Monday, February 19, 2007

Noi traduceri ale "Summei teologice"

De curand am aflat de existenta unui nou proiect de traducere integrala care vizeaza Summa theologiae a lui Thoma de Aquino. Este vorba de un proiect al Catedrei de Istoria Filosofiei Antice si Medievale de la Facultatea de Istorie si Filosofie din cadrul Universitatii Babes-Bolyai din Cluj-Napoca. Nu a trecut nici macar un an de zile de cand acelasi colectiv publica la Editura IRI ultimul volum din seria Plotin (Enneade VI), caci deja suntem in fata unui nou angajament de cursa lunga.
Este minunat ca s-au gasit cativa cercetatori gata sa-si sacrifice cativa ani pe marginea textului thomist, numai ca ma incearca un sentiment de dezamagire atunci cand ma gandesc ca efortul de traducere nu este/nu va fi insotit, asa cum ar fi firesc, de un efort sustinut de dezbatere publica, in reviste de specialitate, a optiunilor de traducere, a conceptelor si problemelor thomiste. Nu contest ca poti alege sa traduci in chilia ta, insa textul vizat de colectivul clujean nu este unul care sa treaca neobservat. Cele noua volume ale Summei teologice, cate numara Editio Leonina, aduna in paginile lor zeci si zeci de probleme de teologie, filosofie, psihologie morala s.a.m.d., probleme care cer un limbaj tehnic, altul decat cel cu care ne-au obisnuit teologii ortodocsi de la noi. Si nu doar conceptele latine trebuie sa fie acomodate cu limba romana, ci si problemele pe care le discuta Thoma. De exemplu, sintagma "doctrina sacra" (cf. "doctrina sfanta", "doctrina divina" - pentru sacra doctrina) este esentiala pentru modul cum este conceputa intreaga Summa.
O a doua chestiune care ma determina sa fiu sceptic cu privire la reusita proiectului este legata de textul de baza folosit pentru versiunea romaneasca. Am inteles ca echipa care pregateste traducerea romaneasca a fragmentelor stoiciilor au folosit doar Stoicorum Veterum Fragmenta, fara a lua in considerare zecile de studii critice pe marginea acesteia. Daca echipa clujeana va proceda la fel in cazul Summei, atunci ne vom putea astepta la destul de multe probleme. Editia leonina a Summei dateaza din perioada 1888-1906, iar de atunci parintele Marie-Dominique Chenu, parintele Roberto Busa, parintele Leonard E. Boyle, precum si multi altii, au reusit sa contribuie in mod substantial la studiul lexicului si gandirii thomiste. Ramane de vazut cum vor proceda studiosii clujeni.
Traducerea in limba engleza a Summei realizata de Parintii Dominicani este considerata de mult timp depasita. Alfred J. Freddoso de la University of Notre Dame a pornit de unul singur proiectul unei noi traduceri a Summei: New English Translation of St. Thomas Aquinas's Summa Theologiae (Summa Theologica). Pana la el, pe parcursul celor peste 50 de ani de la prima versiune englezeasca completa, s-au mai publicat sectiuni intregi in editii critice si/sau comentate. Un foarte bun exemplu este cel al Robert Pasnau care a editat ST Ia, qq. 75-89 (Robert Pasnau, Thomas Aquinas on Human Nature: A Philosophical Study of "Summa Theologiae", 1a, 75-89; Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2001).

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Doing history of ancient and medieval philosophy in Romania (1)

In Romania, we have a very unhealthy tradition in doing things in the history of philosophy: we publish general surveys before translating the fundamental texts of the European thought and before writing specialized studies. Unfortunately, the young researchers do not break with this tradition. Although we witness a few efforts of translating fundamental texts - e.g., Aristotle's De anima, Protrepticus (1st Romanian trans.), Rhetoric (1st Romanian trans.), De caelo (1st Romania trans.), Politics (two new translations); Plotinus' Enneades (1st Romanian translation of all six enneades - two separate translation projects); Damascius' On First Principles; several of Porphyrios's writings (especially Isagoge); ... - we are still waiting for in-depth studies. In my opinion, the two efforts should be carried in parallel.
One example of ancient text that should receive a new translation: Aristotle's Metaphysics. Please, spear me with Vladutescu's version or Cornea's "interpretation". I want to see a real scholar that will dedicate 10 years of his life working on this text, translating and writing about the aristotelian text in international peer-reviewed journals, participating in international colloquia on ancient thought and especially on Aristotle, and have a team of scholars to discuss all his steps.
I am tired of people that translate Aristotle or Plotinus this year and Augustine or Albert the Great next year. You cannot accomodate enough with the language of Plotinus in one year, in four years or in ten. Even if you are a genius. These things take time, a lot of time.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Medieval Concept of 'Auctoritas' (I)

For medieval thinkers/writers, auctoritas was a very important issue/concept. In my studies on this mevieval concept I have come to think that there are three different meanings of auctorias as it is used by medievals. The origin of the first meaning can be found in Roman law: usus auctoritas (right of possession), auctoritas judiciorum (the authority of the judges), etc. This is a strict technical meaning, which I call the socio-juridical meaning of auctoritas. In this first sens, auctoritas is generally opposed to potestas. Cicero has left us plenty of examples for the first meaning. Innocentius III, in his Epistola ad Bulgaros (1204), speaks of a distinction between the authority of the pope and the power of the prince: "... ut ostendatur quanta sit differentia inter auctoritatem pontificis et principis potestatem" (PL 215, col. 284).

The second meaning has developed from the Greek education model, i.e., the reading of various auctores (in fact, quotations from various authors) gathered in the so-called florilegia for a specific purpose (see the use of Homer for learning the Greek grammar by the Greek ancient youth). This ancient education model have made history in the Middle Ages because it was the basic model of studying of rhetoric, eloquence, and so on.

I'm back!

It has been quite some time since my last comment on this blog. Meanwhile, I have stopped making money for other people and I have started my own company, i.e. SMART SOLUTIONS & SUPPORT. I have also returned to my interests: ancient & medieval philosophy, paleography, moral philosophy & its applications (i.e. applied ethics).
New research materials can be found on my website (see "Research Resources"). Please, observe the copyright notes before using the materials. The author/owner of is not responsible for the illegal use of those materials. They are available there only for my personal use and for my colleagues. This is why I have decided to protect that web area with a username and a password.
Right now, I am working on Pierre Mandonnet's Siger de Brabant et l'averroisme latin au XIIIe siecle. Etudes critique et documents inedits. I hope to post an electronic version of this book by the end of February 2007. The electronic version will consist in a PDF file containing images of each page of the book.
Charles H. Lohr's Renaissance Latin Aristotle's Commentaries article series is also available. Can anyone provide me information on a similar list for the medieval Latin or Greek Aristotle's commentaries? I am trying to determine how many commentaries on the Nicomachean Ethics have been written during the 13th century (before and after Thomas Aquinas' Sententiae libri Ethicorum.