation, figuring it reflects critical reactions to the earlier translations. But shouldn't "innumerable" be followed by a plural noun? Maybe that's why Temple-Todd went with "infinite," although "innumerable" sure is a nice echo of the multiverse described earlier in the story, whereas "infinite" suggests distance to me.

My Yates has a typo ("a Taoist of Buddhist monk") that confused me; it appears to have been corrected in your edition.

Mary (BBP)

The New Media Reader may be inaccurate but it says the Yates translation is from "Labyrinths: Selected Stories & Other Writings" from 1964, New Directions press, so that's a lot later than 1956 Temple-Todd for sure. The word 'innumerable' is repeated throughout the story (as if you couldn't even begin, white flag, surrender the count) vs. infinite (just a ton and we have a good sense of that ton). Example: "Time forks perpetually toward innumerable futures." I agree that "infinite' suggests distance and is so abstract it's cold. Innumerable sounds more human with its limitations. I'm ruminating on the idea of "innumerable contritions and wearinesses." Microsoft Word is telling me those words are misspellings so I went online in search of expertise. According to WordHippo these words can also be the plural forms (but do we trust a hippo for English tips?):
https://www.wordhippo.com/what-is/the-plural-of/contrition.html
https://www.wordhippo.com/what-is/the-plural-of/weariness.html

The typo is fixed in my book, as well.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Sign up for the Quarterly Newsletter

  • Don't miss any posts!
  • Get tips and quotes not mentioned in the blog!

Recommended Websites

BBP Websites

Poetry Videos from BBP
Poets with Sexy Hair

Mary McCray

www.marymccray.com