A 17th-century French critic coined the phrase “les belles infidèles” to suggest that translations, like women, can be either faithful or beautiful, but not both.
The concept of fidelity in translation is still a divisive topic in the worldwide translation communities and forums.
But what do we do when we reach a dead end? What do we do when culture interferes with the language and the renegade untranslatable words that bear so much meaning come to life?
Anjana Iyer, a designer from New Zealand that describes herself as a “a multidisciplinary designer representing the spirit of Mumbai in Auckland City” has come up with a whole new approach to translating the dreadful untranslatable words.
“I am going to make a poster illustrating one word each day for 100 words that cannot be translated to English word for word.”, Anjana says on her Behance account.
We think the result is amazing! If only we could incorporate posters in our translation projects…
Do you know any words that cannot be translated to English mot à mot?
Let us know in the comments section!