Description & Rationale
The German Translation Project is a series of posting of translations that represent the outcomes of my efforts to learn to read German well enough to understand and perhaps even translate German academic texts. I was inspired to set this goal after chatting with a member of the history faculty at UMass Boston. She is a medievalist who indicated how much she wished her German allowed her to read German texts. I agreed, and having some exposure to German (I lived in Vienna for about four years) I decided to throw myself into it. As it happens, at this time I was also reading German Universities: A Narrative of Personal Experience Together with Recent Statistical Information, Practical Suggestions, And a Comparison of the German, English and American Systems of Higher Education by James Morgan Hart, who describes in some detail how he learned German to study at Göttingen in 1861, which gave me an idea of the nature of this undertaking.
In any event, I have been studying a German Grammar, using an online tutorial, doing a lot of exercises, and reading and writing, and I am trying now to translate German text that was not produced for educational purposes. By posting my translations, I am hoping in part to chronicle my attempts and hopefully progress, and also to invite comments and insights from more advanced students of the language or perhaps native speakers. I am starting with relatively simple newspaper articles and hope to work my way up to academic texts within a few years.
Hart, James Morgan. German Universities: A Narrative of Personal Experience Together with Recent Statistical Information, Practical Suggestions, And a Comparison of the German, English and American Systems of Higher Education. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1874. http://archive.org/details/cu31924091077754.