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Do you own any untranslated novels?


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DavidShallcross



Joined: 19 Feb 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 7:04 pm Reply with quote
I have the original Slayers light novel. I thought it would be interesting to see what the spells were like in the original. Kanzaki does that trick with spell names where the furigana above the kanji gives a reading that is not a normal Japanese reading of the kanji.

For example, the famous spell "Dragon Slave" has kanji "竜破斬", and furigana "ドラグ・スレイブ", which would be transliterated as "Doragu Sureibu".

But I don't read Japanese well enough to actually read this novel straight through -- too much back and forth to the dictionary.
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trilaan



Joined: 17 Jan 2009
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Location: Texas

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 5:20 am Reply with quote
DavidShallcross wrote:

But I don't read Japanese well enough to actually read this novel straight through -- too much back and forth to the dictionary.


I know the feeling. I'm hoping my current project of subbing a particular raw anime film will help with my raw novel reading. Although I'm just transcribing the dialog into romanji now.
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vanfanel



Joined: 26 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 10:57 am Reply with quote
DavidShallcross wrote:
But I don't read Japanese well enough to actually read this novel straight through -- too much back and forth to the dictionary.


I know that feeling, but the more you read, the easier it gradually -- oh, so gradually -- gets. That Slayers book was translated into English, actually, so reading the two versions in parallel could be one way to cut down on the dictionary back-and-forth.
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vashna



Joined: 19 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:33 am Reply with quote
Trilaan's comments made me wonder something about untranslated novels. Sometimes the text is rather poor, and it seems that it would make sense to use romaji if doing so does not obscure the meaning as a result of changing puns based on kanji meaning and the like. Is this merely never done because it would be odd to many Japanese speakers to read transliterated text?

I actually thought in the past it would have been great for entering commands into text user interfaces. It's also almost impossible to read the kanji in some older video games because of the resolution, so I thought romaji would have helped here as well.

Getting back on topic, for what it's worth I have seen some materials published by the Oomoto movement that were primarily romanized.
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vanfanel



Joined: 26 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 14, 2013 8:00 am Reply with quote
vashna wrote:
...it seems that it would make sense to use romaji if doing so does not obscure the meaning as a result of changing puns based on kanji meaning and the like.


You mean romaji furigana? I usually just see that done with acronyms. I'd say that of the options they have available, romaji in general is the least natural way to express something in writing to the Japanese.
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vanfanel



Joined: 26 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 14, 2013 8:02 am Reply with quote
WRT reading in general, here are a few things I know of that have furigana given for ALL kanji (except numbers sometimes).

* Shounen Jump/Shounen Sunday manga. Their audience covers such a wide range of ages, they make sure that kids can read it whatever grade they're in.
* The three-volume novelization of the original Macross TV series. Light novels/anime novelizations don't typically do this, so this was an unexpected treat. These books are long out of print, though, so they may be hard to get hold of.
* Japanese Bibles. Especially useful if you're familiar with the Bible already; you can concentrate not on figuring out what it says but on how it's saying it.
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vashna



Joined: 19 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 1:22 am Reply with quote
I was actually previously referring to writing everything in Romaji in areas where the print conditions are so bad that it becomes impossible to tell the difference between different kanji. I have some old untranslated 16-bit video games where this is indeed the case, though I recognize that it would be very awkward to actually as a native Japanese reader to look at text in that fashion. Obviously the untranslated print materials I mentioned before don't suffer from these problems.

Vanfanel, I was really surprised to hear that there is some much furigana in the Macross TV series novelization. I've never come across it. Does it have a name beyond, presumably, Chojiku Yosai MACROSS?

By the way, I know what you mean about Bibles. I've read some books from the New Interconfessional Translation (Shin Kyodo Yaku Seisho) and since I was reading mostly familiar passages I got a better handle on how certain things were being phrased. Naturally I understood how the verses read in English as well as the way they were written in some of the source languages.
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vanfanel



Joined: 26 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 3:56 am Reply with quote
Quote:

Vanfanel, I was really surprised to hear that there is some much furigana in the Macross TV series novelization. I've never come across it. Does it have a name beyond, presumably, Chojiku Yosai MACROSS?


Just "Chojiku Yosai Macross: TV-ban." The author is Inoue Toshiki (井上敏樹), and the three books were published by Shogakukan's "Super Quest Bunko." That label never published just a whole lot, and doesn't seem to be around anymore.

A Japanese colleague who speaks superb English once advised me that reading aloud was a very effective way to improve in a language, but with Japanese, the kanji would frequently leave me stumped as to which of the 2-4 possible readings was correct. When I got hold of these books, though, I read all three aloud from cover to cover.

Quote:
By the way, I know what you mean about Bibles. I've read some books from the New Interconfessional Translation (Shin Kyodo Yaku Seisho) and since I was reading mostly familiar passages I got a better handle on how certain things were being phrased.


That's been my experience with it as well. The Shin Kyodo version seems to be quite popular and fairly easy to read. As an added bonus, the people- and place names are actually transliterated correctly (or as correctly as the katakana will allow) Smile

If you have any interest in Japanese Christianity, I'd recommend the novel "Shiokari Pass" (塩狩峠) by Miura Ayako (三浦綾子). (There's an old movie of it, too, that I haven't seen.) It's fairly easy reading, except for one brief passage quoted from a Meiji era source. There's an English version, too.
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vashna



Joined: 19 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2013 1:16 am Reply with quote
Thank you for giving me a little more information on the Macross novels. I'll have a look and see if I can find them anywhere. It should be a little easier now that I have the author's name and the kanji used to spell it. I can certainly identify with your problems involving choosing which pronunciation to use for each individual kanji. Naturally some characters have even more readings than those 2-4 that you mentioned.

I have to admit that since I'm not in class any more it'd probably look a little weird for me to be reading out loud. I could just imagine myself poised outside pronouncing each kanji. That being said it really is good advice and it definitely is a great way to learn a new language.

Thank you for recommending "Shiokari Pass." I've never actually heard of the book, but I did a quick search and found that a lot of people like it. It seems to involve something about a person who, in spite of dealing with religious persecution manages to show a Christ-like heroism. I'll have a look and see if I can't find a copy of the book.
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vanfanel



Joined: 26 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:10 am Reply with quote
My pleasure! (And for the record, I did my reading-aloud aloud indoors at home!) Very Happy
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Anime_Otaku35
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Joined: 01 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 19, 2013 5:15 pm Reply with quote
I have the Umi ga Kikoeru novel.
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vashna



Joined: 19 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 19, 2013 10:21 pm Reply with quote
Since you really hadn't said much about the Umi ga Kikoeru novel I was wondering how it was. I haven't read it yet, in any language. How difficult are the kanji to parse? Does it provide any furigana readings or is it mostly pretty straight text?
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hyojodoji



Joined: 08 Jan 2010
Posts: 403

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 1:07 am Reply with quote
vashna wrote:
Since you really hadn't said much about the Umi ga Kikoeru novel I was wondering how it was. I haven't read it yet, in any language. How difficult are the kanji to parse? Does it provide any furigana readings or is it mostly pretty straight text?

Umi ga Kikoeru (Ocean Waves) was carried in Animage, and the author is Himuro Saeko, who wrote predecessors of light novels for girls.
So probably the text of Umi ga Kikoeru is not very difficult.
 
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Anime_Otaku35
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Joined: 01 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:04 am Reply with quote
vashna wrote:
Since you really hadn't said much about the Umi ga Kikoeru novel I was wondering how it was. I haven't read it yet, in any language. How difficult are the kanji to parse? Does it provide any furigana readings or is it mostly pretty straight text?


I'm sorry, I mainly bought it years ago to look at Katsuya Kono's illustrations. I'm not fluent in Japanese, but I did give it a quick flip through. There is some Furigana, but not a whole lot. Most of the Kanji does not have it present. Here's a page sample:

(I hope I don't get in trouble for posting this)



Last edited by Anime_Otaku35 on Tue Aug 13, 2013 7:50 am; edited 1 time in total
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vashna



Joined: 19 Feb 2010
Posts: 1313

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:47 pm Reply with quote
I'm not sure of the exact forum rules, but if I understand it correctly that photograph would be acceptable from a copyright standpoint since it's for review purposes. Perhaps someone more knowledgeable than I could correct me; I am sorry if I am wrong. Regardless, I really do appreciate you sharing it so that I know what the text looks like, and I should be thankful to hyojodoji for the information as well.

That being said I do not mean to be rude, but you appear to be holding the book upside down. Was this intentional?
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