Readings on Japanese-to-English Translation

Readings on Japanese-to-English Translation

Compiled by Lynne E. Riggs

Twelfth edition, 2012

Print (limited copies available)

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Selected articles on Japanese-to-English translation. Permission for publication of the articles in this anthology has been obtained for individual and classroom use.

  1. The Alchemist, by Kano Tsutomu
  2. Translating Works in the Social Sciences: Problems and Prospects, by Kano Tsutomu
  3. A Live Dog: Some Pointers on Translation, by Charles S. Terry
  4. Translation Between Typologically Diverse Languages, by Donald Philippi
  5. The Mysteries of Translation, by Wendy Lesser
  6. Eight Ways to Say You: The Challenges of Translation, by Cathy Hirano
  7. Notes from Interlingual Hell: The Translation of Essays and Journalistic Prose, by Lynne E. Riggs
  8. Bilingualism, Biculturalism, and Translation, by Chikako Kobayashi
  9. Burning the Bridge, by Michael Emmerich
  10. Jumping into the Pond, by Julie Winters Carpenter
  11. Noh Translations on the World’s Stage, by Higashizono Tadatoshi
  12. Through the Glass Darkly: Is Translating Poetry Possible? by Janine Beichman
  13. Hearing Voices: Encounters with Translation, by Rebecca Copeland
  14. On Literary Translating, by Meredith McKinney

Excerpts from the introduction:

This anthology was born out of the desire for something to read simply about Japanese-to-English translation—not “translation studies,” not translation among Indo-European or Romance Languages, not even about translation from English (or other languages) into Japanese—but just about translation from Japanese to English (J–E). In the huge world of translation, which in the twenty-first century may finally be recognized for the vital profession that it is, the J-E niche deserves its own literature. The articles in this volume may be a start in bringing such reading together and strengthening its voice.

. . .

Reading about translation will not teach you how to translate. You can only learn by doing it. J-E translation has been much facilitated by the Internet and other technical advances achieved in recent years. Vast sums have been spent in the attempt to have machines do the drudgery, but for translation of most writing in Japanese, only a human being will do. That is something to embrace and celebrate. There will never any real shortcuts for the translator; only tools for awakening and enlivening the “alchemy” of the mind that makes it possible. As we tackle the fascinations and difficulties, however, the enthusiasm and passion of these authors can be both useful and encouraging.

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