CATTI GRE GDP
play of words
descriptive translation studies
idiomatic expressions in English
negative transfer of culture
Gone with the Wind
A reader in Florida, apparently bruised by some personalexperience, writes in to complain, “If I steal a nickel's worth of merchandise,I am a thief and punished; but if I steal the love of another's wife, I amfree.”
This is a prevalent misconception in many people'sminds---that love, like merchandise, can be “stolen”。 Numerous states, in fact,have enacted laws allowing damages for “alienation of affections”。
But love is not a commodity; the real thing cannot be bought,sold, traded or stolen. It is an act of the will, a turning of the emotions, achange in the climate of the personality.
When a husband or wife is “stolen” by another person, thathusband or wife was already ripe for the stealing, was already predisposedtoward a new partner. The “love bandit” was only taking what was waiting to betaken, what wanted to be taken.
We tend to treat persons like goods. We even speak of thechildren “belonging” to their parents. But nobody “belongs” to anyone else. Eachperson belongs to himself, and to God. Children are entrusted to their parents,and if their parents do not treat them properly, the state has a right toremove them from their parents' trusteeship.
Most of us, when young, had the experience of a sweetheartbeing taken from us by somebody more attractive and more appealing. At thetime, we may have resented this intruder---but as we grew older, we recognizedthat the sweetheart had never been ours to begin with. It was not the intruderthat “caused” the break, but the lack of a real relationship.
On the surface, many marriages seem to break up because of a“third party”。 This is, however, a psychological illusion. Theother woman orthe other man merely serves as a pretext for dissolving or a marriage that hadalready lost its essential integrity.
Nothing is more futile and more self-defeating than thebitterness of spurned love, the vengeful feeling that someone else has “comebetween” oneself and a beloved. This is always a distortion of reality, forpeople are not the captives or victims of others---they are free agents,working out their own destinies for good or for ill.
But the rejected lover or mate cannot afford to believe thathis beloved has freely turned away from him--- and so he ascribes sinister ormagical properties to the interloper. He calls him a hypnotist or a thief or ahome-breaker. In the vast majority of cases, however, when a home is broken,the breaking has begun long before any “third party” has appeared on the scene.