Puns in translation

There is a whole range of sighs that only literary translators the world over can hear. Oooph. Seriously? He got to translate that? Really?

Ppphh. And then he translated that like that? Oh dear.

And then there is the most serious one of all. The sound varies from translator to translator but, to the uninitiated, it at first sounds like air escaping from a balloon, our next breath only coming when we’ve come up with at least half a solution. Our hands rattle uncontrollably against our keyboards. We hold on to our mouse like grim death. And above all else we think, Seriously? He didn’t stop to think this book might be translated into English one day. And he squeezes a pun in there? Why? Why? Why?

Read the rest of my post on why there is no sigh like the sigh of a translator encountering a pun (with three concrete examples) over at Intralingo