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Le Tour Du Monde En 80 Jours - Textes En Francais Facile (French) Paperback – 1963
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Et d'ailleurs, avec les habitudes d'insouciance des Américains, on peut dire que, quand ils se mettent à être prudents, il y aurait folie à ne pas l'être.
Is translated in English (by American George Makepeace Towle) as:
It may be taken for granted that, rash as the Americans are, when they are prudent there is good reason for it.
This translation is an excellent one that works better in English than a word-for-word translation from the French would. In French though, the sentence reads more like "And besides, with the Americans' tendencies to be so carefree, you could say that when they are prudent it would be crazy not to follow suit."
You really do have to change words to make it flow better in other languages. This is not a critique of the English translation. But doing this makes you lose some of the author's original intent. It's why I really feel the original wins out!
In my mind "there is good reason to be prudent" and "it would be crazy to not be prudent" are not quite the same. The playful American teasing that Jules Verne included gives the text part of its personality, part of its edge; but this is easily watered down in English versions.
Check it out and enjoy it in the words the author himself had written. I was lucky enough to be reading this while in Hong Kong overlooking the port where one of the scenes took place in Verne's mind. One of my favourite ever reading experiences!
English translation at the same time. I am able to understand most
of it and it's really cool to read some of the things that were omitted
from the translation. I really like the dryly humorous tone of the