Adéla dives into NORLA's archive

What can Czech translations from Norwegian tell us about political changes in the Eastern Bloc? Adéla Ficová is getting closer to an answer.

My project 1 (11)
Adéla Ficová is interested in Norwegian translations to Czheck. Here she is in NORLA's office in Oslo. Foto: Martine Jonsrud.

– I’ve found so much of interest, says Adéla Ficová.

She is a PhD student at the Masaryk University in Brno, Czheck Republic, and has spent the last few weeks in NORLA to study our Czheck collection.

– My thesis is about translations from Norwegian to Czheck between 1945-2000. I am espeically interested in what type of consequences political changes in the East Bloc had on literary translation and literature more generally, she explains.

Searching the 90s

By spending her one month internship with us, Adéla has had access to all Norwegian books translated to Czheck supported by NORLA.

– I have found many documents I wouldn’t be able to find at home. I have also come across Norwegians with invaluable insight and knowledge about my topic and the time period I’m researching, she says, and wishes she could stay longer.

– Unfortunately my time at NORLA was limited. One month is a lot, but not enough! Consquently, I didn’t get to researh everything I wanted. There are also a few wholes in the archive, says Adéla.

She is especially interested in documents from the 90s, as she thinks they will be able to tell her more about the shift in translations after the revolution.

– I haven’t found those specific documents. Yet!

NORLA's archive contains a range of Norwegian titles translated to Czheck. Adéla has been through it all – almost! Foto: Martine Jonsrud.

«Ugler i mosen»

Adéla would love to come back to Oslo at some point during her degree to research more. She has already managed to become fond of many aspects of the Norwegian lifestyle, and finds the Norwegian language amusing.

– I love idioms, as they are so difficult to translate. You really need to understand the language in order to use them, she says and mentions “ugler i mosen” – roughly translated to “something fishy” in English – as one of her favourite Norwegian expressions.

– It was impossible to understand this expression before someone explained it to me, even though I understood the words. These kinds of things make language extra fun, says Adéla.

We wish Adéla good luck with her thesis, and hope to see her again soon!