Monday, August 4, 2014

Azərbaycanda ana dili ad günü idi (1 Avqustda)

I was looking at BBC Azeri again to read more about the news in Azerbaijan and discovered an interesting "blog" item from a writer named Nərmin Kamal. It is an interesting article about the language as it is used today. Let's try to translate...

Nərmin Kamalın bloqu: Azərbaycan dilinin qüruru

Narmin Kamal's blog: Arrrgghhh! OK, now even the title is troublesome. It seems the exact translation of the title would be Azerbaijan's language's pride. Now, that just doesn't work in English. So I have settled on: The grandeur of the Azerbaijani language

The article covers two main topics: 

Azərbaycan dilinin öz üstünlükləri və kəsiri, qüruru və qorxuları var.

"The Azerbaijani language has advantages and disadvantages, greatness and weaknesses."

So, what are the advantages? She seems to be saying that the advantage is that Azerbaijani is like a secret language that others don't understand - that is, workers can insult their boss with impunity because he doesn't understand what they are saying to him. (Did I understand this correctly? I assume he speaks English?) I must say I don't really get this. Things darken considerably when I try to translate “Ə düdük, bizdən yaxşı bilirsən?” Hey stupid [?], you know better than us? Well, check out what Dilmanc does with düdük. Can this really be? 

What are the disadvantages? Same as the advantage - other people don't speak it.

The weaknesses? Education in the mother tongue.

Greatness? That works of great literature exist and are still being written and published in Azerbaijani, despite racist comments from other cultures!

In this last section there is another sentence that is impossible for me to translate. 

"Yüz milyonlarla azərbaycanlı üçün Azərbaycan dili ev pijaması funksiyası yerinə yetirir."

What does this mean?? That millions of Azerbaijanis only speak Azerbaijani at home?

Someone help! Sometimes I despair of ever learning this language...

1 comment:

Alef Noon said...

The literal translation of "Yüz minlərlə...yetirir" would be something like "For millions of azerbaijanis the azerbaijani language functions/works as home pajama." But what the author means by likening the language to pajamas - that I don't know.
As to despairing, don't be discouraged. I still have difficulties with English after ten years of life in the US, studying here, and interacting with people.
Good luck!