Transcendence and Enigma
[This is a strange entry, because it is a revision of an article already published. I have been preparing an address for a conference to be held in Strasbourg in June, you see, and in the course of doing so have revisited this piece on Victor Segalen and his posthumously published Équipée, his account—half factual, half fantastic—of a journey he took late in life from Peking to the Tibetan frontier. On reading it again, I found myself unsatisfied with the form in which it had previously been published; somehow I had failed to say all I meant to say. Moreover, the occasion of the original article was the appearance of an English translation of Équipée. At the time, I was unable to get hold of the original French—in fact, it was not really available—and so I was unable to judge the accuracy of the English version. Since then, I have been able to read it in the original and have discovered that Segalen’s translator took liberties of an altogether disastrous kind—in consequence whereof I have been obliged to retract some of my remarks about the text, to remove every trace of the English edition from my essay, to insert Segalen’s French into it, and to supply my own renderings.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to Leaves in the Wind to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.