Kto to zrobił z nas?

zzjing

Member
Chinese - Mandarin
OK, one more thing. What does this sentence mean?

"Kto to zrobił z nas?"​

I'm getting different translations from different versions of the book.
 
  • lukis421

    Senior Member
    Polish - Poland
    This sentence sounds a little bit unusual to me. Can you give us more context, i.e. some surrounding lines?
     

    zzjing

    Member
    Chinese - Mandarin
    This sentence sounds a little bit unusual to me. Can you give us more context, i.e. some surrounding lines?
    Sure. Here's some context:

    Milczałem. Snaut coraz mocniej chwiał się na nogach. Łzy ściekały mu po twarzy i padały na ubranie.

    – Kto to zrobił? Kto to zrobił z nas? Gibarian? Giese? Einstein? Platon? To byli zbrodniarze – wiesz? Pomyśl, w rakiecie człowiek może pęknąć jak bąbel albo skrzepnąć, albo rozgotować się, albo tak prędko wybuchnąć krwią, że ani krzyknie, a potem tylko kosteczki stukają w blachę, kręcą się po orbitach Newtona z poprawką Einsteinowską, te nasze grzechotki postępu!
     

    lukis421

    Senior Member
    Polish - Poland
    I'm not surprised that you're having troubles understanding it. In my humble opinion, this sentence is written very clumsily and shouldn't get past the editing process! In fact, I'm not sure myself what the author meant.

    'Kto/Który z nas to zrobił' would be a correct way of saying 'who, out of us (all), did this?'

    A different way of reading it would literally be: 'who made this out of us' meaning 'who made us the way we are now'.

    We should probably wait for others to comment on that because I'm just scratching my head right now. Maybe I'm not seeing something that's obviously there...
     

    zzjing

    Member
    Chinese - Mandarin
    I'm not surprised that you're having troubles understanding it. In my humble opinion, this sentence is written very clumsily and shouldn't get past the editing process! In fact, I'm not sure myself what the author meant.

    'Kto/Który z nas to zrobił' would be a correct way of saying 'who, out of us (all), did this?'

    A different way of reading it would literally be: 'who made this out of us' meaning 'who made us the way we are now'.

    We should probably wait for others to comment on that because I'm just scratching my head right now. Maybe I'm not seeing something that's obviously there...
    Thanks for the reply. I guess that's why it's interpreted differently by different translators.
     

    zzjing

    Member
    Chinese - Mandarin
    Out of curiosity, what do the translations say?
    The two English translations are:

    Who is responsible for this situation?​

    and

    Which of us did it?​

    The German translation is:

    Wer hat das aus uns gemacht?​

    Which Google Translate renders as:

    Who made this out of us?
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I didn't have trouble understanding it at all. Just a literary style

    Which of us did it?
    No. In the given context it can only mean "Who made us to be like this". The word order is OK. But I admit, the wording is very colloquial, and functions poorly in a written text, because "to" is fuzzy and ambiguous. He might have said "Kto takimi nas zrobił?", or better "Kto z nas zrobił takich ludzi"
     

    zaffy

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I must disagree. I can't see your idea in that short passage, though I haven't read the book , so you can be right only if the plot can prove it, this short passage can't. Even so, I would say 'Who made us be like this' not 'to be'. Anyways, it is still 'Which of us did it?' for me. :)
     

    Majidou

    Member
    French
    Obviously, the correct translation is: which of us did it?
    However, the correct sentence shall be: Który z nas to zrobił?
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    Obviously, the correct translation is: which of us did it?
    However, the correct sentence shall be: Który z nas to zrobił?
    No, it is not obvious at all, and the context forbids such interpretation. Read again the context: "Kto to zrobił? Kto to zrobił z nas? Gibarian? Giese? Einstein? Platon? To byli zbrodniarze – wiesz? Pomyśl, w rakiecie człowiek może pęknąć jak bąbel albo skrzepnąć, albo rozgotować się, albo tak prędko wybuchnąć krwią, że ani krzyknie, a potem tylko kosteczki stukają w blachę, kręcą się po orbitach Newtona z poprawką Einsteinowską, te nasze grzechotki postępu!"
    But the sentence "Kto to zrobił z nas?" is ambiguous, and should never been used in careful speech.
     

    yezyk

    Member
    Polish
    The correct answer is: Who made this of us?
    The answer, however, does only become clear after a careful reading of a longer passage of Lem's Solaris (the source), especially the preceding paragraph.
     
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