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Lynn Visson (USA). Is a Puzzlement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .74
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.. . , . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .80
105062, ,
., . 23, . 5 . . . . .3-
./: +7(495) 9166703
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e-mail: rvalent@online.ru
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ISBN 978-5-93439-245-2
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page=state&id=2640) , -
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After the end of the year the income statement
31 accounts (revenue accounts and expense
accounts) will be closed or zeroed out and their
balances will be transferred into the Retained
Earnings account. This will mean the revenue and
90 91 - expense accounts will start the new year with zero
balances allowing the company "to keep score"
. ( for the new year.
, .. , -
, 2006, 3, -- Balances in the revenue and expense accounts
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http://www.consultant.ru/law/consult/gk/gk2006 their balances to the Income Summary account.
0217/#art3678)
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to zero out balances in revenue and expense , -
accounts .

22

A small house, esp. in the country; a small on. -

1 (21) 2009 ..
vacation house cottage ,
American Heritage Dictionary. -
, , Collins Cobuild . -
English Language Dictionary: a small house,
usually in the country. - .
, elite, de luxe luxury cottages -
,
, cottage
, , - . -
, small, nice, little, modest, .. , -
, - , -
- .
. Websters Concise College Dictionary -
cottage .
: a small house, usu. of ,
only one story. 2. a small modest vacation house,
at a lake or mountain resort. Collins Concise , -
Dictionary ottage a small , -
simple house, esp. in a rural area. ,
, - -
, - single- . -
family house/home, detached house ,
residence: single-family residence detached , transfer.
residence. , -
. inter-budget transfers. -
, , , ,
single-family residence construction, inter-budget transfer resolutions
- inter-
budget transfer requests. -
luxury village. , .
, , -
, (to provide, to grant, to allocate)
, luxury village - . , -
. - transfer , -
- .
to make: inter-budget transfers made from ...
subdivision, to ... . -
. , -
Random House Webster Dictionary - . ,
subdivision a portion of land divided into -
lots for real-estate development. , ,
. Oxford Advanced , forms of
Learners Dictionary - inter-budget transfers from the federal budget.
- -
(Am.E) one of the parts of an area of - . ,
land that has been divided up for building houses -

23

, , , -
1 (21) 2009 ..

, :
,
the legal ownership of something, esp. land or
. - property Collins Cobuild English Language
- . Dictionary;
535 -
( ) the legal right to own sth, esp. land or
. , property; the document that shows you have this
right Oxford Advanced Learners Dictionary;
-
the formal right of ownership of property -
() - Blacks Law Dictionary;
a persons right of ownership of property -
, Oxford Dictionary
, of Law;

ownership Barron's
, , , Dictionary of Legal Terms.
. -
Barrons Dictionary of Real Estate Terms
.. .. ,
ontract of procurement. , , -
, , :
, evidence that the owner of land is in lawful
. - possession thereof; evidence of ownership.

-
, ,
-
, -
. -
. -
,
agricultural procurement
, Collins
contract.
Concise Dictionary, -
-
title:
-
. a. the legal right to possession of property, esp.
. - real property;
b. the basis of such right;
. - c. the documentary evidence of such right: title
, deeds.
title, - Title
. ownership, possession.
to possess
, . -
title to possess Blacks Law Dictionary
, - to own (, -
- , -
. ,
-
title , to possess, to hold).

24

, - -

1 (21) 2009 ..
, title, Collins Concise .
Dictionary title deed. Title deeds, - ,
Blacks, deeds which constitute or .
are the evidence of title to lands. deed, -
, , , -
: a conveyance of realty; a ..
writing signed by grantor whereby title to realty is (
transferred from one to another ( title, , -
, Blacks ) -
). , -
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right ( ) title (- , ( , , -
) - ).
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Vindicatio . Lat. the asserting of a right or title
in or to a thing (Blacks). .
, -
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, , (
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, .
. , - www.arbitr.msk.ru.
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. article_2007_12_16_0241.php?number =305).
305 :
.
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25

- ,
1 (21) 2009 ..

, : (1) (2)
, // .
, - : (1) right; title (=right
- -
, of ownership) (2) legal basis, legal grounds.
,
, . title,
() , ,
. - . ,
(. 265 ), entitlement, to be entitled =
(. 294 ), -
(. 296 ). - to have a right to sth, title -
. ,
(. 216 ), - , title.
(- ()
) (. 338 ), , - , -
: (. 34 ), title: title examination,
(. 35 ), - title search, , -
(. 36 ), (. 40 ), -
(. 47 ), - , -
(. 53 ) .. .
(..
: ) legal
- possessor/holder,
. , entitled possessor.
, - www.businessdictionary.com

, legal possessor:
.
, . . . Legal entity that has the legal right to possess a
- property while another entity (the legal owner)
, , , retains its title.
, -
- legal owner legal
. (http://arbitr. possessor . -
msk.ru/upload/knigi/article_2007_07_ , legal owner legal possessor c-
18_0014.html) , ,
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26

. , ,

1 (21) 2009 ..
, - -
: , ( . novatio -
, , , - , ). -
, . ,
- , novation, -
, -
:1 , , .
. -
17 1998 . N 976- . -
, 414 -
.

- , -
, - , -
,
, -
:
.
1.
-
: Barrons Dictionary of Legal Terms
. novation :
2.
, : Substitution of another party for one of the
original parties to a contract, with the consent of
2.1. , - the remaining party. The old contract is then
; extinguished, and a new contract, with the same
2.2. content but with at least one different party, is
; created.
2.3. -
;
. ,
2.4. -
.
,
-
3. , -
: .
;
-
; (
), (
, - ). -
, . ( )
.
1 Oxford Dictionary of Law -
, : - novation,
-
. :
constructed facility. ,
, , - the substitution of a new contract for one
, already existing.
, .
. Barrons Dicitionary of Real Estate Terms
, territory not novation , -
subject to development area not subject to development. :
, -
.

27

1. a 3-party agreement whereby one party is , -
1 (21) 2009 ..

released from a contract and another party is


substituted. ().
2. substitution of one contract for another, with -
acceptance by all parties.
:
novation
- An obligation is terminated by an agreement of
the parties on the replacement of the initial
, - obligation existing between them by another
, - obligation between the same persons providing for
. another subject or another means of performance
- (a substitution).
novation (agreement of novation) , -
, Blacks: -
A type of substituted contract that has the effect , -
of adding a party, either as obligor (debtor) or , , : agreement
obligee (creditor), who was not a party to the on replacement of obligation agreement on
original duty. Substitution of a new contract, debt, substitution of obligation. -
or obligation for an existing one, between the same
or different parties. The substitution by mutual
agreement of one debtor for another or of one , -
creditor for another, whereby the old debt is novation,
extinguished. A novation substitutes a new party , ,
and discharges one of the original parties to a .
contract by agreement of all parties. , -
,
, - .
,
, - novation .
,
, - , -
, novation, -
. , novation. -
, novation novation
, , , -
, , -
, - . -
.
. ,
. - novation
,
414 - . -
Termination ? , , .
of an Obligation by a Substitution. :
: , ,
(
-
-
, , ,

28

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substitute, substituted, substitution. - ( , trademark
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. , franchiser franchisee
-
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road show, -
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.

29

,





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- growth rate?
, , -
, .
- growth rate ( -
- ). C-
,
: -
- ,
. , 100%! ,
, .
- , -
, -
, - , ,
- , -
. : X=Y1/Y0,
, Y1,Y0
, - . -
. ,
: 120 , 80, -
growth rate 1,5.
, 100% (
, , -, - 150%).
; - 1
operating , , 100 % (
, 50%).
-
; , (Oxford Dictionary of Business and
, fixed Management) growth rate
assets , amount of change over a period in some of the
, financial characteristics (
-
. ...).

30

, - )

1 (21) 2009 ..
50% rise, spike, surge .
.
Operating ? -
, ,


growth rate . -
.
- -
- . -
- (The Anderson , -
School at UCLA), growth ratio is the ratio of operating revenues, operating
ending quantity to the beginning quantity ( - expenses, operating profit,
120/80 = 1,5 -
). - ,
, growth rate is the growth ratio less one; -
, , , (, , ).
growth rate = 1,51= 0,5 50% .
9/99
, , . ,
, growth ratio 6 1999 . 32. ( -
, a growth rate . - 18.09.2006), -
, : -
,
1, ( -
100%. . -
- , -
).
,
, operating? -
,
, , : operating
, -
a 7.1% increase in
-
grew 28.2% y-o-y
.
rose 13%
(Multitran) -
a 6.5 % rise in
, operating
- revenue -
- , -
, - : operating expenses

, : , -
: spike, jump, surge, -
leap, rally
.
, -
1 100% ( -

31

9/99 (. 7): operating
1 (21) 2009 ..

, - , -

, - , , -
, , -
, .
? ,
; - . , -
( - , operating
); revenue, on-line
- www. answers.com:
, -
Operating revenue means net sales plus other
. - regular income sources related to the normal
business operations of the entity (e.g., lease income
, if a major activity).
, -
, - , -
- ( , , -
5
).
9/99
. ,
operating?
- operating
,
(International Accounting Terms -
Dictionary) : ( ,
-
Operating describing expenses and revenue ), , .
associated with a companys main line of business.
9/99 . 5,
, , , -
.
, , -
- operating , :
revenue . Operating 1) -
(
. )
, - ;

(Oxford Dictionary of Business and 2) , -
Management) operating , -
profit/loss: -
;
Operating profit/loss profit or loss made by a 3)
company as a result of its principal trading activity.
,
, -
(1, 2, 3)
. -
, -
().

32

( - Non-operating describing expenses and

1 (21) 2009 ..
- revenues resulting from activities that are only
) incidental to a companys main line of business.
, , -
, -
. .
(1)
,
operating revenues, - , -
.
, - YourDictionary.com:
, - Non-operating revenues- revenues that are not
. . derived from a companys operating activities.
www.ecsocman.edu.ru: These may include revenues from investments, such
as dividends earned on stock held in other
perating revenue - companies, or income from notes or credit
, ( , - extended to customers.
- , -
, , .
). , -
,

.
operating revenues -
-
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33

- Statements),
1 (21) 2009 ..

- 2238/2004 29 -
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34

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37
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1 (21) 2009 ..

Cleavage canyon, the area on the chest between


. - the tits.
Thats a boob job, just look at the silicone valley.
, , -
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a girl who had a major and obvious boob job.
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the area between two breast implants. -
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Look at that chicks ugly tattoo in her silicone valley!

38
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57

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executive - -
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http://ermolovich-di.ucoz.ru
1 ,
, -
, . ., , [14].
2 (Ethan Mao), -
.
(Quentin Lee), 2004 .
3

.. .
. , 4 , . ,
- . , . , 2008 .


.
1. . . -
//
. ., 1984. . 311.
. .. , 2. .. . ., 1975.
, 3. ..
. . ., 2007.
, - 4. .. -
. , 2003.
5. .., .. -
, . : ? //
- . , 2003. . 2027.
. - 6. ..
( ). ., 2001.
, 7. ., . -
- . ., 1976; 2- ., 1980; 3- ., 2006. -
, 3-
.
, -
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- . ., 2004.

59

9. .. - 19. ..
1 (21) 2009 ..

. // . - . ., 1978.
, 2003. 20. .. : -
10. .. . ., // . ,
1975. 2003.
11. .. (- 21. .. .
). ., 1990. http://sternin.adeptis.ru/articles2_rus.html [-
12. .., .. : , ], 2007.
. ., 2003. 22. ..
13. .. ( ). . 4-. ., 1983.
- 23. .. . .,
: . . . . ., 1982. 1973.
14. .. . 24. .. : , -
., 2000. , . ., 1988.
15. - .. - 25. Malblanc A. Stylistique compare du franais et
. ., 1996. de lallemand. Paris, 1961.
16. .. ( - 26. Vinay J. P., Darbelnet J. Stylistique compare du
). franais et de langlais. Mthode de traduction. Paris,
, 1975. 1958; . : J. Vinay, J. Darbelnet. Comparative
17. .., .. - Stylistics of French and English. / Trans. and ed. by Juan C.
. ., 1964. Sager and M.-J. Hamel. Amsterdam/Philadelphia, 1995.
18. ..
. ., 1974; 2- ., 2004. -
2- .


. 35
:
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. 2007. 4(16). .41-48. ,
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..

60


..

- Bill Gates gets 4 million emails a day


- The next time youre sifting through the mortgage
- offers, cheap Rolex watches or dubious business
proposals from Nigeria, spare a thought for Bill Gates.
. - The Microsoft founder is the most spammed man in the
world, with 4m emails arriving in his inbox each day.
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73

"Is a Puzzlement"
Lynn Visson

That awkward and ungrammatical phrase age of five. As a result, I was raised speaking
is a puzzlement has remained engraved in my Russian, French and German. The
mind since the first time I saw the musical The surrounding environment, however, ensured
King and I in New York many years ago. that English was my native language.
(Frankly, it sounded very much like the kind of In addition to their native Russian, my
thing my father might have said, all the more so parents had an excellent command of French
since both he and Yul Brynner, the actor playing and German. By the time I was 12, though, I
the King of Siam, were native speakers of was the resident expert on any questions
Russian.) Alone on the stage, the King muses involving the proper use of English. I rather
aloud that is a puzzlement why the arrival of enjoyed the role of English arbiter in return for
his childrens English governess has led to the all the times I had to turn to them regarding the
upheavals and moral breakdown now plaguing mysteries of Russian and French. That
his court. Annoyed and angry, he persistently understanding concerning the unquestioned
mangles the governesss native language. Yet she division of linguistic expertise was a given in our
keeps on patiently and politely correcting him, family. And the tradition kept on going. In the
for she realizes that King Chulalongkorns 1970s my father wrote his memoirs of his years
mistakes in English are the result of his countrys as Director of Exhibitions at New Yorks
centuries of isolation from Western civilization. Wildenstein Gallery, and since his written
But today what is an educated American or English was not on the level of his spoken
Englishman to do when a foreigner with a fairly English, he was counting on my editing the
mediocre command of English takes it upon book. Following his death shortly after
himself to correct a native speakers use of completing the manuscript, I reworked the
English? Grin and bear it? Argue? These are text, which was subsequently published in the
questions that have haunted me since US and in Russia.
childhood. My parents, who were part of the My knowledge of Russian, however, was
first wave of Russian emigres who left during uneven. The fact that I never attended school in
the years preceding and following the 1917 Russia made itself felt whenever it came to
revolution, first lived in Sweden, Denmark and putting pen to paper, or Cyrillic text to a PC.
Germany, then settled down in France, and in Though I am relatively confident of my ability
1941 were forced to move once again, this time as a nearly bilingual cow to moo in Russian till
to America. When I arrived on the scene shortly my fellow bovines come home, to this day I am
afterwards, my parents, like most of their careful to submit all my writings in Russian
friends and contemporaries, took it for granted intended for publication to the watchful eye of
that any child would do what they had had to a native speaker who is either an academic
do, i.e., become fluent in four languages by the colleague or a professional editor.

74

On the other hand, some 40 years devoted outposts in all areas of the Russian language.

1 (21) 2009 Lynn Visson


to studying and working with Russian language The Russian mass media has and with good
and culture, and ongoing contacts with Russian reason been bursting with angry reactions of
colleagues and friends in both the US and the readers, writers and viewers fulminating against
country of my roots have helped to bridge the the linguistic devastation wrought by this
gap between my written and spoken Russian. A invasion of Anglophone terminology, ranging
decade of teaching the language and literature from to to -.
in American universities, 24 years at the United No need for a host of examples; we are all
Nations interpreting from Russian and French familiar with them. The modern protective
into English (and occasionally from English Slavophile reaction to this Westernizing
into Russian), years of travel to Russia to rampage by the English language is thoroughly
lecture and teach translation and interpretation understandable.
in Russian, and speaking Russian day in and There is, however, a major distinction in
day out with my husband, a Moscow the attitude towards these two languages in the
intellectual who left the USSR some 30 years US and in Russia. In the United States,
ago, have served to make me, for practical Russian has been taught for years in schools
purposes, bilingual. I maintain ongoing e-mail and universities, first by pre-war immigrants,
correspondence in Russian with numerous later by the waves of emigres who arrived
colleagues and friends, and though I following World War II and in the 1970s, as well
occasionally notice a grammatical slipup in the as by several generations of US Slavists who
letters of even highly literate and educated devoted themselves to the study of the
native speakers of Russian, it would never occur language. For decades, therefore, Americans
to me to flag such an error to the writer, or to had the opportunity to study Russian with
correct someone to prove to him that he is native speakers, while most Russians were
wrong. On the other hand, all my friends learning English from other Russians. The
know that I am always grateful for correction of Russian emigres in the United States were
an infelicity in my Russian. keeping up with their native language, and with
Like my US colleagues who are engaged in changes in that language, while the English of
interpreting and translating from Russian, I am the Soviet Union was frozen in a time warp.
acutely aware that the history of Russia has To use a favorite Sovietism, it is well known
created a distinctive attitude among Russians to everyone that the USSR was a closed society,
both to their own language and to foreign and that native speakers of Western languages
tongues. Only those individuals who are either who could serve as teachers and language editors
stone deaf or totally devoid of the slightest were few and far between. Russian English-
linguistic and cultural sensitivity can fail to language textbooks and linguistic materials
notice the fierce and passionate love and tended to be ideologically biased; Russian-born
devotion of Russians for their , teachers of English unconcernedly transmitted
, . This is a old-fashioned and nearly archaic British
language which has survived the hailstorm of expressions to students who passed them on to
foreign (including German and Dutch) terms their students. For many Russian students,
that first battered their way into Russian during moreover, the British dialect was and still is the
the reign of Peter the Great, to be followed by only acceptable version of the English language.
the relentless march of French terms that The few native English-language editors,
accompanied the Napoleonic troops and the primarily aging American, Canadian and British
diction of Pushkin and his nineteenth-century Communists working in English-language
contemporaries, and ultimately by the verbal newspapers such as the Moscow News or Progress
Klondike of perestroika, which unlocked the Publishers, were at the mercy of Soviet editors
linguistic gates to a flood of English who placed ideology over language and insisted
management, banking, business, computer, on the goal-directed steps and radiant
slang and other terms which set up permanent future characteristic of Marxist jargon.

75

Yet and this is important in seeking an the notion that this was a good thing, and in
1 (21) 2009 Lynn Visson

answer to the puzzlement during those fact a very good thing. The next logical and
same decades in which dusty, arcane English pragmatic though rather dubious step was
was being handed down in Russian schools and to posit that Russian interpreters (i.e., native
colleges, the country saw a flowering of speakers of Russian) could do a better job than
superbly qualified English-Russian translators, native speakers of English in interpreting from
who both did outstanding theoretical work and Russian into English.
provided brilliant renderings into Russian of There have, of course, been exceptions to
world classics. The poetry of Burns as the into native is better rule, in the form of
translated by Marshak, Shakespeare through some brilliant and virtually bilingual Russian
the lens of Pasternak, or Salingers Catcher in (and a few US) interpreters who could work
the Rye as transformed by Rita Rait-Kovaleva, into both languages. Oleg Troyanovsky, Viktor
are classics of the art; many English-language Sukhodrev, Boris Belitsky, Yurii Klebnikov and
translations of the Russian classics pale in Bill Krimer were a few of these stars of the
comparison. The architecture and art of interpretation world.
translation as practiced in Soviet Russia raised The closed nature of Soviet society and the
the bar to a level that was admired by translators desperate need for individuals with an excellent
worldwide. There was a very good reason for knowledge of English spurred Russian
this; in an era where a joke told to the wrong teachers, editors, translators and interpreters to
person could lead to a twenty-year prison perfect their English-language skills and
sentence or worse, translation was an doggedly cling to their chosen profession. No
ideologically safe haven. As compared to many wonder they valued it so highly. This was their
other activities, translating classical Greek or passport to excellent jobs, trips abroad, the
Roman, or even nineteenth-century English chance to purchase foreign goods, read
poetry, was relatively innocuous. literature in English and legitimately engage in
While translators were penning their way to contacts with foreigners. Even when the society
creative heights, interpreters were struggling. In opened up, this attitude remained. Many of
addition to the shortage of native speakers those who had clambered up to the peak of the
capable of teaching and writing good English English-language establishment firmly dug in
there was a near-total dearth of native speakers their heels and refused to descend from those
of English capable of interpreting, let alone of heights or to allow native English speakers to
doing simultaneous interpretation. As a result, join them there. These foreigners were
Russian-born interpreters were obliged to trespassers, and that Russian monopoly on
interpret both from English into Russian and English was not going to cede its position lightly.
Russian into English. Practice worked its way Perestroika unquestionably gave a major and
backward into theory. While in the West and irreversible jolt to the Russian English-language
in particular in international organizations teaching and translation-interpretation elite.
such as the UN interpretation for the most Foreign language-teaching books began to be
part was done from the foreign into the native published in Russia. Native English speakers
language, Russian theoreticians touted the were hired as teachers and editors (along with a
benefits of interpretation from the native into very few translators and interpreters, who could
the foreign language. The de facto shortage led hardly service the entire countrys needs), and
to theoretical underpinnings for the Russian specialists in English found it vastly
assumption that native into foreign is better, easier to go abroad for training and maintenance
though anyone who has ever had to listen to a of their language skills.
non-native speaker of English struggle to Nevertheless, the effect of decades of
interpret from his or her native language into a isolation has left a strong stamp on Russian
foreign language is most unlikely to agree. As a speakers of English. Years of studying English
result of being forced to work from Russian into with teachers who had no contact with native
English, many Russian interpreters accepted speakers of English, and of learning from the

76

ideologically sanitized world of outdated opinion and I have mine. That attitude seems

1 (21) 2009 Lynn Visson


textbooks did not provide students with a to apply to notions concerning mastery of a
knowledge of contemporary English usage. language as well as to a host of other subjects.
Language is far from static; it is constantly To go still further into the realm of national
developing and changing. Usage changes as we stereotypes and fixed ideas, the old-style
speak. A little learning, said the 18th-century for foreigners the reverse side of
English writer Alexander Pope, is a dangerous the coin of the old Soviet superiority-inferiority
thing, and even some knowledge can be complex/love-hate relationship with the West,
equally shaky. An individual completely which posited that anything Western was highly
ignorant of foreign languages is aware of the desirable, while at the same time
gaps in his knowledge, and may well look up to sometimes seems to have spilled over
those who have mastered one or several tongues. into a for the foreigners knowledge
But a , someone with little or of their native language.
some knowledge, may have a highly Perhaps the most mind-boggling example
exaggerated view of his mastery of a language. of linguistic arrogance I have heard about was
presents particular dangers that of the Moscow film editor who busied
for an interpreter working from a native into a himself correcting the English subtitles an
foreign language. Regardless of what knowing American friend of mine had done for a
a language means, and what knowing Russian movie. When she objected to one of his
Russian or knowing English actually changes (which was, in fact, a blatant
involves, one thing is crystal clear: under the mistranslation) and reminded him that she was
pressure of the booth, the grammar, syntax and a native speaker of English, he retorted that,
style of a simultaneous interpreter working into , .
a non-native language rapidly disintegrate. A Here we return to the puzzlement.
Russian who has excellent mastery of the Throughout years of contacts with Russian
English tense system may still have trouble with native speakers who work as teachers, editors,
articles, syntax and style, and particularly with translators and interpreters of English, dozens
register. How can he also have an all- of my US colleagues and I have repeatedly
encompassing knowledge of the endless rules encountered a thinly veiled attitude of I know
for proper punctuation, capitalization, letter English better than you do, or, to tweak the
and resume-writing? Of exclamations and words of Pete Seegers song, This language is
interjections and acceptable and non- my language it isnt your language. I repeat:
acceptable curse words? Only long-term neither I nor the overwhelming majority of my
exposure to the linguistic milieu can lead to US colleagues who have not been educated in
true comfort with such issues, and with register. Russia regardless of our fluency in the
To phrase the argument in Chomskyan terms, a language would ever venture to publish a
non-native speaker of the language, no matter piece in Russian that had not been carefully
how sophisticated his theoretical knowledge of vetted by a native speaker of the language, a
grammar, will not be able to generate the same professional editor or an academic. Yet time
kinds of sentences as a native speaker. And a and again I have seen native speakers of
Whorfian would assert that a native speaker of Russian blithely publish articles, abstracts, and
Russian cannot have the cultural worldview even entire books without feeling the slightest
determined by the English language. Nor will need to submit them for review to a native
he be familiar with all the associations that speaker of English. In all fairness, this behavior
English words and phrases bring to mind for a seems far more characteristic of people living in
Briton or an American. Russia than of those living in the US, since
A Russian can very easily turn ongoing immersion in an English-speaking
into a , categorically asserting milieu usually fairly quickly convinces emigres
, as opposed to the that the locals have a solid grounding in their
American tendency to say, Well, you have your native English and do in fact know what they
are talking about.

77

A few months ago native English speakers Russian who has remained relatively immune
1 (21) 2009 Lynn Visson

working at the English-language The Moscow to the surrounding linguistic milieu) did not
Times were told that some of the awkward hesitate to correct my translation of the late
phrasing in the English texts of Russian authors Mrs. Smirnova to the passed over Mrs.
reflected distinctive features of their specific Smirnova, and the advice of Dr. Ivanov to
style and was not to be corrected. Thats for a the advices of Ivanovs. Only the solemn
start. I wish these had been isolated incidents, promise practically an oath extracted from
but far from it. A recent issue of an academic the author by our editor to the effect that there
journal published by a major Russian would be no more such corrections allowed
educational institution had a page of English me to finish work on the manuscript.
titles of articles spiked with grammatical and While working with another Russian author
spelling errors. When I pointed this out to the on the English text of his article, which was
editor, he was incredulous. That cant be, he filled with incorrect English usage, I was
remonstrated. These were translated by one of constantly informed that all these forms were
our English teachers. Point made. I had in the dictionary (which dictionary?) and were
questioned the Popes command of Latin. therefore by definition correct. Never mind that
I am not about to trot out the old hackneyed dictionary forms a) may be outdated and b)
argument that the native speaker is always must be used correctly and in the appropriate
correct. Native speakers, as we all know, can linguistic-cultural context. That was fairly
make mistakes both in speaking and in writing irrelevant, though, since, of course, he knew
their native languages. There are linguistic slips, English better than I did. That was a given.
changes in usage, incorrect usages. Two eagle- Things are not much better for interpreters.
eyed Russian editors and proofreaders have Some of the Russian delegates at international
found various typos and slipups in various meetings are devoted aficionados of the sport of
English texts of my books and articles, and I am catch the interpreter. This game is played by
most grateful to them for that. As a member of monitoring every syllable uttered by the English-
the editorial board of a Moscow journal, I have language interpreter and making as many
on occasion called the editors attention to corrections as possible. Of course, any
various spelling and grammatical errors in the interpreter with whatever language
Russian texts of articles submitted for combination can make a mistake. There is no
publication, and have caught a Russian editor such animal as an infallible interpreter, and a
using the wrong declensional form for a delegate has every right to correct a real mistake.
numeral. But I also have had to stand firm to But this requires that the Russian delegate
keep 20th-century standard English phrases possess an excellent knowledge of the language
from being corrected by zealous Russian into which the interpreter is working. An
editors into Dickensian English parlance. How American interpreter was once interpreting a
would a Russian speaker feel if his modern delegate who kept using the word .
Russian prose were corrected by an English Tired of repeating fears and apprehensions,
speaker to sound like Sumarokov? In the the interpreter referred to misgivings. After a
overwhelming majority of cases, though, the moment of deathly stillness during which the
native speaker serves as both the standard and interpreter (as so often happens) waited with
the judge of correct usage. thumping heart for the axe to fall the delegate
I recently translated a book by a proudly announced, Is mistake in the
distinguished Russian historian. Due to his interpretation. We are not giving anything away.
highly limited knowledge of English, our entire What delegate wants, delegate gets.
correspondence and all our telephone Russian delegates who insist on English
conversations were conducted exclusively in cognates as translations for words such as
Russian. The learned gentleman, (who in fact or are in fact
had been living in the US for quite a few years obliging the native speaker of English to come
and is one of the rather few examples of such a out with incorrect renderings. Moreover, an

78

English translation of a Russian text given to an the rules of Russian grammar. That is natural,

1 (21) 2009 Lynn Visson


English-language interpreter and marked since the native speaker does not need to give
"Read as written" can put the interpreter in the constant thought to grammatical rules.
awkward position of saying some very odd But no American student of Russian would
things. How does a listener react on hearing a then take it upon himself to go about correcting
native speaker of English speaking thoroughly the Russian oral or written of a native
non-native English? How would a Russian- speaker. He would be considered by his
language interpreter react on being handed a American colleagues as just short of clinically
Russian text with mangled verb aspects, insane. Nor would a native speaker of French,
jumbled case endings and preposition salad? Spanish or German take it upon himself to
correct the English of a native speaker of
, or When in Rome, do as the Romans English. English-speaking Western Europeans
do are proverbs common to many cultures. have been in contact with native speakers of
And when in America, do as the English English for far longer than most Russians, and
speakers do, without imposing a tend to have a much more accurate idea of what
. Never mind the basic tenets of common is actually involved in mastering the language.
courtesy in cross-cultural communication; English has emerged as a global language,
denying the obvious fact that a simultaneous and its study in todays Russia is widespread.
interpreters knowledge of his native language Unfortunately, not all Russian speakers
is superior to that of a non-native speaker is understand that the claim to know English
both fraught with serious implications for better than a native Anglophone and correction
linguistic communication and can lead to of his English (to use a completely
serious misunderstandings in international inappropriate metaphor) makes the English
relations. I have no quarrel with a Russian speaker see red. Ones language is a part of
interpreter who wishes to correct a native ones cultural identity, and these bounds and
English-speaking colleague who has genuinely borders must be respected.
misunderstood the Russian original. And I am There are some thoughtful voices with
fully aware that todays commercial market whom it is possible to dialogue on this issue of
often requires native Russian interpreters to Russian English, but unfortunately these still
work both ways at a meeting, i.e., from seem to be in a definite minority. That is why I
English into Russian and from Russian into have decided to take this issue out into the open
English, and to do the best possible job in this and stop skulking around wrapped in the shawl
situation. But I cannot accept the illogical of linguistic politesse. Sorry,
conclusion of some of these monitors and . While I'm always glad to help Russians
one with far-reaching consequences that who are studying and working with English,
native Anglophone interpreters are simply this language is my language; it isnt your
unnecessary and can easily be replaced by language. I would hope that one day we will be
native speakers of Russian. at the point when both Russian and English will
So I would plead for some restraint on both be our languages, when the English language
sides. Many Russian professionals, editors, will no longer be the fiefdom of the Russian
translators and interpreters have attained an English-language elite, with native speakers
extraordinary mastery of English, and post- relegated to the linguistic bleachers. And that
perestroika Russian students of English have then native Russian English teachers, editors,
made phenomenal progress. In fact, many translators and interpreters will cooperate with
Russian students of English have long had a their American English-speaking counterparts
theoretical grasp of English grammatical to produce the best possible English-language
structures that is considerably better than that of product. But work on that has to start now. As
quite a few native speakers of English, and many the new American President has been saying,
American students of Russian have a better grasp Time for a change.
than native Russian speakers of the subtleties of

79

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