Un état desprit (Littérature Française) (French Edition)
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A political, social and economic system that had previously seemed peripheral now seemed to be bidding for a place at the big table, endeavouring in the words of one contemporary French pamphlet to:. Combien de questions importantes sur lesquelles il ne sera pas permis aux auteurs d'avoir un avis[! The impetus came from the financial and other burdens incurred in the Seven Years War, and one of the aims of this repackaging of the monarchy was to strengthen France for eventual revenge on perfide Albion, which eventually came in the form of French support first covert, then open of the rebel colonists in America.
The war made direct communication between Wilkes and Suard difficult. Dziembowski has noted, portraits of the patriotic public-spirited England in the s: England and the English language were open, scientific and exhilaratingly vigorous. Suard was a regular contributor under Arnaud's editorship.
As Burrows notes, oft-rehearsed claims that the French government sponsored periodicals by taking out bulk subscriptions of several thousand copies four thousand, it is claimed, in the case of the Courier de l'Europe have yet to be substantiated. Besogne and the bookseller Pierre Machuel, both of Rouen. Yorick, GLE , 4, 28 March , vol. Wilkes to Suard, 25 March These delays eventually stretched to six months, and helped finish off the Journal. This is reproduced in Oeuvres de Voltaire, ed. Writing many years later, Garat addressed Suard directly: Suard , 2 vols. My thanks to Professor Burrows for sharing an advance copy of this piece with me.
On Morande, see also Weinbrot in this issue of etudes-episteme. My friends in Paris devoted themselves to teaching me the slang of Belleville and the poetry of Verlaine. I actually did a degree in English and American studies with a minor in Italian. The s were an exciting time to be in a radical French uni — the afterglow. But it was at Vincennes that I had my first taste of literary translation, under a tutor called John Edwards.
He passed on to me his passion for translating. Did you become a translator at the outset of your career? I lived in Paris for 8 years, and then spent a year in India. In Paris I had taught English in companies as a way of keeping body and soul together, but had no 'real' work experience.
I was too old to go into a job at a very junior level, too inexperienced to go in at a higher level, and too much of a maverick to fit into a company culture. So I had no option but to invent my own career. I launched myself as a translator, having translated one book before leaving Paris, for which I had not yet found a publisher. You've translated over 60 books from French into English.
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How long did it take you to establish the kind of reputation that put your services in such high demand? The publishing world is quite small and once you've got a foot in the door, editors tend to pass your name on. Colleagues too. It took a few years of letter writing, taking on other types of work, notably cookery books.
Which of the books was the most challenging, linguistically or in other respects?
Each book has its own set of challenges. It took me way out of my comfort zone, and by the end I had a curious feeling that I'd translated from Arabic, so different is the novel's structure and language from the western narrative tradition. Do you find time to study the works of other literary translators? When you do that, do you have the source and target texts before your eyes? I'm not an academic, I'm a hands-on practitioner. I read voraciously, both translations and other literature.
I am in permanent dialogue with numerous translator friends and colleagues. And as a mentor and external supervisor I see students' work. But I don't have time to 'study' translations. There aren't enough hours in the day. For those contemplating a career as a literary translator, would they have any realistic prospect of making ends meet, short of achieving the kind of success you've had. Making ends meet has nothing to do with critical success. Literary translation simply isn't well paid.
And there is a limit to how many books you can translate in a year. This was not only where Madrid chose to concentrate most of its elite units, it was also where the nature of the terrain as evidenced during the Habsburg advance to Corbie in made large-scale enemy encroachments both most likely and difficult to counter. Inevitably, there were fierce debates in Paris over the distribution of finite military resources and the use of the handful of talented generals, as well as over how to prioritize the different military theaters. Having enumerated the multitudinous difficulties that the Bourbon monarchy had to contend with during this period, it is necessary to stress two facts.
First, despite all of these challenges — whether in command and control, logistics, or domestic stability — the French war effort was somehow maintained. Across Europe, chief ministers and private secretaries grappled with a similar set of challenges as the small and overburdened bureaucracies they oversaw groaned under the pressure of resourcing and coordinating protracted military operations waged on an unprecedented scale across multiple theaters. Like Richelieu, the volcanic Spaniard had to navigate the treacherous world of court politics with its webs of patronage and cronyism.
And just like his French nemesis, Olivares groused about the dearth of qualified commanders and the unreliability of his allies, and was often in a wretched mental state, overworked, depressed, and plagued with insomnia.
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Indeed, he often appeared on the verge of buckling under the mental weight of coordinating a multifront campaign across a far larger and less geographically cohesive space than that confronted by Richelieu. Unfortunately for Olivares, the cardinal possessed both an uncanny gift for political survival and a robust counter-intelligence apparatus. Both chief ministers were fully cognizant of the inadequacies of their respective state bureaucracies for the prosecution of such an onerous and large-scale war of attrition.
This was a perfectly rational calculation. After all, the French were war-weary and Richelieu was deeply unpopular, was riddled with various ailments from crippling migraines to weeping abscesses, and had an occasionally fraught relationship with his royal patron. As the war dragged on with no sign of resolution, the Spanish chief minister became increasingly desperate, covertly sponsoring a number of French schemes to remove the cardinal and feverishly discussing elaborate plots for his assassination.
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In the event, history smiled on the cardinal, who won his strategic wager. On the military front, French armies and proxies finally began to make some progress, making inroads into both Flanders and Imperial German territory. Joint Habsburg military operations became ever rarer as the Holy Roman Empire focused the bulk of its forces against the Swedes. In , the Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand II died and was replaced by his son, Ferdinand III, a man with a greater appetite for compromise and a new willingness to shed the formalized military alliance with Spain in favor of conflict resolution.
A cordon of military outposts was established across the upper Rhine and the southern Roussillon was occupied. In Catalonia, the ringleaders of the popular revolt opportunistically invoked ancient treaties from the time of Charlemagne and swore allegiance to Louis XIII, who promptly dispatched troops to garrison his new protectorate. Spain only succeeded in recapturing the renegade province twelve years later in In the case of Portugal, however, the divorce proved more permanent — after decades of bitter struggle, the Portuguese obtained their full independence in These developments almost fatally impeded the Spanish war effort.
In that year the Spaniards had been victors on French soil, and their advance had excited a panic in the French capital. In France was not only secure against invasion, but its frontier had been advanced in the east, in the north, and in the south, and its great rival, Spain, was threatened with imminent dissolution.
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The connection with the Netherlands was already destroyed, and the French fleet in the Mediterranean made communication with Italy difficult and dangerous. In the peninsula itself two provinces were in open revolt, and one of them seemed likely to become a part of France.
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Three years later, in , the French army crushed a large Spanish force at the battle of Rocroi, in northeastern France, earning a spectacular and resounding victory. Richelieu, however, was no longer there to see it. Exhausted and emaciated, he had finally succumbed to one of his many afflictions a few months prior, on a wintry day in December Surrounded by a gaggle of nervous physicians, coughing up blood, and struggling to speak between fits of hacking coughs, the cardinal leaned toward his monarch and engaged in a final defense of his policies. The cardinal responded that there was nothing and nobody to forgive.
After all, he personally had never had any true enemies — other, of course, than those of the state. When Your Majesty resolved to admit me both to your council and to an important place in your confidence for the direction of your affairs, I may say that the Huguenots shared the state with you; that the nobles conducted themselves as if they were not your subjects, and the most powerful governors of the provinces as if they were sovereign in their offices. I dared to promise you, with assurance, that you would soon find remedies for the disorders in your state, and that your prudence, your courage, and the benediction of God would give a new aspect to this realm.
I promised Your Majesty to employ all my industry and all the authority which it would please you to give me to ruin the Huguenot party, to abase the pride of the nobles, to bring all your subjects back to their duty, and to restore your reputation among foreign nations to the station it ought to occupy.