Spreading The Translated Word

Posted by - Admin / June 22nd, 2010

Spreading the Translated Word

I just learned about this really interesting project, the Japanese Literature Publishing Project (JLPP), that promotes Japanese literature to a number of foreign countries. Sponsored by the Agency for Cultural Affairs, JLPP has been around since 2002 and has so far been behind the publication of 34 Japanese titles translated into English. JLPP selects about 10 books per year, and the titles are translated into several languages, including English, French, German, and Russian. It then promotes the translated works to publishers, and following publication, JLPP buys a good number of the translated titles and distributes them to libraries. What a good way to increase access to translated works!

Some of the published titles are already well-known works, such as Natsume Soseki’s Botchan and Ryunosuke Akutagawa’s Rashomon and Seventeen Other Stories. The selected works cover a number of genres, including mysteries, poetry, short stories, and novels. Upcoming titles include an introduction to contemporary Japanese poetry, fantasy novel The Mandala Way by Masako Bando, historical novel Tokyo Seven Roses by Hisashi Inoue, and literary biography A Thousand Strands of Black Hair by Seiko Tanabe.

Thanks to the very informative Three Percent blog, which focuses on international literature, for clueing me in about JLPP! I’m definitely going to check out some of these books.

Mariko Fujinaka

Thomas Riggs & Company

Missoula, Montana; Nice, France

From Thomas Riggs & Co. Blog: www.thomasriggs.net/blog