Stanisław Lem - Forum

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Tytuł: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 28, 2006, 04:04:15 pm
Hello all, I'm interested in finding out about Lem's neologisms and wordplays in Polish and their comparison to the English and German translations.

As Mr. Lem himself said in an interview 20 years ago (http://www.depauw.edu/sfs/interviews/lem40interview.htm): "The translations of my works always depended on the inventiveness of my translators; and my best two are, I think, the late I. Zimmermann-Gollheim (German) and M. Kandel (English). Ms Zimmermann-Gollheim succeeded in translating remarkably literally, whereas Mr Kandel has given himself a lot of interpretative latitude, replacing that which he was unwilling or unable to retain with that which was equivalent in English on some higher semantic plane."

At the moment I'm working my way through three later Trurl and Klapaucius stories: "Kobyszcze" (In Hot Pursuit of Happiness / Experimenta Felicitologica, 1971), "Edukacja Cyfrania" (Ziffranio's Erziehung, 1976) and "Powtórka" ("Die Wiederholung", 1979). The first one was translated to English by Michael Kandel and to German probably by Irmtraut Zimmermann-Göllheim (?) The other two have not been translated to English as far as I know, but German translations have been made by Hubert Schumann (how does he compare?)

There don't seem to be many neologisms or wordplays in the German translations. I don't have a copy of Kandel's English translation of "Kobyszcze" to compare. Maybe there aren't many in the Polish originals either? In Cyberiad there were plenty though.

As there don't seem to be very many neologisms in these stories, I'd be very grateful if someone who can read Polish could post a list of neologisms and wordplays found in (any of) these stories along with a short explanation of their meaning. Of course a joke is lost by explaining it, but I'm asking from a translator's point of view.

I wish I'd studied Polish when I was young and had time for such things :-/

Any opinions/reviews about these three stories, by the way? These are all long stories that circle around the same topic - it seems like they would make a nice collection.
Tytuł: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Kagan w Maj 29, 2006, 09:15:18 am
What about Kandel's TICKUFF! (=FUCK IT in reverse), a direct translation of Lem's AWRUK (KURWA in reverse)? Not every translator understood it (or was given a hint by Lem)... ;)

Cytuj
Hello all, I'm interested in finding out about Lem's neologisms and wordplays in Polish and their comparison to the English and German translations.

As Mr. Lem himself said in an interview 20 years ago (http://www.depauw.edu/sfs/interviews/lem40interview.htm): "The translations of my works always depended on the inventiveness of my translators; and my best two are, I think, the late I. Zimmermann-Gollheim (German) and M. Kandel (English). Ms Zimmermann-Gollheim succeeded in translating remarkably literally, whereas Mr Kandel has given himself a lot of interpretative latitude, replacing that which he was unwilling or unable to retain with that which was equivalent in English on some higher semantic plane."

At the moment I'm working my way through three later Trurl and Klapaucius stories: "Kobyszcze" (In Hot Pursuit of Happiness / Experimenta Felicitologica, 1971), "Edukacja Cyfrania" (Ziffranio's Erziehung, 1976) and "Powtórka" ("Die Wiederholung", 1979). The first one was translated to English by Michael Kandel and to German probably by Irmtraut Zimmermann-Göllheim (?) The other two have not been translated to English as far as I know, but German translations have been made by Hubert Schumann (how does he compare?)

There don't seem to be many neologisms or wordplays in the German translations. I don't have a copy of Kandel's English translation of "Kobyszcze" to compare. Maybe there aren't many in the Polish originals either? In Cyberiad there were plenty though.

As there don't seem to be very many neologisms in these stories, I'd be very grateful if someone who can read Polish could post a list of neologisms and wordplays found in (any of) these stories along with a short explanation of their meaning. Of course a joke is lost by explaining it, but I'm asking from a translator's point of view.

I wish I'd studied Polish when I was young and had time for such things :-/

Any opinions/reviews about these three stories, by the way? These are all long stories that circle around the same topic - it seems like they would make a nice collection.

Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 29, 2006, 04:50:39 pm
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What about Kandel's TICKUFF! (=FUCK IT in reverse), a direct translation of Lem's AWRUK (KURWA in reverse)? Not every translator understood it (or was given a hint by Lem)... ;)



Heh, in the German translation it's "TUF!"... of course :)
Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Kagan w Maj 29, 2006, 09:02:13 pm
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Heh, in the German translation it's "TUF!"... of course :)

I know some intresting words in German, but tell me what exactly "TUF" means... I do not remember that word from my German classes!
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 29, 2006, 09:16:09 pm
This is actually a bit of a catch-22 - I'm looking for information that only Polish readers can give, and I can't ask them on the Polish forum because I don't understand any Polish.

I have a copy of these three stories ("Kobyszcze", "Edukacja Cyfrania", "Powtórka") in Polish, and I'd be really interested to see Lem's original Polish wordplays and neologisms explained and then compare them to the English and German translations. I'm interested from a translator's point of view.

Dear moderator, please hint at this thread on the Polish forum :) Any replies are welcome in English, German or French.
Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 29, 2006, 09:19:50 pm
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I know some intresting words in German, but tell me what exactly "TUF" means... I do not remember that word from my German classes!


If you did, I'd wonder what kind of school you went to ;) Spelled backwards, it means very similar things as the English and Polish versions.

(Well, YSSUP to be exact, but in a more derogatory tone.)
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Maj 29, 2006, 09:51:15 pm
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As there don't seem to be very many neologisms in these stories, I'd be very grateful if someone who can read Polish could post a list of neologisms and wordplays found in (any of) these stories along with a short explanation of their meaning.
Do You mean Polish neologisms in the original explained in English?
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 29, 2006, 10:09:03 pm
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Do You mean Polish neologisms in the original explained in English?


Yes, I was thinking of the original Polish neologisms (and wordplays) broken down to their component words if needed, and a short explanation of the whole in English.

As an example, take this wordplay in Finnish: "romumaja". It's twisted from a true old Finnish word "tomumaja", consisting of "tomu" (dust) and "maja" (house) meaning "shell of (earthly) dust", i.e. a mortal body of a human being. In the wordplay "tomu" is twisted to "romu" (mechanical junk), so that the meaning becomes "shell of mechanical junk", which to a Finnish reader creates an unmistakable notion of the mortal body of a robot.

I'm hoping that someone might have the patience to offer us translation readers a glimpse of Lem's original verbal acrobatics.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Maj 29, 2006, 10:27:32 pm
It will be pleasure! And an exercise i English for me. Well, at first - if You didn't read it before - an explanation of the word  "kobyszcze" - which I've post before in another place:

I can't find another similarity than to "kobyła (kobyla)" what means in a disregarding manner "horse, mare" - adjactives which i connect to "kobyla" are: old, dull. There is also a polish proverb "smieje się, jak kobyla do owsa" what means: one is laughing like a "kobyla" at oats - it's for somebody, who is laughing with no reason. Word-ending "szcze" is archaic and means, that something is bigger than usually.  

So "kobyszcze" is a big, dull thing, which is happy without a reason.

Of coure if we assume, that somebody who laughs is happy.

Well, I try to make a one a day.
Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Kagan w Maj 30, 2006, 08:45:15 am
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If you did, I'd wonder what kind of school you went to ;) Spelled backwards, it means very similar things as the English and Polish versions.
 
(Well, YSSUP to be exact, but in a more derogatory tone.)

I am still puzzled. "Fuck" means "pierdolic" (or "jebac") in Poland (a rather coarse description of having sex), while "kurwa" means a prostitute (hooker, whore). So tell me please if this "fut"  (if I am right) means "fucking" or is rather a coarse word for a "whore"? Is there any link between German "fut" and Polish "fiut" (colloquial description of penis)? And to Terminus: do not delete this post, PLEASE. I had to use some colloquial English and Polish, otherwise it would be very hard to understand my questions!
Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 30, 2006, 10:55:05 am
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I am still puzzled. "Fuck" means "pierdolic" (or "jebac") in Poland (a rather coarse description of having sex), while "kurwa" means a prostitute (hooker, whore). So tell me please if this "fut"  (if I am right) means "fucking" or is rather a coarse word for a "whore"? Is there any link between German "fut" and Polish "fiut" (colloquial description of penis)? And to Terminus: do not delete this post, PLEASE. I had to use some colloquial English and Polish, otherwise it would be very hard to understand my questions!


When translating, it is very important not to just translate word for word but to use expressions and figures of speech that are familiar to the reader of the translation.

The point in all these backwards-spelled words is that they are a common curse in the target language - TIKCUF is a curse word in English, AWRUK in Polish, TUF in German. They do not mean literally the same thing, but the general idea of a sexually-oriented curse word spelled backwards is what's important (well, from a translation point of view - all in all I consider this to be a rather cheap joke from Mr. Lem).

Coincidentally, in Finnish "korva" means "ear". This is the only Finnish-Polish language joke I know - a Finnish tourist on the street in Krakow sees a beautiful lady drop an earring, and not knowing any languages he helpfully points at her head and says "korva!"  - and of course gets hospitalized...
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 30, 2006, 10:58:18 am
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So "kobyszcze" is a big, dull thing, which is happy without a reason.


That would seem to refer to Trurl's Felix Contemplator Vitae :)
Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Kagan w Maj 30, 2006, 11:58:44 am
author=ssipila:
When translating, it is very important not to just translate word for word but to use expressions and figures of speech that are familiar to the reader of the translation.
- I know this very well. I'm just asking what "TUF" exactly means in German...

The point in all these backwards-spelled words is that they are a common curse in the target language - TIKCUF is a curse word in English, AWRUK in Polish, TUF in German. They do not mean literally the same thing, but the general idea of a sexually-oriented curse word spelled backwards is what's important (well, from a translation point of view - all in all I consider this to be a rather cheap joke from Mr. Lem).
- OK. It was almost all I wanted to know. But could you be more precise and just tell me if fut=fuck or something else, for example penis (in Polish "fiut")? As to the quality of joke - I thing it was excellent. Mind you, "Bajki robotow" were compulsory lecture for Polish schoolchildren! Polish censors did not understand (or did not want to understand) that AWRUK is just a common KURWA in reverse...

Coincidentally, in Finnish "korva" means "ear". This is the only Finnish-Polish language joke I know - a Finnish tourist on the street in Krakow sees a beautiful lady drop an earring, and not knowing any languages he helpfully points at her head and says "korva!"  - and of course gets hospitalized...
- Kurwa is, as I understand from Latin and it means just a curve... But it also has a meaning in German, as I understand. I heard Marlena Dietrich telling something about "kurven" in a recorded TV interview...


Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Maj 30, 2006, 12:09:21 pm
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But could you be more precise and just tell me if fut= (...) for example penis?


Actually, the exact opposite of that :) and in a quite low-style derogatory manner. The gender is "die".
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Pekka w Maj 30, 2006, 04:54:12 pm
Fellows, I think this question has been asked without significant output under other topics here, but repetitio mater studiorum est, so are there any hidden meanings buried in the names of Solaris characters?

Because of my medical background I know that Sartorius in fact is the body´s longest muscle;  a muscle in the thigh that helps to rotate the leg into the sitting position assumed by a tailor; the longest muscle in the human body. In Finnish it is called the tailor´s muscle.

Is there some hidden implicit connotation for Polsih-speakers. At least the Russians have a saying "as heavy a drinker as a tailor" but probably it is not this...

greetings, Pekka 8)
Tytuł: Re: TICKUFF (AWRUK)!
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Pekka w Maj 30, 2006, 04:58:55 pm
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Coincidentally, in Finnish "korva" means "ear". This is the only Finnish-Polish language joke I know - a Finnish tourist on the street in Krakow sees a beautiful lady drop an earring, and not knowing any languages he helpfully points at her head and says "korva!"  - and of course gets hospitalized...


Sorry, I couldn´t resist this:   you know my name:  Pekka R.
Once I was attending a conference in the US and every time I passed a certain security guard he read my tag and smiled very much. I was confused, before I learned the american slang word that can be confused with my first name + r.
After learning this I started to say passing the guard:  "Hello again, the big one is here".

Pekka ;D ;D
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: NIKA w Maj 30, 2006, 05:32:38 pm
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At least the Russians have a saying "as heavy a drinker as a tailor" but probably it is not this...
 


Not as a tailor, as a shoe-maker.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Maj 30, 2006, 06:18:17 pm
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are there any hidden meanings buried in the names of Solaris characters?
I can't find any. They are not Polish nicks, names or surnames. They are somehow cosmopolitan
Cytuj
Not as a tailor, as a shoe-maker.
In Polish we say "shoe-makers' monday" ;D. On mondays shoe-makers used to suffer week-ends.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Czerwiec 02, 2006, 09:02:39 pm
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Well, I try to make a one a day.


Waiting eagerly for more :)
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Czerwiec 26, 2006, 12:35:27 am
Ok, i've read KOBYSZCZE from the beginning to the end. I don't think there are very much neologisms in this story. As a matter of fact, it is written in some kind archaic language, what is an obvious author manner. To be true it is double archaic now, bacause some words, which were up to date those days are not today.

Well, best for me is Billion Cykszpir - William Shakespeare of course. Well, Billion is - as I think - to amplify. Cykszpir is an hybrid CY-fra (digit) and Shakespeare in Polish (Szek-SPIR). The whole word (CYKSZPIR) is some kind funny, bacause the word CYK has a wery vide meaning - basicly the sound, that makes clock (cyk, cyk - like tic-tac), but also a toast (let's CYK - like let's drink, or let's go ahead) and so on, and so on... .

The second part of the word (SZPIR) (pronounce like fre(SH PIR)x sound a little like a russian word, what makes it more funny (at least for Polish reader).

All other neologism are simply made of latin words (Felicjanci - people of felicyty, Angstremkowie - people Angstrem-sized, some words made of "hedo-" etc...)

The last funny is ZERWIŚRUBA (what Trurl says about Klapaucjusz) made of two words - ZERWać (to break down) and ŚRUBA (screw).
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: NIKA w Czerwiec 26, 2006, 09:38:32 am
About "kobyszcze".I think "szcze" can means "puppy".Care-free merry puppy.

Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Terminus w Czerwiec 26, 2006, 11:16:40 am
Well, sounds interesting, however I don't think that szcze was supposed to mean anything in particular. In Polish you can easily find another words, like Chłopiszcze, which simply means Chłop (i.e. peasant) and has definitely nothing to do with pooping of any kind. In my opinion it's simply a form of augmentative.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Czerwiec 26, 2006, 12:23:20 pm
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About "kobyszcze".I think "szcze" can means "puppy".Care-free merry puppy.
As far as I remember word-ending "-szcze" is an archaic remaining - it comes out of pre-slavic language, which is not existing any more, but some words are in use in todays slavic languages. "-szcze" means, that something is bigger than usual - SIEDLISKO - settlement, but SIEDLISZCZE - big settlement. I don't think this has any connotation to puppy ;D.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Czerwiec 26, 2006, 01:33:44 pm
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Ok, i've read KOBYSZCZE from the beginning to the end. I don't think there are very much neologisms in this story. As a matter of fact, it is written in some kind archaic language, what is an obvious author manner. To be true it is double archaic now, bacause some words, which were up to date those days are not today.


Thanks very much, this is good to know.

Cytuj
Well, best for me is Billion Cykszpir - William Shakespeare of course. Well, Billion is - as I think - to amplify. Cykszpir is an hybrid CY-fra (digit) and Shakespeare in Polish (Szek-SPIR). The whole word (CYKSZPIR) is some kind funny, bacause the word CYK has a wery vide meaning - basicly the sound, that makes clock (cyk, cyk - like tic-tac), but also a toast (let's CYK - like let's drink, or let's go ahead) and so on, and so on...


Heh, the German translator has used "Billion Schlecksbier". Schleck means "treat, delicacy" or refers to the verb "lick" and Bier of course is beer.  It doesn't have the allusions to cyphers or clockwork, but this wordplay is just for fun anyway. In Finnish it will be more difficult to play with the name William Shakespeare though... maybe one could use "2-pi-r" for Shakespeare as it's prononuced "kaks-pii-r" in Finnish, but then there's no allusion at all to drinking...

Cytuj
All other neologism are simply made of latin words (Felicjanci - people of felicyty, Angstremkowie - people Angstrem-sized, some words made of "hedo-" etc...)


This is the same in the German translation... this kind of wordplay isn't very difficult for the translator.

Cytuj
The last funny is ZERWIŚRUBA (what Trurl says about Klapaucjusz) made of two words - ZERWać (to break down) and ŚRUBA (screw).


OK, stuff like that isn't very difficult to translate either - it's just for fun, so it's ok to take a bit of liberty and to create a funny equivalent.

Thanks again, this was very useful. I hope to hear about "Edukacja Cyfrania" and "Powtórka" too. I'm especially interested because Mr. Lem said in an interview in the mid-80's (http://www.depauw.edu/sfs/interviews/lem40interview.htm) that "Edukacja Cyfrania" has never been successfully translated - he said it has some specific message that is apparent to Polish readers only. (Since then a full German translation has been made, but I don't know if it properly conveys this specific message).

Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Pekka w Czerwiec 28, 2006, 10:45:30 pm
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The last funny is ZERWIŚRUBA (what Trurl says about Klapaucjusz) made of two words - ZERWać (to break down) and ŚRUBA (screw).


Mental or physical breakdown or both?

8)
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Pekka w Czerwiec 28, 2006, 10:47:17 pm
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As far as I remember word-ending "-szcze" is an archaic remaining - it comes out of pre-slavic language, which is not existing any more, but some words are in use in todays slavic languages. "-szcze" means, that something is bigger than usual - SIEDLISKO - settlement, but SIEDLISZCZE - big settlement. I don't think this has any connotation to puppy ;D.


Lisko means reptila in Finnish
:D
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Pekka w Czerwiec 28, 2006, 10:47:45 pm
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Lisko means reptila in Finnish
 :D



Sorry, of course reptile... :P
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Czerwiec 28, 2006, 10:54:46 pm
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Mental or physical breakdown or both?

 8)

physical, the whole neologism is the equivalent for fumbler, bad specialist, etc. (perhaps You can use it describing Your car's mechanic for instance ;D)
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Czerwiec 28, 2006, 10:58:21 pm
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Lisko means reptila in Finnish
Yama means mountain in Japanese, yama in Polish means hole in the ground ;D.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Pekka w Czerwiec 29, 2006, 11:56:02 am
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Yama means mountain in Japanese, yama in Polish means hole in the ground ;D.


So is Yamaha a mountain-climber?

8)
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Czerwiec 29, 2006, 12:42:59 pm
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So is Yamaha a mountain-climber?

 8)


Nope, it's a funny hole in the ground :) Actually "ha" means "leaf". Yamaha is thus "mountain leaf" or "mountain leaves" - heh, that would translate directly as "Vuorilehto" (a Finnish surname). Now this is getting way off-topic...
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Czerwiec 30, 2006, 09:29:11 am
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Actually "ha" means "leaf". Yamaha is thus "mountain leaf" or "mountain leaves".........  Now this is getting way off-topic...
Yeah, a little bit off-topic, byt, anyway, funny and interesting. So what is "to" in Japanese? (Yama-to - ww2 Japanese imperial flag  battleship). "To" means "this" in Polish ;D
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Czerwiec 30, 2006, 12:43:31 pm
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So what is "to" in Japanese? (Yama-to - ww2 Japanese imperial flag  battleship). "To" means "this" in Polish ;D


"This hole in the ground" :) - not too far from the truth in the end I guess (see http://www.answers.com/main/ntquery;jsessionid=37rvjqeov1pc5?tname=yamato-battleship-explosion-jpg&sbid=lc10a  )

Yamato was a province in old Japan. Its name also came to mean all of old Japan in a reverent way. That's the meaning of the battleship's name.

In general a syllable like "to" or "ha" can have lots of meanings in Japanese - the language has lots of homonyms and you have to figure out the correct meaning from the context (of course reading is "simpler" because each noun has its own word-character). To make things even more difficult for foreigners, these nouns are pronounced differently if they are used as single words instead of combinations.

Meanwhile, I'm eagerly waiting for wordplay & neologism commentaries on "Edukacja Cyfrania" and "Powtórka" :)
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Czerwiec 30, 2006, 08:02:22 pm
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"This hole in the ground" :) - not too far from the truth in the end I guess
this was the fate of all this class battleships those days - US Arizona, GB Hood, D Bismarck, and Yamato as well...
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Yamato was a province in old Japan...
i hoped Japanese is simplier - I thought "to" meant "ship" so "Yama-to" meant "ship as big as a mountain" ;D. Of course, as always, life is more complicated!
Cytuj
Meanwhile, I'm eagerly waiting for wordplay & neologism commentaries on "Edukacja Cyfrania" and "Powtórka" :)
I'm going through!
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Lipiec 05, 2006, 10:48:21 pm
Well ssipila, here it is, a bunch of wordplys of "edukacja cyfrania"

Cyfranio is composed of cyfra (digit) and Franio (diminutive of Francisk for a small child)

cyberak, cyberyba - both composed od cyber-netic and rak (crayfish) or ryba (fish)

maszynak - its like a zwierzak (pet) - funny about zwierze (animal), but maszyna (machine) is in the place of an animal

maślak (maslak - not sure You are able to see Polish letters) -  made of butter (about biotic organizm),

jełczak (jelczak - not sure You are able to see Polish letters) - nearl the same as maslak - jelczec is a verb that means what happens to butter, when it is too long out of fridge (not melt but rank, rancid, go off)

chandroid - it is a meteorite chondryt (chondrit), but it is chandra (funk, bad mood, CHandra pronounce like a Hammond, not like a CHandler)) in the place of chondrit, or it could be an android (robot) with chandra (funk, etc.) - sad robot

maśliciel (masliciel without Polish letters) -  well really good one, it is myśliciel (mysliciel) - the thinking man, thinker, but it is masło (maslo) - butter in the place of myśl (mysl) - thougt, so perhaps he thinks rather slowly...

When the first re-frozen came to the place where he thought he would be able to play drum, he landed in Baństwo (Banstwo) - state. Because it was all about the music , all non-vibrant sounds in words where changed to vibrant. I'm sorry perhaps I don' use correct words to express what I think, but the sound of letter "B" is vibrant, and "P" nonvibrant - and C-S, G-K, etc are in couples -  the sound is nearly the same but in one case vibrant, and nonvibrant in the second.

So we have Gról (Grol) what is Król (Krol) - the King (Ging - doesn't it sound much more like a music ;) )

Baństwo (Banstwo) is made of Państwo (Panstwo) - the State

and - my favourite - Bolicja - made of Policja - Police. This one is really good, because boli- means ache ;D

and - about musicians - dętyści (detysci, detysta in singular) - made of dentists. Really funny, dęty (dety) means an instrument like trumpet (like in the brass band), detysta is a neologism - means a man who performs on such an instrument, but it is so close to dentysta (dentist) - so it was such a performance, that everybody has a toothache...

Well, I've made the first refrozen story till now...
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Lipiec 06, 2006, 01:19:19 pm
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Well, I've made the first refrozen story till now...


Thanks again, this is very useful :) - I wonder what Lem's "special message understood only by Polish readers" is. Maybe it's in the story of the second robot.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Lipiec 06, 2006, 08:44:01 pm
Is it obvious that all this orchestra is about a comunism? King (Ging) is the general secretary, and gorilla is a secret police? All people (musicians) know they do something completly useless, but it is said they do something very important? And it was easy to come to this state, but it is difficult to go out?
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Lipiec 07, 2006, 12:15:15 pm
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Is it obvious that all this orchestra is about a comunism? King (Ging) is the general secretary, and gorilla is a secret police? All people (musicians) know they do something completly useless, but it is said they do something very important? And it was easy to come to this state, but it is difficult to go out?


This brings to mind the Cyberiad story "Trurl's Machine"... it's difficult to avoid seeing similar metaphors when you read about a huge 8-storey high machine colossus that says "2+2=7" and threatens to squash you if you disagree :)
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: maziek w Lipiec 08, 2006, 08:29:57 am
To me that story of the stupid but ambitious machine doesn't have any political meaning. It's a story about an idiot. I'm very interested, how do You in Finland feel all this political spoof "made in Poland" those days (before 1989). My own children born in 90's don't understand, why I LOL at some films made in 70's or 80's...

Anyway, I'm going through the second refrozen robot story. It is much more complicated, because in first refrozen story there was a few neologisms at all, in this one there is a few in every sentence. I'll perhaps read the whole story at first, to get a concept, and than we will go page by page.
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Miesław w Lipiec 18, 2006, 03:39:48 pm
"The Star Diaries" are full of wordplays  ;D . (I've bought this book about week ago).

In 20th journey we have some wonderful abbreviations and surnames.

1) abbreviations
"TUMAN zawiódł, kontrprzodek pękł"- "blockhead failed, backside cracked"
TUMAN= Telechroniczny Układ Mimośrodkowej Automatyki Nawodzenia. Sorry, but I'm not able to translate what these shortcuts stand for :)

HOPSA (homo perfectum sapiens) - hopsa is something connected with jumping.

2) surnames
Z. Goodlay- We read Goodlay near exactly like gudłaj, and it is ninny; wishy-washy person.
H. Ohmer- he was sent back in time- to ancient Greece...
P. Latton- also sent back in time to ancient Greece
Khand el Abr, Canne de la Breux- sounds like Kandelabr- candelabrum
Guirre Andaule, G.I.R Andoll: żyrandol- chandelier

and many more.


Lem often wrote a name of plant or animal (of course, created by himself) and then gave its latin name: [examples from "Ratujmy Kosmos" (save the Universe)]

mrówka krzesławka dręczypupa, multipodium pseudostellatum Trylopii . In English it could be: chair bottomtorment ant. (Those ants construct from their boduies something like a chair and wait for someone to sit... then they attack.)

Okrucytia cudawka (pixigalaquia bombardans L.). Name comes from oktutny (cruel) and cudowny (wonderful).
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: ssipila w Sierpień 05, 2006, 03:49:41 pm
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I'm very interested, how do You in Finland feel all this political spoof "made in Poland" those days (before 1989). My own children born in 90's don't understand, why I LOL at some films made in 70's or 80's...


Back from vacation, sorry about the delay.

I was just a boy in the 60's and early 70's, but my memory is that the peoples in the eastern European countries of the Warsaw pact were thought of with sympathy, mixed with pity for their bad luck in western democracy -minded circles (such as my family).

Finnish people were rather divided politically, and in the 70's the left-minded seemed to be a strong majority especially in the official circles. The Soviet Union and the Warsaw pact governments weren't officially criticized for anything, etc. There was some truth in the accusations of "finlandization".

Among the more western-minded Finns it was completely different. The politically right-wing newspapers told news in quite different light than the left-wing ones. In my memory they also had sympathy for the east European peoples (not their governments though).

I remember one political joke related to Poland, but it is completely impossible to translate from Finnish without dissecting the punchline word for word:

Two guys sit in a police holding cell in Poland. The other one says: "I was arrested for drunk and disorderly behavior... what about you?" The other one says: "I have no idea. I was driving along when the engine started coughing, so I stopped and opened the hood to see what was wrong. I soon found the trouble, but just then a police car stopped behind me and the cops came out to ask what my trouble was. I said: "Puolan johdossa on vikaa..."

The punchline means "the ignition coil cable is broken", but also, word for word, "The Polish government is rotten" :)

Puola = Poland; ignition coil
johto = cable, electric lead; leadership
vika = broken; fault, faulty; wrong
Tytuł: Re: Lem's neologisms and wordplays
Wiadomość wysłana przez: Cieciu w Czerwiec 15, 2010, 01:55:02 am
maślak (maslak - not sure You are able to see Polish letters) -  made of butter (about biotic organizm)
In fact, maślak is also a Polish name for a Suillus mushroom (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suillus).

About "kobyszcze".I think "szcze" can means "puppy".Care-free merry puppy.
The "-szczę" part of Kobyszczę strongly suggests something like szczenię (puppy) or cielę (calf) - a young animal, esp. a cute one.

The last funny is ZERWIŚRUBA (what Trurl says about Klapaucjusz) made of two words - ZERWać (to break down) and ŚRUBA (screw).
Zerwiśruba is a direct reference to Zerwikaptur, a Polish coat of arms, made famous by the knight Longinus Podbipięta, a character from Ogniem i mieczem, a very well-known Polish historical novel (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Longinus_Podbipięta - the link doesn't work properly, so you'll have to copy-paste it manually)