Magritte on TV

The flowing mysterious visions fascinate, but what gives David Sylvester, the presenter, the right to change the titles La clé des songes ('The key to dreams') to 'The interpretation of dreams', La femme introuvable ('The woman who cannot be found') to 'The elusive Woman' or 'The unfindable Woman' (brevity?), Les jours gigantesques to 'Titanic days', L'esprit de géométrie to 'The mathematical mind', etc. Even if he is following a 'tradition', a 'translation norm' for nice free euphonic translations (cf. Remembrance of Things Past), isn't it time to break with it, to try and write simply what the painter wrote? On the other hand, if the titles are not Magritte's (cf. 'The Emperor Concerto', i.e. Beethoven's 5th Piano Concerto), the translator can go ahead.

Peter Newmark (1998) More Paragraphs On Translation, Clevedon: Multilingual Matters, p. 1.

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