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View Poll Results: November 2009 Mobile Read Book Club Vote
The Trial by Franz Kafka 15 20.27%
The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky 8 10.81%
Persuasion by Jane Austen 4 5.41%
Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens 8 10.81%
The Picture (or Portrait) of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde 12 16.22%
Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne 11 14.86%
Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edward Abbott 6 8.11%
Orlando by Virginia Woolf 6 8.11%
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo 4 5.41%
Voters: 74. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-01-2009, 06:59 AM   #61
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no, funnily enough I've ordered an astak ez reader pocket pro (I can't remember which of those letters was meant to be capitalized, so I've decided not to capitalize at all). I wouldn't mind a Kindle but it was beyond my budget.
Ah cool, you went with the Pocket Pro. Welcome to the club. Which colour?
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Old 11-01-2009, 07:49 AM   #62
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:31 AM   #63
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Did you guys know this book was unfinished by Kafka? Darn. Just like Mozart's Requiem, it may be a great work, but it is unfortunate to have to wonder which parts are original and which parts aren't.
The unfinished part isn't the ending. I believe everything you read will be Kafka.
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Old 11-01-2009, 12:15 PM   #64
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I've never read kafka so I may join in this month as soon as I finish Travels with My Aunt.

There was a movie version of The Trial starring Anthony Perkins; it'll be interesting to compare the two.
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Old 11-01-2009, 11:21 PM   #65
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The David Wyllie translation is most certainly not in the public domain; it is a copyrighted work.
Fine, fine my bad. It's available for free, better? Regardless, I'm told the other translation is a lot better so I still wonder if anyone has seen it as an ebook. As far as I can tell it's not available.

Last edited by AnemicOak; 11-01-2009 at 11:24 PM.
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:10 AM   #66
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In honor of the reading of The Trial, I am posting the beginning of an article that appeared in the Oct. 15 Economist.

The lines in The Trial that reminded me of this article are these:

"And why am I under arrest?" he then asked.
"That's something we're not allowed to tell you."

Here is the beginning of the article, titled "Barbara Streisand Strikes Again":

THIS week a national newspaper ran a fascinating story about absolutely nothing. The Guardian reported on its front page on October 13th that a question had been tabled by an MP in Parliament, but that the newspaper could not reveal “who has asked the question, what the question is, which minister might answer it, or where the question is to be found”. The reason, it explained no less cryptically, was that “legal obstacles, which cannot be identified, involve proceedings, which cannot be mentioned, on behalf of a client who must remain secret”.

The contorted language was the result of a “super-injunction”, an increasingly common form of gagging order that forbids the media not only from reporting certain information, but also from reporting that they have been forbidden from reporting it. The gag in question was granted last month at the request of Trafigura, an oil firm, to prevent publication of the details of a report related to the dumping of toxic waste in Côte d’Ivoire. Trafigura’s lawyers at Carter-Ruck, a firm that specialises in shutting up newspapers, warned the Guardian that mentioning the injunction would place it in contempt of court, even after it was referred to on October 12th in Parliament. Yet proceedings in both Houses have long been reported under privilege—that is, without fear of prosecution for contempt.

Minutes after the Guardian’s bowdlerised article was published online, internet sleuths found the censored material on the Parliament website and published it on their blogs and in their tweets. By lunchtime, shortly before several newspapers were due to challenge its position in a High Court hearing, Carter-Ruck lifted its opposition. The firm and its client were left to observe an example of what bloggers call the “Streisand effect”, a phenomenon named after the unfortunate singer whose efforts to block publication of an embarrassing photograph served to spread it around the internet at once.

End of quote from The Economist. Now, if that isn't Kafkaesque, what is?
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:15 AM   #67
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Fine, fine my bad. It's available for free, better? Regardless, I'm told the other translation is a lot better so I still wonder if anyone has seen it as an ebook. As far as I can tell it's not available.

I bought a kindle addition for .99. As I am new to kindle and not figured out how to download. .99 was worth not messing with it for me.
http://www.amazon.com/The-Trial-mobi...7167519&sr=1-1
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:16 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by geneven View Post
In honor of the reading of The Trial, I am posting the beginning of an article that appeared in the Oct. 15 Economist.

The lines in The Trial that reminded me of this article are these:

"And why am I under arrest?" he then asked.
"That's something we're not allowed to tell you."

Here is the beginning of the article, titled "Barbara Streisand Strikes Again":
.... Now, if that isn't Kafkaesque, what is?
Just goes to show you that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

and that good writing that presents the human condition will always be relevant.
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Old 11-02-2009, 02:30 PM   #69
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Fine, fine my bad. It's available for free, better? Regardless, I'm told the other translation is a lot better so I still wonder if anyone has seen it as an ebook. As far as I can tell it's not available.
I spent quite some time last night fruitlessly searching for an ebook version of the Breon Mitchell translation. The thing I found most surprising was that most sites did not say who the translator was...the only time a translator was shown was when it was David Wyllie.

I even downloaded several preview versions to see if the actual ebook noted the translator. The answer was always "no".

Seems odd and I am disappointed...willing to pay for a Mitchell translation (also noted elsewhere to be better).
d

Last edited by CharlieBird; 11-03-2009 at 05:31 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 11-02-2009, 04:10 PM   #70
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Originally Posted by CharlieBird View Post
I spent quite some time last night fruitlessly searching for an ebook version of the Breon Mitchell translation. The thing I found most surprising was that most sites did not say who the translator was...the only time a translator was shown was when it was when it was David Wyllie.

I even downloaded several preview versions to see if the actual ebook noted the translator. The answer was always "no".

Seems odd and I am disappointed...willing to pay for a Mitchell translation (also noted elsewhere to be better).
d

I've looked at all the various shops I usually buy from and it doesn't appear that the Mitchell translation is available as an ebook.
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Old 11-02-2009, 07:40 PM   #71
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Translations

Amazon in particular is TERRIBLE about translations. You often have to read READER COMMENTS, for gosh sake, to find out who the translator is. Worse yet, I have seen books listed with ratings COMBINED for different translations, so you can't tell which translation is liked and which is not, unless a reader happens to be so specific -- and let's face it, many readers seem translation-oblivious.

It is probably the publisher's fault, ultimately, but really -- it's not a big secret that many great classics ARE NOT WRITTEN IN ENGLISH!! Amazon should realize that, and as a reader service, should insist that publishers specify that information.

I don't care if the translation is hundreds of years old, the identity of the translator is essential artistic information, unless the tranlator is unknown, in which case THAT should be explicitly specified.

In the case of The Trial, the Project Gutenberg version doesn't seem bad, though it's probably not the best out there. It's the one I'm reading for this goround.
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Old 11-07-2009, 01:13 PM   #72
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One of the "problems" with reading a translation is knowing how much of the "author" you're reading, and how much of the translator. I often wonder, for example, with authors like Shakespeare, who is, of course, one of the true masters of the use of language - can it really be translated into a different language, and still remain Shakespeare?
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Old 11-07-2009, 01:58 PM   #73
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Yes, much hangs upon the translation. You don't just translate words, you basically have to re-tell. A good translator needs to have some talent for storytelling and have a good udnerstanding of language. If you've ever tried translating from one language into another, it will be very obvious.

There is much of culture embedded in language, and I don't think you can really make a translation that is 100% as good - but on the other hand, I personally don't think I get all the nuances of an English language text, so I am not sure which would best; native text in English or a good translation into Danish

In this case, I am going to find a translation into Danish, as I don't see much point in reading a translation from German to English when neither is my native tongue.
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Old 11-07-2009, 02:47 PM   #74
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One of the "problems" with reading a translation is knowing how much of the "author" you're reading, and how much of the translator. I often wonder, for example, with authors like Shakespeare, who is, of course, one of the true masters of the use of language - can it really be translated into a different language, and still remain Shakespeare?
Yes, that's why I'm extremely skeptical of poetry translations. It just seems poetry in particular can only be read/experienced in the original language -- unless perhaps translated by the author themselves. I also must say that I've read quite a few poetry translations that seemed very well done. Of course I do not have the original to compare to.
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Old 11-14-2009, 08:45 PM   #75
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Well, I voted Dickens, but was outnumbered by the Kafka clan. (who had probably already read Oliver Twist)

I read half of The Trial and found that it sucked. It is the first book in a long time that I started and had no desire to finish.

Started reading The Count of Monte Cristo instead. Awesome book. At first, I was pretty shocked at how slow it was going. I had spent hours reading, and was still only at 2%. Now that I'm at 20% I'm hoping it'll never end.
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