Friday, July 9, 2010

"Some of the most common problems in the translation of Buddhist texts in Sanskrit texts may be attributed to two unspoken lexicographic assumptions. First is the privileging of doctrine and philosophy: the assumption that Buddhist usage can always be clarified by reference to simple tables of doctrinal truth and classification. Second is the privileging of etymology: the assumption that the “root” gives a “primary” and preponderant meaning accessible to the translator whenever the latter is in doubt as to what a word might mean."
— Luis O. Gomez, “The Way of the Translators.”