日付変更線 International Date Line

Dan Luffey, translator of Edogawa Ranpo’s famous children’s detective story The Fiend with Twenty Faces 江戸川乱歩『怪人二十面相』, has published a short online article online about translating Ranpo’s work into English.  There he writes the following. 

There’s one quote about translation I’ve always tried to keep in my mind. I can’t remember who first told it to me, but it goes something like this: “The goal of any good translation is to give the reader in the target language a similar experience to that of a reader in the source language.” In other words, translation isn’t merely re-stacking items from one shelf to another. A good translation unpacks the product, examines it, and decides how best to rearrange and display things for the target audience.

I wonder if the quote was based on a conversation I once had with him soon before this book was published….  I often say this sort of thing when talking about translating. 

In any case, congrats to Luffey for a translation well done!  Here is to more new Ranpo translations!

A big section from the introduction of my book Writing the Love of Boys, about the ways that a key group of early twentieth-century Japanese authors helped re-invent the language used in Japan to talk about love between men, is on Google Books. 



The beautiful cover image is a painting called “Portrait of Two Boys” 二人少年図 painted in 1914 by the painter and poet MURAYAMA Kaita 村山槐多, one of the major figures that I talk about in this book.  Other figures that feature heavily in this book are the mystery writer EDOGAWA Ranpo 江戸川乱歩 and the modernist innovator INAGAKI Taruho 稲垣足穂. 

Also, click here to see the book on amazon.com