SV: Gita translations

Burt Thorp bthorp at PLAINS.NODAK.EDU
Sun Mar 7 19:15:25 UTC 1999

By Bolle? or by people on the list who've used Van Buitenen's trsl?  Bolle
read Sanskrit with Van Buitenen at Chicago, but their approaches are quite
different.  Bolle tries for both a poetic rendering and for a translation
that will be particularly useful for Historians of Religions.  Van
Buitenen's is the philologist's attack on the problem of translation, or so
it seems to me.  BTW, Bolle's answer to the question, why one more Gita
translation?, is to ask how there can ever be too many translations of an
important religious text.

We could open a thread on Van Buitenen's MhBh translation--it's been
criticized as inaccurate at places, but it often seems to me that at some
places he's come up with wonderful renderings.

At 10:24 AM 3/6/99 +0100, you wrote:
>> Re Gita translations: Take a look at Kees. W. Bolle's translation
>(University of California Press, I think 1979) and especially his
>concluding essay "On Translating the Bhagavadgita," where he discusses
>various widely available translations, including Edgerton, Ryder, Hill,
>Prabhavananda, Bhaktivedanta, and so forth.  Interesting in Bolle's
>translation is his rendering of karman as "ritual."  Many would agree that
>Barbara Miller's translation is commendable.
>[Lars Martin Fosse]
>How is van Buitenen's translation regarded?
>Best regards,
>        Lars Martin Fosse
>Dr. art. Lars Martin Fosse
>Haugerudvn. 76, Leil. 114,
>0674 Oslo
>Phone: +47 22 32 12 19
>Fax: +47 22 32 12 19
>Email: lmfosse at

Burt Thorp
English Department
University of North Dakota
Grand Forks ND 58202-7209

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