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About the names and pseudonyms of translators of Russian literature in China (using the examples of translators I. A. Krylov, A. S. Pushkin and N. V. Gogol)

Pei Tszyan

ORCID: 0000-0002-6100-2718

Postgraduate student, Department of History of Russian Literature, Faculty of Philology, Lomonosov Moscow State University

119991, Russia, Moskovskaya oblast, g. Moscow, ul. Gsp-1, leninskie gory, 1, str. 51

pj725913.zyh@yandex.ru
Other publications by this author
 

 

DOI:

10.25136/2409-8698.2022.6.37926

Received:

22-04-2022


Published:

17-06-2022


Abstract: This article discusses the features of the names and pseudonyms of three famous Chinese translators of Russian literature – Wu Yan, Mu Dan and Lu Xin. The author explores the components of Chinese names before the creation of the PRC, explains the main reasons for the formation of the original Chinese pseudonyms, and mainly highlights the relationship of pseudonyms and real names of translators I. A. Krylov, A. S. Pushkin, N. V. Gogol. The purpose of the study is to identify the sources of formation, the meaning of the names and pseudonyms of these famous Chinese translators. When analyzing the characteristics of the names and pseudonyms of translators, a comparative historical approach, methods of analysis and interpretation are applied. В В  The scientific novelty lies in the fact that the article for the first time studied the pseudonyms of Chinese translators of Russian classics in detail from the position of pseudonymy. As a result, it was revealed that the tradition of pseudonyms in China has a long history, and the names "Hao" of the ancient Chinese were similar to today's pseudonyms. At the end of the ⅩⅨ and the beginning of the ⅩⅩ centuries, Chinese began to translate works of fiction of Russian literature. For political and social reasons, more and more of these translators began to use pseudonyms to publish their works, and until the 1880s, few people published their works under their real names. The results and conclusions can be used in the study of the history of translation of Russian literature in China and the problem of pseudonymy.


Keywords:

name, nickname, interpreter, translation, russian literature, Krylov, Pushkin, Gogol, history of china, Lu Xin

This article is automatically translated. You can find original text of the article here.

The ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu (c. 571-471 BC) wrote in his work "Tao te Ching": "The Tao that can be expressed in words is not a permanent tao. A name that can be called is not a permanent name. The nameless is the beginning of heaven and earth, having a name - the mother of all things. Therefore, he who is free from passions sees the wonderful mystery of the tao, and he who has passions sees only it in its final form. Nameless and having a name of the same origin, but with different names. Together they are called the deepest. The transition from one to the other, the deepest is the door to all the wonderful (Chinese: )" [12, p. 115]. From these expressions we learned that the name is the beginning of the world.

A name makes a person a person, different from others. Since ancient times, social status, character traits and a lot of information are reflected in the surname and first name. If we look at the hieroglyph? (sin, surname), we will notice that this hieroglyph consists of two parts: ? (nyu, woman) and ? (shen, birth). Why exactly from these parts? In the dictionary "Showing of rzeczy ()", which is the first kanji dictionary, compiled and organized by the principle of the hieroglyphic key, as well as the analysis of the structure of the hieroglyphic sign, there is this explanation: "the Character ? (sin, name) consists of two parts – ?(Nuits, female) and ? (Sheng, birth); the Appearance of this character due to the fact that there's people; in ancient times sacred to the mother bore children, the gods touched and gave the children the names of key ? (Nuits, female) (Chinese: ?)" [7, p. 258]. In addition, in China, the surname originated in a matriarchal tribal society. That is why ancient Chinese surnames usually carry with them the hieroglyphic key ? (nyu, woman), for example, such surnames as ? (Gui), ? (Si), ? (Ji), etc.

Everyone knows that the surname represents a blood relationship, and the name is a personal desire. The dictionary "Showen jiezi" also mentions: "The hieroglyph ? (min, name) consists of two parts – ? (si, evening) and ? (kou, mouth); it's dark in the evening, and people can't recognize each other, so they open their mouths, call the name of the other.” (Chinese: )” [7, p.31]. This, of course, is a primitive legend about the origin of the name in China.

In ancient times, children had "Zhumin" (, baby name), which are usually given by parents (usually father) or grandfather (the most venerable in the family) when three months after birth and before they turned ten years old. I must say that "Zhumin" is the first name in the life of every Chinese in ancient times. For example, the childhood name of the Chinese commander and poet Cao Cao (, 155-220) And Man () [8, p. 4]. The hieroglyph ? (man) means "to deceive", his opponents then often used this to scold him, scolding that Cao Cao likes to deceive another. The last emperor of the Shu Empire (?) Liu Shan (?, 207-271), at home his name is A Dou (), it is even more famous than his real name.

When a man turns 20, his parents will arrange a growing–up ritual for him and give him a middle name - "Tzu (?)" to indicate that he has become an adult, and a woman at the age of 15 is considered an adult and can be married. But in ancient times in China, women had a low status and usually had no name other than their last name. After this ritual, only his parents and older relatives call him by his first name "Zhumin", and everyone else calls him by his second name "Tzu" [3, p. 68].

After the Tang (618-907) and Song (960-1279) eras, there were more and more unnecessary ceremonies between intellectuals, they thought that using the second name "Tzu" was not respectful enough. So the third name "Hao" appeared, it is more respectful than the second name "Tzu". In comparison with "Zhumin" and the second name "Tzu", a person usually comes up with a third name for himself "Hao", which, as a rule, is associated with a person's place of residence, his religious beliefs, hobbies, attitude to politics, etc. A person can have not only one "hao", but several. For example, the "Hao" of the poet, artist, calligrapher and statesman of the Song Su Shi era (?,, 1037-1101) is Dongpo (), because he lived in Dongpo County (now Fuling ) of Huanggang City () of Hubei Province. Another example: The famous poet, writer Li Bo (701-762) has three names, his last name is "Li (A)", his real name is "Bo (a)", the second name "Zi" is "Taibo (A)", the third name "Hao" is "Qinglian jiushi (a))". Li Bo has many other "Hao", for example, "Zhexianren ()", "Jiuxianwen ()", etc. [4, p. 51]. Some scientists believe that "Hao" is the original form of a pseudonym in China.

"Hao" is not used specifically when people write something, it is also possible when they talk. Unlike "Hao", a pseudonym is a name used by a person in public activities instead of the real one. It is difficult to specify the exact date when the first pseudonym appeared in China. There is an opinion that the first pseudonym is "Lanling xiaoxiaosheng ()", the author of the 1607 novel "Jin, Ping, Mei" (, Plum flowers in a golden vase) [11, p. 161]. To this day, no one knows his real name. So, maybe in China the first pseudonym appeared in the Ming era (1368-1644).

As soon as the pseudonym appeared in China, he established an indissoluble connection with the novel. Relying on the prosperity of the literary genre of the novel in the Ming and Qing era (1644-1911), the pseudonym found its place in China with the development of various publications. According to the book "On Pseudonyms ()" (Taiwan, 1971), which the Taiwanese Zhang Taigu () wrote, at the end of the 19th century there were only 1,562 authors from various newspapers and magazines, and these authors used as many as 4,487 pseudonyms [9, C. 15].

In the history of Chinese literature, the writer who uses the most pseudonyms is Lu Xin (, 1881-1936). According to the statistics of his wife Xu Guangping (1898-1968), there are at least 80 or more pseudonyms of Lu Xin; according to the statistics of Zhou Qing, there are more than 150 [4, p. 51]. Lu Xin's real name is Zhou Shuzhen, but at the moment the writer is known all over the world under his pseudonym "Lu Xin". This pseudonym first appeared in the novel "Notes of a Madman", published in the newspaper "New Youth" in May 1918 with the support of Qian Xuantong ( 18, 1887-1939), which is the first novel in the history of modern Chinese literature in Baihua () (oral Chinese). This is the most frequently used pseudonym of Lu Xin among all his pseudonyms, under which more than 500 novels, novellas, short stories, poems and translations have been published.

There are three explanations for the meaning of the pseudonym "Lu Xin": the first is in memory of his mother, because Lu Xin's mother's surname is Lu, Xin is his childhood name, i.e., "Zhumin"; the second – it reflects the writer's modesty, because the hieroglyph "lu (?)" means not smart, but "Xin" – quickly, Lu Xin means that although he is not smart, he will be hardworking; third, "xin" in ancient China means a wolf, according to historian Hou Weilu (, 1903-1987), who translated Karl Marx's "Capital" for the first time in China, Lu Xin bravely fight for the benefit people like a wolf.

As a translator, Lu Xin translated Gogol's "Notes of a Madman", in the preface of the translation he wrote: "Gogol can be called the founder of the school of Russian realism. He first wrote about the grotesque phenomena of Ukraine, but gradually moved on to describing real human affairs and added satirical elements... all this love to read modern people (Chinese: ......)" [2?P. 224]. The novel "Notes of a Madman" by N. V. Gogol had a great influence on the creation of the novel of the same name by Lu Xin. If we carefully compare these two stories, you can find that there are obvious similarities in them: the main characters of both stories are crazy; both heroes write diaries; both heroes (Aksenti Ivanovich Poprishchin and Kun Zhong) express dissatisfaction with the world, as well as criticize others; both authors used realistic methods and psychological analysis. But there are also a lot of differences, for example, the "crazy" Lu Xin denied the Chinese feudal system and feudal moral norms, and Aksenty Ivanovich Poprishchin, in our opinion, the bureaucratic system of Russia at that time.

Lu Xin is not the only example among the translators of Russian literature. It can be said that from the end of the 19th century until 1978, the year of the adoption of the policy of reforms and openness (the program of economic reforms undertaken in the PRC), Chinese writers and translators almost did not use real names in the press, but only pseudonyms. The reasons could be different: from the desire to hide his real name in order to avoid possible political troubles, or the desire to differentiate between different spheres of his creative activity (the same person could act as a writer, scientist and translator under different names) to purely aesthetic considerations.

Zha Liangzheng (, 1918-1977), poet, outstanding translator of A.S. Pushkin's poems, who translated the main works of A.S. Pushkin from original Russian texts, including nine poems ("Poltava", "The Bronze Horseman", "The Caucasian Prisoner", etc.), 502 lyrical poems and a novel in Pushkin's poems "Eugene Onegin". His pseudonym is Mu Dan (). He himself is such a genius as A.S. Pushkin. He has been writing poetry since high school and came up with the pseudonym "Mu Dan ()" for himself. He divided his surname "Zha (?)" into the hieroglyphs "Mu (?)" and "dan (?)". Then he replaced the first hieroglyph with the homonym "Mu (?, expectation)", more similar to the Chinese normal surname of a person than the previous "Mu (?)", and eventually clarified the pseudonym as "Mu Dan ()", implying admiration for the dawn, expectation of the overthrow of the old China and the meeting of the new China [1, p. 15].

The origin of the pseudonym of another translator Li Gang (, 1926-1997) is simply a choice of fate. Russian Russian translator, his real name is Wang Guizhong, since 1950 he began studying at the Harbin Institute of Foreign Languages (the predecessor of Heilongjiang University), majoring in Russian, and in 1953 was sent to teach students at Anhui Pedagogical University. Li Gang translated almost seven million words from works of Russian and Soviet literature, such works as "Hero of Our Time", "Anna Karenina", "Sunday", "Quiet Don", "Doctor Zhivago", etc. The pseudonym "Li Gang" was obtained by drawing lots when he was the editor of the newspaper "Dazhong Zhibao ())". Then one day the editor-in-chief of this newspaper gathered all the editors and said that "according to the current tradition, we need to choose a pseudonym, I wrote several on paper, choose!" And that's how Lee Gan got his pseudonym. The homonym "Li Gang" means strength, the translator liked it very much.

Sun Jiajin (1918-2010), pseudonym - Wu Yan, former editor-in-chief of the Shanghai Translation Publishing House, a well-known translator who beautifully translated a collection of poems by the Indian writer Rabindranath Tagore. He is also the translator of the first complete works of the fables of I. A. Krylov, which was published in 1954 in the Shanghai publishing house "Xinwenyi chubanshe", which included all 198 fables from nine books of I. A. Krylov's fables, and three of his early fables that are not included in the main collection ("Not in time guests", "Lion and Man" and "Feast") [6, p. 92]. His translations have been reprinted as many as 20 times, they are very fond of being read by different readers. The only drawback is that he translated Krylov's fables in prose. Wu Yan was born in the city of Suzhou, and Suzhou in ancient times was called "Wu", "yan" (?) - stone. Therefore, he came up with the pseudonym "Wu Yan", which means he is one stone in the "Wu" area. His pseudonym shows the modest nature of the translator and love for the motherland.

If we consider the translations of translators of Russian literature before the 1980s, then most of them were published under pseudonyms. But you can call an exception. For example, A. P. Chekhov's translator Zhu Lun (, 1916-1995) translated many of Chekhov's novels and short stories, such as "Ward No. 6", "Chameleon", "Death of an Official" and so on. Interestingly, readers who do not know him often take his real name Zhu Lun as a pseudonym, because the surname "Zhu" (?) is rarely found in China, so "Zhu Lun" does not look like a person's real name. There are quite a few such surnames, there are such as Yan (?), Fu (?), etc. Actually, his real name, Tzigane () occurring from the book "Mencius": "you Have to respect their grandparents and grandparents of others; to take kindly to their children and other people ( )" [5, C. 17]. His pseudonym Jizhen shows the translator's dream of a wonderful future for China.

After the creation of the PRC, complex naming rules were changed, only the surname and one name remained, although the name is not limited to hieroglyphs (from one to three). Since the 1980s, China has opened a window to the world, more and more Chinese have started reading Western books, accepting Western culture and stopped using pseudonyms. However, the pseudonyms of those translators who devoted themselves to the exchange of Chinese and Russian literature and culture remain forever in the hearts of people.

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The relevance of the reviewed work lies in the fact that the study allows us to comprehensively and fully understand the question of the meaning of names and pseudonyms of translators of Russian literature in China. The article is conceptual in nature, the topic is considered in sufficient detail by the researcher, the examples / illustrations are complete and voluminous. I think that the topic is not trivial, and the material will be in demand from a potentially interested reader. The work is informative, and links to existing developments not only do not interfere with the author, but also help to consolidate his own view of the issue chosen for evaluation. The stylistic component is knowledge-intensive: for example, "a name makes a person a person, different from others. Since ancient times, social status, character traits and a lot of information have been reflected in the surname and first name. If we look at the hieroglyph? (xing, surname), we note that this hieroglyph consists of two parts: ? (nyui, woman) and ? (sheng, birth). Why exactly from these parts? In the dictionary "Showing of rzeczy (????)", which is the first kanji dictionary, compiled and organized by the principle of the hieroglyphic key, as well as the analysis of the structure of the hieroglyphic sign, there is this explanation: "the Character ? (sin, name) consists of two parts – ?(Nuits, female) and ? (Sheng, birth); the Appearance of this character due to the fact that there's people; in ancient times sacred to the mother bore children, the gods touched and gave the children the names of key ? (Nuits, female) (Chinese: ?,????,?????????????,??,????????,????????)", or ""Hao" is not used specially when people write something, and when they can talk. Unlike "Hao", a pseudonym is a name used by a person in public activities instead of the real one. It is difficult to specify the exact date when the first pseudonym appeared in China. There is an opinion that the first pseudonym is "Lanling xiaoxiaosheng", the author of the 1607 novel "Jin, Ping, Mei" (The plum blossoms in a golden vase) [11, C. 161]. To this day, no one knows his real name. So, maybe in China the first pseudonym appeared in the Ming era (1368-1644),"or "there are three explanations for the meaning of the pseudonym "Lu Xin": the first is in memory of his mother, because Lu Xin's mother's surname is Lu, Xin is his childhood name, i.e., "Zhumin"; the second is it reflects the modesty of the writer, because the hieroglyph "lu (?)" does not mean smart, and "xin" means fast, Lu Xin means that although he is not smart, he will be hardworking; third, "xin" in ancient China means a wolf, according to historian Hou Weilu (???, 1903-1987), who translated Karl Marx's "Capital" for the first time in China, Lu Xin boldly fought for the benefit of the people like a wolf," etc. The methodology of the research correlates with the principles of a systemic nature, comparative variant, empiricism. The novelty of the essay is in an attempt to holistically capture the effective nature of the "translator's name and pseudonym". The structure of the work correlates with the classical type of scientific project; serious / actual editing of the text is not required, in my opinion, it is unnecessary to supplement and expand the material. The final block of work could look expanded, because it can include ideas / thoughts about the perspective of studying the problem. The bibliography of the text is fully used, references and citations are given in the correct format. The material can be used practically, I think that the option of considering the issue can become a model for new research. I recommend the reviewed article "On the names and pseudonyms of translators of Russian literature in China (using the examples of translators I. A. Krylov, A. S. Pushkin and N. V. Gogol)" for open publication in the journal "Litera".
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