Victor Toporov (1946–2013) was a brilliant literary critic and writer of the “sixties” generation, who decided during his school years “not to fit into any system” and to maintain his independence. In 1969 he graduated from the department of German Philology of Leningrad State University; being a creative person he suffered from the absence of freedom of the press as he could not publish his own poems. As a result, he found a niche for himself in translating poetry. Many of his translations from German and English are both true to original texts and sound like quality Russian verses. But the situation with translations from Dutch is different. Comparing the source and target texts we come to the conclusion that the translator sought to create vivid and colorful Russian poems, without sticking to the original text. In particular, many of his translations of Lucebert’s poems are so far from the Dutch originals that they can be considered a case of literary mystification similar to the hoax of Vladimir Lifshitz (1913–1978), who published his own poems and passed them off as translations of works by a non-existent British poet James Clifford. Toporov’s translations from Dutch have a perfect form (a clear rhythm, vivid rhymes), their vocabulary is very informal, and he often uses bold neologisms.

pdf_iconMichajlova I., Rubtsova S. VICTOR TOPOROV’S TRANSLATIONS OF DUTCH POETRY (1946–2013)