úterý 1. dubna 2014
Et voilà: it is Milan Kundera's birthday today. I thought I'd email him a card, but in the morning, I heard on the radio, that Kundera actually dislikes birthday wishes (so if you run into him on Boulevard de Montparnasse later tonight, don't leap to him with a bouquet and a handshake, as his attitude to birthdays compares to the one of Frenk Underwood). Kundera, in any case, is the only Czech author whose work proves a point I have tried to advocate since ten years: a non-native writer can make it. Apart from remarkable storytelling and clarity of thought, the linguistic perfection Kundera demonstrates in his French texts tops most of contemporary native French writers. It is the absolute mastery of foreign language he achieved that, in my eyes, authorizes any scepticism he might have with regard to literary translation. Still, instead of congratulations, let’s challenge some of his scepticism and explain why he is wrong.