This dissertation consists of an annotated translation of a British short novel Paris for One which written by Jojo Moyes who British romance novelist and journalist is. She was born in London. After gaining varied career experience, she has become a novelist since 2002 (Moyes. 2018). In this practice project, chapter4, 11, 12 and 13 are translated from English into Japanese.
In the work of Jojo Moyes, two books of me before you and One plus One had been translated into Japanese and published by same translator. In particular, me before you which became a bestseller and was made into a movie. Thus, many Japanese people who knew her presence by this movie. However, the translated novel was not as popular as being the best seller in Japan even though the movie got a favorable notice.
One of the features of Moyes’s writing style is colloquial expressions in the spoken language. This style makes the story realistic and helps readers better understand. In addition, it makes easier to understand the emotions of the protagonists. Another feature is that she focuses on the details of daily life. The protagonists’ background and view of life are reflected in the story. As she is a British writer, it also includes British humor and there are stereotype British characters.
It is said that Japanese young people have decreased to read books compare than the past. In fact, the survey from a National federation of University co-operative associations showed that 53.1 percent of University students do not read a book for pleasure (Japan times, 2018). In this situation, there is a danger that Japanese language ability and reading comprehension will decline rapidly in the future. Thus, I would like to make an opportunity to read a translated book which is attractive to Japanese young people who usually reluctant to read a book. Therefore, I had set up my target readers are Japanese young people especially girls between teenager and mid-twenties.
Jojo’s novel is suitable for my target reader because the most of the main characters are mid-twenties and the stories in her novel are drawn to possibly happen for everyone. In other words, it is easy to imagine and understand the feelings of the main characters. Furthermore, her writing style with colloquial expression is simple, which makes it easy to follow on any type of target reader.
2.2 Overview of the story and feature
Paris for one is a hundred fifty-one pages in length and divided into fourteen chapters and epilogue (Six Months Later). The chapter generally occurs in chronological order, but there is a scene going back to Nell’s memory in chapter 4. This story is conveyed from the third-person point of view on the whole.
This story is about that British girl falls in love with a French man in Paris. The main character, Nell is a British girl who is mid-twenties. She works a corporate job in London. She has never had the adventure such as possible dangerous activity because she is shy and conservative personality. One day, she bought two tickets for Paris trip in order to spend a romantic weekend with a British boyfriend and gave it as a surprise present for him. However, her boyfriend stood up her that weekend. Thus, she had to spend Paris trip alone. Then, she met a French man, Fabien and become a friend. Fabien and Nell got to know each other and bridged the gap of culture and language. Through the story, Nell spent time with Fabian and his friends, looked back at herself. Finally, Nell broke up with a British boyfriend and went steady with Fabien. In addition, Nell grew into a beautiful confident woman at the end.
According to Japan times (2018), The Japan Tourism Agency recommends young people to go overseas trip. They believe that overseas experience will broaden the view and knowledge of young people and will be useful for the future of Japan in various situations. In the light of the fact that these recent backgrounds, there is demand for the story which develop an interest in overseas travel especially for young. Hence, the story of this book addresses a growing demand for the market. To put it another way, this book is a great opportunity for young people to be interested in both overseas travel and reading.
As mentioned earlier, the target leaders are Japanese young people and half of them are not habitually reading for pleasure. Therefore, this story is suitable for them as beginner readers because of the length of the story and simple romance story. In addition, the end of the story encourages them to go on an overseas trip after reading. From this kind of circumstance, this story should be translated simply so that the target reader can enjoy reading.
2.3 Existing translation
Among Jojo’s novels, me before you and The one plus one have been translated into Japanese and already published. In addition, both are translated same translator, ?? ?? (Saisyo Atsuko).
me before you (2012)
Japanese edition published in 2015 translated by ?? ?? (Saisyo Atsuko)
The one plus one (2014)
Japanese edition published in 2018 translated by ?? ?? (Saisyo Atsuko)
Saisyo (2017) commented in an interview within the website of the Japanese translation school. She talked about the episode when she translated me before you. She mainly classified this story as a romance novel, taking the form of an entertainment novel that everyone can enjoy. However, it is including the dignity of human beings and anguish of people with disabilities. Thus, it is not only romance but also social problems that have been raised in the story. She said that she emphasized “readability” to make it easy for readers to understand the messages and about social problems from author. In order to achieve the purpose of her translation, it seems that she adopted domestication approach. For example, she effectively used onomatopoeia and ruby characters so that translation text are more familiar with Japanese readers.
After this book was published, many comments arrived that people have been thought about the relationship with disabled people and the death of dignity. It seems that most of the comments on persons with disabilities and dignity were more than the romance elements of characters (Saisyo ,2017). It can be said that it is one of the success examples that it was able to translate into translated content that more Japanese reader can sympathize by domesticating approach.
Example 1 Onomatopoeia me before you p.95
ST word?for?word TT
knocked quietly ????????????He was fast asleep ??????????????????? sotto (quietly) and ???? gussuri (fast asleep) are common onomatopoeia used in Japanese. In general, it is a natural expression that onomatopoeia and frequently used in Japanese spoken language. Even though there are exactly the same meaning words such as ??? shizukani (quietly) and ?? jyukusui. (fast asleep), Japanese people tend to use onomatopoeia in order to explain more vividly. Onomatopoeia can make easier to imagine situations.
Example 2.1 ruby characters One plus one p.115 line 15
ST TT Back Translation
ED: “It’s… a work thing” ???…???????? “It’s… a work thing”
LALA: “Oh, A werk thing” ???????????????? “Oh, A work thing”
This is a conversation between lovers, and Lala responded her boyfriend, Ed, in the dialogue. Lala is Italian and speaks Italian accent English, so the author expressed as peculiar accent of Italian by using “werk”. However, it is quite difficult to express Italian English accent into Japanese. Therefore, the translator intentionally used Hiragana to emphasize this word and added pronunciation with Katakana by using ruby characters.
This allows the reader to think that she speaks different accent with English native speaker. In addition, emphasizing the use of hiragana make readers imagine of the situation of ironic response from Lala. In this way, phonetic guide can indicate not only the pronunciation annotation but also the unnaturalness of the words spoken by the characters.
One more example of effective use of ruby characters.
ST me before you p. 2
“Mr BlackBerry makes me feel like Miss Goosberry”TT ?????????.9
“Mr BlackBerry makes me feel like leaving me out.”
According to the oxford dictionary (1974), this is a British idiom meaning “outsider” or “leaving someone out”. When it comes to translation into Japanese, it can only express “????”. Nevertheless, as an author’s intention, it seems that humor by rhyming with “blackberry” and “gooseberry”. In order to convey meaning and humor, it seems translator uses ruby characters by adding pronunciation. As a result, Japanese readers could understand the meaning and notice that this phrase was rhyming humor.
Example 4 Tense The one plus one p. 181
She liked fixing things. She did odd jobs around the estate, from rewarding plugs to tiling people’s bathrooms.
Jess likes fixing things. She does odd jobs around the estate, from rewarding plugs to tiling people’s bathrooms.
Even if the narrator talks in the past tense, it can be expressed the character’s habitual things such as part-time job with present form in Japanese. That makes it a familiar expression for Japanese readers (Yamauchi, 2005). In fact, by using the present form here, it is easy to imagine the characteristics of Jess and she does the same thing when someone asks her to help.
Analyzing these examples, the translator effectively uses the method of onomatopoeia, ruby characters and tense. Therefore, it can be concludesd that the domestication succeeded.
As described above, these existing translations are produced in a legible manner for Japanese reader. Considering the translation approach by Venuti (1995), the translator is invisibility in this case. As a result, Japanese readers are able to understand the story less effort. Thus, they enjoy the story as if it were not a translation work.
3.1 Translation strategy
There are a great deal of discussion in translation studies about Domestication and Foreignization. In order to overcome various obstacles such as linguistic, culture and customs. Especially, English and Japanese are completely different language. Therefore, translator must decide whether familiarize the cross-cultural characteristics with target reader or keep cross-cultural traits, the former approach called as domestication and the latter as foreignization.
German translator Friedrich Schleiermacher (1813/1963 cited on Pym, 2010) divided translations according to domesticating and foreignizing. American scholar Lawrence Venti in his book The Translator’s Invisibility (1995) developed these two approaches. Venuti is an American scholar who mainly talks about translating from other languages into English. He discusses translator’s invisibility using these two concepts (Venuti, 1995). When it comes to domesticating approach, the ST is not respected, and a TT will create as familiar with the target culture. He claims that it is difficult to recognize that is translation work or not. As result, translator becomes “invisibility”. In this case, the target reader less aware of translator’s intervention. Venuti said as follows;
“The domesticating translation that currently dominates Anglo-American literary culture, both elite and popular, can be challenged only by developing a practice that is not just more self-conscious, but more self-critical. Knowledge of the source-language culture, however expert, is insufficient to produce a translation that is both readable and resistant to a reductive domestication; translators must also possess a commanding knowledge of the diverse cultural discourses in the target language, past and present (Venuti, 1995:309).”
He critically considers the domesticating approach because it is dominant and it is violent to dynamically change the words of ST. Alternatively, he strongly advocated a foreignization approach that translator’s mission is to preserve the cultural value of the SL and not to manipulate it to TL. In terms of foreignization approach, faithfulness is the highest priority so that translator can convey specifically the cultural background, historical facts and geographical environment to the reader.
To say nothing of let alone, English is the major languages in the world and spoken as the first language in some countries. On the other hand, Japanese is a minor language. To take into consideration of power balance between both languages, it is quite unlikely to become a dominant translation by domesticating approach from English into Japanese. In the modern world, the world becomes globally more open. Thus, people could learn foreign culture for each other compare than the past. Thus, many foreigner expressions become popular in China especially young generation (Suo, 2015). It is the same situation in Japan. For example, the young generation can easily communicate the foreigner through Internet such as social networking service. Thus, the young generation are familiar with some simple words from overseas like greeting words. From this trend in this era, mutual understanding is advanced among younger generation, and the role of translators should be considered accordingly. To determine whether domestication or foreignization is an appropriate translation, translator must consider a detailed restructuring in the culture where translation is consumed (Venuti, 2001 cited in Baker, 2001).
Domestication and foreignization strategies have penetrated in the translation discipline especially literature translation. Many scholars have argued both two strategies’ pros and cons. Before Venuti (1995) insists on these translation strategies, Nida (1964) strongly insisted on “dynamic equivalence”. According to Nida (1964), translation is communication between languages and cross-cultures. It is not necessarily for the successful communication that correspondence at the formal and meaningful structure level. Nida’s idea brought the receptors to the center of communication.
We must analyze the transmission of a message in terms of a dynamic dimension. This analysis is especially important for translating, since the production of equivalent messages is a process, not merely of matching the parts of the utterances, but also of reproducing the total dynamic characters of communication. (Nida 1964: 120)
This dynamic equivalence is clearly the fundamental conceptualization of the domesticating approach. Unlike technical translation, dynamic equivalence is a significant element in literature because literature consists of the conversation between characters. It can be seen that dynamic equivalence/ domesticating approach focuses on communication, the intention and cultural differences of the characters should be natural for the target reader.
Newman (1988 cite on Pym) distinguished semantic and communicative translation. The former focused on formal values, while the latter attempts to accurately represent the contextual meaning that can be accepted and understood by the reader.
The aim of this practice project is to produce a TT that will be natural for the Japanese young reader. In order to achieve this goal, Paris for one translated on the basis of domesticating approach. Firstly, target reader is young people who are between teenager and mid-twenties. As mentioned earlier, the majority of target reader are unaccustomed to reading books for pleasure. If someone recommends reading a long story, they might be unwilling to read. According to Nida (1964), if the translation requires effort to read, reader are likely to stop reading except they highly motivated to read it. Hence, translator should adopt a suitable approach for the target reader. In this case, reader is young and beginner. Translation should attempt to create natural to read in order to be acceptable. Having a story for pleasure is more important than letting reader think intricately about different cultures. Secondly, the feature of this story and Jojo’s writing style based on spoken language. This colloquial expression is simple, but reader have to imagine vividly in the situation. This story is set in Paris. Domestication approach could be changed even setting place such as Paris to Tokyo. However, I would not change the setting place because recommendation of overseas trip is one more purpose to translate this story. Thus, it is necessary to imagine vividly the situation in other ways. Finally, in the case of no equivalent word such as Eurostar, translator need to add an explanation. Furthermore, British humor also needs some changes for understandable.
The domesticating approach is an essential way of translating literary, however, it cannot solve all of the challenges which face translators. Therefore, the next chapter will explain some of the difficulties encountered in this practice project.
Japanese language has abundant onomatopoeia and mimetic words. These words have lively expressiveness and are indispensable for communication in Japanese. Those who are native speakers of Japanese acquire onomatopoeia usage very naturally. Since onomatopoeia has a clear expressive power, it is widely used in advertisement, magazine and literature such as manga and novels. It is a device indispensable for everyday conversation in Japanese (Fukushima, Araki and Uchida, 2014).
Previous studies shown that onomatopoeia is not used much for superiors in a public position, but for personal relationships it is used regardless of whether it is a superior position or not. For example, onomatopoeia is used for parents or grandparents, but it is not used for bosses and customers in the workplace (Hirata, 2012). This situation can also be applied to the conversation between friends. For instance, it is common for onomatopoeia to be used more frequently in conversation between two people than first time. As they got to know each other, onomatopoeia are used more frequently in their conversation. By using onomatopoeia in translation, it is possible to express the degree of goodness relationship and the movement of their mind.
In addition, it has been reported that the onomatopoeia utilization rate by female was found to be higher than men (Hirata, 2012). In fact, it is convincing that it is common for women to use onomatopoeia at a high frequency. Taking this into consideration, Jojo is a female novelist and most of main characters in her story set as a woman. In the dialogue of the third narrator who explains the story and the speech of the female character should use onomatopoeia frequently so that conversation become more realistic daily conversation in Japan. It is an effective expression method to domesticate for foreign texts into Japanese.
Japanese onomatopoeia can be classified three types such as Giongo/???
Gseigo/??? and Gtaigo/???. The definition is summarized in the table below;
Classification Definition Example Meaning
Giongo/???imitate sound language dobo-dobo???? the sound of pouring water
Giseigo/??? the sound of animals wan-wan???? the sound of dog
Gitaigo/???imitate condition language ira-ira???? the expression of annoying
As mentioned in the Chapter 2.3 Excising translation example 2, ???/sotto (quietly) can be categorized as and as fast as Giongo/???, while ????/gussuri (fast asleep) into Gitaigo/???. Giseigo/??? did not use in translation because animals did not appear in this story. On the other hand, the other two I frequently used it in various situations. These onomatopoeias have the role of making sentences more descriptive like adjectives and adverbs.
ST Chapter 11 TT meaning
Giongo???Fabien says nothing but swigs back his beer. ????????????????????????????? vigorously
Gitaigo??? C’mon, you can’t let you down. ???????????????? glumly
There is no single verb representing “swigs” in Japanese. It is only ???drink?to express the action of drinking. However, it is important to express that characters are getting irritated from the appearance of drinking vigorously. Therefore, as an example of Giongo???, by adding onomatopoeia (????/ gabu-gabu) as an adverb to the verb, it has the effect of making it easier to imagine situations more than Japanese readers. (????/ gabu-gabu) represents the throat sounds when a person swig alcohol.
On the other hand, Gitaigo???is not meant to resemble sounds. It is word that represent an action or emotional states. It is an expressive method peculiar to the Japanese, if it is from a non-Japanese speaker, it is a very ambiguous and difficult to understand expression.
“????” in example of Gitaigo ??? has a meaning of depression. In particular, it is often used when encouraging depressed people by adding negative form. “???????” is the meaning of “Don’t worry” is the closest meaning. However, there are times when the meaning differs slightly depending on the relationship and situation of the two people who are talking. For example, it can be used for the meaning such as “Take it easy”, “Cheer up” and “You can do it” in the same way for “???????”. In other words, it is a phrase that can be interpreted freely by the reader. There is no image in the novel. Thus, readers have to imagine those character in the story. That is a major difference between movies and novels, but it is one of the values of novels.
In the scenes below, French man confessed his love to Nell. And she answered, “But you don’t know me”.
ST TT Chapter 12 Back Translation
Nell: But you don’t know me. ?????????????????? You don’t know me yet.
Unlike the British culture that emphasizes directness, Japanese tend to use ambiguous expression such as “may be” or “might” because Japanese pay attention on maintenance of interpersonal relationships. It does not mean that the Japanese are indecisive, but Japanese feel very strongly about the tentatively expressed opinion (JETRO, 1999). In fact, there are several ways to make expressions softly in Japanese language. The use of onomatopoeia can be said to be one of the ways to make phrase softly. In this way, in consideration of the cultural character of the Japanese, I chose onomatopoeia “????/mada-mada”. This can be classified into Gitaigo ???and it means “not yet”. It is used in the situation of positive possibilities in the future rather than deny. In this scene, Nell does not clearly deny, and she is also interested in him. By using “????/mada-mada”, it became an natural response to the cultural character of the Japanese, and it can be expressed Nell ‘s implication of falling love in him.
As far as the previous research understands, onomatopoeia are more frequently used by women than men.
4.3 How to express French
One of the features of this story is the inclusion of French phrases that is simple sentences to use for greetings and travel. Although it expressed in italics, there is no additional explanation in these sentences in the ST. Therefore, readers who do not know any French at all, they must decide whether interpret the meaning on their own or not to read it. As mentioned earlier, simple words of greeting are generally known by young generation. In fact, France is a popular overseas travel destination and frequently introduced in dramas and TV programs. Therefore, Bonjour and Merci are highly recognized by the Japanese people.
The Japanese language consists of two kinds of letters: ?? (Kanji) and ?? (Kana). Kanji is transmitted from China, and it is used for not only conceptual words and proper nouns but also various parts of speech such as verbs, adverbs and adjectives. On the other hand, Kana expresses conceptual words written in Kanji and those not written in Kanji. In addition, Kana can be divided into two types: ???? (Hiragana) is the original Japanese character in writing, and, ???? (Katakana) is used to write foreign languages in Japanese. For example, it is expressed according to the pronunciation of a foreign language such as a person`s name or the name of a place. Japanese sentences are created by combining these three letters (Hadamitzky and Spahn, 1981). Well-known foreign language words could be expressed in ???? (katakana) according to the pronunciation.
ST Chapter 4 p.
‘Bonsoir.’ The waiter, who has a shaven head and wears a long white apron, puts a jug of water in front of her.
‘Je voudrais le steak frites, s’il vous plaît,’ she says in a rush.
??????????? ????????????????? ???????????????????
“Hello”The waiter, who has a shaven head and wears a long white apron, puts a jug of water in front of her.
“What can I get for you”
“Could I get steak and chips” She say in a rush.
In this case, I adopted using Katakana for “Bonsoir” because it is generally known French’s greeting words. Nevertheless, ‘Qu’est-ce —’ and ‘Je voudrais le steak frites, s’il vous plaît,’ are unfamiliar for Japanese except for the student who have studied French before. Therefore, I added phonetic guides to explain the meaning of this phrase and how to pronounce it.
This kind of phonetic guide are common in Japanese language. Japanese ?? (Kanji) have several different pronunciations. For instance, the character ?, meaning “sky”, it can be read as “sora” or “kuu”. There are multiple pronunciation ways in the same letter, even adults frequently do not know how to pronounce especially person’s name and place name are used by unfamiliar pronunciations. For this reason, Japanese people are used to reading phonetic guides like ??/sora? and ???/kanji??. Using phonetic guides within a limited range, it will not be a burden to the Japanese reader.
4.4 Culture specific words
Fukushima, H, Araki, K and Uchida, Y (2014) “Disambiguation of Japanese Onomatopoeias using Nouns Verbs” TSD 2014 LNAI 8655, p.141-149 online Available from https://www.tsdconference.org/tsd2014/download/preprints/617.pdf Accessed at 05 July 2018
Hadamitzky, W. and Spahn, M., 1981″ KANJI & KANA” Tokyo: the Charles E. Tuttle Company. P.11-14
Hirata, S (2012) “?????????????????????-The frequency in use of onomatopoeia in daily conversations” The 76th Annual Conference of the Japanese Psychological Association.
summary In this research, Hirata examined how the usage frequency of onomatopoeia in everyday conversation changes by gender, age group, and subjects to be used. As a result of this survey, the onomatopoeia utilization rate was found to be high for women overall. Because the onomatopoeia usage rate is high for the parents and grandparents who are the same superior relationship, but the same euphemism use rate is the lowest onomatopoeia usage rate for superior in public position.
JAPAN EXTERNAL TRADE ORGANIZATION (JETRO), 1999 “Communicating with
Japanese in Business” Available at:
https://www.jetro.go.jp/costarica/mercadeo/communicationwith.pdf Accessed at 20 August 2018
Nida, E. 1964. “Toward a Science of Translating.” Leiden: Brill. 331 pages
Suo, Xuxiang. “A New Perspective on Literary Translation Strategies Based on Skopos Theory” Theory and Practice in Language Studies, Vol. 5, No. 1, pp. 176-183, January 2015 http://dx.doi.org/10.17507/tpls.0501.24HORNBY, A. S., COWIE, A. P., ; LEWIS, J. W. (1974). “Oxford Advanced Learner’s?Dictionary of current English”. London, Oxford University Press
Pym, A. (2010). Exploring translation theories. London, Routledge.
The Japan times, 2018″Majority of Japanese university students don’t read books for pleasure, poll shows” The Japan times, online 28 Feb. Available at: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/02/28/national/majority-japanese-university-students-dont-read-books-pleasure-poll-shows/#.W1Irt9VKipp Accessed 20 July 2018.
The Japan times, 2018″Japan Tourism Agency aims to encourage more young people to travel overseas” The Japan times, online 11 Jan. Available at: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/01/11/national/japan-tourism-agency-aims-encourage-youngsters-travel-overseas/#.W1eHkNVKipo Accessed 20 July 2018.
Venuti, L, 1995. “The translator’s invisibility: a history of translation”. London, Routledge.
Venuti, L, 2001 “Strategies of Translation” In Baker, M (ed.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies. London ; New York: Routledge, pp.240-244.
Saisyo, A (2017). Interview with Takasaki for Fellow Academy “??????”,
16 January 2017. Available at
https://www.fellow-academy.com/fellow/pages/kobore/kobore124.jsp Accessed at 27 August 2018
Summary An interview about the episode when Saisyo translated me before you in the official homepage of the translation school has been posted. Although it is a romance novel, she replied that she wanted to tell more people the subject of this story that made them think deeply about dignity death. For that reason, she translated it with readable sentences and more realistic conversation in Japanese daily life.
Yamauchi, M, 2005 “??????????????????????”??????????” ??????????????p.167-192
online Available at http://repository.tufs.ac.jp/bitstream/10108/24091/1/acs073001.pdf accessed at 02 July 2018
“Viewpoint and tense in the novel: In the Japanese-English tense system when speaking as a reference point”
Summary This paper describes various differences in tense in English and Japanese. As a feature of Japanese in the novel, it is possible to change the tense freely depending on whether it is a narrator point of view or a person’s point of view. The use of non-past tense that is a form for talking in English is restricted overall.