Saturday, 6 March 2010

The link between Dr Who's "allons y!" and André Chouraqui's translation of the Magnificat

I've written about André Chouraqui's translation of the Bible into French several times before. The passage from his translation that is particularly well-known is the Beatitudes where the the word "blessed" is rendered "En Marche"
Yesterday evening I read Chouraqui's translation of the Magnificat for the first time - partly to see how "blessed" was rendered in this passage - and in verse 48 he has Mary say "from this time on all generations will call me: En marche!" It's of course not the most elegant French - but it is thought provoking and it does challenge the rather more passive way we tend to interpret "blessed". Translating makarios - blessed - in the beatitudes and here in the Magnificat as "en marche!" - gives it the meaning of get up, get going, let's go. If someone is "en marche" they would be setting out on a path, walking, "marcher" is the French for to walk; if something is en marche, it is switched on, working, going.
Thinking about this I realised that the best way of trying to explain the meaning to a British audience would be with the catchphrase of David Tennant's Dr Who "allons y!" - let's get to it, let's go there, let's go!
Dr B has for several years now been wanting me to preach a series of sermon on Dr Who related themes - I have to keep reminding him that in France no one would understand anything about it. Anyway I hope he appreciates this little attempt at a Dr Who thought for the day rather than sermon.


David D. said...

Nice association/translation, Jane. Does that mean we can look forward to more Dr. Who thoughts for the day?

Jane said...

Stephen would like that but I think my knowledge of Dr Who is not quite up to his standards - he should do them himself I feel!

Dr B said...

Oddly enough, when I went to the pharmacy yesterday the pharmacist said "allons y" as he put the health insurance card (Carte Vitale) into the card reader

Jane said...

Ahh you see I can sense another thought for the day coming on a link between soteriology and the "card of life" - the link to Dr Who may be more complex - carte vitale doesn't even with my poor speeling seem to be an anagram of bad wolf ... hmmm

Mavis said...

I love this quote Jane. Thanks