PARTLY FOLKSY, SOMETIMES SMIRKING: A NEW TRANSLATION OF AUGUSTINE’S CONFESSIONS

D van Schoor

Abstract


The translator and poet Sarah Ruden published her new and in some
ways quite original translation of Augustine’s Confessions in 2017.
In a fighting introductory essay she explains her position which she
characterises as maverick. She contrasts her own work against other
translations, which she regards as more traditional. Ruden makes
provocative claims about the allegedly conventional interpretations,
which, relative to hers she argues, can work to obscure rather than
convey what the Bishop of Hippo intended his contemporary
audience to understand. This essay forms a reflection on her claims
and sets some of her passages against the original Latin and those of
other modern English translators. While Ruden’s is a welcome
contribution to a well populated field of translations into modern
languages, her claims and strategies are not found to be always
entirely judicious.

Keywords


Confessions; Latin; English translation; Sarah Ruden

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7445/63-0-995

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ISSN 2079-2883 (online); ISSN 0303-1896 (print)

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