Why I Love Automatic Translation

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Here’s automatic French-to-English translation on Amazon.fr of part of the page flogging the French version of my Jenny and the Jaws of Life. (I supply the original sentences for the quoted passage from “Melinda Falling.”)

She was disconsolate. It was inconsolable. For hours she lay face-down on the living room couch, sobbing wildly, angrily brushing off my comforting hand.   Lengthened flat belly on the settee of the living room, it sanglota passionately during hours, pushing back with anger my caresses of comfort. When she became coherent she called herself “a freak, a freak, a freak,” and threatened to run away to a sideshow. When it could be expressed in a coherent way, it qualified “monster, monster, monster” and threatened to go to be given in spectacle in fairs. I told her that indeed, she was a freak, in a positive and glorious sense; that she was unique; that she was different, not in degree but in kind, from any other woman I had ever known, and that therefore she was infinitely precious to me. I say to him that indeed, it was a monster, in a positive and glorious direction; that it was single, different, not in degree but in kind, of all the other women whom I had known; and that, consequently, it was infinitely invaluable for me. She said I was crazy. It answered that I was insane. How can it be crazy, I asked her, to love someone without reservation, just as she is, and to wish for nothing more? “In what is this insane, asked him I, to love somebody without reserve, such as it is, and nothing to wish moreover?” “I don’t know,” she said, “but it is.” “I do not know, but that is.”

Twisted stories or stories to twist laughter, the stories of Jincy Willett stick tenderly to characters délicieusement wobbly. The women are awkward there with the clean direction, the men with the illustrated direction. Useless to specify that as soon as it is a question of going to dance, allure or simply discuss, the catastrophe is never very far.

The author seen by the editor:

Jincy Willett is an author and editor; she lives in San Diego, in California, where, since the republication of Julie and the fair with the illusions, she has more and more evil to remain incognito.

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Part Deux:

Here’s an automatic translation of an ad for the French version of Winner:

 Gloire, Honneur, et Mauvais Temps

Abigail and Dorcas live in Providence (Rhode Island) and are twin. More different one from the other, it does not have there. Abigail is the Gironde, sensual, unsteady, greedy, secretly with the drift; Dorcas is less than pretty, revêche, disgusted by the sex, book (it is a librarian). Abigail will marry, have a girl, will become widowed, take lovers; Dorcas will be desiccated on the spot, handled clearness like a sabre, will be cynical by nature or survival, with the choice. And here is Abigail who convole in second weddings with Conrad Lowes, famous novelist and perverse practitioner; and here is that Dorcas observes the sadomasochistic relations between Conrad and his sister. All will fly in glares, glory and honor, beauty too. And then one day, Abigail will kill Conrad. Its tumultuous life of couple in a book will entrust. Who will have success. That Dorcas will briskly comment on, with compassion, fury and intelligence, carried by the blizzard which blows on Providence.

Biography of the author

Jincy Willett was born in 1946 in Massachusetts. After studies with Brown University, it teaches philosophy and takes part in workshops of writing. It has a son in 1987 and becomes widowed the following year. It joined then its family with San Diego, where it always saw. It publishes Jenny and the jaws of life (1987) who will appear in France under the title the Can-opener (Otherwise, 2004). In 2003, it delivers its first novel, Winner of the National Book Award (this Glory, honor and bad weather that Phébus publishes in January 2007). Jincy Willett is putting the last key at its second novel, The Writing Class.  


7 Comments Why I Love Automatic Translation

  1. justkristin

    the tool for translation of the google is not well better. The video holy of Graal of the python of Monty has a funny scene which was translated into Japanese and then again subtitled in English with the similar results. Holy Graal becomes the holy cup of saké.

    [as rendered by said google translation tool from French to English.]

  2. Tom Hartley

    “…the catastrophe is never very far… she has more and more evil to remain incognito.”

    Karla Rove

  3. Tony D

    I dunno, I kind of liked the Amazon.fr version. It all goes especially good with a 7-1 Martini (Gin, of course; swished anyway you like).

  4. chris

    This reminds me of a chat I had with a co-worker. I teach Gr. 2 french immersion. I wrote a two page test filled with grammatical errors. My co-worker said, “wow, did you read this when you were finished. It’s filled with mistakes.”

    I said “no,” and tried to pass it off. But in reality I had used Babelfish to translate the whole test from English to French. No really, I can speak french… kind of.

  5. Harriet Golding

    Saw you today at Lit. Women. You were, by far, the best speaker. You came across as so REAL, in contrast to the previous slick presentation. You must be a great friend to know. I have just sent for 2 of your books.

  6. Janet Hironaka

    I enjoyed your presentation at Literary Women: Long Beach Festival of Authors on March 6.

    May I have the name of the brain researcher/neuroscientist you quoted on the connections among narration, storytelling, learning, and sense-making?

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