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Roberts, T. (2003). Translator' Notes to the English Edition of The Sigmund Freud-Ludwig Binswanger Correspondence 1908-1938. The Sigmund Freud-Ludwig Binswanger Correspondence 1908-1938, v-vi.

Roberts, T. (2003). Translator' Notes to the English Edition of The Sigmund Freud-Ludwig Binswanger Correspondence 1908-1938. The Sigmund Freud-Ludwig Binswanger Correspondence 1908-1938, v-vi

Translator' Notes to the English Edition of The Sigmund Freud-Ludwig Binswanger Correspondence 1908-1938 Book Information Previous Up Next

Thomas Roberts

While it is not uncommon for a book to be translated by two or even more translators working together, for two translators to work in isolation on different parts of the same book is very unusual, and the reader deserves an explanation. Prof. Fichtner began editing this correspondence in 1978. Few people are aware of the vast amount of research which goes into an edition of this kind, but to those who are, it will not be surprising that fourteen years passed before the German edition was published. During this period, in the hope of speeding up the publication of an English edition, Arnold Pomerans was commissioned to translate the unedited letters then available, a task he completed in 1987. When the fully annotated German text became available in 1992, no English language publisher could be persuaded to commit themselves to the expense of translating the remaining parts of the book and by the time a publisher was found in 2000, Mr Pomerans was committed to other work and unable even to begin the task for a long time. Thus I, as archivist to Sigmund Freud Copyrights and having a degree of familiarity with the correspondence, was persuaded to step with some trepidation into the footsteps of one of the most renowned translators in this field and translate the editorial apparatus, fourteen additional letters which had turned up in the meantime, including one which came to light only after the publication of the German edition, and parts of a further two letters which had not been available in their entirety to Mr Pomerans. Some of this work has gone well beyond the bounds of straightforward translation, as for example researching the very obscure expression Mohrenwäsche, in letter 56F, which called for a much expanded note for the English reader.

This has been a very complex project and, for a variety of reasons, two more years have now passed since the translation was completed, but I, for one, am delighted this important contribution to the history of psychoanalysis is at long last being made available in English.

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