I’ve talked about translation quite a few times already on this blog (see here, here and here), but I thought it would be a good idea to talk specifically about the theory behind translation – and why you in particular, as an anime fan, should give a crap.
This will be a series of posts that covers a major translation theory/debate every week with a key focus on how it applies to anime and its fandom. I’m writing this for a non-specialist, non-academic audience, so I’ll try not to sound too technical or dry. Translators might find some of this stuff relevant to their craft, but this isn’t a guide on how to translate.
Hopefully, after reading a couple of these posts, you’ll have a more informed opinion on key fandom issues such as fansubbing, localisation, faithfulness, and, of course, DUBS VERSUS SUBS.
But before we get started, we need to ask ourselves the obvious question.
The year is 2014. Japanese cartoons featuring googly-eyed anime girls have taken over the world. What better way to spend your days in this post-apocalyptic world than to start a blog where you can freely
complain write about your love of anime?
In all seriousness, I really encourage anime fans to express themselves and to get involved in the community. So here’s a post advertising some up-and-coming blogs under the guise of an award.
This can be done well in theory.
Writing stories is one of those things that for some reason people seem to think is a cheap and easy thing to do until they actually get around to trying it themselves. Fanfiction authors have it the worst, of course. In theory, people know that a fanfiction can be good. Unfortunately, most fanfiction is crap. The reason that this is so is because, even more so than regular writing, fanfiction is incredibly hard to pull off convincingly.
I wrote this post to shed some insight on the fanfiction writing process – but of course most of this does apply to original writing as well, so anyone interested in stories and how they’re constructed should find this useful in some way. It’s a lot more involved than it looks.
Note: This is a lengthy post, which delves into academia and literary theory. I’ll try to explain it all in an accessible way, but nonetheless, I wouldn’t call this light reading.