2018.03.22 12:10

3399_This end up!

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austraLasia #3399


This end up!

ROME: 21 March 2014 
Apart from the 'box' pic nicely encapsulating (literally!) what we Salesians are all about, it raises another issue. Translation.  
Of course 'non capovolgere' in English is 'This end up'. What else could it be?
'Mystics in the Spirit' had to face this issue on Thursday - partly because it raised the question of translating the Salesian sources, partly because of the problem suggested in the second pic! And maybe, just maybe, the problem is really inherent to a term like 'Mystics', anyway.
Meanwhile a few of the earlier 'straw' proposals firm up. A few more are added - Will Europe stay at 3 or reduce to 2? 
Youth Ministry Framework - maybe the first ever document at this level to go into language versions such as 2 x Spanish and 2 x Portuguese. Just 1 x English - I mean, let's face it, we all speak the same language :-) and,

Eye halve a spelling chequer
It came with my pea sea
It plainly marques four my revue
Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.
-- Sauce unknown

Which end up for the Chapter document?
The desire to get a document in some sort of shape before the coming week focuses on elections, is progressing - but might have hit a small speedbump, and people seem to have two ways of handling speedbumps. Most slow down, some just go faster - they sort of don't notice the bump that way, but God only knows what it's doing to your set of wheels - you could simply 'capovolgere'!  One suspects (hopes) the Chapter will slow down.

You see, they are now looking more closely at the first drafts of the more or less 'complete' item covering Listening-Interpretation-Way forward. Mystics in the Spirit (1st core topic) was a hard one to start with, when you think about it, because it's not an easy topic to get a handle on, and how do you make the 'Way forward' really hit home in concrete terms?  So the debate is on - and be it interventions in the auditorium or comments from commissions - translation as an issue is coming up from time to time, not just into English but into other languages and their versions (as the YM Framework to be presented today (Friday) highlights nicely.

There is a recommendation in the 'Way forward' in topic 1 which, if it survives discussion, will say "See to the translation of Salesian sources into various languages", this being thought essential if we are to understand DB the mystic etc. etc. and how do you describe DB the mystic? An early draft thought a comment on DB the mystic by Ceria would help - but maybe not?

One speaker weighed in on this during the 5 minute interventions. He spoke in English and there might have been a moment of mystery (sometimes the dominant language speakers feel exempt from using the headphones, and were the English-into-other-languages ready anyway? He usually speaks in Italian!). What he was saying seemed important, but you have to understand him to be sure of that!

What was he saying? He pointed to translation not so much as a technical problem but a charismatic one. He pointed out how it's easy enough to ask for this but getting stuff into our various languages has been and remains one of our great challenges.  

He cited examples (mistranslations of the Constitutions in English; A Missioni Don Bosco video that said DB was a Protestant Pastor! Lenti's masterpiece is in Spanish but not yet in Italian! The current 'Fonti salesiane' translations into Spanish appear to be leaving out whole paragraphs ...)

But he did not leave it at a problem. He made some quite direct proposals, such as: develop appropriate tools or use the ones already existing and further develop those (he cited Salesian Termbase, for example, as such a helpful tool for the EN-IT pair). He also asked that there be a reference group set up that translators of Salesian source material could have easy access to, to resolve difficulties.

Discussion will continue - the Drafting group now works on topic one again (they have a fair bit to work on), and meanwhile Topic two, three will come up in these days to be handled similarly.

IUXTA MODUMS and the like
Things have more or less firmed up in readiness for elections - there was an attempt to put the elections off for a week, but that proposal got voted down. C 141 (regarding election of RM and Vicar) have not been tampered with, instead R. 127 which also affects the election of Sector councillors, is going to be modified now to allow the discernment process (see previous austraLasias) in Regions to take place as outlined in earlier proposals.

Meanwhile there are new straw votes: recall the earlier proposals for two instead of three Regions affecting Europe?  It looks as if, for various reasons, this will not proceed. At least the proposal put forward by the juridical commission is opting to keep three regions. One of those Regionals would then coordinate PE (Project Europe, not Phys Ed!).

And there are matters now in receipt of final and definitive voting.
- Term of office for RM and Councillors. Won't change
- Composition of General Council: RM, Vicar, unchanged sectors, and regionals still on the Council
- Vicar of RM will be relieved of SF (goes to secretariat under RM)
- Tasks of Regional, won't change.

To round off, two comments:

1. "Translation does not come after Babel. It comes when some human group has the bright idea that the kids on the next block might be worth talking to. Translation is a first step towards civilisation. It is translation, more than speech itself, which provides incontrovertible evidence of the human capacity to think and to communicate thought. We should do more of it." David Bellos, in 'Is That a Fish in your Ear?'

2. Salesian Sources (translation of the 1,300 page 'Fonti salesiane' is now reaching completion for Part One in English. More than 50 documents now available singly, and of course together. And - promise - no whole paragraphs missing!