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Off Topic: Japanese Literature

Discussion in 'Symphony X (Unofficial)' started by Hyoukinmono, Sep 6, 2003.

  1. Hyoukinmono

    Hyoukinmono Real Man

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    It appears that there are quite a few people here who like Japanese music and Japanese animation, but is there anybody who has read any Japanese literature (not including comic books; we can do a different thread for that one!)? What have you read and how did you like it? What did you like or dislike about it? (Just curious, since I'm dealing with Japanese literature, classical as well as modern, all day everyday.)
     
  2. Kate Bush Rules!

    Kate Bush Rules! Kali Yuga

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    No, i can't read Japanese.
     
  3. Hyoukinmono

    Hyoukinmono Real Man

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    Okay, let me rephrase my question:

    Is there anybody who has read any Japanese literature in Japanese or in translation?:rolleyes:
     
  4. SilentRealm

    SilentRealm Member

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    I've never read japanese literature.. unless u count my marriage certificate :p
     
  5. Kate Bush Rules!

    Kate Bush Rules! Kali Yuga

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    In that case no, I haven't. Recommendations?
     
  6. Divine Wings Of Tragedy

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    i would love to learn japanese, wish i could
    why dont u teach us
     
  7. SilentRealm

    SilentRealm Member

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    only things i know in japanese is..

    nihongo wa wakarimasen (i dont understand japanese)

    eigo de kaite kudasai (please write in english)

    genki desu ka ("how are you?" or rather "are you well?")

    "domo" or "arigato" (thanks)

    domo arigato gozaimasu (thankyou very much)

    i'm not sure of the correct spelling or meaning i THINK is:

    itashimashite ("you're welcome" or rather "thankyou for enjoying our food" at a restaurant)


    erm.. if any of those are wrong let me know..
     
  8. Divine Wings Of Tragedy

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    i know some words too

    "paga" or something like that :p
    i watch anime hehe

    SilentRealm paga desu, is this right?
     
  9. rockmanxpr

    rockmanxpr High Speed Samurai

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    I couldn't read Kanji to save my life...
    Here is a great example of how things get lost in the translation.
    http://www.evilzero.com/NewsRadio/Episodes/Ep57.htm
    And now for my word of the day: Asa Datsu (dachu)= Morning Hardon as you can tell it's a universal situation :p
     
  10. Hyoukinmono

    Hyoukinmono Real Man

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    SilentRealm:
    Hey! You did great on that! The only mistake is that it should be "dou itashimashite." And it is usually the equivalent of "You're welcome."

    Divine Wings of Tragedy:
    Hmmmm...I've never heard of the word "paga." Could it be "baka?" It means "stupid," "idiot," or "fool." In that case, SilentRealm needs to get mad at you.:D

    KBR:
    Here is a list of some recommended books that have been translated into English. (Some of them have been translated into a number of other languages as well.) They're all relatively accessible for the first-time J-lit reader. The names of the authors are last name first, following Japanese custom.

    Endo Shusaku. Considered one of the top Japanese writers of the 20th century.

    Silence-Probably Endo's best known book. It deals with the apostasy of a Jesuit priest in early 17th century Japan, and the issue of why God lets people suffer.

    The Sea and Poison-One of Endo's earlier works. It deals with a doctor who was involved in the vivisection and experimentation on American POWs near the end of WWII.

    Wonderful Fool-A lighter work. A clutzy but good-hearted French man goes to Japan and helps people.

    Murakami Haruki. One of the current top-selling Japanese writers. Sells well in the US and Europe.

    A Wild Sheep Chase-One of the better known of Murakami's earlier work. An odd, surreal story.

    Norwegian Wood, Sputnik Sweetheart-Two of Murakami's more realistic books. Norwegian Wood was his breakout hit. (Sputnik Sweetheart was translated by a professor in my department, by the way.)

    Yoshimoto Banana-One of the top-selling women writers in Japan. Quite a bit of her novels have been translated.

    Kitchen-Yoshimoto's breakout hit.

    Natsume Soseki-One of the great late 19th/early20th century writers, and one of the most influential. His portrait graces the front of one piece of Japanese currency.

    Kokoro-Considered to be his great classic. A bit dark, but thought-provoking.

    Oe Kenzaburo-Nobel prize winner. Not really a surrealist, but his world and style are both kind of weird. Usually easier to understand in translation than in the original Japanese. (Oe has made that comment a number of times.) His most recent work, Somersault, was also translated by the aforementioned professor in my department. The Silent Cry is another of his well-known works.

    Murasaki Shikibu-Early 11th century writer. The Tale of Genji is a massive book, but is the piece of classical Japanese literature that everybody HAS to read. I would recommend the Seidensticker or Tyler translation.

    Mishima Yukio, Tanizaki Junichiro, Shiga Naoya, Mori Ogai, Kawabata Yasunari, and Inoue Yasushi are some of the other respected writers that have been translated. (Mishima especially has been translated quite extensively.)

    There is some really great humorous Japanese literature, but almost none of it has been translated. I'm working on some of it, so it might be out there in the next couple of years...or later...
     
  11. RequiemX

    RequiemX King of Ithaca

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    Cool. I should pickup a few of those.
     
  12. Hyoukinmono

    Hyoukinmono Real Man

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    Oh, and how could I forget Akutagawa Ryunosuke and Dazai Osamu!
     
  13. rockmanxpr

    rockmanxpr High Speed Samurai

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    Hyokinmono, when we gonna start the Manga thread?
     
  14. SilentRealm

    SilentRealm Member

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    oh yeah now i remember the 'dou' bit..its been a long time since i learned any japanese.


    and is it right that im an idiot? sadly, yes it is right..:(..but that doesnt mean you have to say it :(
     
  15. Divine Wings Of Tragedy

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    Hyoukinmono : hehe yea thats the word, i learned it from Great Teacher Onizuka :D
     
  16. ElPredicador

    ElPredicador Yeah... Whatever

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    All japanese I know is: Zankoku na tenshi no te-ze
    that means: Cruel Angel thesis, right?

    yeah that's from evangelion :)
     
  17. Hyoukinmono

    Hyoukinmono Real Man

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    Hey, I didn't say it. DWOT said it. I just translated it and told you to get mad at him.:D

    Rockmanxpr: Yeah, we'll have to start a manga thread. Do you want to start or should I?

    DWOT: GTO is pretty funny. I've read all the manga versions and have seen the TV (live action) version. I used to work with a guy that looked exactly like the manga version of Onizuka. And he acted like him too!

    ElPredicador: Right! Use that phrase next time you meet a Japanese person. It will either impress them or scare them away.

    My sister knows two sentences in Japanese:
    "Ninshin sankagetsu desu." ("I'm three months pregnant.") She's not, by the way.
    "Buta mo ki kara he o koku." ("Even pigs fart from trees.") That's a play on the Japanese saying "Saru mo ki kara ochiru." ("Even monkeys fall from trees.")

    She lives in New York, and says those sentences to anybody she sees on the subway that she thinks is Japanese. (She does not, and never has had, any shame. She used to pretend to have seizures in public because she thought people's reactions were funny. Now she works on Wall Street...)
     
  18. Divine Wings Of Tragedy

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    Hyoukinmono : i suggest u check out the anime, its pretty funny and moving too.

    SilentRealm:i was jokin sorry
     
  19. ElPredicador

    ElPredicador Yeah... Whatever

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    Knowing myself and my luck, It's more probable I'll scare them than impress them...:erk:
     
  20. Friend of Moloch

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    I think that last should be "doitashimashite".

    And "hajimemashite" means "pleased to meet you."
     

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