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王蒙 哦, 穆罕默德 · 阿麦德 一 translation: Ah, Mohamed Ahmed, Pt 1

This is the first part in a line by line translation / annotation of the 1983 story 哦, 穆罕默德 · 阿麦德 (O, Mùhǎnmòdé · Āmàidé) - ‘Ah, Mohamed Ahmed’ - by the Chinese author 王蒙 (Wang Meng).

As always, if you notice a mistake or have any suggestions please share them in the comments at the end of the page.

哦, 穆罕默德 · 阿麦德

Ah, Mohamed Ahmed

Part 1 · Part 2 →”)

小说题目愈来愈长,加感叹词和标点符号,以至把标题变成“主谓宾定状”俱全的完整的句子,大约也是一种新潮流吧? Fiction titles are getting longer and longer, adding interjections and punctuation marks, to make titles into every kind of "subject verb object fixed pattern" sentence, and it's pretty much a fashion now, right?

于是我想来它个以毒攻毒,将此篇命名为:《哦, 我的远在边疆的亲爱的可怜的维吾尔族兄弟穆罕默德·阿麦德哟,让我写一写你!》, 后一想,如此创新,殊非正路,乃罢。 Because of that, I'd like to fight fire with fire and title this piece: "Oh, my dear, pitiful Uighur brother in the distant borderlands Mohamed Ahmed, oh, I write of you!"; but then I thought, if I do something so creative, it'd be going off the beaten path, and I dropped the idea.

似乎自从日本电影《啊,海军》(还有《啊,野麦岭》)在我国放映以来,“啊” “哦”式标题就多起来了——来自东洋? It seems that ever since the Japanese films "Oh, the Navy" (and "Oh, Wild Barley Mountain Pass") were shown in China, "ooh" and "ah" titles have been on the increase - do they come from Japan?

电影《啊,摇篮》,小说《哦,香雪》,《哦, 十五岁的哈丽黛哟》,《哦,我歪歪的小杨树》……流韵所及,当我这次来上海给《小说界》改中篇的时候,有人建议我把中篇命名为《哦,我的爱》,您受得了么? The film "Oh, Cradle", the novels "Oh, Fragrant Snow", "Oh, Fifteen Year Halidai [?]", "Oh, My Crooked Little Polar"... they flow well enough, and when I came to Shanghai this time to edit a middle chapter of 'Fiction World', someone suggested that I retitle the middle chapter "Oh, My Love" - can you stand it?

我看不惯“啊”“哦”。 I'm not used to reading "ah" and "oh".

想不到在这个短篇上竟向“啊”“哦”投降。 I didn't expect that that I would give in and go as far as putting "ah" / "oh" in the title of this short story.

这只能说是穆罕默德·阿麦德的力量。 This can only be the power of Mohamed Ahmed.

新疆惯例译作“买买提·艾买提”,同样的名字如果来自埃及、叙利亚或苏丹,就是穆罕默德·阿麦德,似乎雅气了些也庄重了些。 It is convention in Xinjiang to translate names like "Mamati Ahmati", if they come from Egypt, Syria or Sudan, into "Mohamed Ahmed", as if with more energy it will be more dignified. [?]

我几经推敲,决定从后一种译法,倒并非想冒充阿拉伯故事或炫耀博学以招揽读者,而是不如此译,便不能表达我对阿麦德的郑重的敬意。 I've thought over it many times and decided that the latter translation really isn't pretending to be an Arabic story or flaunting one's erudition to attract readers; it's that if I don't translate it this way, I couldn't convey my serious respect for Ahmed.

Part 1 · Part 2 →”)

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