My article on Japanese-English philosophical translation is now out in Tetsugaku: International Journal of the Philosophical Association of Japan.
Abstract: The influential and prolific philosopher and translator of philosophy James Heisig has argued for “desacralizing” translation into Japanese, and against “perfect translation” and for “thick translation” in Japanese to English translation. Heisig prioritizes broad appeal and readability over accuracy, bringing the translated philosopher into the reader’s space and facilitating an encounter on the latter’s terms rather than treating the author as a “sacred cow”. This article discusses Heisig’s programmatic statements on translation strategy in the context of the global dominance of English, the effects of declining language capabilities and unequal distribution of translation capabilities among Anglograph philosophers, the tendentially conservative and “domesticating” Anglospheric regime of translation, and the “foreignizing” alternatives found in Japanese translation history and in Schleiermacher, Nietzsche, Benjamin, and contemporary translation theorists. It suggests that learning from professional practices in the translation industry could help translating philosophers strike a suitable balance between domestication and foreignization.
Graham Parkes, David Williams, and Ouyang Xiao will be visiting Dublin and spending the afternoon of Tuesday 3rd April presenting and discussing their work on various aspects of Chinese and Japanese political thought.
A poster and programme with biographies and abstracts is available to download here.
April 2017 was dedicated to Miki Kiyoshi’s Notes on Life 人生論ノート on the NHK’s excellent “A Masterpiece in 100 minutes” 100分で名著 series. Each month, a major work by one thinker or an idea, such as pacifism or happiness, is examined by the two studio hosts and an invited specialist. Every episode since 2011 is available to view on NHK On Demand.
While Notes on Life may not be Miki’s philosophically most significant work, it is by far the most read. It was written for non-specialists during Showa Japan’s “dark valley” of war and repression. As of this year, it has been reprinted 108 times. And – as is pointed out in the programme – interest in it has increased in recent years.
I will eventually subtitle all four episodes, but for now the trailer will give you a foretaste of what is to come:
Shortly after arriving from Japan and 30 minutes after moving into a new apartment, I went to Ardmore House for a research seminar. This gave me an opportunity to introduce myself and my work to my new colleagues at UCD’s School of Philosophy.
The title was ““The Kyoto School as Comparative Political Thought: Ways forward after Seven Decades of a Dialogue of the Deaf.” The presentation slides can be read on academia.edu.