(no subject)

Olaf Solstrand harryklein at hotmail.com
Sun Feb 24 22:27:08 CET 2002

From: Don Rosa

>"Is this odd question posed ironically? Sarcastically? What are
>you asking?"

As weird as it sounds, this is not ironic ment, not sarcastic ment. I've 
always read stories in _perfect_ Norwegian - even from villains and 
foreigners (maybe except that story "Mickey Mouse's Surprise Visitor").

The reason I asked was only that this was something totally new to me (since 
I've read Barks in Norwegian for years before being able to read it in it's 
original language).

>"Why the Norwegian editions don't translate the spirit of
>the originals correctly? Or why there is improper grammar in
>the originals?"

After growing up with perfect grammar comics, the intention of the question 
was why there is improper grammar in the originals, which seemed very odd to 
_me_ (even though it makes perfect sense in your answer). I feel that I got 
a very good answer to that from you (Don Rosa) and Rob Klein now, so thanks!

>"Well, I'll hafta assume you are being serious..."

I was. I think I'm serious most of the time on this list?

>"Any proper, effective dialogue in a story, whether it's a movie
>or a book or a comic, should show a distinct character when that
>would benefit the story and help identify the character or
>personality of the speaker. If the Norwegian editions sabotage
>that aspect of a story (and I don't know if they do, I'd hafta
>take your word for that),..."

At least I know that they do that most of the time. Of course, some stories 
- like "Lost in Andes" - keeps it beautiful accents, but normal streetslang 
have always been written in perfect Norwegian Bokmål.

>"...probably with the well-meaning but misguided idea that to
>have even some small bit of dialogue written with an accent or
>broken grammar would cause all the readers to suddenly UNlearn
>everything they know about their language,..."

As far as I know, that's why they do it.

>"...that is a fault in that editor's view of good storytelling.
>I assume such an editor (if you say they are so) would also want
>all spoken dialogue in a film to sound as if it was coming from
>the mouth of a college professor in linguistics and grammar, and
>that would be just as wrong for good film storytelling."

I'm not 100% sure about this, but I think that most Norwegian movies are 
made like that! That they're talking perfect Written Norwegian (in they're 
own street gang or peasant voice, of course). You barely find dialects, and 
even three-years-olds have perfect grammar.

>"By that same logic, all the characters in the film or comic
>should look as though they just bought their clothes new at
>a fashionable boutique, regardless of whether they have just
>spent 6 months on a desert isle or are crawling across the
>Sahara desert.
>Anyway, the thought that *good* dialogue is being mucked up by
>an editor somewhere is rather disturbing to this storyteller.
>I'd hate to know what such an editor, just as regards my stories
>much less the thousands of others, did with the dialogue for
>Arpin Lusene in "The Black Knight" or all of the backwoods aliens
>in my "Attack of the Hideous Space Varmints". The broken grammar
>of the characters in the latter was about 50% of the humor and
>character of the story!"

If you really would hate it, DON'T read this next part:

As far as I remember, Arpin Lusene talked Norwegian - except from that he 
sometimes put in a "oui", "non" or "sacre bleu". But most of his language 
was in pure Norwegian. As for the aliens, I can't recall, since it's been a 
while since I read it (and I have most my comics 100 km from my flat). None 
of the Scottishmen or other "foreigners" in "Life of Scrooge" talks with an 


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