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19 juillet 2011 2 19 /07 /juillet /2011 20:52

Rappel : pour s'entraîner à la version, il faut lire une première fois le texte et se focaliser sur le sens global.

Texte à lire en VO donc sur ce lien avant tout. C'est la VO, et donc c'est important de le lire avant!!!.



Cidessous, Je traduis seulement les mots qui me posent des difficultés, si vous ne comprenez pas un passage du texte malgré mes aides, pour toute traduction rapide voici deux liens super :

babel fish (traducteur médiocre mais qui permet de se donner une idée du sens sans traduire parfaitement et donc se forcer à réaliser la version soi même)

en cas de blocage total : Reverso



MORE than 1,700 prisoners in California, many of whom are in maximum isolation units, have gone on a hunger strike. The protest began with inmates (détenus) in the Security Housing Unit (Unité de sécurité et de réception) at Pelican Bay State Prison. How they have managed to communicate with each other is anyone’s guess (reste une énigme) — but their protest is everyone’s concern. Many of these prisoners have been sent to virtually (pratiquement) total isolation and enforced idleness (contraints à l'oisiveté) for no crime, not even for alleged infractions of prison regulations (règlements). Their isolation, which can last for decades, is often not explicitly disciplinary, and therefore not subject to court oversight (attention). Their treatment is simply a matter of administrative convenience (commodité).


Solitary confinement has been transmuted (converti) from an occasional tool of discipline into a widespread (répandu) form of preventive detention. The Supreme Court, over the last two decades, has whittled steadily away (taillé au couteau, steadily signifiant en principe solidement) at the rights of inmates, surrendering (attribuant) to prison administrators virtually all control (pratiquement tout le contrôle) over what is done to those held (retenus) in “administrative segregation.” Since it is not defined as punishment for a crime, it does not fall under “cruel and unusual punishment,” the reasoning goes (le raisonnement tient la route).


As early as 1995, a federal judge, Thelton E. Henderson, conceded that so-called (soi-disant) “supermax” confinement (emprisonnement) “may well hover on the edge (hover = planer, edge = le bord ; difficile à traduire, je propose "se rapproche de") of what is humanly tolerable,” though he ruled (ordonner) that it remained (demeure) acceptable for most inmates. But a psychiatrist and Harvard professor, Stuart Grassian, had found that the environment was “strikingly ("impitoyablement", à vérifier, je ne sui spas sûr de cette traduction) toxic,” resulting in hallucinations, paranoia and delusions (illusions). In a “60 Minutes” interview, he went so far as to call it “far more egregious (extrême)” than the death penalty.


Officials (Fonctionnaires) at Pelican Bay, in Northern California, claim (prétendent) that those incarcerated in the Security Housing Unit are “the worst of the worst.” Yet often it is (c'est pourtant souvent) the most vulnerable, especially the mentally ill, not the most violent, who end up in indefinite isolation. Placement is haphazard (aléatoire) and arbitrary; it focuses on those perceived as troublemakers (fauteurs de trouble) or simply disliked (détestés) by correctional officers and, most of all, alleged (supposés) gang members. Often, the decisions are not based on evidence. And before the inmates are released (libérés) from the barbarity of 22-hour-a-day isolation into normal prison conditions (themselves shameful) they are often expected to “debrief,” or spill the beans on other gang members (dénoncer les autres gangs).


The moral queasiness (nauséeuse) that we must feel about this method of extracting information from those in our clutches has all but disappeared these days (je n'arrive pas à traduire clutches qui signifie en principe "embrayage???", je traduirais par un mot comme "sas" ), thanks to the national shame of “enhanced interrogation techniques (techniques d'interrogation améliorée)” at Guantánamo. Those in isolation can get out by naming names, but if they do so they will likely be killed when returned to a normal facility (en principe facility signifie fonction, mais je traduirais par "condition" dans ce cas). To “debrief” is to be targeted for death by gang members, so the prisoners are moved to “protective custody” — that is, another form of solitary confinement.


Hunger strikes are the only weapon these prisoners have left. Legal avenues are closed (ici la traduciton littérale ne signifie rien, "les avenues légales sont fermées", je traduirais par : les voies légales sont inappropriées). Communication with the outside world, even with family members, is so restricted as to be meaningless (au point de n'avoir plus aucun sens). Possessions — paper and pencil, reading matter (de quoi lire), photos of family members, even hand-drawn pictures — are removed. (They could contain coded messages between gang members, we are told (nous dit-on), or their loss may persuade the inmates to snitch (moucharder)  when every other deprivation has failed.)

The poverty of our criminological theorizing is reflected in the official response to the hunger strike. Now refusing to eat is regarded as a threat, too. Authorities are considering (envisagent) force-feeding (gavage). It is likely it will be carried out (mis en oeuvre) — as it has been, and possibly still continues to be — at Guantánamo (in possible violation of international law) and in an evil caricature (mauvaise carricature) of medical care.


In the summer of 1996, I visited two “special management units” at the Arizona State Prison Complex in Florence. A warden boasted (un gardien revendiquait) that one of the units was the model for Pelican Bay. He led me down the corridors on impeccably clean floors (m'ai laissé dambuler les couloirs aux sols impeccablement propres). There was no paint on the concrete (béton) walls. Although the corridors had skylights (lucarnes), the cells had no windows. Nothing inside could be moved or removed. The cells contained only a poured (coulé) concrete bed, a stainless steel mirror (mirroir d'acier inoxydable), a sink (évier) and a toilet. Inmates had no human contact, except when handcuffed (menottés) or chained to leave their cells or during the often brutal cell extractions. A small place for exercise, called the “dog pen,” with cement floors and walls, so high they could see nothing but the sky, provided (procurant)  the only access to fresh air.


Later, an inmate wrote to me, confessing to a shame made palpable and real: “If they only touch you when you’re at the end of a chain, then they can’t see you as anything but a dog. Now I can’t see my face in the mirror. I’ve lost my skin. I can’t feel my mind.”


Traduction à suivre...

Do we find our ethics (Où se trouve notre éthique) by forcing prisoners to live in what Judge Henderson described as the setting (le cadre) of “senseless suffering (douleur insensée)” and “wretched misery (souffrance misérable)”? Maybe our reaction to hunger strikes should involve some self-reflection. Not allowing inmates to choose death as an escape from a murderous fate or as a protest against continued degradation depends, as we will see when doctors come to make their judgment calls, on the skilled manipulation of techniques that are indistinguishable from torture. Maybe one way to react to prisoners whose only reaction to bestial treatment is to starve themselves to death might be to do the unthinkable — to treat them like human beings.

Colin Dayan, a professor of English at Vanderbilt University, is the author of “The Law Is a White Dog: How Legal Rituals Make and Unmake Persons.”


Texte tiré du New York Times  


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Titulaire d'un Master administration de l'entreprise, d'une licence de droit public 
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  • Thomas Bonne Titulaire d'un Master administration de l'entreprise, d'une licence de droit public Lauréat des concours administratif de rédacteur territorial 2011 et d'attaché territorial 2012 et Inspecteur des finances publiques