Vietnamese project aims to translate 1,000 major works
The Vietnam National University in Hanoi is aiming to introduce more Vietnamese people to major philosophical works from throughout the world via the Phan Chau Trinh Culture Foundation’s 1,000 Classics Translation Project.
Ngo Tu Lap is the man responsible for this project and he believes it is of crucial importance to have significant international works translated into Vietnamese. The country has long sent people abroad to expand their knowledge, but this move aims to bring that knowledge to the people.
Lap believes the project will enrich Vietnamese education and recounts instances where Vietnamese intellectuals abroad have had significant gaps in their knowledge through not having read certain books.
“In Vietnam, we’re providing the students with the same old materials again and again. When we have a world of knowledge and it’s accessible for discovery, I think we should help them discover it,” says Lap.
So far the project has completed translations of about 100 world classics which have been put on the internet as well as being distributed to university libraries free of charge.
However, that leaves another 900 works still to be translated. Finding highly qualified Vietnamese translators is proving problematic and even when translators are located, funding can be an issue. Nevertheless, for the moment at least, work is continuing on this ambitious and worthwhile project.