Have you ever seen the name of the translator on the cover of a book? Did you ever care? In Japan, the translator’s name appears on the cover as large as the author’s name, and readers do pay attention to who translated the book (and not just the famous translators such as Haruki Murakami.) Why the difference? Motoyuki Shibata, a translator of American fiction and editor of the journal focused on contemporary Japanese literature, Monkey Business, will discuss the role of translation in the nation’s century-long attempt to modernize.
Motoyuki Shibata taught American literature and literary translation at the University of Tokyo until March 2014. Among others, he has translated the words of Paul Auster, Rebecca Brown, Stuart Dybek, Brian Evenson, Laird Hunt, Kelly Link, Steven Millhauser, Richard Powers, and Charles Simic into Japanese. He received the 27th Suntory Prize for Social Sciences and Humanities for American Narcissus.
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