Thursday, January 13, 2011

Dracula Lite

Not sunlight, of course. No, the solution is to abridge and simplify the sucker.

Holy water, Batman! Wouldn't that adulterate him? It sounds indecent!

No need to cast aspersions; the Count has been (mal)adapted countless times in English alone. Once more--even once per major auxlang--should do no harm. And much of the story could be left intact, including most of the main characters' dialog. This isn't Tom Sawyer, which I believe has been translated into Esperanto, and whose dialect is a major part of the story. Most of the difficult bits of Dracula could be summarized easily enough.

There would even be a useful long-term effect: when the auxlang and its user base have matured enough for the complete novel, the abridgement could be used as a basis, so only the summarized bits would need to be translated. The rest could just be tweaked a bit.

In any case, this sort of thing has already been done. One of the first long Interlingua texts I encountered online was an abridgement of Pilgrim's Progress (translated by Paolo Castellina), and there's a short version of Robinson Crusoe on the Mondlango site.

Even so, this is at least an intermediate-level project--the sort of thing suitable to Ido and Occ, for example. (As already noted, Eo and Interlingua could manage an actual translation.) Other auxlangs could technically manage it--I suspect Sambahsa could, for example--but they don't have the user base to justify it.

Next time I'll try to explain the levels of development for various auxlangs.

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