Translation as Spiritual Practice
Richard Sadowsky / サドゥスキー リチャード
I left the U.S. at the age of 20 sparked by an interest in Zen, not knowing I would spend the rest of my life in Japan. Earning a living as a freelance translator is something I feel fortunate to have accomplished and for which I will always be grateful.
Why grateful? Because I get paid to do what I enjoy. I like...
The JATPATENT Steering Committee invited Masako Ohta, Registered Trade Marks Attorney with Shelston IP in Sydney to discuss the state of IP and trademarks in Australia. Ms. Ohta not only gave us an overview of the Australian IP system, but a fascinating history of famous inventions that you may not have known were invented by Australians. The full text of the report is in Japanese. JAT members...
The Light at the End of the Tunnel: Do You See It Yet?
At our annual Christmas Party last year I received a card with the following message:
This may be the last time I attend your Christmas Party as the president of my own translation company. Of course, it may be the last Christmas Party you give as president of your own company.
Who says translators don't have a sense of...
In memory of Geraldine Harcourt, who passed away in New Zealand last month, we republish an interview with Geraldine from JAT Bulletin 182 of May 2000.
The Challenges of Translating a Best-selling Nonfiction Work
by Geraldine Harcourt
This month Geraldine Harcourt (winner of the 1990 Wheatland Translation Prize) has generously agreed to answer some questions about her latest project, the...
They say that good things come in small packages, and this 76-page book is an excellent illustration of that saying. Veteran Japanese-English translator and medical writer/educator Lee Seaman has teamed up with internationally renowned medical writer and communications consultant Tom Lang and three other collaborators to produce International Medical Writing: English for a Global Audience...
The May 18, 2019 Tokyo Activities Committee meeting held in Shibuya saw Steven Mayeda and Naotaka Midori of Tokyo Zeikei Tax Services give a comprehensive rundown of the basics of filing tax returns in Japan and outline a number of tax-saving strategies.
The two-part presentation proceeded with each topic discussed in English, followed by a summary in Japanese. Some of the subjects covered by...
I recently attended the Japan SciCom Forum 2019, held at the Earth-Life Science Institute in the Ishikawadai area of the Ookayama campus of the Tokyo Institute of Technology. Aimed at public information officers and other science communicators working in universities and similar institutions, the program was a diverse collection of keynote speeches, flash talks, and workshops.
Kumi Kuroda from...
牧野成一 (Makino Seiichi): 日本語を翻訳するということ - 失われるもの、残るもの
Published by 中公新書 (Chuko Shinsho), June 25, 2018
Price: 780 yen plus tax
An intriguing and challenging interrogation of aspects of the Japanese language and translation by Seiichi Makino, Emeritus Professor of East Asian Studies and Emeritus Professor of Japanese and Linguistics at Princeton University. Perhaps better...
Points of Correspondence
There are some obvious and other less obvious points of correspondence in bilingual dictionaries, and in this paper I would like to consider first one of the less obvious points and later some of the more obvious points of correspondence in the light of one recently published Japanese-English dictionary, The Kenkyūsha Japanese-English Learner’s...
We spend a lot of time talking about client education from the perspective of the translation and post-translation processes (e.g., editing, formatting, design, proofreading). The Global English Style Guide looks at the writing process for technical documentation before any translation takes place. It seeks to answer the following questions. How can we effectively use English to communicate...
Flashback to IJET-2
Panel Discussion on English-Japanese Translation (英日翻訳市場の現状、品質管理、翻訳のためのツール、翻訳の将来)
With just under ten weeks to go before IJET-30 in Cairns, this week we take a look back to IJET-2. The Second International Japanese-English Translation Conference was held in June 1991 in San Francisco. Many of the presentations were panel discussions, and we've chosen the report of a panel...
Translators and the Editing Tightrope
Translators with a few years’ experience, reasonable writing skills in their native language and perhaps some expertise in a particular subject area are often asked to carry out work which may be variously described as “editing,” “revising,” “proofreading,” “native check,” “QC,” etc. Ideally, this occurs after the translation has first been...
The Very First IJET
It’s now just four months before IJET-30 in Cairns kicks off!
We owe an immense debt of gratitude to the 1989/90 JAT Board and band of volunteers for their foresight in organizing the First International Japanese-English Translation Conference, held in Hakone, Japan, on the weekend of May 26-27, 1990. IJET has since grown to become JAT’s flagship annual event, attracting...
Dreyer’s English: An Utterly Correct Guide to Clarity and Style
Random House, published January 29, 2019
Hard cover, 320 pages, around USD15 from Amazon
After following Benjamin Dreyer on Twitter for six months or so, I pre-ordered his book in late 2018 and it made its eagerly-awaited arrival at my house in early February 2019.
Dreyer is a New...
Teaching Japanese-to-English Translation
by James L. Davis
In the Technical Japanese Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, we teach Japanese-to-English translation in conjunction with Japanese language instruction. Separating translation skills from language skills is a tricky business, and completely separating the two tends to be impossible. However, as we move from the basic...
Writing Science in Plain English (Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing).
Greene, Anne E.
University of Chicago Press.
ISBN 978-0-226-02637-4 (paper) — ISBN 978-0-226-02640-4 (e-book)
The advice in this concise and inexpensive book is similar to that you’ll find in other books on scientific writing, but it is written in a breezy, engaging style in plain English; the author...
Second Edition, published September 2014
Price: 3700 yen plus tax (as of December 2018)
医薬品開発-承認申請-市販後業務のための知っておきたい英単語・英語表現 is now in its second edition. Written by Takemi Uchida, formerly an in-house translator with pharma companies Upjohn and Pfizer before retiring to become a freelance translator, this book dovetails...
Mere Pebbles Along the Way
Charles De Wolf
It is said that while source texts are eternal, target languages are not, hence the enduring need for new translations of old works. And yet inasmuch as our perceptions too are subject to time’s vicissitudes, so in some sense are the seemingly unchanging texts themselves.
The perfectly “normal” dialogue in older films such as Ozu’s Banshun (Late...