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2011年4月6日 星期三

桃色紏紛與馬後炮


上星期有人問古德明一個問題:

:「桃色糾紛」和「桃色新聞」可不可以譯做 dispute about affair以及 newspaper stories of love and sex
答:「桃色糾紛」譯做 dispute about affair(關於事務的糾紛?),恐怕沒有人會明白,可改譯做 a dispute over women/ a woman………至於 newspaper stories of love and sex(報紙上的情慾故事),譯「桃色新聞」,也不妥當,因為「新聞」不限於報紙上的報道,而且「桃色新聞」一般指姦情,而非一般的男女情慾,可改譯做 a sex scandal news of an affair

我對於將「桃色糾紛」譯做 a dispute over women/ a woman並不敢苟同. 引起「桃色糾紛」的人的雖然大多數是女性, 但也可以是男的. 若二女爭一男的話, 英文是不是要說成dispute over a man? 換了是我,「桃色糾紛」我會譯做“dispute over (an) illicit love affair(s). Illicit這字的意思是“not approved of by the normal rules of society (Oxford, p. 774) . CambridgeOxford字典裡面都有an illicit love affair這例句.

其實外國人本身就有一個字來有形容桃色事件的; 它就是bimbo eruption, 直譯是桃色事件曝光. Bimbo是非正式用語, 意謂有吸引力但並不聰明的年輕女子. 這字是美國一位女政客Betsey R. Wright為形容美國總統克林頓的婚外情(extramarital affairs) 而在九十年代創造的. 例如Hillary R. Clinton便說過Bill Clinton was“a hard dog to keep on the porch and dealing with bimbo eruptions had long been part of their marriage (Indian Express, 1999). ” 另外, 也有這樣的報紙標題報導關於老虎仔活士去年的桃色事件: More Bimbo Eruptions for Tiger Woods (Dec 2, 2009, CNSNEWS)

前些時, 又有人問古德明:「馬後砲」英文怎麼說?
他答:英文有 It is easy to be wise after the event(事後聰明十分容易)這句成語,第七版《牛津高階英漢雙解詞典》 wise條下譯做「馬後砲」。又「先見之明」英文叫 foresight,後之而來的反義詞就叫 hindsight,即「後見之明」,也是「馬後砲」的意思。

Wise after the event是英式說法, 我來補充一下美國人會怎樣說. 美式地道說法是Monday-morning quarterback:a person who unfairly criticizes or questions the decisions and actions of other people after something has happened.

eg. After the water main broke, the Monday-morning quarterbacks in the media criticized the city for not replacing the old pipes. (Merriam Webster, p. 1049)

另一種美式說法是second guess : to criticize something after it has already happened

eg. The decision has been made – there is no point in second-guessing it now. (Longman, p. 1571)

老實說, 我個人認為將「馬後砲」譯做 Monday morning quarterback更為貼切, 也較有韻味, 因二者都同屬於俗語. Monday morning quarterback也不是甚麽特別艱深的字, 一般高階字典都有收錄此字, 除了Macmillan English Dictionary,真奇怪!