I mentioned Charlotte Roche’s bestseller Feuchtgebiete earlier. It’s now being translated into English as Wetlands, by Tim Mohr, who is apparently from New York and spent six years as a DJ in Berlin (for more, see the weblog love german books).
Bild has a list of terms for which an English equivalent had to be invented. I’m not sure why Perlenrüssel (clitoris) should not become pearl trunk but snail tail. And Hahnenkämme for inner labia translated as dewlap – a term usually applied either to cattle or people with huge double chins – is extremely bizarre.
What really led me to add another entry to the heap, however, was this text on the Swiss site:
Und wo wir gerade beim anderen Geschlechtsteil sind: Das für die Vagina benutzte Wort «Perlenrüssel» wird zu «snail tail», was soviel wie Schneckenschwanz bedeutet. «Klingt gut und ist ein schönes Bild für die Klitoris», meint Mohr.
Do the Swiss not distinguish between vagina and clitoris? Or have I missed something in my education?
Granta interview with Charlotte Roche.