I’m now in the process of writing a rough draft and having trouble translating language and culture for American readers.
Not only does my story have a severe lack of quotes because I had to work through a translator, but I find myself needing to explain a lot more than I thought would be needed. Seeing things firsthand makes it easier to grasp a culture. Writing about them is a beast. I got stuck explaining pilafs today–a mere detail in my story.
As mentioned in my previous post, the global sphere of information means the need to translate ideas to other cultures. It seems that the translation problems are going both ways. I’m not the only one struggling.
Luckily, much of my information is on video tape, thanks to documentary maker Isaac Brown who worked alongside me in the field. Unfortunately, my rough draft deadline for class occurs before the tapes will arrive. Even then, I now realize that the translation of ideas is often more tricky than translation itself.
I’ve never wished more than now that I’d taken five years of Spanish instead of Latin. Then I might even have a good job lined up.