The MacLamity

The News That Stays News, Reported Live

Thursday, November 03, 2005

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It's good to know that there were limits to Anthony Burgess's linguistic powers: "So fluent in [Malay] that he leaves the examiner of his degree-level certificate trailing in his wake, he sets down to translate The Wasteland into Malay. Sadly the project founders on linguistic incompatibility; 'April is the cruellest month' means nothing in the tropics, where all months are the same, while the word 'Spring' fails to show in the dictionaries. " And that's still true, even if those limits came from language itself.