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Discussion Starter #1
Having now read a couple classic novels on Kindle, I've come to appreciate that there are different levels of quality in translating a book to the Kindle.  For example, a well-indexed table of contents (clickable), full forewards, afterwords, critical essays, footnotes, readers guide included etc.

So, before I begin the journey of reading The Brothers Karamazov, I thought I would check to see if anyone can either recommend or 'recommend to avoid" any specific Kindle version of the book.

Thanks!

 

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In general, I have found the mobilereference to be very good editions (complete collections of Dostoyevksy for $4.67).  Well formatted, TOC lins, etc.  But I have gotten English books. 

I guess your best bet as far as translations is concerned is to download a few samples and see which read the ebst for you.  You'll probbaly get the first chapter in each, so you can make a direct comparison.
 

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Avoid the translation by Constance Garnett even though it is the free one.  She had a prudish and Victorian sensibility, and Dostoevsky was no prude.  For example, there was a character named Stinking Lizaveta, or Reeking Lizaveta, depending on the translator, but Garnett expunged the smelly adjective from her name altogether, calling her plainly just Lizaveta.  I can only guess at her reasons, but I think she thought it an improper way to call a women, even a mute and retarded woman. 

If you can't find a Kindle version with a more modern translator, you'd be better off with a DTV.  Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky were faithful to Doestoevsky's text and style, even down to making the English style clunky when it was clunky in the original Russian.
 

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I agree with Geemont, some translators have their own agendas and that can really change a work. Garnett is one of them. She has done some interestingly adjusted translations of Tolsoy as well.  Her "nip-tucks" are quite extensive and really can make it like you haven't read Tolstoy. Sometimes his entire meaning is covered in white lace. I'll see if I can find a link to a well translated, well formatted Dostoevsky, but it will be later this evening. I have a degree in Literature, so maybe I take this more seriously then most people. But, I think one of the reasons more people don't read "foreign" classics is the translations aren't always very enjoyable. JMO
 

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Well, I checked amazon and I wouldn't recommend any of the ones available on kindle right now. Most are the public domain versions of Garnnett, and the couple that aren't don't have linked foot/endnotes. On a large work translated from Russian that means a lot of extra work to get it read because the notes are important to understanding the works. As Geemont said, the Pevears is a really good translation. I went ahead and clicked on the make it kindle for you  ;D
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the tips y'all! I had a feeling from browsing the many versions available for Kindle that there was something missing. I may wait for a little while then to see what develops and move on to The Confusion by Neal Stephenson in the mean time. I enjoyed Quicksilver quite a bit.
 

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While further researching this issue of translation, I ran across this article about the couple who made it their mission to produce an improved English translation. Some of you may find this interesting:

http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2005/11/07/051107fa_fact_remnick?currentPage=all

(Edit: I should add that this is the Pevear translation, referenced above by Red, which is of course not available on Kindle right now :()
 
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