再谈WHICH
  来源:周蕴仪博客
发布时间:2012年01月10日
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内容提要:从先前谈到的《余英时和吴大猷对话》作业中,发现学生喜欢用which,把一些不相关的信息,或者没有直接逻辑关联的信息,一一串在起来。

再谈WHICH

周蕴仪

 http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_684448670100ncad.html

从先前谈到的《余英时和吴大猷对话》作业中,发现学生喜欢用which,把一些不相关的信息,或者没有直接逻辑关联的信息,一一串在起来。无论which的修饰对象是什么,都是逗号后面加上which。见以下例子: 

逗号 + “Which”
1      This is obviously an "ideal state", which cannot be achieved within a decade or a century.

 这里的which ,旨在修饰其前面的ideal state,根本无需加逗号。加了逗号,which就是修饰逗号前的整个短语。但如果修饰This is obviously an ideal state,根本说不通。把逗号去掉,改为;

 This is obviously an "ideal state" which cannot be achieved within a decade or a century.

 不但更加通顺,意思也更加清楚。

 2  Also, in the field of academy, there was an undercurrent of anti-intellectualism, which especially opposed to science and technology, or more accurately, the youth actually opposed the overdevelopment of science. 【此句有语法错误】

 此句同上。去掉逗号,变成

 Also, in the field of academy, there was an undercurrent of anti-intellectualism which was especially against science and technology; more accurately, American youth were against the overdevelopment of science. 【有小修改】

 意思比较清楚。

 3      We can say that all men are involved in a “big whirlpool”, which is continuing its expansion.

 同样,去掉逗号,改为

 We can say that all men are involved in a “big whirlpool” which is continuing to expand.

 去逗号后,意思便很清楚。

 :以上修改还是以不推翻原译的基础上,针对which 的问题作小更正。

 Which是否非用不可?

 例一:

 Hartford continues to lose its industrial base, which means that more and more of its income base depends on companies whose primary business is paper shuffling.

 修改

 尝试不用 which从句,把Hartford“状况”重新“命名”.

 Hartford continues to lose its industrial base, an economic catastrophe in the making [summative modifier], since income is derived primarily from companies engaged in paper shuffling.

 例二:

长期以来,由于制度不健全、不完善,甚至存在着某些弊端,党的代表大会制度的职能和作用还没有充分发挥。

 Over the years, there are some deficiencies and even defects in our political system which hinders the system of CPC Congress from functioning effectively.

 修改

Over the years, deficiencies––even defects––in our political system have prevented the Party Congress from functioning effectively.

 例三:

长期以来,由于制度不健全、不完善,甚至存在着某些弊端,党的代表大会制度的职能和作用还没有充分发挥。……

 For a long time, the flaws of the system of the Party Congress have hindered the well-functioning of the system which can be seen from the following aspects:         

 修改

For a long time, the Party Congress’s functions have been hampered by major institutional weaknesses and flaws (as follows):

 短句是否一定优于长句?

 例一:

Macbeth was very ambitious. This led him to wish to become King of Scotland. The witches told him that this wish of his would come true. The king of Scotland at this time was Duncan. Encouraged by his wife, Macbeth murdered Duncan. He was thus enabled to succeed Duncan as king. 55字;6句)

 修改

Encouraged by his wife and desire kindled by the witches’ prediction, ambitious Macbeth murdered Duncan and became King of Scotland. 19字;1句

 我把原文用一句话串起来,感觉一气呵成(至少我是那么认为的),不会拖泥带水。原文虽说挑不出什么毛病,但总觉结结巴巴,丧失了Macbeth 的气势。

 例二:

In America, our heroes have customarily run to men of large accomplishments. But today this college and country honours a man. His contribution is not to our size but to our spirit. It is not to our political beliefs, but to our insight. Similarly, it is not to our self-esteem, but to our self-comprehension. . . .

 I look forward to a great future for America. This is a future in which our country will match its military strength with our moral restraint. Our wealth will also be in accordance with our wisdom. In addition, our country’s power will also be aligned with our purpose. I look forward to an America which will not be afraid of grace and beauty. Instead, it will protect the beauty of our natural environment and preserve the great old American houses and squares and parks of our national past. What’s more, our America will build handsome and balanced cities for our future.

 例二是原文的修改版,我刻意把原文的长句改为短句。虽说效果看似还不错,但对比原文以后,可发现长句比短句效果好太多了。原文见下

 原文

In America, our heroes have customarily run to men of large accomplishments. But today this college and country honours a man whose contribution was not to our size but to our spirit, not to our political beliefs but to our insight, not to our self-esteem, but to our self-comprehension. . . .

 I look forward to a great future for America, a future in which our country will match its military strength with our moral restraint, its wealth with our wisdom, its power with our purpose. I look forward to an America which will not be afraid of grace and beauty, which will protect the beauty of our natural environment, which will preserve the great old American houses and squares and parks of our national past, and which will build handsome and balanced cities for our future.

President John F. Kennedy: Remarks at Amherst College, October 26, 1963

 可见,(加上which的)长句也可以让人觉得精炼,长句也未必让人觉得拖泥带水。反之,如果妥善使用,层次分明,可以更有效地传达某些感情和气势。

勘误:上一篇有关连词的讨论,经 Husbronick 博友的提醒,第一个例子需要更正:

1、他认为世界被分割成两种文化:一是科技的,一是人文的,但这两种文化彼此“言语不通”,而且情况越来越严重

He believes that the world is divided into two cultures: one is sciences, and the other is humanities, but the two cultures can’t talk to each other, and the situation seems to be worsening.

改译

He believes that the academic world is divided into two cultures: science and the humanities, between which  the communication gap  is widening.

多谢 Husbronick 博友!

  
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