Articles

From Behind Cloistered Walls: A Tale of Two Translations

Lynne E. Riggs

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In February 2009, In Iris Fields: Remembrances and Poetry by Abbess Kasanoin Jikun, edited by Barbara Ruch and Katsura Michiyo, was published by Tankōsha (Kyoto). The book’s prose was translated by Beth Cary and its numerous poems by Janine Beichman. In early April, Amamonzeki—A Hidden Heritage: Treasures of the Japanese Imperial Convents, edited by... more

Travel Media in a Time of No Travel

By Rob Goss

Travel media, like the rest of the travel industry, has been hit hard by COVID-19. Publications large and small have had to cut jobs, furlough staff and scale back on publication. Business Traveller UK, to give one example, has temporarily gone digital only. Adventure.com has put itself into hibernation until COVID-19 ends. Lonely Planet has shut down its... more

EVENT REPORT: Press Trips and Language Tips for Travel Media

By Rob Goss

On March 20, 2019, twelve people, including five first-timers, attended the latest SWET Travel Writing Meetup in Tokyo at Book House Cafe, Jinbocho, for a presentation by photographer Phil Ono about the handling of style issues in place-name signage used around the country and a presentation by travel writer Rob Goss about press trips for travel writers and... more

The History of SWET

The late 1970s were years of growth and ferment in English-language book and periodical publishing in Japan. Book publishers Charles E. Tuttle, Inc., John Weatherhill, Kodansha International, and the University of Tokyo Press released dozens of new volumes in English annually. Japan Echo, the Japan Interpreter, and Japan Quarterly published high-quality Japanese journalism and writing in English translation. Four daily... more

Romanizing Japanese: Polishing the Fine Points

By Lynne E. Riggs (Republished from June 2016)

Whether it’s a book title in a bibliography, a few lines of poetry, or a snippet of dialogue, romanization of Japanese in English text is a skill every wordsmith associated with Japan mobilizes now and then, and though it may seem easy, there are many intricacies the committed editor will want to... more

Workshop: Cultural Translation and the Information Gap

by Richard Medhurst

Japanese and English readers come from different cultural backgrounds. References that are familiar to the former, whether from tradition or popular culture, may baffle the latter. The SWET workshop I led on May 17, 2017 tackled cultural translation for the general reader, considering how to handle the “information gap” between the two kinds of readers with the aim... more